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Unic

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Unic was a French manufacturer founded in 1905, and active as an automobile producer until July 1938. After this the company continued to produce commercial vehicles, retaining its independence for a further fourteen years before being purchased in 1952 by Henri Pigozzi, who was keen to develop Unic as a commercial vehicle arm of the then flourishing Simca business.

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Unic was a French manufacturer founded in 1905, and active as an automobile producer until July 1938. After this the company continued to produce commercial vehicles, retaining its independence for a further fourteen years before being purchased in 1952 by Henri Pigozzi, who was keen to develop Unic as a commercial vehicle arm of the then flourishing Simca business.

Unic was founded by Georges Richard after he left Richard-Brasier. In 1905 Richard had a meeting with the entrepreneur-financier Baron Henri de Rothschild and obtained funding for the creation of the "société anonyme des automobiles Unic", based at Puteaux. The objective was to manufacture "unique" (rather than mainstream) vehicles, and at the start the company made only light cars and taxis with two-cylinder and four-cylinder engines.

Unic passenger car production ceased in July 1938.

After 1938 Unic concentrated in the truck business, being one of the leading French makes. In 1966 it was taken over by the Italian company Fiat and eventually merged into Iveco in 1975.

Post World-War II timeline:

  • In 1952, the firm was taken over by Simca, headed by Henri Pigozzi, who wanted a commercial vehicle production unit. Trucks of this period are commonly referred to as Unic-Simca trucks.
  • In 1956 the French arm of the Swiss truck manufacturer Saurer was taken over.
  • In 1966 Unic joined the Fiat Group.
  • In 1975 a holding company named IVECO was established covering truck and bus brands such as Fiat, OM, Lancia, UNIC, and Magirus.
  • In 1976 UNIC-FIAT S.A. became UNIC S.A.
  • In 1992 IVECO UNIC S.A. changed its name to IVECO FRANCE S.A.
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