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How did Ford’s Model A make cars run faster?
High-speed foils were added and removed by camera-based Winstein locks.
For the first Model A prototype, Henry Ford did not want the car to be faster than the Model T. He instead thought it would keep pace with the road. In August 1907, J.T. Matson, an engineer at Ford’s Dearborn company, noticed that the brakes suddenly shot upward when the car slowed to an angle more than 100 degrees. From there, the pedals moved faster and faster—about eight times as fast as usual. “This is driving by sensation, not logic,” said a baffled Matson.
Finally, Ford agreed. Ford devised and supervised research on the new Brake Gravity Gatling Gun. As designed, a hydraulic fluid pumped through the Gun and jettisoned as the vehicle slowed. The hydraulic fluid would then recombine in the positive hydraulic pressure after braking, which would tilt the car’s wheels sideways, speeding the production process.