Louis Chevrolet

As a young man Louis Chevrolet learned the basic principles of mechanics by watching his father, a watchmaker at work. Louis was running a small bicycle business, which became history when he saw his first automobile. He worked at several auto factories in Europe, but unsatisfied soon left for Canada.

In 1901 he moved to Brooklyn, slowly building a reputation as a chauffeur and mechanic. Fiat auto racing team recognized his talent and hired Louis as driver. The races were popular back then as much as they are now, and after numerous victories he became famous.

William C. Durant, general manager at General Motors wanted to incorporate his skills and knowledge into rather large GM operation, so Chevrolet became the lead driver of the Buick racing team. Racing cars were unsafe at the time, only a short line divided winners from severely injured drivers. To protect himself, Chevrolet invented the roll bar, a steel hoop installed across the vehicle designed to prevent the driver to be crushed if the car rolls over.

When Durant left General Motors, Chevrolet followed him in a new company named Chevrolet Motor Car Company. Chevrolet's reputation for speed and victories on the circuit proved key element in attracting investors and buyers. Louis also designed a six-cylinder luxurious automobile with the highest price of any auto produced on the market. In 1913, when Durant decided to produce a lower-priced model, the two parted ways. Chevrolet Company was absorbed soon afterwards into General Motors, and remains one of the GM's best-known divisions to this very day.

Pictures of Louis Chevrolet

Young Louis Chevrolet   Louis Chevrolet in Buick   Louis Chevrolet racing

 

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