When Scottish engineer Alexander Wilson founded a company that primarily built marine engines and pumps in 1857, he probably would not have ever possibly imagined that it would become a global car manufacturing superpower to the scale it has progressed to. The company at that time was called Alex Wilson & Company; eventually they became known as Vauxhall Motors.
In 1903 they built their first car, one with a single cylinder and no reverse gear. This year marks 110 years since that conception and more than a century of Vauxhall innovation.
A couple of years later saw a move to a seven acre site on the edge of Luton which they occupied until 2002, during the 97 years of production at the plant, Vauxhall manufactured 7,415,045 cars.
In 1925 General Motors Corporation acquired Vauxhall for $2.5 million, changing the company’s image, market and bringing an American influence to car production.
A fact that is not hugely known is that Vauxhall manufactured the Churchill tanks during the second world war, playing a significant part in victory by producing a whopping 7,000 to help Britain overcome the Nazi stronghold throughout Europe.
The four time winner of the European Car of the Year in 84, 86, 09 and 12 with the Astra, Carlton, Insignia and Ampera taking home the plaudits. Innovation and creativity has certainly never fallen far away. Their classic collection of cars feature the 30-98 model which was the first British vehicle to exceed 100mph, this vehicle had a significant impact on the evolution of Motorsport as rivals tried to emulate its success.
As one of Britain’s top companies to work for, they employ 35,000 workers who continue to make Vauxhall as strong as ever. They proceed to revolutionize the industry with groundbreaking stylish cars and components attracting public and corporate businesses.
Happy Birthday Vauxhall! Here’s to another 110 years.