In 1867, American born Benjamin B. Hotchkiss was asked by Napoleon II to establish an arms factory in France. Well established, Hotchkiss had plants in New York and New England and had been a major supplier of weapons and ammunition during the Civil War. They patented the Hotchkiss revolving cannon in 1872.
By the turn of the century and the advent of the automobile, the auto industry began relying on the company's knowledge of special steels, precision manufacturing methods and their machining skills. Their machinists were used to build crankshafts, pistons, rods, gears and valves. Hotchkiss introduced its first car in 1904, they went on to produce successful road and rally cars. In 1948, the board of directors voted to buy a front wheel drive car from J.A. Gregorie. This car was priced higher than traditional Hotchkiss models and sales were disappointing, few were made before production was discontinued.
This example is part of the Lane Motor Museum of Nashville, TN.