This 1914 Ford Model T Is the World’s Oldest RV, and It’s for Sale
Ever seen an RV that predates World War I?
The world's oldest known camper, a 1914 Ford Model T, is coming up for auction next month and it's estimated to go for much cheaper than you expect.
The honor belongs to the 1914 Ford Model T crossing the Bonhams auction block Sept. 10, at the Beaulieu National Motor Museum in England. The vehicle reportedly was commissioned in 1914, prior to World War I, and had its chassis lengthened and strengthened by a firm called Baico. Its body was assembled by Dunton of Reading, apparently known for its quality traditional caravans, and houses a "quartet of berths," according to the listing. (Presumably, that's the 1914 way of saying, "it has four beds.") Beneath polished pine floors sit storage lockers, another of which can be found under the leather bench that doubles as a couch and a front seat. Heat comes from a wood stove, and light from either brass lamps or drawing the velvet curtains.
The camper's original owners sold the vehicle in the 1920s, after which it was abandoned at an unknown point, according to the listing. It was rediscovered in the early 1970s in good condition, which allowed 95% of its body timber to be reused during a subsequent four-year restoration by a cabinetmaker. Since then, the camper has appeared at (and won) numerous Concours events—where, being a quaint little cottage on the back of a Model T, it's been hard to miss. Being the world's oldest RV doesn't hurt, either.
Automotive history like this rarely sells for an affordable amount, but this camper appears to be the exception to the rule. Its consignor Bonhams predicts a surprisingly low hammer price of between about $23,400 and $35,100, and that's including a full set of pots and pans and vintage memorabilia. It's being sold on a bill of sale as the registration hasn't been found, but it's hard to imagine that setting up the buyer for a kerfuffle over who really owns the world's oldest motorhome. If it does, well, then it's just something for its owner to blow off steam about at the pub. Or RV park.
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