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Vauxhall/GM marks 90-year anniversary as 500-million landmark reached

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Vauxhall/GM marks 90-year anniversary as 500-million landmark reached

General Motors today became the first car manufacturer in the world to produce 500 million vehicles, as Vauxhall in the UK - GM's fourth largest market - celebrated 90 years of ownership by the US company.

‘During 2015, we expect to sell more than 1,000 new vehicles per  hour, 24 hours per day,’ said Mary Barra, GM’s CEO. ‘This adds up to  nearly ten million vehicles, the most in our history. I look at this  extraordinary volume as ten million opportunities to prove what kind of  company we are and to say thank you.’

The landmark figure came 90 years after General Motors purchased  Vauxhall in 1925 in what was the American company’s first overseas  acquisition. Luton-based Vauxhall, which is Britain’s oldest surviving  car manufacturer, very quickly repaid GM’s investment and to date has  sold nearly 14.5 million vehicles in its own right.

Like its parent company, which pioneered the automatic transmission,  the V-8 engine and the first airbags in a production vehicle, Vauxhall  has a long history of innovation too. Just 10 years into GM ownership it produced the DY and DX models, the first British cars with independent  front suspension. Two years later the H-type was launched, the first  British car to have an integral body and chassis.

But perhaps the most significant achievement for Vauxhall is its 112  years of continuous vehicle production, even during both World Wars when it manufactured the D-type Army Staff Car and Churchill Tank  respectively from its Kimpton Road plant in Luton. Today, Vauxhall’s  Vivaro van is still built on Kimpton Road, with a further five million  vehicles produced by the company’s Ellesmere Port plant since it opened  in 1964.

‘Vauxhall has made a significant contribution to GM’s success, and we are very proud to be part of its global family,’ said Tim Tozer,  Vauxhall’s Chairman and Managing Director. 

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