The Aston Martin is a car manufacturer well known for producing luxury sports cars well loved by fictional cars from James Bond to Edward Cullen from the Twilight books. It may be a surprise though to find out that instead of originating in Italy or Germany, the Aston Martin is a British sports car.
The Aston Martin name is derived from one of the founders and from the speed hillclimb near Aston Clinton in England. The company was founded in 1913 when Martin decided to build his own race car vehicles. The first car produced was in 1915, but the company disbanded during World War I and refounded after the war. In 1922 cars were produced to compete in the French Grand Prix setting world speed and endurance records. The company went bankrupt though in 1924, then purchased by Lady Charnwood and went bankrupt again in 1926 with Lionel Martin a founder finally leaving. Later that year a number of investors took control of the company and renamed it Aston Martin Motors.
Between 1926 and 1937 Augustus Bertelli was the technical director and designer of all cars during this period. These cars are known as the Bertelli cars. Bertelli was a very competent driver and loved to race his cars. These cars were very successful in international motor racing. In 1936 the company decided to focus on road cars but production was halted with Word War II. During the war the factory produced aircraft components.
In 1947 David Brown Limited bought the company and produced the classic series of cars with the initials DB. The DB4 established the company's reputation for good racing cars. The company was often in financial troubles and changed hands many times after this. In 1977 the V8 Vantage was produced and the convertible Volante in 1978. The company changed hands again quite a few times due to bad sales during the 1980s. In 1986 Gauntlett, executive chairman, managed to negotiate a return of James Bond to driving Aston Martin cars. In 1987 Ford took a share holding and with the revived economy, the car manufacturer launched the Virage range the first new Aston car in 20 years.