1906: Rolls-Royce Company Founded

1906: Rolls-Royce Company Founded
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The first model independently produced by Rolls-Royce after its founding was the Rolls-Royce 40/50 hp, later named Silver Ghost.


The Rolls-Royce automobile company was founded on this day in 1906. Its first official name was Rolls-Royce Limited, and it was named after founders Charles Rolls and Henry Royce. Royce had a more prominent role in designing the automobiles, while Rolls was the financer and director (possibly why his name came first).

It was already in 1910, i.e. four years after the company was founded, that Rolls tragically died in an airplane accident, aged 32. He thus became the first Briton to die in an accident involving a powered aircraft. Royce fell gravely ill in 1908 and had to withdraw from running the company, leaving the job to Claude Johnson. He was extremely important for the early development of the company and later allegedly described himself as the “hyphen in the Rolls-Royce name”. The first model independently manufactured by the company after its founding was the Rolls-Royce 40/50 hp, which was considered by some the best automobile in the world. It was later named Silver Ghost.

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