Last fall there was a thread about the Car and Driver race between a new Tesla Model S and a 1915 Ford Model T. If you are interested, the magazine is now out. I think the article is quite entertaining.
Has anyone else seen it?
A neighbor brought the magazine over last week. But I have not got to it yet.
Here's the 2013 thread: http://www.mtfca.com/discus/messages/331880/395337.html?1382070989
And here's a reaction at a Tesla forum: http://www.teslamotors.com/sv_SE/forum/forums/car-driver-race-model-s-vs-model-t
I read the article on the web over Xmas, interesting that cost was never mentioned. I mean the T probably is worth about $15,000 and the Tesla costs around $55,000. And it only won by an hour.... Maybe they should have tried against a 1967 VW Bug, I'm sure the Bug would have won by 5 hours. Electrics are OK for short city runs, but useless for longer trips and definitely the economics are just not there when initial cost is factored in the equation...
Congratulations Chris and Dave!
Considering most people (even us country folks) mostly run short trips, I see electric vehicles as being an really important part of the transportation mix in the future. An electric car may not be ideal for 100% of your transportation needs, but I bet it would fill 75% of them or better.
I love how defensive some of the Tesla guys are on their forum. I think they're missing the fun aspect of the whole race.
Ford is now playing with solar cars:
Wasn't a fair race. Chris and David are two of the best Model T mechanics out there. Not to mention long distance drivers. The Tesla folks just had factory technicians.
Chris, this is a great story that I hadn't seen. Won't you please put it up on the HCCA website, too?
I'll bet the trip was a lot of fun. I really enjoyed the article, especially the artistic license used in the description of the "Ruckstell?"
Seeing as tax payers are subsidizing every electric car sold,they will never be a success,until they stand on their own. Once the politicians figure out they (electric cars )are not paying their fair share of road tax,and should be proportionally more expensive to license,they will really lose popularity. Or the roads will all go to heck.
An electric car may do for 75% of my driving! but I still need another vehicle to haul things and pull trailers. By the time I pay for insurance on 2 vehicles, license, taxes, etc, all savings are gone. I'll keep driving my pickup!
The Tesla is a glorious failure. It will soon be gone from the marketplace. If the Model T had been better prepared it would have arrived first. In any case a poor showing for the ridiculously expensive Tesla.
Actually, the Model T was very well prepared. I don't think there are too many basically stock T's that would stand up to what we put it through.
Our problem was a lack of fuel pressure when we got down below a half tank of fuel. At the speeds we were running for the length of time we were doing it, we did not have enough fuel at the carburetor. We ended up stopping every hour and a half or so through the night (which was just fine with me) just to fill up.
But 719 miles for the Tesla vs. 765 miles for the Model T wasn't very fair - maybe the T could have won in a race over equal distances?
The irony is ....
Tesla is likely to be noted in history as
the first significant mass marketed electric car
Just like the Model T - it has its' place in history
Personally - I think it is great that the company is succeeding
Regarding government subsidies .....
There are tens of thousands of Federal Failures
that cost the taxpayers trillions of the years
Royce--How on Earth can you suggest that this T was not sufficiently prepared? Look what it and the drivers accomplished!
If you meant to say it wasn't sufficiently modified (perhaps with a fuel pump?), then I think you miss the point of running a basically stock T.
Great showing, Chris and Dave!
Why would the T not run right at less than half a tank? I don't have that problem. Was there a Grose Jet in the carburetor?
Ok, let's put this into perspective, who here has run their Model T for 22 hours straight at 50+ mph. They stopped only for gas and minor repairs. That sounds like they were prepared.
Agreed, it was a fantastic effort, one to be proud of.
What was causing the problem?
Sounds like they were going so fast the fuel couldn't catch up with the carburetor. I drive my Model T much slower and don't have that issue.
I haven't run into that problem on my Model T, but I certainly did on my 1971 Plymouth GTX - I had to install a Hemi fuel pump because the stock 440 pump couldn't keep up with the engine's fuel demand at the top end of second gear.
Chris, just found out about the article at our Model-T club meeting today. Bought the magazine on our way home and am still laughing at some of the more humorous comments on David's T. You know, given the difference in miles driven, it should have been a very close race, and with a stock carb, you probably could have won according to Jessica's prediction. Well done to both you and David.
The Tesla may be the car of the year for 2013, but let us not forget that the Model-T Ford was unanimously voted CAR OF THE CENTURY!
The Tesla vs. Model T race was a clever idea in the same manner as was “The Tortoise & the Hare.” And if you’ll pardon my use of mixed metaphors, this was, for both cars, a “fish out of water” story and in that way, fair. I thought the whimsical, tongue-in-cheek writing style of the article was in keeping with the fact that nobody was really going to prove anything we didn’t already know: The Model T crew would invest more physical effort and endure the effects of weather, whereas the Tesla crew would comfortably travel in style, and get plenty of rest.
That the Tesla won by an hour sort of begs the question of whether, in the case of an automobile race, beating the competition by an hour isn’t decisive, but that kind of nit-picking would miss the point, here. Still, I’m a Model T guy and can’t help but remember the Ocean-to-Ocean reenactment race of 2009, wherein over fifty of these cars completed the trip from New York to Seattle. Had Chris and Dave’s ’15 Touring only been equipped with a thicker fuel line, they’d have beaten the Tesla by at least an hour and we’d all be gloating even more.
All rib-elbowing aside; congratulations, Chris and Dave! What a great adventure—and what an incredible job you guys did! I loved the article and a blind man could see through a brick wall that a whole lot of time and effort went into it.
Thank you all. It was a lot of fun. I'm not sure I'd do it again, but it was fun. Ok...I probably would.
One thing the article left out (which we hoped would be included) was that we were roommates at McPherson College. Needless to say, it probably wasn't the first silly thing we were involved in together.
The article is now online with a lot more photos than were in the magazine. Here's a link:
I wish that they had picked me to race them.
OK so the T would have been more reliable if it had a Model T ignition system. The Rayfield carb is a nice accessory, but either a Stromberg OF or an NH Straight thru might have been better choices.
Still a great accomplishment, and well done.