The AC motor car company
This section provides access to the cars and autos manufactured under the name of the AC motor car company. An online guide for auto enthusiasts covering old and new cars and autos. If you like car talk then you will love this website! A free, online resource with facts and company information about the cars and autos made by the AC motor car company.
Founding of the AC motor car company
The AC Cars motor car company was founded in 1901 by John Weller and the company started production in it's South London workshop shortly afterwards.
History of AC motor car company
John Weller and his brother initially planned to produce an advanced 20 hp car, however, Portwine (their financial backer) thought such a car would be too expensive for the existing market so they designed a small delivery three wheeler, it was named the Auto-Carrier and a new company was founded to produce the vehicle. The Auto-Carrier soon proved to be a financial success and so in 1907 a passenger version was introduced, called the AC Sociable.
In 1911 production was moved to new premises in Surrey and the cars began to carry the now famous AC logo. The start of the first world war soon halted production of the two seater sports car and in consequence only a small number were made.
In 1921, Selwyn Edge bought shares in the company and was appointed governing director. In 1922 the company name was changed to AC Cars Ltd. In 1927, following a drop in sales, Edge bought the remaining shares and re-registered the company as AC (Acedes) Ltd, however sales continued to decline. The ailing company was badly afected by the financial crash of 1929 and went into voluntary liquidation, eventually being sold to the Hurlock family.
In 1947 production started on a new car with a 2-litre engined aluminium bodied three wheeler called the Petite. The AC Ace went into production in 1953 and Ken Rudd the racing driver fitted his own engine into an Ace raced the car in the 1957 and 1958 Le mans.
1954 saw the arrival of the AC Aceca. it was slightly heavier than the existing convertible Ace and was unveiled at the Earls Court show. (It is of note that the Aceca is still very popular at classic racing events). A new four seater car was soon added to the AC range called the AC Greyhound.
In 1962 AC was approached by Carroll Shelby to supply a car to use use a Ford V8 engine, the resultant car was the now famous AC Cobra. Shelby wanted to compete against Chevrolet's Corvette in US car racing, at the end of the racing season in 1964 Shelley needed a bigger engine as the AC Cobra was being outclassed by the new Ferrari. A Ford FE 390 V8 was fitted but the car so overpowered it became virtually un-drivable, it was clear a new chassis had to be designed. The improved Cobra 427 car was not ready for the start of the 1965 season and was only ever raced by privateers, albeit very successfully, as the Cobra name was sold by Carroll Shelby in a deal which resulted in the joint development of the Shellby Cobra Ford Mustangs. It is of note that as a 1964 publicity stunt a Cobra was "test driven" on England's new unrestricted M1 motorway at 183 mph, the resulting publicity caused the British Government to introduce a 70 mph national speed limit on all existing and future UK motorways, this limit still applies to this day.
AC also made lightweight three wheel invalid carriages in the 1960's and 1970' powered by Villiers engines, these were provided by the UK National Health Service at subsidised rates to disabled people, they were eventually withdrawn for safety reasons as they had a poor safety record when involved in accidents with normal heavier cars.
The AC Frua was made for wealthy customers who wanted a grand tourer, Pietro Frua the Italian coach builder designed the body it proved so expensive only a few had been sold when production ended in 1973.
In the 1970's AC produced the 3000ME at their Thames Ditton works, although a well built comfortable car they only sold 71 cars, they had hoped to sell 250 a year, and consequently production ceased in 1984, following this failure the car and the AC name were licenced to a new company registered as AC (Scotland) plc run by David McDonald in a new factory in Hillington, Glasgow.
1901: AC cars motor company founded and introduced the Auto Carrier.
1907: AC Sociable was introduced.
1911: Production moved to Surrey. The famous AC logo was introduced.
1921: Selwyn Edge bought shares in the company and appointed governing director.
1922: Company name changed to AC cars Ltd.
1927: Selwyn Edge bought the rest of the shares and changed the company name to AC (Acedes) Ltd.
1929: AC went in to voluntary liquidation and sold to Hurlock family.
1947: 2 litre Petite introduced.
1953: AC Ace introduced.
1954: AC Aceca introduced.
1962: Carroll Shelby uses ford V8 to create the famous AC Cobra.
1964: AC Cobra fitted with a Ford FE 390 V8 and was virtually un drivable.
1965: Cobra 427 introduced.
1970's: AC Frua was produced until 1973. A 3000ME was built and sold until 1984.
1984: AC name licensed to a new company and registered as AC (Scotland) plc run by David McDonald with a new factory in Hillington, Glasgow.
What models and types of cars and automobiles ha the AC motor car company produced?
The models and types of cars and automobiles produced by the company include those detailed on the following list. Whether you enjoy comparing cars and autos, want to conduct some research before you buy a new car or a used car or finally an automobile enthusiast who loves fast, cool, new, old, vintage, classic, antique, sports, top, muscle or exotic cars we have the info you are searching for! Select the automobile you are interested in and click the link for access to an online overview of this AC vehicle with car guides, online facts, information, statistics, specs, specifications, design details and ratings of cars and autos.