Peugeot a originally French family owned company (formed after the merger of two businesses from the same Peugeot family) first started building cars way back during the dawn of the motorcar in 1889. By 1910 the two Peugeot businesses had formerly merged to form one of Frances largest car firms.
During the first half of the 20th Century Peugeot established a reputation for building good quality small and family sized cars. By the early 50's Peugeot had begun importing its cars into Britain in serious quantities. Today it is one of the UK's favourite foreign marques incorporating Citroen and has one of its largest car plants situated in Coventry (which it acquired during the 1980's after it had purchased Chrysler Europe).
The Peugeot business dates from about 1810 when it began making handsaws at a works near Belfort in eastern France. Throughout the 19th century Peugeot prospered, and products included peppermills, spring-steel strips for ladies' corsets, sewing machines, and bicycles.
In 1888 Armand Peugeot met Gottlieb Daimler and Emile Levassor and was persuaded to make petrol-engined automobiles rather than the Serpollet steamers with which he had been experimenting. By 1891 a small four-wheeled Peugeot had been constructed using a tubular chassis with a V-twin Panhard-Levassor-Daimler engine at the back. Slightly larger cars followed with 40 being made in 1894 and over 300 in 1899. Peugeot had introduced its own two-cylinder horizontal engines in 1896 and from 1901 front-engined cars with vertical engines followed, ranging from the single-cylinder 'Bébé' to large four-cylinder models. Peugeot successfully took part in many races of the period and in the years immediately prior to the Great War dominated voiturette and Grand Prix racing.
In 1975 Peugeot absorbed Citroën which indirectly revived the Panhard-Levassor connection originally made nearly ninety years earlier.