The Standard Motor Company is one of the largest motor companies that so few have ever heard of.
It grew from a tiny workshop in Coventry to become one of the biggest car manufacturing companies in the UK, employing some 11,000 people at its peak. Over its 60-year existence the company developed a surprisingly large range of models, powered by engines from 8 hp, 4-cylinders up to 20 hp V8s. Standard also supplied independent car builders with major components during the 1930s, including such brands as Railton and Swallow Sidecars (later to be renamed SS and subseqently Jaguar). The purchase of the Triumph marque, in 1945, added a second brand to the stable and, as a result, all post-war Triumphs were designed and built in Standard factories. The Triumph badge was used exclusively on all the cars after 1963. The Standard-Triumph brand was subsumed first into Leyland Motors then BLMC, but the same workforce continued to build cars with Triumph badges, in Coventry and elsewhere, until the 1980s.
The Standard Motor Company would mass-produce cars, as an independent concern, for 60 years. The company thrived for another 20 years after that before succumbing to rationalization and eventually corporate failure, as part of the ill-fated British Leyland. At first it was the passion of one man, but thereafter involved the dedication of a significant group of talented managers and engineers.
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