Grace's Guide

British Industrial History

Grace's Guide is the leading source of historical information on industry and manufacturing in Britain. This web publication contains 148,485 pages of information and 233,919 images on early companies, their products and the people who designed and built them.

Alexandre Darracq

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Alexandre Darracq (10 November 1855 – 1931) was a French investor, engineer, cycle manufacturer and automobile manufacturer.

1891 Founded Cycles et Automobiles Gladiator with Paul Auroq

1896 The Gladiator business was acquired by Adolphe Clement. Darracq founded Automobiles Darracq S.A.

By 1904, Darracq was producing more than ten percent of all automobiles in France and he sold a substantial part of his business to British investors.

He became fascinated by the possibilities of a rotary valve engine, put it into production and though it became a disaster for Darracq & Cie persisted in installing it in Darracq products.

He was obliged to retire in June 1912 aged 56 and after the Armistice his name was dropped from his Suresnes factory's mass-produced products.

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