1932 Ford Deuce Roadster with Flathead
Image Copyright John Filiss
Classic Hot Rods
In 1932, Ford changed automotive history by introducing his Flathead motor that made V-8 power affordable. The V-8 made 65 bhp at 3400 rpm, although the more conservative Society of Automotive Engineers set the net rating at 30 bhp.
One group that was particularly impressed with the Ford V-8 were gangsters. Both John Dillinger and Clyde Barrow (of Bonnie & Clyde fame) wrote to Henry Ford to express their satisfaction with the new vehicle. Below is the letter sent by Clyde Barrow to Henry Ford in April, 1934, exactly as written:
While I still have breath in my lungs I will tell you what a dandy car you make. I have drove exclusively when I could get away with one. For sustained speed and freedom from trouble the Ford has got ever other car skinned and even if my business hasen't been strictly legal it don't hurt anything to tell you what a fine car you got in the Ford V-8.
Clyde Champion Barrow