If you wanted to tour a South American country known for wine, mountains, and incredible cuisine, then doing it in a Ford Model A is probably the best way to do it.
One lucky woman, writing for Driving.ca, managed to snag a tour of the Argentine countryside on the back of a Ford Model A. Sarah Staples described the journey as “an adventure that’s part classic road trip, part classic car.”
Her ride is a 1928 Phaeton Model A, a car that was purchased and then lovingly restored to factory original condition by Christian Paul Delaporte of Argentina’s Antique Tour Experience. Christian offers tours from the back of his Model A either around town or as larger journeys to see the attractions in the North of Argentina.
For the history buffs among you, Ford actually made two versions of the Model A. The first was the original made in 1903 and is considered one of the first cars ever made. It was powered by a 2-stroke engine that managed a whopping 8 horsepower. It was basically as close to a self-powered horse carriage as you can get, and it was often stymied by small rocks in the road.
The second Model A came around 1927 and was the successor to Ford’s first production car, the Model T. It was available in four colors (although nowadays you’ll find them in whatever color the owner wants), and had an inline 4-cylinder engine that put out a far more impressive 40 hp. Top speed was around 65 mph, but given the fact the roof is made of fabric and the windshield was so poorly fitted it did little to stop the on-rush of air, most kept it to a more stately 40 mph.
Staples was immediately smitten by the charm of such an older car, noting that modern vehicles don’t have as much character. "I especially love the little flourishes: the bugle-shaped car horn, for instance, or the radiator temperature hood-ornament gauge, called a ‘moto-meter,’ that’s shaped like an aircraft propeller,” she wrote.
Traveling from San Miguel de Tucumán to Salta is little over 300 KM, but at the speed of the Model A it took Sarah three days. Of course, she was touring vineyards, towns, and local cuisine all the while, so we can’t fault the Model A for the poor performance.
If you find yourself in Argentina, check out Christian’s website to maybe book your own tour. From the photos, it looks like Sarah had an awesome time.