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One of the world's oldest car manufacturers is actually French automaker Peugeot. Originally founded by the Peugeot family in 1810 as a bicycle and coffee mill company, it wasn't until 1882 that the company shifted to manufacturing automobiles. Over the years, the brand has grown to become not only a world class car maker but also excelled in competing in motorsports, creating motorbikes, and more. Today, the company retains a huge manufacturing plant in Sochaux, France along with an extensive collection of vehicles and other memorabilia in their own Peugeot Museum. Peugeot is currently part of PSA Peugeot Citron, which is now the second largest vehicle manufacturer in Europe.
The Peugeot family actually started participating in the manufacturing business in 1810 by producing mills that were used to grind coffee, pepper, and salt. Soon, they moved into bicycle production, which allowed Peugeot to realize that the automobile would be the future of transportation. The first Peugeot automobile was a three-wheeled steam-powered vehicle that was produced in 1889. From that first vehicle, the company soon grew along with the automobile industry and turned to the internal combustion engine in the 1890s. The company hasn't stopped innovating and has since become one of the biggest players in the industry today.
The brand's rich history wasn't limited to automobile manufacturing as it was also an early pioneer in motor racing. Race car driver Albert Lematre actually won the the world's first motor race, the Paris-Rouen race of 1894, in a 3 hp Peugeot. In fact, there were five Peugeots in that race and all of them finished in the main event. It was a testament to the performance and quality of Peugeot parts that even in their infancy were a notch above the rest. Today's modern Peugeot has expanded worldwide and is now manufacturing and marketing their vehicles in countries like China, Russia, South America, and India.