Did you know car manufacturers such as Mercedes Benz, Ford and Volkswagen can trace their origins back to the early days of car production, even inventing the car at the end of the 19th century? In today’s blog post we will be taking a look at some fun facts about car manufacturers and renowned car brands.
The car industry is a complex world with many interesting facts and cars are exported all around the world. The car manufacturing industry is a huge part of American and German history and culture, with car brands like Volkswagen, GM or Chrysler being some of the oldest companies that have survived two World Wars, The Great Depression, recessions and more recently the bankruptcy.
Here are some fun car-related facts you may not know about car manufacturers and car brands:
1) The first car ever made was invented by Karl Benz in 1885, but the idea of creating an automobile can be traced back to 1769 when Nicolas Joseph Cugnot demonstrated his steam-powered tricycle that had three wheels and could carry four people.
2) Peugeot is one of the oldest car companies in the world, founded in 1810, but didn’t build car-like vehicles till the 1890s. Before that, they were in the iron industry.
3) The name “Volkswagen” originated from a German phrase meaning “people’s car”.
4) General Motors bought the german car brand Opel in 1929, which is Europe’s second-largest car manufacturer after Volkswagen, but sold it to Peugeot in 2017.
5) Seat, Škoda Audi, Bentley, Bugatti, Ducati (Bikes), Lamborghini and Porsche are all owned by Volkswagen today.
6) The Audi logo (four rings) originates from the merger of four car brands in 1932: Audi, DKW, Horch and Wanderer.
7) Audi has been owned by Volkswagen since 1969.
8) Chrysler was taken over by Fiat in 2014 and since 2021 was owned by Stellantis, a Dutch car company that was created after the merger of Citroen, Peugeot and Fiat-Chrysler.
Some car brands have an interesting history behind them that deserves to be shared and dates back to the invention of the car. Let’s have a closer look at some world-famous car brands:
The history of the invention of the car and the tree car pioneers Maybach, Benz and Daimler are interwoven, even though Gottlieb Daimler and Carl Benz never met in person. Mercedes Benz’s first car was produced in 1926 by Daimler-Benz AG, a German car manufacturer created after the merge of Daimler and Benz and named after the most successful car Mercedes.
The history of one of the world’s oldest car brands goes back to 1886 when Gottlieb Daimler and Wilhelm Maybach (who was part of Benz’ company till 1891) created their “motorwagen,” which they presented at the International World Exhibition as the first car, at the same time Karl Benz developed his first car.
Half a century later Henry Ford revolutionized manufacturing with the invention of the assembly line. That changed the way the world produces forever and made Ford step up their production, following the German car industry.
Opel car was first created in 1862 by Adam Opel. In 1857, the company started its production of sewing machines and then expanded to bicycles and carriages.
In 1899 they began car production under the name Opel. Their cars were very popular in Europe, especially after world war I and II where they were used as a car for officers or ambulances.
However, Opel was bought by General Motors in 1929 and is now owned by Stallantis.
One name – many brands. Over the years Volkswagen AG has merged with a lot of companies and now owns Seat, Škoda, Audi, Bentley, Bugatti, Ducati (Bikes), Lamborghini and Porsche. Ferdinant Prosche was a pioneer in the car industry and worked together with other engineers like Karl Benz to invent the car we know today.
Henry Ford is credited with inventing the car manufacturing process in 1913 that was used for most car companies today. He invented the assembly line which revolutionized not only car production but manufacturing in general. He wanted to give everyone an opportunity to own a car, so he introduced an inexpensive model called Model T in 1908. It was affordable and could be bought through installment plans.
Cadillac was originally founded by Henry Ford in 1899, but left it in 1902 and the Henry Ford Company was then named Cadillac, which was bought in 1909 by General-Motors.
More car-related fun facts
– In 1900, there were only 8 cars in New York City! By 1920, there were almost 2 million cars on America’s streets.
– GM stands for General Motors which is the largest car manufacturer in the world employing over 260 thousand workers around the globe.
– Volvo developed and patented the three-point harness, which the company licensed to everyone throughout the world to make everyone safer.
– Karl Benz is the inventor of the world’s three most important inventions according to TIME magazine: The Motorwagen, Injection pump and Carburetor.
– There are an estimated one billion cars in the world, with China leading car sales every year since 2009 by far.