In the 1920s, General Motors of the U.S. took over Vauxhall, buying the company for 2.5 million dollars, to penetrate the British market with Chevrolet trucks. Rebranded as Bedfords, the trucks proved to be extremely reliable rough horses during the war that the Vauxhall factories were hard pressed to keep up with demand.
Vauxhall was an integral part of the British war effort during World War II. Manufacturing Churchill Tanks, army lorries, army staff cars, dummy vehicles to mislead bombers, and even tin hats.
After the war, the company experienced enthusiastic response to the Viva, its primary model for the small car market. It was cheap, reliable and offered fantastic gas mileage. The Viva was sold from 1963 – 1979.
At the start of the 21st century, the special model in the Vauxhall range was the high performance Monaro coupe, sourced from Australia’s Holden. Known in the U.S. as the Pontiac GTO and in the Middle East as the Chevrolet Lumina, production of this import model was limited to 15,000 units to avoid additional safety testing.
Cars like Opel and even LHD are manufactured by Vauxhall for export. Also among the list of export cars produced by Vauxhall are the Holden Vectra A and Astra B.
Vauxhall is also behind the VXR brand, high-performance super cars sold in the United Kingdom. VXR cars are essentially race track-styled models with high performance engines. Starting with the VXR 220, to the Monaro VXR and the Astra VXR, and recently the Zafira, Vectra and Meriva versions.