Facts about Ford: 30 Unknown Things About the 2nd-Largest Car Company in the World

How well do you know your Ford cars? Well, you can test your skill with our list of interesting and unbeknown facts about Ford.


Commonly known as ‘Ford’, the Ford Motor Company is best known as a legendary car manufacturing company. It is renowned for debuting as the first auto manufacturer to automate production with an assembly line, pay workers a so-called fair daily wage and produce vehicles for the mass-market and everyday consumer.


An American multinational automobile manufacturer, Ford was founded by Henry Ford in June 16, 1903. The company sells automobiles and commercial vehicles under the Ford brand and luxury cars under its Lincoln luxury brand. Ford is the second-largest U.S.-based automaker (behind General Motors) and the fifth-largest in the world (behind Toyota, Volkswagen, Hyundai and General Motors) based on 2015 vehicle production. In this blog, we have covered unique facts about Ford that are unknown to a majority of us.


Facts about Ford: Inception and Initial Days


  1. Ford is the second-largest family-owned company in the world. Henry Ford’s great-grandson, William Clay Ford, Jr. currently resides as the company’s executive chairman.
  2. The ‘Henry Ford Company’ was Henry Ford’s first attempt at a car manufacturing company and was established on November 3, 1901. This became the Cadillac Motor Company on August 22, 1902, after Ford left with the rights to his name.
  3. Although the company went public in 1956, the Ford family, through special Class B shares, still retains 40% of the voting rights.
  4. The first president was not Ford, but local banker John S. Gray, who was chosen in order to assuage investors’ fears that Ford would leave the new company the way he had left its predecessor.
  5. The very first Ford sold was to Dr. Pfennig in 1903, for a grand total of $850. The “Model A” had a 2-cylinder engine and could reach a max speed of 30 mph
  6. Ford’s current CEO, William Clay Ford, Jr., or Bill Ford, currently owns the first Ford vehicle ever sold in 1903.


Facts about Ford: Henry Ford and Thomas Edison


  1. Before Henry Ford became the most well-known name in American vehicles, he worked for Thomas Edison at the Edison Illuminating Company in Detroit, Michigan.
  2. Edison encouraged Ford to work on gasoline-powered engines when the idea caught his imagination.
  3. As requested by Ford, Thomas Edison’s son captured Edison’s last exhale in a test tube and sealed it with a cork. Ford kept the tube as a memorial to Edison’s “life and breath.”


Facts about Ford: Signature Logo and ‘Go-Green’


  1. Ford’s signature blue, oval logo was not introduced until 4 years after the company had already been in production.
  2. Ford was one of the first companies to “go green” and use natural materials in its production.
  3. During the early 1930s, Ford factories were using biofuels. The factories would burn human and animal waste as fuel, powering their machinery with renewable resources.


Facts About Ford: Employees’ Retention


  1. In 1914 Ford offered its employees double the current market average, creating Henry Ford’s “$5-a-day.”
  2. The new salary, accompanied by a shorter working day and company profit sharing, minimized employee turnover, and was significant in growing the middle class and fair wages movement. Henry Ford was quoted saying he wanted to help his workers to a “life” not just a “living.”
  3. Ford introduced methods for large-scale manufacturing of cars and large-scale management of an industrial workforce using elaborately engineered manufacturing sequences typified by moving assembly lines.
  4. By 1914, the methods used by Ford were known around the world as ‘Fordism’.
  5. In 2008, Ford produced 5.532 million automobiles and employed about 213,000 employees at around 90 plants and facilities worldwide.


Facts About Ford: The Mustang and Top Models


  1. In 1964, after Ford debuted the Mustang, 94,000 pedal-powered toy Mustangs were bought for children the following Christmas season.
  2. In 1965, a Ford Mustang was transported in 4 separate pieces to the observation deck of the Empire State Building, using resident elevators, where it was reassembled and photographed by helicopter. The car was later reassembled inside the building until it was eventually taken apart and removed from the building 5 months later.
  3. The only car that Jim Morrison, legendary Doors singer, ever owned was a 1967 Shelby GT 500.
  4. Chevrolet actually used a Ford SuperDuty to set up their Chevy Truck display at the Texas State Fair in 2012.
  5. When former President Gerald Ford was describing his no-nonsense, style of governing, he was quoted as saying, “I’m a Ford, not a Lincoln,” comparing President Lincoln’s eloquence with Lincoln, the luxury car company owned by Ford Motor Company.
  6. Ford F-Series has been consistently ranked as the #1 selling car in America so far in 2013.
  7. There’s a reason the first Ford model most of us are familiar with is the Model T. Henry Ford didn’t pick the letter at random; Ford went through nineteen unsuccessful models of car before their twentieth, the Model T, found success.
  8. Ford also owns Brazilian SUV manufacturer Troller, an 8% stake in Aston Martin of the United Kingdom and a 32% stake in China’s Jiangling Motors.
  9. The company is listed on the New York Stock Exchange and is controlled by the Ford family; they have minority ownership but the majority of the voting power.
  10. Ford’s former UK subsidiaries Jaguar and Land Rover, acquired in 1989 and 2000 respectively, were sold to the Indian automaker Tata Motors in March 2008.
  11. In 2011, Ford discontinued the Mercury brand, under which it had marketed entry-level luxury cars in the United States, Canada, Mexico, and the Middle East since 1938.


Facts About Ford: Other Ventures


  1. Established in 1949 by Henry Ford II, Ford Fund is a nonprofit corporate foundation financed by contributions from Ford Motor Company. In 2017, it contributed $63 million to various causes with a focus on education, driving safely and community building.
  2. The Ford Driving Skills for Life program is a driver safety program aimed at teens that were developed together with the Governors Highway Safety Association and safety experts.


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