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Doctor T: 1927 Ford Model T Doctor’s Coupe

031716 Barn Finds - 1927 Ford Model T 1

The Model T is towards the very top of my master wish-list. This 1927 Ford Model T Doctor’s Coupe, found in Santa Ynez, California here on Craigslist, is all original according to the seller. The asking price is $10,000, which may seem a bit high when looking at other examples for sale though.

031716 Barn Finds - 1927 Ford Model T 2

1927 was the last year for the venerable Model T and they made about 400,000 of them that year, compared to over 1,500,000 the prior year. About 15 million were made altogether in its twenty year history. They made almost 90,000 of these coupes and I think that they’re the most desirable body style. Of course, if you spent the money and restored this car you’d be upside down on the value and I actually like the look of this original finish. I would make sure the mechanicals were sound and just attempt to drive it.

031716 Barn Finds - 1927 Ford Model T 3

The price of this car would have been around $360 car in 1927 when the annual income was around $1,000, give or take. Of course, as is the case with average salaries, doctors made more than $1,000 a year in 1927. They didnt formally call this model of Model T a Doctor’s Coupe when they were new, but apparently they were popular with country doctors because they were reliable, had a top for inclement weather, and a truck to haul medical gear.

031716 Barn Finds - 1927 Ford Model T 4

Production of the Model T was halted halfway through 1927 so they could gear up for the upcoming Model A, which probably explains the relatively-low production numbers. These were tough cars and if you’ve ever driven one, you know that they would be almost totally theft-proof today. Most new drivers can’t even drive a manual transmission equipped vehicle let alone one with, well, here’s a little demonstration on YouTube. I really like this car, but I don’t know if I would pay $10,000 for it in this condition. What do you think – do you like these coupes and is this one worth keeping original or would you restore it?


  1. JW454

    The pool of people who can relate to these cars is quickly diminishing. At this price, I don’t see as many potential buyers as there once was. It’s a lot of money for a novelty. I like them but the time I would want to own one has passed for me too.

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  2. angliagt

    10,000 Keys? – I don’t think anyone caught the reference in the title

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  3. z1rider

    Theft proof? I agree. Hard to believe that once upon a time, when Model T’s all by themselves constituted over half of the worldwide population of cars on the road, driving one was familiar to more drivers than cars with conventional transmissions.

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  4. Terry J

    Henry Ford, the truly great visionary, thought that the Model T would satisfy the needs of the motoring public through the rest of the 20th century. Edsel fought for modernization since the competition by the late 20’s had passed up the Tin Lizzie in advancements. He actually had a syncromesh transmission fitted to a Model T in the R&D shop and didn’t tell Dad. When he took Henry for a drive old Dad was impressed with the tranny, but so mad at Edsel for his sneakiness that he banished him to the remote fringe of the empire (California). BUT a modern transmission was used on the Model A, the car that many thought should have been named after Edsel. : -) Terry J

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    • David

      That would have been kind of hard for Edsel to do, since synchromesh transmissions didn’t exist until 1928, and were developed by GM. And, since Edsel never installed a synchromesh tranny in a Model T, he never showed one to his Dad, and his Dad never banished him to California. In fact, his Dad made him president of the Company. Good try, though.

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    • Marty Member

      The Model A transmission has sliding gears, but I don’t think qualifies as being “modern” in the sense that it is not synchronized.

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  5. Terry J

    Pardon the wrong term David. Here’s a bit of an excerpt from one of many biographies that touched on the subject. Of course the rouge “employees” were under Edsels direction in their quest to modernize the Model T.

    Alfred P. Sloan, Jr., began to offer inexpensive Chevrolets with amenities that the Model T lacked. Instead of the sturdy but antiquated planetary transmission, it had a smooth three-speed. Dealers clamored for a new Ford that would strike the fancy of the more demanding and sophisticated consumers.
    But Henry Ford refused even to consider replacing his beloved Model T. Once, while he was away on vacation, employees built an updated Model T and surprised him with it on his return. Ford responded by kicking in the windshield and stomping on the roof. “We got the message,” one of the employees said later, “As far as he was concerned, the Model T was god and we were to put away false images.” Only one person persisted in warning him of the impending crisis: his son, Edsel.

    Terry J

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  6. Terry J

    A little more on the subject David: During the design of the Model A in 1927, Henry Ford assured mechanical quality and reliability, allowing his son to develop the body, with the help of designer József Galamb. Edsel also prevailed upon his father to allow the inclusion of four-wheel mechanical brakes and a sliding-gear transmission on this model. ( TJ: This was done with considerable conflict as previously noted)The resulting Model A was a commercial success, selling over four million during four years of production.

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  7. Terry J

    In a few minutes research, I don’t find a timeline for Edsel in California, though Ford opened a new plant in San Jose in 1930. Years ago I read a biography about Henry (and Edsel) that spoke of the conflict between them specifically Edsels fight to replace the Model T. I suppose the “banishment” the author referred to was Edsels involvement in the initial planning of the San Jose plant. My guess is that there was many times that Edsel ran for cover to escape Dads abuse. Does that explanation meet with your approval David? Terry J

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  8. angliagt

    Sorry – I was referring to the movie-
    “The 10,000 Keys of Dr.T”,starring
    Jonathon Harris,who played Dr. Smith
    in “Lost in Space”.

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  9. Dennis M

    Flat top T’s have always been on my favorites list.

    Lose the fenders, chop the top, drop in a flathead V8 – than you have something worth keeping!

    Like 0

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