Borgward was founded in around 1921 in Germany by Carl Borgward and was based primarily in Bremen. The Borgward company went on to produce four makes of cars: Borgward, Goliath, Hansa and Lloyd.
classic cars bear the name Borgward; the 2000, the 2300, the Hansa 1500, the Hansa 1800, the Hansa 1800 D, the Hansa 2400, the Isabella, the P100 and the 230. The marque also produced a number of classic trucks, such as the B 611, B 622 and B 4500.
The first vehicle designed by Borgward was known as the the Blitzkarren (which translates as lightning cart), a very small three wheeled van that was very successful. The German postal service bought many Blitzkarrens to use for delivering mail.
In 1929, Carl Borgward became director of Hansa Lloyd AG and developed the Hansa Konsul. In 1937 came the first Borgward classic, the Borgward 2000. This was soon followed up with the 2300, which were made until 1942. After the second World War, Borgward released the Hansa 1500, which was their most successful model to date.
The company's most successful ever model was the Borgward Isabella, released in 1954. Borgward continuously produced the Isabella for the rest of its life. 1959 saw the introduction of pneumatic suspension to a Borgward, when the P100 was put on sale. This time also saw Borgward's most successful period of racing, with the company's powerful 1500 series being used successfully in Formula One and Two. The classic 16V engine was reliable and well suited to racing.
Borgward was a very innovative company, introducing both automatic transmission and air suspension into the German market. However, it operated fundamentally as four small automobile manufacturers and as such, its prices were higher than competing manufacturers such as Volkswagen and Opel. There were also many quality issues with some of the models produced under the Borgward umbrella, such as the Lloyd Arabella with its leaky radiator and unreliable gear box.
In 1961, Borgward entered into liquidation and its assets relating to the P100 and Isabella were sold to a buyer in Mexico. Carl Borgward claimed that the company was actually still solvent and this would seem to be true, as all of its creditors were paid in full. Carl died in 1963. Production in Mexico began in 1967 but the new venture never really took off and three years later, production ceased altogether.
In 2008, Carl Borgward's grandson, Christian, revived the Borgward name with a view to producing concept cars, ships and aircraft.
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