For best results, view in Landscape mode.
In 1926, the Pontiac brand
by General Motors as the companion marque
to GM's Oakland division, and shared the
GM A platform. Purchased by General
Motors in 1909, Oakland continued to
produce modestly priced automobiles until
1931 when it was renamed Pontiac.
It was named after the famous Ottawa chief
who had also given his name to the
city of Pontiac, Michigan where the
car was produced.
Within months of its introduction, Pontiac
was outselling Oakland, which was
essentially a 1920s Chevrolet with a
six-cylinder engine installed.
Body styles offered included a sedan with
both two and four doors, Landau Coupe,
with the Sport Phaeton, Sport Landau Sedan,
Sport Cabriolet and Sport Roadster.
As a result of Pontiac's rising sales, versus
Oakland's declining sales, Pontiac became
the only companion marque to survive
its parent, with Oakland ceasing
production in 1932.
In 1893, the Pontiac Buggy Company was
established in Pontiac, Michigan.
They produced horse-drawn carriages,
and like others in their field, they wanted
to evolve into the automotive age.
In 1907, as an adjunct to his buggy-making
enterprise, Edward Murphy began building
and selling 2-cylinder runabouts
During the summer of 1907, Murphy organized
the Oakland Motor Car Co.
His lack of sales with the Oakland, a two-cylinder
vertical engine that rotated counterclockwise,
convinced him that Cadillac might have
been right in rejecting the Brush design.
In 1909, they introduced a line of 40 HP
four-cylinder cars with sliding
Although this innovation was successful
Edward Murphy didn’t see the increased
sales due to his sudden
death in 1908.
Shortly before his passing, Murphy had
met with another former buggy man named
William C. Durant.
Soon afterward, Oakland became part of
Durant’s General Motors Empire and its
design would evolve under his rule.
The company produced Oakland’s most
recognized model in 1924, the “True Blue
Oakland Six” which came with a new L-head
engine, four-wheel brakes, centralized
controls and an automatic spark advance.
They painted the cutting edge automobile
with a Blue Duco nitro-cellulose lacquer.
In 1926, Alfred R. Glancy, Oakland’s assistant
general manager introduced the Pontiac.
The quality six-cylinder engine cars designed
to sell for the price of a four.
The automobile became an instant success
and Pontiac had been born.
In 1902, Henry Martyn Leland,
the founder of Cadillac Automotive
Company, named his luxury,
precision-made car after Frenchman Le
Sieur Antoine de la Mothe Cadillac.
Leland wanted to honor Cadillac, who founded
the city of Detroit in 1701 initially as a frontier
outpost and fort.
In 1909, the newly formed General
Motors Corporation (GM) acquires the
country’s leading luxury automaker, the
Cadillac Automobile Company,
for $4.5 million.
Cadillac was founded out of the ruins
of automotive pioneer Henry Ford’s
second failed company (his third effort,
the Ford Motor Company, finally succeeded).
When the shareholders of the Henry Ford
Company called in Detroit machinist
Henry Leland to assess the company’s
assets for their planned sale, Leland
convinced them to stay in business.
His idea was to combine Ford’s latest chassis
(frame) with a single-cylinder engine
developed by Oldsmobile,
another early automaker.
In its first year of production, Cadillac
out nearly 2500 cars, a huge number
at the time.
Leland, who was reportedly motivated
by an intense competition with Henry Ford,
assumed full leadership of Cadillac in 1904,
and with his son Wilfred by his side he firmly
established the brand’s reputation for quality.
Among the excellent luxury cars being
produced in America at the time–including
Packard, Lozier, McFarland and Pierce
Arrow–Cadillac led the field, making the top 10
in overall U.S. auto sales every year from
1904 to 1915.
The Cadillac V-16 was Cadillac's
top of the
line model from 1930 - 1940.
The V16 powered car was a first in the
United States, both extremely expensive and
exclusive, with all chassis finished to
Only 4076 were constructed, with the
majority built in its debut year before
the Great Depression took strong hold.
In 1912, Cadillac introduced the world’s
first successful electric self-starter, developed
by Charles F. Kettering; its pioneering V-8
engine was installed in all Cadillac
models in 1915.
The years, Cadillac maintained its reputation
for luxury and innovation.
In 1954, it was the first automaker to
provide power steering and automatic
windshield washers as standard
equipment on all its vehicles.