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“Be brave. Ride.”
The story of Chevalier is a very peculiar one: originally founded in Naples in 1933 as a joint English-Italian enterprise (the original founders were Patrick Gurose and Emiliano Martelli) for the production of engines for motorsports, after 1935 it moved all its activites to the UK, in Nottingham, before being definitely shutted down with the beginning of the war.
In 1956 a brief attempt by Martelli to revive the brand ended in failure after the only model produced, the C100, didn’t succeed to impose itself into the new Formula 1 races, despite the critical acclaim that surrounded its debut.
In 2005 talks began between the Martelli family and a financial conglomerate, headed by the famous British pilot and businessman William McAndrew and his Dutch partner Johann Van Deer, in order to bring back the brand to life.
Finally, the 2nd August 2010 the Chevalier Motors was officially born, with its main factory now located in Altopascio, northern Tuscany, and a completely new focus as a generalist car manufacturer.
Despite its turn toward generalist manufacturing, something of the old spirit of the original Chevalier is still kept in its industrial concept: the brand is basically divided in two distinct divisions, Chevalier Motor Engineering, responsible for the design and production of all engines employed on the cars, and which thus collect the legacy of Gurose and Martelli, and the proper car manufacturing division. Chevalier is particularly proud in stressing that all its cars only mount Chevalier-produced engines; moreover, the same engines are often the subject of industrial exchanges with other manufacturers.
Furthermore, the brand also maintains a strong link with an independent design studio, Fiorino, based in Florence, which it funded, and is responsible for the design of all the brand models to date.
Right now, Chevalier is in the midst of a struggle for determining its own identity and, thus, its future. The current set of models produced by the company ranges from city cars to SUV and spiders, with a focus on sport-like performances at a lower price. However, this image of ‘cheap prestige’ is already getting obsolete, as competition is becoming more and more aggressive, and some weird decisions by the top echelons resulted in the creation of models with unclear market targets.
Two schools of thought are now facing each other: one pointing at rising the brand status to the premium level and a stronger emphasis on motorsports, the other instead privileging a continuation of the current trend, possibly further extending the range markets to be targeted.
What will happen, only the future could tell.
Aglovale Touring Wagon