The British are famous worldwide for many things, including their cars. When people think of British car brands, they often think of expensive sports cars and luxury models like Rolls Royce and Bentley.
However, other Britain car brands are loved by fans worldwide. If you’re looking to buy a car, why not consider purchasing one of these ten popular British car brands?
Jaguar has been in production since 1922 and was initially created by an informal partnership between a British motorcyclist and a London taxi cab driver.
At the same time, you may be surprised to learn that Jaguar is one of the best-selling Britain car brands, more than 10 million units have been sold worldwide. Also, you might be even more shocked to know that its profits have gone up in each of the last five years.
In other words, it’s going strong as ever. It’s also very widely known for its recent collaborations with design house Pininfarina.
In 2011, for example, Jaguar entered into a three-year partnership with Pininfarina to design new models. From 2013 onwards, they announced their plans to build electric cars together.
2. Rolls Royce
BMW now owns the Rolls Royce brand of motor cars. Rolls Royce Motors was initially an independent company and produced its first vehicles in 1904. At first, a bicycle maker was keen to experiment with engines for newfangled horseless carriages.
They built just one automobile, which sold at a significant profit due to its innovative design. The company focused solely on building prestige automobiles from 1906 onwards.
Later, it became one of the best-known Britain car brands. They were recognized before Vickers bought it during World War One when its financial backers withdrew support.
It’s one of the best-loved and most famous British car brands, with six generations of luxury cars built. Although Bentley is now a subsidiary of Volkswagen Group and part of Audi, it was founded in Cricklewood near London in 1919.
The company quickly developed a reputation for building robust and reliable motors for successful sporting events, like racing or long-distance travel.
Models such as the Bentley Speed Six were especially popular with wealthy buyers on both sides of the Atlantic. Read more about Bentley here.
4. Aston Martin
The luxury sports cars made by Aston Martin have been on Top Gear, driven by James Bond, and they’re a common sight on The Mall. But few people know their history, and fewer still their names.
They may be iconic in England, but they remain little known outside dedicated enthusiast circles across much of Europe and America. Lagonda owned and sold alongside their other luxury British car brands for most of its lifetime.
He sold it under names such as Aston-Martin Lagonda, Aston Martin Lagonda Ltd, or simply Aston Martin. A public limited company in 1947, it adopted its current name Aston Martin in 1977 when Ford took control of it.
5. Land Rover
Land Rover (LR) is one of the luxurious British car brands of four-wheel-drive vehicles, specializing in Sport Utility Vehicles (SUVs).
Birmingham-based Rover Group founded it in 1948. It was taken over by BMW in 1994, who sold it to Ford Motor Company in 2000.
However, Land Rover’s primary activity is that of a producer of off-road vehicles for all purposes — from humble workhorse to high-end luxury.
It also has a thriving business providing specialist equipment and services to military customers. Land Rover has produced more than nine million vehicles worldwide, with production centers across Europe, North America, and China.
Also, in 2010 approximately 130 000 units were sold globally, thus maintaining its position as one of Britain’s top five manufacturers.
6. Mini Cooper
This one of the iconic Britain car brands, Mini Cooper, was launched in 1959 and has been a mainstay on UK roads ever since.
In 1990, BMW took over and introduced a new generation of Minis to a whole new market. Their next generation of vehicles brought even more success for Mini; sales tripled between 2002 and 2012.
However, the third generation Mini range (launched in 2014) is now available as a classic hardtop or a convertible with turbocharging technology. And both models made Autocar magazine’s 2015 Top 10 list!
It’s easy to see why so many people still love this famous British car brand after all these years – despite its non-British parent company.
7. Vauxhall (GM)
Vauxhall is among the famous British car brands known for its reliable and safe cars. Alexander Wilson founded Vauxhall in 1857 and has had a rich history of offering various vehicles to appeal to customers.
Vauxhall is currently part of GM’s portfolio, although it still retains many distinctive features which make it stand out as a British marque.
We have ten more exciting facts about Vauxhall that you might not know. For example, did you know Henry Royce gave his name to another of our top 10 British marques?
TVR is a high-performance car manufacturer based in Blackpool, England. Trevor Wilkinson and Ron Bardwell founded the company in 1947 as Trevor Victor Riley.
TVR ceased trading on February 29th, 2013. In December 2015, an investor group by John Chasey purchased certain assets of the company and would relaunch TVR in 2016.
9. Morgan Motor Company
A young industrialist and former engineer, Henry Frederick Stanley Morgan, founded his eponymous car brand in 1910. It was initially intended to be a cheap and easily maintained method of transport for fledgling motorists.
These days it’s one of the Britain car brands’ most enduring automotive success stories. The marque is renowned for its traditional chassis-less open two-seater cars.
Despite being more expensive than most on our list, they remain trendy amongst fans due to their quality construction and lasting appeal.
They are also still utterly handmade at their base in Malvern Link, Worcestershire.
10. Lotus Cars
The last on the list of Britain car brands is Lotus. Lotus Cars manufactures sports cars based in Hethel, Norfolk, England.
The company designs and builds race and production automobiles of lightweight and delicate handling characteristics.
It also owns Lotus Engineering, which has facilities in Europe, Asia, and North America with three divisions.
These divisions are Lotus Cars (production vehicles), Lotus Components (operational components), and Lotus Composites (carbon fiber production). DRB-HICOM owned Lotus through its subsidiary Proton, which acquired it from General Motors in 2009.
In addition, the company was formed as Lotus Engineering Ltd. by engineers Colin Chapman and Colin Dare, both graduates of University College London’s aeronautical department. They launched their first product, the Lotus Mark 1, in 1952.
Over more than a century, these companies have evolved from manufacturers of some of the first Britain car brands to pioneers in engine design and safety systems. On their own, each has made huge strides toward better vehicles for consumers worldwide.
Together, they have shaped our perception of British automobiles in profound ways. So as you gather with family and friends on May 24th, raise a glass to celebrate what makes driving in Great Britain so special: its people and cars.