AC Cars was founded by London based butcher John Portwine and engineer John Weller, who first got together in 1901 to set up a workshop in south London for the purpose of manufacturing motor vehicles.
For many decades Aston Martin has been well known for its production of very prestigious, high performance cars. The history of Aston Martin really began in 1913 when Singer distributors Lionel Martin & Robert Bamford produced a car based on an Isotta-Fraschini chassis with a 1400cc Coventry Simplex engine.
Herbert Austin (1866-1941) later to become Lord Austin designed his first car (a three wheeler) for Wolseley in 1895. In 1905 he founded his own car manufacturing business the Austin Motor Company in Longbridge, Birmingham. Production of Austin motor cars began in 1906 and the famous Austin Seven was first produced in 1921.
In 1945 Donald Mitchell Healey, a very capable auto engineer and successful racing driver, founded the Warwick based Healey Motor Company. But the history of the Austin-Healey Marque really started in 1952 at the Earls Court Motor show in London.
Bristol Cars Ltd have an esteemed reputation as low volume manufacturers of superbly made, prestigious cars. It is a reputation that was justly earned in the company's very early days and is one that has remained with them ever since.
British production of Ford cars began in the 1910's at Trafford Park, Manchester, with the American designed Ford Model T, and a little later on the Model A being constructed there. Up until the early 1920's the Model T was the Britain's best selling car.
It was in 1922 when Jaguar founder William Lyons (later Sir William Lyons) set up his first business - the Swallow Sidecar Company, which was based in Blackpool and built motorcycle sidecars. In 1926 this business expanded into the Swallow Sidecar and Coach Building Company, which apart from the sidecars now also built coachwork for other car manufacturers.
The two brothers, Alan and Dick Jensen first established a coachbuilding company in the 1920's, and the first bodywork that they produced was fitted on to an Austin Seven chassis. It was a low and sleek car that performed well.
The Lotus marque is now legendary, and you cannot mention the name Lotus without thinking of the man behind it all – Colin Chapman, a man now justly regarded by many as a legend in his own all too short lifetime.
MG is probably one of the most famous names in British Motoring history. MG actually stood for Morris Garages, who were the Oxford distributors for Morris Cars Ltd., both of which were owned by William Morris.
The idea behind the Mini originated in the mid 1950's and stemmed from a desire of the then head of BMC, Leonard lord, to add a small economical but practical car to his Austin & Morris ranges.
William Morris, the son of a draper's assistant was born in 1877 in Worcester. The Morris family later moved to Cowley on the outskirts of Oxford, where William Morris started work as an employee of a local cycle firm.
Like some of the other pioneering British car manufacturers, Riley had been previously been involved in the manufacture of bicycles. It was in 1898 that the first Riley car,the single cylinder voiturette designed by Percy Riley, appeared on the roads of Britain.
The Rover car story really began when the Rover Cycle Company, which was founded in 1896, progressed into the manufacture of Motor Vehicles in 1904. A motor cycle had been produced a year earlier in 1903 but this was soon followed by an 8 hp single cylinder car designed by E.W. Lewis who had previously worked as senior draughtsman for Daimler.
The history of Sunbeam goes back as far as 1887 when a Wolverhampton metal worker by the name of John Marston, set up a company producing high quality bicycles.
Triumph was established in Coventry in 1885 as a bicycle manufacturing business. The company then went on to produce its first motorcycle in 1902 and a three-wheel car followed in 1903.
Frederick York Wolseley was born in Ireland in 1870. At the age of 17 he moved to Australia where he set up the Wolseley Sheep Shearing Company Limited which manufactured sheep shearing equipment.