Almost 100 years since the founding of Ford Motor Company of Australia Ltd in 1925, Ford’s online Heritage Vault has added more than 180 photos and brochures of some of the brand’s most interesting and iconic models sold down under between 1960 and 2002, with more to follow soon.
Following the opening of the vault in June 2022 with 5,000 images, which created unprecedented web traffic from around the world, Ford’s new Australia upload includes images and brochures covering Anglia to Zephyr and everything in between, including Escort, Econovan, Falcon, Meteor, Spectron, and Transit.
Ford created the Heritage Vault for fans, journalists, and car enthusiasts, making it easy to discover the company’s rich heritage from anywhere in the world. The searchable artifacts are downloadable for personal use, free of charge, as one of the auto industry’s most comprehensive online databases.
To date, almost 12,000 curated Ford and Lincoln photographs and product brochures from the first century of the company’s history have been made available to the public online for the first time. The site has around 5,000 downloads per day.
Visitors from more than 170 countries have searched the vault, with Australian search volume making it one of the top five locations in the world.
“We’re opening up in a way we’ve never done before,” said Ford archive and heritage brand manager, Ted Ryan. “Making our archives accessible for everyone online is a real passion project for me and the team. Looking back through Ford’s history not only helps to educate but can serve as inspiration as we accelerate our transformation as a company.”
From the hundreds of Australian images and brochures on offer, there are some absolute gems in the mix, such as:
A 1909 Ford Model T brochure espousing the virtues of Vanadium steel and committing to the production of 25,000 ‘Tin Lizzies’ in a year [LINK].
The 1983 Ford Fairlane was the recipient of a Good Design Award and had success as a luxury car that “is tough enough to handle the wide-open spaces yet is equally at home among the bright city lights” [LINK].
The 1975 Ford Escort Outback that was “built strong to take Australia in its stride,” boasting a pop-top roof “for stand-up headroom”, an awning, optional 12V fridge, sink, a couch that could be converted into a bed for two, and more [LINK].
4×4 expert, Peter Barnes, who waxed lyrical about his 1993 Ford Courier, saying in a print advertisement, “I reckon it’s near bullet-proof,” [LINK].
Every Australian motoring enthusiast had a soft spot for Ford’s XR range of utes, from the 172kW XR6 to the 200kW XR8. A Falcon ute range brochure from 2002 kicks off with the XR8, saying “If the smell of roasting rubber doesn’t tell you what the XR8 is all about, the special quad lamp front end will” [LINK].