General Motors Company U.S.A.

General Motors Company U.S.A.

General Motors Company U.S.A.


September 16, 1908; 108 years ago
William C. Durant

Detroit, Michigan, United States


General Motors Company which is commonly known as the GM, is an American multinational corporation that designs, manufactures, markets, and distributes vehicles and vehicle parts, and sells financial services. GM manufactures cars and trucks in 35 countries. Former GM automotive brands include McLaughlin, Oakland, Oldsmobile, Pontiac, Hummer, Saab, Saturn, as well as Vauxhall, and Opel, which were bought by Groupe PSA in 2017. The company was the largest automobile manufacturer from 1931 through 2007. General Motors produces vehicles in 37 countries under twelve brands: Chevrolet, Buick, GMC, Cadillac, Holden, HSV, Wuling, Baojun, Jie Fang, and Ravon. In addition to its twelve brands, General Motors also holds a 20% stake in IMM, and a 77% stake in GM Korea. It also has a number of joint-ventures, including Shanghai GM, SAIC-GM-Wuling and FAW-GM in China, GM-AvtoVAZ in Russia, Ghandhara Industries in Pakistan, GM Uzbekistan, General Motors India, General Motors Egypt, and Isuzu Truck South Africa.



On September 1908, General Motors Corporation was formed as a holding company controlled by William C. Durant, owner of Buick. In the beginning of 20th century, there were fewer than 8,000 automobiles in America, and Durant had become a leading manufacturer of horse-drawn vehicles in Flint before making his foray into the automotive industry. In 1909, Durant brought in Cadillac, Elmore, Oakland, and several others. Also in 1909, GM acquired the Reliance Motor Truck Company of Owosso, Michigan, and the Rapid Motor Vehicle Company of Pontiac, Michigan, the predecessors of GMC Truck.  In 1911, Durant started the Chevrolet Motor Car Company in the U.S., and through this, he secretly purchased a controlling interest in GM.

In 1916, Durant converted the General Motors Company into General Motors Corporation with merging Chevrolet with GM and merging General Motors of Canada Limited as an ally in 1918. Manufacturing facilities operated by Chevrolet were added to the individual factories that were exclusive to Cadillac, Buick, Oldsmobile, Oakland, and other companies acquired by GM.



GM has participated over the years in the World Touring Car Championship (WTCC), 24 Hours of Le Mans, NASCAR, SCCA, Supercars Championship, and many other world venues. Throughout the 1990s, GM's engines were highly successful in the Indy Racing League (IRL) which results in winning many races in the small V-8 class. GM has also done much work in the development of electronics for GM auto racing. Recently, the Cadillac V-Series has entered motorsports racing. An unmodified Aurora V-8 in the Aerotech, captured 47 world records. Currently the Chevrolet SS is the only entry in the series, but in the past the Pontiac Grand Prix, Buick Regal, Oldsmobile Cutlass, Chevrolet Lumina, Chevrolet Malibu and the Chevrolet Monte Carlo were also used.

GM has won a total of 40 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series manufacturer's championships, including 34 with Chevrolet, the most of any make in NASCAR history, 3 with Oldsmobile, 2 with Buick, and 1 with Pontiac. In Australia, there is the V8 Supercar Championship which is battled out by the two main rivals of (GM) Holden and Ford. The current Holden Racing Team cars are based on the Holden Commodore and run a 5.0-litre V8-cylinder engine producing 635 bhp (474 kW).


Hybrid Electric Vehicles

In May 2004, General Motors produced the world's first full-sized hybrid pickups which was known as Silverado/Sierra. In 2005, the Opel Astra diesel Hybrid concept vehicle was introduced. The 2006 Saturn Vue Green Line was the first hybrid passenger vehicle from GM and is also a mild design. M has hinted at new hybrid technologies to be employed that will be optimized for higher speeds in freeway driving. GM currently offers the 2-mode hybrid system used by the Chevrolet Tahoe/GMC Yukon/Cadillac Escalade, and GM 1/2 half-ton pickups and will later be used on other vehicles. In 2010, GM introduced the Chevrolet Volt, an electric vehicle with backup generators powered by gasoline. General Motor also introduced the hybrid-powered bus, GM Magic Bus.


All-Electric Vehicles

GM was the first company in modern era to release an all-electric automobile. In 1990, at the Los Angeles Auto Show, GM debuted the "Impact" concept car. It was the first car with zero-emissions marketed in the US in over three decades. For the model year 1996, Impact was eventually produced as the EV1. In 2010, GM debuted the Chevrolet Volt, an plug-in hybrid electric vehicle with backup generators powered by gasoline. General Motors has announced that it is building a prototype two-seat electric vehicle with Segway. In October 2011, General Motors announced the production of the Chevrolet Spark EV, an all-electric version of the third generation Chevrolet Spark, with availability limited to select U.S. and global markets. The production version was unveiled at the 2012 Los Angeles Auto Show. In October 2016, GM began production of the Chevrolet Bolt EV. Chevrolet Bolt EV is the first ever affordable mass market all-electric car with a range of more than 200 miles (320 km).



Small Car Sales

Since 1920s, GM has always offered economy models in the U.S. market and had done research and development in the 1940s and 1950s in preparation for any potential rise of strong demand for truly small cars in the U.S. market. GM's response has been that it has always responded to market demands, and that most Americans, despite anything they said to the contrary, did not actually demand mall size or fuel efficiency in their vehicles to any great or lasting extent. Since 2000s and 2010s, GM's interest in truly small-car programs for the U.S. market has been renewed. This will be the first time ever that a large manufacturer produces a supermini vehicle in the United States.


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