The need for transportation vehicles was greater in the United States than in Europe, and the nation’s high per capita income and more equitable income distribution also created an excellent market for cars. In addition, the country’s longstanding manufacturing tradition helped keep automobile prices competitive, and the lack of tariff barriers encouraged sales across a large geographic area. Moreover, the cheap raw materials and chronic shortage of skilled labor encouraged the mechanization of industrial processes.
Ford Motor Company
The Ford Motor Company is an American multinational automobile manufacturer based in Dearborn, Michigan. It was founded by Henry Ford and incorporated on June 16, 1903. The company sells automobiles under the Ford brand and luxury cars under the Lincoln luxury brand. The company makes more than one million vehicles a year, including a wide range of models.
During the Great Depression, the company reduced production and laid off workers. In response, the United Automobile Workers (UAW) began a campaign to organize the company’s employees in Kansas City. The march drew 3,000 to 5,000 unemployed workers. At one point, Ford security guards fired on the protesters, killing four, and injuring another five. This led the National Labor Relations Board to cite Ford for unfair labor practices.
Despite the tough times, the company has made significant strides to remain profitable. In 2008, the company reported sales of 5.532 million vehicles and employed 213,000 people in ninety plants around the world. Ford has also begun to invest in self-driving vehicles and is developing a car-sharing program.
Ford opened its first international sales branch in Paris in 1908. By the 1920s, the company was producing half of America’s automobiles and had 20 overseas assembly plants. By 1927, the Ford Model T was the most popular car in the world, with 15 million models made. The Ford Model A and Ford V-8 were introduced a few years later.
The General Motors Company is an American multinational automotive manufacturing company headquartered in Detroit, Michigan, United States. Founded in 1903, GM is one of the world’s largest automakers. It was the largest in the world for 77 years, before losing that title to Toyota in 2008. This company makes cars and trucks for both domestic and international markets.
GM manufactures automobiles, trucks, and crossovers. In addition, it sells automobile parts and services. The company’s brands include Chevrolet, Buick, Cadillac, and GMC. The company also offers automobile financing and insurance services. It also designs and builds autonomous vehicles. It also has manufacturing facilities in eight countries.
During the 1980s, General Motors faced stiff competition from Japanese automakers. To combat the competition, the company started a division called Saturn, which produced small, inexpensive cars to compete with Japanese imports. While the efforts to modernize the company had some success, heavy losses in the early 1990s forced GM to shutter many plants and cut thousands of employees.
General Motors has been a part of the automotive industry for more than a century. It pioneered many technologies and innovations that helped make cars more fuel-efficient. In addition, it was also involved in the development of low-leaded petrol, air bags, and catalytic converters. During the second world war, GM supplied airplanes and tanks for the Allies. The company developed an engine guidance system for the Apollo 11 space mission and helped design the Lunar Roving Vehicle. It also pioneered the use of turbochargers, and a V6 engine in the 1960s. While the V6 engine was popular at the time, General Motors eventually dropped it as it lost interest in it as the muscle car race began.