Centenary Ben climb for vintage car

Wild land charity and part owners of Ben Nevis the John Muir Trust (JMT) have reached an agreement with the organisers of a vintage car rally in Lochaber that will see a Model T Ford go to the summit. The event will mark the hundredth anniversary of the first drive up Ben Nevis in a Model T, a car generally regarded as the world's first mass produced vehicle.

Model T Ford, 139 kb
Model T Ford

The 1911 summit drive took several days, and involved some hauling and improvised track building. Perhaps it's surprising that the car finally made it at all, but unlike modern road cars the Model T was designed for a world where paved roads were almost non existent, and its toughness and all-terrain ability was famous.

The Ben Nevis climb of 1911, 210 kb
The Ben Nevis climb of 1911
© Ford

For this year's event the Model T will be carried, not driven. The vintage car, which has already been prepared by enthusiast Neil Tuckett, will be dismantled at Achintee, near Fort William, and assembled on the 1,344m summit of The Ben. The planned date for the carry is Wednesday 18 May, part of a week-long rally being organised for the Model T Register of Great Britain.

Local company No Fuss Events will co-ordinate the carry of the car with the support of Fort William Community Council, Friends of Nevis, the John Muir Trust, the Nevis Partnership and The Outdoor Capital of the UK (OCUK), working with the Ford Model T enthusiasts.

Following a meeting in Fort William between car enthusiasts and a number of local groups, JMT chairman John Hutchison said 'We are very pleased that all parties have reached agreement on an appropriate way to celebrate this event and we will be working to make it a success.'

Neil Tuckett said 'I congratulate everyone on reaching this agreement. This will be a fantastic event for the Fort William community and all owners are looking forward to seeing a Model T back on the summit.'

Offering administrative support, OCUK chair Marian Austin said 'We are pleased that this historic event is being commemorated and, to ensure safe procedures and insurance cover, we are seeking donations from anyone who would like to support it.'

Volunteers with hillwalking experience are needed to carry the Ford up to the summit. Anyone interested should contact No Fuss Events by emailing

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