How Many Months’ Salary To Buy A New Ford?

I found this photo when I was researching my last post about the 50th anniversary Ford. It appeared in a June 1953 newspaper, and the caption reads:

Fifty years ago, when Ford Motor Company was founded, the average man would have worked 17 months to earn enough money to buy a runabout consisting of little more than a two cylinder engine and a buggy frame. Today the cost of a Ford car similar to those above is equal to the wages an average man earns in 3 1/2 months.

So, in 1953 the “average” man could purchase a new Ford with wages earned in the span of 3 1/2 months. How does that compare to today? According to the Social Security Administration, the average annual salary for Americans in 2019 was $51,916.27. Most new Fords would take every bit of that!