Kiwis build Model T in under 3mins

A team of six has built, started and driven a vintage car in less than three minutes, in a bid for vehicular history on Sunday.

The team assembled a Ford Model T in two minutes and 40 seconds outside Levin's Horowhenua Events Centre.

Team member Jeff Fox, of Manakau, said there were about 16 major steps in assembling and running the Model T, the world's first mass-produced car.

He said the trickiest bit was slotting the drive shaft into the rear of the transmission, or gear box, at a point called the universal joint.

The person performing the task had to do it on his own - assistance could see him get his fingers ''chopped up'' if others helped and pushed too hard while he lined up the mechanisms.

''So that's a delicate bit.''

Mr Fox said it was only the third attempt at assembling a Model T for the team that fronted on Sunday.

''We did a practise last Monday night, walked through it - that was three minutes 10.''

The team bettered that by two seconds in their first attempt as part of the Early Times Transport and Machinery Show.

They regrouped and made another run two hours later - producing the stunning sub-three-minute effort.

Mr Fox said the team was more relaxed for the second attempt, which meant members didn't ''try too hard'' to beat their previous time.

Now they will seek to have the time recognised by Guinness World Records, but that could be tough with no standard global format for Model T assembly racing.

The team comprised Kapiti and Horowhenua members of the Horowhenua branch of the New Zealand Vintage Car Club.

They were Riley and Bernard Scott, Andrew Heffey, Mr Fox, Ivan Horn and Graham Henry. The Model T used in the event is owned by Mr Horn.

Kapiti Observer