"the old Model T Ford she then drove"
Science Museum, London - Model T Ford
Creative Commons AttributionScience Museum, London - Model T Ford - Credit: DanieVDM

The Model T Ford, or 'Tin Lizzie' as it affectionately became known, was launched in Detroit by Henry Ford's Motor Company in 1908. The innovative methods behind its production -- it was the first motor vehicle to undergo mass production on a factory line -- meant that owning a car was suddenly an affordable option for many people (it initially sold for $850). The first models had to be crank started and, as Sean O'Grady points out in The Independent, 'the T creeps forward as soon as you start, so you have to scuttle round quickly to get in.' Broken fingers, thumbs and arms were another downside. Gertrude Stein evidently had much affection for her Model T, which she called 'Lady Godiva' and highlighted as a symbol of Modernism.