What they don't factor in is that horsepower & torque are at least 10 times that of the Model T.
What morons the Detroit News has:
"Ford's Model T, which went 25 miles on a gallon of gasoline, was more fuel efficient than the current Ford Explorer sport-utility vehicle -- which manages just 16 miles per gallon."
-- Detroit News, 6/4/03
If they were talking about the 1909 model, the engine was an L-head four displacing 176.7 cubic inches (about 2.9 liters) with a 4.5-to-1 compression ratio that produced 22 horsepower at 1,600 rpm.
The 2009 Ford Explorer with the 4.6 liter V8 makes 292 horsepower @ 5,700 rpm -- there is a slight difference there!!
Torque on the Exploder
is 315 @ 4,000 -- I'd guess that the Model T with such a low HP peak is probably in the range of 35-50 ft./lbs. of torque.
They're comparing apples to hubbard squash for the sake of their story