From Academic Kids

This article is about the automobile. For other uses, see Talbot (disambiguation)

Talbot is an automobile brand, whose history is one of the industry's most complex.


Inception of the British Talbot

Talbot was originally the British brand name used to sell imported French Clément-Bayard cars. Founded in 1903, this business venture was financed by the Earl of Shrewsbury and Talbot, who lent his name to the firm. Starting in 1905, the company branded its imported cars as Clément-Talbot and marketed a newly developed model under the name Talbot.

Parallel Talbots in Britain and France

During World War I, the firm manufactured ambulances. The firm's French and British operations continued in separate, parallel production and marketing processes until 1919, when the French firm Darracq took over the company. Darracq-made Talbot models were marketed as Talbot-Darracqs. The following year, Darracq was reorganised as part of the Sunbeam-Talbot-Darracq (STD) conglomerate.

The Swiss-native Georges Roesch became chief engineer and in the early 1920's, Talbot built a number of successful models, including the 14/45 hp, or Talbot 105, which was first built in 1926. In the mid-1930's, Anthony Blight won a number of professional automobile races driving a Talbot 105.

The Rootes era

In 1935 STD combine collapsed and the Rootes Group took over Clément-Talbot. For Rootes, profits were more important than engineering - the existing models were simply rebadged. The French factory was bought by Anthony Lago who used Talbot-Lago as a brand afterwards.

In Britain, Sunbeam and Talbot marques were combined in 1938 to form Sunbeam-Talbot. Production ceased before the World War II.

The Chrysler era

After the war, only the French Talbot-Lago continued until 1959. In 1967, Chrysler took over Rootes and merged it with Simca to form the backbone of Chrysler's European operations. The Talbot name was not use in this era, although the Chrysler pentastar logo gradually replaced the Rootes brands as the 1970s progressed.

The Peugeot era

At the end of 1979, Peugeot took over the Chrysler Europe (which made Chryslers in Britain and Simcas in France) and badged the whole range as Talbots. The Peugeot takeover saw the end of Chrysler Hunter production, but the Chrysler-designed 1510 (Alpine in UK), and Horizon remained in production. The last remaining car produced by the Rootes group, the Chrysler (previously Hillman) Avenger, remained in production as a Talbot until the end of 1981. 1981 also saw the end of Talbot Sunbeam production. The entry-level model in the Talbot range from 1982 onwards would be the Talbot Samba, a three-door hatchback based on the Peugeot 104 and also sold as the Citroen LN/LNA.

In 1981, Peugeot began producing the Talbot Tagora, a boxy four-door saloon marketed as a Ford Granada rival. But it was not popular in either Britain or France and production ceased in 1983.

At the end of 1984, the Alpine hatchback/Solara saloon ranges were all rebadged Minx/Rapier depending upon specification rather than bodyshell, with nameplates sourced from the Rootes Group files. During the 1960's, the Rootes group had produced the Hillman Minx and Sunbeam Rapier.

At the end of 1985, Peugeot withdrew the Talbot Horizon from production and replaced it with the Peugeot 309. Peugeot had originally planned to sell the car as the Talbot Arizona but had now changed its plans and was now intent on phasing out the Talbot Marque.

During 1986, the Minx, Rapier and Samba ranges were withdrawn from production and the Talbot marque was shelved on passenger vehicles, although the Talbot Express panel van continued in production until 1992.

External link

de:Talbot fr:Talbot sv:Talbot


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