Fossmobile Enterprises, created by Ron Foss of Burlington as a tribute to his grandfather who built the first gas-powered car in Canada, received the 2022 Richard Evans Prize from the Quebec Anglophone Heritage Network.
The award recognizes the tireless work undertaken by Fossmobile Enterprises – led by Ron – “to raise awareness of George Foote Foss and his revolutionary automobile” – the Fossmobile.
In April, a replica of the vehicle was unveiled at a special ceremony 125 years after the original Fossmobile rolled out of Foote Foss’ bicycle repair shop in Sherbrooke, Quebec.
Over the past three years, the family has spent “countless volunteer hours researching the Fossmobile and garnering advice and collaboration from automotive historians, restorers and other supporters in an effort to” reverse-engineer “a replica of the now long-lost Fossmobile, of which no blueprints (and only photographs) exist,” said a QAHN press release.
The tribute to Foss’ legacy will help redress an aspect of Canada’s technical and industrial heritage that has been largely overlooked, the statement said.
“This 19th century Eastern Townships automobile pioneer should be recognized and his invention brought back to life.
The car was donated to the Canadian Automotive Museum in Oshawa but will be shown at the Burlington Auto Show on Saturday July 9 and will be transported to Sherbrooke in August for a special three-day event in honor of George Foote Foss, organized by the Société historique de Sherbrooke and the city.
The National Association of Automobile Clubs of Canada has also requested the vehicle’s presence at the Cobble Beach Concours d’Elegance in September.