When Was Chevrolet Founded?


The Chevrolet Motor Company was founded on November 3, 1911, in the great city of Detroit. Louis Chevrolet and William C. Durant built the business together, and in just a few decades, Chevrolet would rapidly rise to prominence as one of the best-selling automakers in the industry. In fact, their first few years are full of exciting twists and turns.

The legacy of the Chevrolet Motor Company continues to excite drivers from Danville, Urbana, and beyond. Once you’ve explored a little bit of their history with Sullivan•Parkhill Automotive Inc, you’ll have no trouble seeing why!

Who Founded Chevrolet?

We’ve already noted that Chevrolet was founded by Louis Chevrolet and William C. Durant in 1911, but we wouldn’t be surprised if you wanted to know more about who these people really were! Chevrolet himself was a Swiss race car driver who also happened to be an engineer, and his unique ethos and outlook continue to inspire the engineers who work at the company today.

The other founder, William C. Durant, has an even more interesting background! In fact, before helping to found Chevrolet, he had been both founder and president of General Motors! Several years after Chevrolet got off the ground, Durant engineered a reverse merger with his former company and reclaimed the leadership position that he’d previously been ousted from. This was in 1918. By 1919, he would be out once more, replaced by Alfred Sloan.

2019 Chevrolet Silverado towing a boat

Even under new leadership, Chevrolet quickly took on a leading role within the GM brand. For Sloan, the purpose of the Chevy name would be to provide “a car for every purse and every purpose” The diverse array of new Chevy models offered today certainly testifies to the breadth and depth of their commitment.

Where Was the First Chevrolet Factory?

Although the Chevrolet Motor Company was founded in Detroit, the first Chevy factory was actually built nearby, at the corner of Wilcox and Kearsley Street in Flint, Michigan. This area, located across the street from Kettering University, is today known as the “Chevy Commons.”

What Was the First Chevy Model Produced?

Real Chevrolet enthusiasts will know that the first Chevy ever produced was the Series C Classic Six. Louis Chevrolet himself drew up the specs for this model, and Etienne Planche quickly finished the complete design. They would unveil it just two years after the company’s founding, at the New York Auto Show of 1913.

2019 Chevrolet Corvette in yellow on track

Where Does the Chevy Logo Come From?

Believe it or not, the origin of the Chevy logo is actually a matter of some debate! What we know for certain is that it was first used in 1914, on the H Series Baby Grand, the Royal Mail, and the Light Six L Series.

As some have it, William C. Durant got the idea for the Chevrolet bowtie emblem from the wallpaper of a hotel room that he had stayed at in France. For others, the logo was probably inspired by the similar logo of the Coalettes coal company. A third narrative links the Chevy bowtie to the Swiss cross, a symbol which would have been familiar to the founders. No matter its origins, today the bowtie is one of the most iconic logos in the U.S.

Explore the History of Chevrolet with Sullivan•Parkhill Automotive Inc!

Chevrolet still makes “a car for every purse and every purpose,” so if you’re planning on upgrading with a new ride soon, you’d do well to explore their current lineup!

Whether you’re in the market for an efficient Chevy Cruze, an adventurous SUV like the Equinox, or a classic Chevy Silverado 1500 pickup, you’ll find plenty to get excited when you visit your local Sid Dillon Chevrolet dealership near Champaign. Check out our new Chevy inventory to get started, and schedule your test drive today!


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