29 October – 4 November: Motoring Milestones

Discover the most momentous motoring events that took place during this week in history ……

110 years ago this week, General Motor purchased Buick Motors for $4,000,000 [29 October 1908]………The first Hupsmobile (cover image) was completed, a Model 20 runabout [1 November 1908]. Hupmobiles were built from 1909 through 1940 by the Hupp Motor Car Company, which was located at 345 Bellevue Avenue in Detroit, US…….. 90 years ago this week, the Ford Motor Company became the first mass producer of to use safety glass as standard equipment [1 November 1928]………80 years ago this week, the 1939 Mercury, a new marque manufactured by the Ford Motor Company, was introduced to the public [4 November 1938]……… 70 years ago this week, General Motors resumed management control of Adam Opel AG. The German government had officially seized control of Adam Opel AG in 1940 [1 November 1948]……… 60 years ago this week, the 1959 Ford Edsel line was introduced to the public [31 October 1958]……… 50 years ago this week, Jackie Ickx and David Hobbs drove a Gulf Ford GT40 to victory in the Rand 9 Hour Race at Kyalami, South Africa [2 November 1968]………Graham Hill completed his second

world championship with victory at the Mexican , narrowly pushing Jackie Stewart into second place [3 November 1968]. Hill went into the weekend with a three-point lead over Stewart and the pair were head to head for the first third of the race, Stewart even leading from the third to the seventh lap, before he fell back to seventh with engine failure. “I had a lovely time,” Hill said after his win. “The car went beautifully. I am very pleased to have won.” Denny Hulme had a lucky escape when the suspension on his McLaren broke and he piled into a wall…….. The following day [4 November 1968], Grand Prix driver, Horace Gould (50) died. Gould was a burly motor trader from Bristol who graduated from a Cooper-Bristol to the ex-Prince Bira Maserati 250F and then a newer version of the same model. The resourceful Gould based himself for much of the racing season at Modena, scrounging odds and ends from the Maserati factory parts bin. He was an indefatigable, larger-than-life personality with enormous enthusiasm and determination to surmount any setback. He survived to retire from racing, dying some years later from a heart attack…….. 40 years ago this week, Charles Chayne (80), Chief Engineer of Buick (1936-51), died in Carmel, California [30 October 1978]. He is best remembered for saving the Bugatti Type 41 Royale Weinberger cabriolet and later donating it to the Henry Ford Museum……..Lee Iacoccoa joined Chrysler Corporation as President and Chief Executive Officer [2 November 1978]…….. 30 years ago this week, Grand Prix newcomer Ayrton Senna won the World Championship title after winning the final race in Suzuka against team-mate Alain Prost to become the third Brazilian after Emerson Fittipaldi and Nelson Piquet to take the crown [30 October 1988]……….the following day [31 October 1988] Ford agreed to provide approximately $300 million in financing for acquisition of Budget Rent a Car by Breech Holdings Corp………20 years ago this week, Mika Hakkinen’s flag-to-flag victory at the Japanese

Grand Prix clinched him the first of two world titles and also gave McLaren its first constructors’ crown since 1991 [1 November 1998]. The only real challenge was likely to be from Michael Schumacher, but he had to start from the back of the grid and then he suffered a 165 mph blowout when he ran over debris from an earlier crash, needing all his skill to bring his Ferrari to a safe stop. “I don’t know how to start explaining my feelings,” Hakkinen said. “I was aware of the pressure falling on me.” Ferrari boss Jean Todt was not a happy man. “We have shown we are capable of winning grands prix,” he said. “But we must show one day we are capable of winning a world championship.” He need not have worried……….The first production model of the world’s first three-door coupe, the Saturn rolled off the Spring Hill assembly line in Tennessee, US [4 November 1998]. The third door, a rear- hinged panel is located behind the driver’s door. The front door must be opened first. There is a definite logic to this — in a parking lot, the coupe driver can more easily toss packages, groceries, or a briefcase in the rear seat, without having to move the front seat back forward and so out of adjustment. And when someone needs to get into or out of the rear seat, access is much easier……..10 years ago this week, Lewis Hamilton became the youngest ever Formula One World Champion, aged 23 years, after finishing 5th at the Brazilian Grand Prix [2 November 2008]. The McLaren driver also received official congratulations from Queen Elizabeth II and British Prime Minister Gordon Brown. Massa’s win and Räikkönen’s third place helped Ferrari win the Constructors’ Championship. The Grand Prix was David Coulthard’s final race; the Scot retired after 246 race starts.

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