Although a French company, Hotchkiss is named after an American arms manufacturer, Benjamin Hotchkiss (1826-1885). He established a factory in France in 1875, but died suddenly ten years later. The company continued, however, and gained a reputation for building quality engine parts before building its own cars in 1903 at Saint-Denis. WW I saw a return to armaments manufacture but through the 1920’s and 30’s, the company concentrated on cars for the middle-classes. Their cars were also highly successful in the Monte Carlo Rally. After WW II, cars in the 1950’s were powered by a Gregoire engine until production stopped in 1955. A jeep was built after this date by a new company called Hotchkiss-Brandt.