Peugeot was founded way back at the wee end of the 19th century in 1882 as a bicycle manufacturer – however there had been manufacturing in the facility and company since the 1700s, just not wheels and wheeled human powered or motor powered vehicles. In 1889 Armand Peugeot became very interested in automobiles, and fancied the idea of having a horseless vehicle that could power itself with fuel. First designs were of a 3 wheeled steam powered engine, which was abandoned straight off after he saw what was going on with Daimler – he switched to internal combustion and signed a contract with Daimler.

Peugeot logo

The vehicle produced had a three point ‘bump suppression’ otherwise known as suspension system along with sliding gears. A year later in 1892 production began to ramp up with one short of thirty being built – and were the first to sport rubber tires. By 1886, dissatisfied with a partner, Peugeot split and founded his own company with his own car factory – by 1899 they reached a record sale of three hundred automobiles – four years later they began production of motorcycles.During the first Great War manufacturing produced cars, bikes, and armaments for the military, and supplied many of the French army with a means for transportation. Their engineering by this time had reached a point in which just a few years earlier they had pushed a car within five miles of a hundred per hour, marking theirs as some of the most technologically advanced (and not using in-house engines) of the time. During the booming 1920’s economy times Peugeot was able to manufacture cars at a faster rate, and saw many of their cars win amazing races with grand finishes leaving them with many trophies won by their cars.

Along with production of very fast and performance based vehicles they also produced many low budget low priced vehicles, having the cheapest in France at the time, and by 1929 they dominated the market. Two years later the car called the 201 – their cheapie – got front suspension and a year after the depression hit, all car sales slumped, but because they offered the most affordable cars on the market they survived the depression – then came NAZI occupation that endangered the company. However, as we all know, the allies won and Peugeot was restored.

Peugeot car

During the post war boom until the 70’s they continued to introduce new models, and even opened markets up in the USA. Then in 1974 Peugeot expanded further, and bought Citroen. Citroen lost its soul as a result, but in turn was granted a new lease on life – although blander now that they had been – their sales have been at a million each year. Following this in 1978 they wanted more, and thus they bought the European division of Chrysler. With all of this money being invested, a little too much was bitten from the pie, resulting in a fiscal crisis. By 1986 they had begun to dump assets and then left the U.S. markets in the early 90’s. Following this in the latter half of the 90’s cuts were made, and a balance was restored to the company, although more cost cutting continues – the most recent being a plant shutdown in England that cost the community roughly 5,500 jobs.

Further Readings:

Filed Under: General


RSSComments (0)

Trackback URL

Leave a Reply

You must be logged in to post a comment.