Vauxhall built its first car in 1903. It was the first foray into car manufacture by the Vauxhall Ironworks, and the company specialised in mostly sports and touring cars, becoming known as Vauxhall Motors in 1907. However, the takeover by General Motors in 1925 as part of its European expansion saw it head more profitably for the mass market that was starting to grow during the inter-war years.
In 1932 the milestone Cadet became the first British car with a synchromesh gearbox. another first came in 1938 with unitary construction for the Vauxhall 10. Subsequent rationalisation gradually pushed Vauxhall closer to its German counterpart Opel and, after Viva production ended in 1979, all subsequent new Vauxhalls were in effect little more than rebadged Opels.