Chevrolet is one of the oldest American car manufacturers still active to this day and it has its fair shares of innovative features introduced throughout the decades. While it does offer luxury vehicles, Chevrolet – or Chevy, to most – is popular for being one of the more affordable brands that still offer quality, durability, and speed. No one is going to question the quality and class of a Camaro, Corvette, or Volt.
The company started as the Chevrolet Motor Car Company all the way back in 1911 and was founded by Louis Chevrolet and William C. Durant, one of the initial founders of the General Motors (founded in 1908). It was Durant’s move after he was ousted of GM, the company he founded just a few years back, and used it to incorporate himself and the brand into GM by 1918.
After GM acquired Chevrolet, the company focused on producing mainstream vehicles. By 1929, the Chevrolet brand would quickly take over Ford as the best-selling car in the United States. Over time, the brand would be associated as one of the premier “muscle cars” of the United States.
Overseas, especially in the 1980s to the mid-2000s, Chevrolet cars were released under GM Daewoo or would be missed out completely due to their replacement by other GM representatives.
The 2000s saw a sudden drop in Chevrolet’s performance but since 2010 the company has made a quick turnaround of events as they introduced new car lines as well as reinvigorating existing vehicles. The most innovative turn from the new millennium is the Chevy Volt, the vehicle that would later win the North American Car of the Year award for 2012, as well as the European Car of the Year.
There are a lot of iconic cars from Chevrolet, the first being the 1914 Royal Mail Roadster. This was one of the first cars to have a speedometer, windshield, and metal roof, all of which were expensive accessories at the time. It was the first car to carry the Chevy bowtie logo as well.
Another notable vehicle is the original 1948 Chevy Pickup. It’s become a part of modern pop-culture as the “Bob Seger” country pickup truck.
Then there’s the 2010 Camaro which was popularized in the 2007 movie Transformers. The car became the Earthly design for the character Bumblebee. Finally there is the 2011 Chevrolet Volt, one of the few alternative-fuel cars that actually drive much like a regular muscle car.
Chevrolet was the first brand to introduce articulated braking actions – the forefather of today’s brake pedals – and was also the first brand to introduce an onboard car radio on its dashboard. It was also the first car to mass produce marketable sports cars (in 1953) and was the first to integrate air bags in its cars’ design (1973).