A Card From Your Dealer Arrived…A Bit Late

Paul Niedermeyer
by Paul Niedermeyer
a card from your dealer arriveda bit late

No, its not a recall. But not surprisingly, he’s trying to sell you service for your Ford. Service has always been the big profit center for dealers, and nothing has changed in almost one hundred years.

To put those prices in perspective, multiply them by twelve. Try getting a new fender installed on your Fusion for sixty bucks. Or a tune up for twelve bucks and “a small charge for materials”. Fifty bucks to rebuild your front end suspension. While you’re at it, have your engine and transmission rebuilt for under $300, parts included.

(hat tip to Ray Charlton)

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  • Fred schumacher Fred schumacher on Mar 10, 2010

    As a retired North Dakota farmer, this postcard is interesting from several facets. The price of wheat back then was three times today's price, when measured in constant dollars. Even when adjusted for increased yields, it would have taken the production from fewer acres to buy and repair a vehicle. Although the inflation index for 1928 (the year of the postcard) was 12.5 to one, by 1933, deflation caused by the Great Depression had raised that to 16 to one. In North Dakota, we say there are three great crop years, 1918, 1942, and next year. In 1918, wheat prices were high and the crop was so good, that my father-in-law's parents could pay for their new farm house from the profits of one year's production from a quarter-section of land (160 acres). That's not possible today. That $3,500 real price for a Model T shows why automobiles took over personal transportation. Maxbass and Bottineau are 40 miles apart, a pittance of distance by North Dakota standards, but they were not on the same rail line. The Model T provided isotropic, schedule free transportation. Roads were terrible back then, but the Model T's high ground clearance and narrow tires on spoked rims allowed it to dig through the mud to reach firm ground farther down and be able to keep going on roads a modern 4-wheel drive couldn't handle. It's interesting too that the postal address required no more than a name and town. My father-in-law once received a letter meant for him but with his name totally mangled and addressed to a town 40 miles away. Luckily, a North Dakotan's sense of community is geographically expansive, and the creative postmaster forwarded the letter to the correct post office.

  • Windswords Windswords on Mar 10, 2010

    "To put those prices in perspective, multiply them by twelve." I would pick a higher number, because for years the true pace of inflation has been under estimated and recently our penchant for huge budget overruns has pushed real inflation even higher but it hasn't been reported officially. Problem is, I don't know what higher number to pick. Maybe someone here has a better guess.

  • Lou_BC "15mpg EPA" The 2023 ZR2 Colorado is supposed to be 16 mpg
  • ToolGuy "The more aerodynamic, organic shape of the Mark VIII meant ride height was slightly lower than before at 53.6 inches, over 54.2” for the Mark VII."• I am not sure that ride height means what you think it means.Elaboration: There is some possible disagreement about what "ride height" refers to. Some say ground clearance, some say H point (without calling it that), some say something else. But none of those people would use a number of over 4 feet for a stock Mark anything.Then you go on to use it correctly ("A notable advancement in the Mark VIII’s suspension was programming to lower the ride height slightly at high speeds, which assisted fuel economy via improved aerodynamics.") so what do I know. Plus, I ended a sentence with a preposition. 🙂
  • ToolGuy The dealer knows best. 🙂
  • ToolGuy Cool.
  • ToolGuy This truck is the perfect size, and the fuel economy is very impressive.-This post sponsored by ExxonMobil