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Lot 57
1929 Ford Model A Moxie Horse-Mobile


• Sure to be welcomed in car shows and exhibitions
• Easy-to-maintain mechanics; professional quality construction
• Rarely seen on the market
• Attracts attention wherever it goes; ideal for horsing around

200 cid L-head inline four-cylinder engine, 40 HP, Zenith carburetor, three-speed manual transmission, remote steering, solid front axle with transverse leaf spring, live rear axle with frame mounted transverse leaf springs, four-wheel mechanical drum brakes; wheelbase: 103.5”

If your parents or great grandparents lived in the New England area at the start of the 20th Century, they probably heard of, or maybe consumed Moxie Sodas. Originated around 1876 by Augustin Thompson in Lowell, Massachusetts, he claimed it contained an extract from a rare, unnamed South American plant, which is now known to have been gentian root. He asserted Moxie was effective against paralysis, softening of the brain, nervousness, and insomnia. He claimed the name came from a mysterious friend of his, Lieutenant Moxie, but most historians believe the origins for Moxie was taken from a native American word for dark water as it was used within the names for several lakes and rivers in Maine. In the 1880s, Thompson added soda water to his formula and changed the name to Moxie Nerve Food and was one of America’s first bottled soft drinks. As the acceptance of such beverages became more common, Moxie started a campaign to advertise and promote their products with signs and billboards. The word “moxie” even made into the American language and if a person had a lot of vim and vigor and a positive attitude, they could be described as “having a lot of moxie!” As early as 1918, the first Moxie Horse-Mobile was produced, and it is believed that as many as 12 different cars were used throughout the 1920s and well into the mid-1930s. To date, only one known original survives, but in the late 1990s, a craftsman out of Pennsylvania received permission from the current owners of the Moxie brand, Coca-Cola, to produce a limited number of replicas. No two of those are alike as a variety of chassis and parts were employed. Unfortunately, there is no accurate record of what automobiles were used and those cars are believed to be in private collections, hidden away from the general public.

Rarely does a product-mobile with presence like this ever come up for auction. This uniquely presented example is based on a 1929 Ford Model A. The engine and chassis have been restored and it is reported to operate much like a regular passenger car. A life-size horse statue was created in sturdy fiberglass and mounted to a custom-built platform mounted to the chassis. This majestic white stallion is probably the only horse you will ever see with beautiful blue eyes! The operator of this vehicle sits atop the horse in a full-size authentic leather saddle which has been securely strapped to the model along with original bridle, complete with reins attached to the bit in order to control the horse’s movement. The actual steering for the car was re-routed up through the horse’s body via several Universal joints using a period four-spoke steering wheel. Foot controls for the gas, brake and clutch were relocated to raised platforms on both sides of the horse and a handcrafted shifting rod wrapped in rope that is topped off with a replica .45 caliber revolver which is gripped when one wants to change gears. A special windshield was created using brass mounts on the cowl to hold it in place and a 10-gallon fuel tank is mounted on the right side of the horse, held in place with polished brass straps and fitted with a brass spin-off fuel filler cap. The platform is covered in green artificial turf with a rear-mounted spare tire, while the hubcap replicates a large Moxie bottle cap. The Ford Model A grille has a protective screen at the front topped with the quail radiator mascot and a sign mounted to the headlight bar tells folks to “Uphold Prohibition”. The B. F. Goodrich Silvertown blackwall tires are mounted on genuine wire wheels painted red to match the bodywork. We imagine special skills would need to be developed to drive and control this wild steed, but it is sure to be the best attention getter you could ever ask for and will stand high above the crowd wherever this unique car is shown. Saddle up!

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