Ford’s miniature Model A was designed with some practical matters in mind

Written by By Kayti Burt, CNN Chicago, Illinois Proving that no car is too old to be a museum piece, Ford Motor Company created a miniature version of the Model A it made in…

Ford's miniature Model A was designed with some practical matters in mind

Written by By Kayti Burt, CNN Chicago, Illinois

Proving that no car is too old to be a museum piece, Ford Motor Company created a miniature version of the Model A it made in 1906 before the Model T was even a glimmer in its founder’s eye.

The Model A, which uses a rectangular car, was a throwback to a simpler time — before front seats, independent axles and refrigerators. But because the car’s chassis was so large, it needed some reconfiguring in order to seat three people.

Standing at just eight inches in length, it comes equipped with a beat up wooden seat from which you can see over the driver’s shoulder. The front bumper also provides protection from the occasional bumps in the road and the passenger seat has enough padding to ride in comfortably, even when forced to stand.

Ford’s miniature Model A comes equipped with a beat up wooden passenger seat. Credit: Kristy Spang/Turner Collection

Credit: Kristy Spang/Turner Collection

Credit: Kristy Spang/Turner Collection

When the Model A wasn’t in use as a pedal car, its drivers spent their time riding it on an 11-foot long rolling frame. In a 1904 advertisement for the car in Popular Mechanics, Ford explains that the Model A is made of an alloy “concrete-foot or tire-proof, inter-auto-tube, steel-reinforced steel, rubber or hard rubber material.”

Aside from serving as a promotional vehicle for the automobile, the car has also been in the spotlight for years as a trophy of sorts. It’s part of a group of vintage cars created by Los Angeles-based artist Daniel Blau at Turner Contemporary for Turner Contemporary’s upcoming exhibition “Skunk Works,” which explores the contributions of makers who labored in olden days.

Over the next two months, museum-goers will be able to see Blau’s miniaturized machines including the Model A, along with sculptures that emulate Morris Minor, Pinta and Breguet watches. There’s also a Tickle Me Elmo Batch of Toys featuring the childhood toy that went viral in 1997.

Turner Contemporary’s Miniature Gallery is open from June 27, through September 23. Admission is free.

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