Car Manufacturer Profiles

You know the names, but you may not the history behind some of the biggest automobile makers out there. Learn about the good, the bad and the ugly on car manufacturers.


Take a look back to an extravagant and optimistic time when outrageous cars ruled the world. A time when automobiles weren't just about simple transportation -- they were about bold statements and high style.

Harley Earl has been called the father of American automotive design. See our list of 11 design innovations of Harley Earl such as the Wraparound Windshield and the Auto-Styling Studio to find out why.

Classic cars span decades and continents to capture the highest achievements in automotive art and engineering. Learn about hundreds of great classic cars from 1930 to today in these richly illustrated articles.

Stutz formed in 1912 and quickly earned a reputation for fast race-worthy cars. Stutz introduced America to an early form of the sports car. Learn how they made the switch to consumer cars and why.

Cord produced cars for only 10 years, but they are deemed to be some of the best ever built. The man behind it all was Errett Lobban Cord. Read about the Cord company and its cars in this article.

Kaiser made inventive cars during the 1940s and 1950s that just never caught on with the public. Kaiser was experimenting with the idea of plastic-bodied cars. Read about the history of Kaiser in this article.

Henry J. Kaiser a former partner of Joseph Frazer borrowed money to design a car after their partnership dissolved. With no little modesty, he named it the Henry J. Learn about the Henry J's fate.

Hudson made some of America's finest most popular cars during its 48-year history. A low-priced four-cylinder Essex was a key to their early success. Learn about Hudson's history and its cars in this article.

Hupp was founded by Robert C. Hupp, an established auto engineer who worked with Ransom Eli Olds and Henry Ford. Find out how it strove to release affordable cars to compete with the big boys.

LaSalle was formed as a companion line to Cadillac seeking to fill a price gap between themselves and Buick. The division chose the name LaSalle, honoring the French explorer. Find out how LaSalle fit the bill.

Charles Nash believed in offering innovative cars at a fair price. He bought the Thomas B. Jeffery Company and renamed it Nash Motors. Read about the history and vehicles of the Nash car company in this article.

Howard Marmon set out to build the perfect automobile, but was cut short by the Depression. The Marmon HCM Prototype was one of the models that never saw production. Learn about Marmon's near miss with automotive perfection.

The Muntz Jet was built on the dream of a man known as Earl "Madman" Muntz. Learn about Muntz and find out why a one-shot car by a small company ultimately couldn't compete with established automakers.

Pierce-Arrow, born of a bicycle company, quickly earned a reputation for extravagant luxury cars. It was one of the fabled ‘’three Ps’’ of U.S. automotive royalty. Learn how this led to both success and failure.

Crosley cars created unique models from the sporty Hotshot to the handy FarmORoad. Founder Powel Crosley, Jr. entered the auto industry in 1939. Read about the history of the now-defunct Crosley company.

Edsel was formed by Ford to match GM model-for-model, but by the time Edsel debuted the entire market was depressed and the medium-price segment had shriveled from 25 to 18 percent. Learn how and what it meant for Edsel.

Essex manufactured cars for Hudson that were actually so well-received the name was dropped from common use. Find out why and how the Essex helped turn Hudson around.

Franklin set itself apart from other automakers by using air-cooled engines and lightweight aluminum parts. Franklin was ahead of the industry by selling more sedans than open cars before 1920. Learn more about Franklin cars.

Frazer made genuinely new post-war cars, while most automakers released redesigned prewar models. They looked good, very clean, with modest horizontal grilles, and little decorative chrome or sculptured sheet metal. Learn how this helped Frazer get started.

The Graham brothers originally built trucks for Dodge before buying their own company. The Grahams prospered with cars as quickly as they had with trucks. Learn how they went on to produce classic if ill-fated cars.

Studebaker started in 1852 with covered wagons and horse-drawn vehicles. In 1902, Studebaker began building automobiles. Learn about the history of Studebaker and its demise in the 1960s.

Eagle was formed by Chrysler from the defunct American Motors Corporation. Chrysler inherited the right to use the Eagle name on their cars after buying AMC. Learn why Chrysler bought the name from Renault and what they did with it.

The Reo Motor Car Company was created in 1904 out of an argument at Olds Motor Works. Reo fielded one-, two-, four-, and six-cylinder cars. Learn all about Reo which stopped making cars in 1936.

Rambler cars got their start as a successful compact model put out by Nash in 1950. Rambler sold more than 30,000 1958 Rambler Americans. Learn all about Rambler which closed shop in the late '60s.

Founded by James Ward Packard in 1989, Packard was once a leader among automakers, but changing tastes and poor business decisions doomed the brand. Learn more about Packard cars.

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