On this day in auto history – June 16th

Wed 16th Jun 2021

It was on this day in 1903 that the Ford Motor Company was founded in Detroit by a 39-year-old Henry Ford.

Over the ensuing decades, Ford would go to become one of the largest and most profitable companies in the world and, 115 years later, still remains largely under family ownership.

Early investors included the famous Dodge brothers - John and Horace - who would later go on to found their own company but Henry would eventually acquire all stock in the company as it went on to lead the world in the expansion and refinement of the assembly line concept.

Helped by the phenomenal success of the Model T - generally regarded as the first ‘affordable’ motor car - Ford was the world’s dominant carmaker until losing much of its market share to General Motors in the 'Great Depression' of the 1930’s but it has never dropped out of the top five automakers and currently employs over 200,000 workers across 90 plants around the globe.

During the 2008 financial crisis, Ford was teetering close to requesting bankruptcy protection but, helped by the enduring success of models such as the Fiesta, Focus and Ka, as well as a buoyant commercial van sector, it has since recovered and returned to profitability.