Which model of car was named after Henry Ford's son?


A 1958 Edsel Pacer 2-Door hardtop

If it weren't for Henry Ford, car culture would look very different. Between the Ford hot rods built in the 50's, to the Mustang, the original pony car and all its variants, not to mention the number of muscle cars it inspired, Ford has been quite a force for automotive culture. 

There's one car however, that he probably wishes he had named differently. 

In late 50's, Ford was experimenting with some new technology and configurations, and decided to name this car after his son. Unfortunately, that turned out to have possibly been a mistake. 

So, which model of car was named after Henry Ford's son?

The answer is the Ford Edsel. 

The Edsel was a marque marketed as the car of the future, and built to compete with Chrysler and General Motors. It was only sold by the Ford Motor Company during the 1958, 1959, and 1960 model years.

Initially, marketing research and development happened under the code name "E car", which stood for "experimental car." Ford decided to name this new car the "Edsel", in honor of Edsel B. Ford, son of the company's founder, Henry Ford, despite objections from Henry Ford II.

Sadly, the public thought the Edsel was unattractive, overpriced, and over hyped. It never gained popularity with contemporary American car buyers and sold poorly. All in all, the Ford Motor Company lost $250 million on Edsel development, manufacturing, and marketing. 

The very word "Edsel" became a popular symbol for failure.

 

For more car model name history, check out our Ultimate Taxonomy of Names of Cars art print 

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