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Cars ‘made’ in Ireland

  • 18-08-2011 4:25pm
    #1
    Registered Users Posts: 154 ✭✭ S Line


    They used to assemble beetles in Dublin, was this in the MDL building on the long mile road that now houses Mercedes Ireland?

    I think I heard there was a thing around Dublin at the time where people would take the crate that the CKD (complete knock down) body shell came in and used them as garden sheds???

    Recently there was a restored Fiat in Classics Monthly magazine that was made in Dublin, where was this done?

    Hino trucks were also made in Dublin? Ford had a Factory in cork in know that. Any other car brands assembled in Ireland??

    I know about Delorean in N.I. (not trying to be political but technically that’s the UK after all that’s who’s government all the money was embezzled from!!!) and please don’t mention that fibre glass bathtub – the Shamrock


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Comments



  • S Line wrote: »
    They used to assemble beetles in Dublin, was this in the MDL building on the long mile road that now houses Mercedes Ireland?

    It was actually where Ballsbridge Motors is today. It was originally an old Tram station that MDL converted to build Beetle's in around 1950 IIRC.

    I believe the first car built there is now exhibited at Volkswagen's museum in Wolfsburg.
    Recently there was a restored Fiat in Classics Monthly magazine that was made in Dublin, where was this done?

    There was a reunion event on recently that was for people who worked in that factory by FIAT Ireland. It stated where the factory was located, but I now forget where it was.
    Hino trucks were also made in Dublin?

    They still are I think; opposite the Coca Cola factory on the Naas Road.

    Other brands assembled in Dublin were British Leyland, Datsun and Toyota, who I believe were all out on the Naas Road. The factory where Chrysler/Rootes Group cars were built is now a Garda station in Coolock.




  • the Renault 4L was assembled in Wexford (Drinagh or Kerlouge I'm not sure) , The Doors of Grandads Shed were made from packing crates that the CKD's were shipped in, I think We still have some of the Plywood with the Renault logo sprayed on it as part of the loft floor




  • wasnt there also a Ford Asembley plant somewhere in Cork




  • Believe it or not there were cars Made in Rathfarnham in Dublin.

    I will come back with details nothing on the web but i'll get the info Again) first hand. Borgward comes to mind though

    No Bull;)




  • wasnt there also a Ford Asembley plant somewhere in Cork

    Yes as mentioned by the OP ;). I think it was down the docklands somewhere??


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  • http://www.amazon.com/Are-You-Still-Below-1917-1984/dp/1905172494/ < theres even a book on the Ford Cork factory, girlfriend got me a copy in a reasonably sized book store




  • Brittains in Portobello/Ringsend assembled Morris.
    Buckleys in Ringsend; Hillman, Humber, Talbot & Riley
    Summerfields of Lwr. Baggot Street assembled RHD Chrysler (American model), RHD and LHD Plymouth and some DeSoto.
    McCairns on the North Wall and later Santry, assembled Vauxhall and Chevrolet.
    Caveys on Camden Street assembled Jaguar.
    O'Neills on Pleasants Street assembled Dodge.
    Nugents on Parnell Street assembled Peugeot
    Assemblers Garage on Townsend Street assembled RHD Hudson
    Ashenhurst Williams Talbot Place- Leyland/Citroen
    O'Shea's in Cork assembled Opel &Dodge
    Grange Motors in Deansgrange assembled Mercedes although I am unsure when they stopped.
    Booths Stephen Street assembled Wolseley & MG
    Brittains in Portobello/Ringsend assembled Morris
    Lincoln & Nolan on Baggot Street assembled Austin.

    There are other later plants and ones I have left out.
    Its hard to imagine Motor Assembley Plants in the centre of Dublin!




  • Bigus wrote: »
    Believe it or not there were cars Made in Rathfarnham in Dublin.

    I will come back with details nothing on the web but i'll get the info Again) first hand. Borgward comes to mind though

    No Bull;)

    Borgwards were assembled in Rathfarnham by the Belgian Saal family.




  • TMC in Wexford built their own car based on a Lotus 7. Stephen Roche had a TMC 1600 and a TMC Costin.

    A couple of pics of the Brittains plant in Portobello, its all housing now, one of the arches has been converted into a shop.

    DublinJuly2010001.jpg
    DublinJuly2010003.jpg
    DublinJuly2010004.jpg









    Theres a bit more info on car assembly in Dublin and some pics in a thread here:
    http://www.dublin.ie/forums/showthread.php?8914-motor-factory-in-crumlin&
    am just looking at the posts re Brittan's etc . Indeed ,they did assemble the Morris group of cars in Portabello . Thier service dept. was in Ringsend where the bus yard is now . Lincoln and Nolan assembled the Austin group of cars in New Wapping Street in East Wall and the service was in Baggot st where the Bank of Ireland is now. In 1967/68 Brittans and Lincoln&Nolan amalgamated and became B.L.N.Motor Company. and closed up Baggot st and Portobello and moved out the the old Aspro factory on the Long Mile Rd temporarily as there service dept.A new service dept was built later on the junction of Kylemore rd and Bluebell Avenue where the Royal Liver Retail Park . The Smith Motor Group moved in and it became the Smiths B.L.N. They were assembling and servicing the Austin and Morris Mini, 1100 ,1300,1800 till British Leyland bought out the complete group. Then came the introduction of Datsun Motors to Ireland and they were assembled in the same plant in Bluebell . That is as far as can go




  • Where was the "Shamrock" made. I know of one surviving in Killarney.

    T.


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  • DKW or Auto Unions made in Cork? I remember the lettering still painted onto the side of a factory a few years back around the Bishopstown side IIRC...

    Anyone shed any light?




  • DKW were made in Ballincollig, The Shamrock buisiness was established by an American businessmen, James F. Conway and his buddy William K Curtis in Tralee, Co. Kerry, but was moved to Castleblayney, Co. Monaghan, before production began. The aim was to produce a large luxury car model for export to the US market. It didn't work out as the design was flawed in many ways.




  • 2 more makes that were assembled in Dublin,

    NSU at Reg Armstrong Motors in Ringsend,

    Panhard at John Caldwell's in Lucan




  • Reg Armstrong used to assemble Opel's too.




  • Kevin Heron & bijapos – lots of info there thanks

    I would assume global shipping costs are probably cheaper now than back in the day however I cannot understand why so many manufacturers did CKD’s in Ireland. I would assume shipping CKD’s was as costly as fully assembled cars. Maybe I’m wrong but I would imagine there were full CKD’s with very little parts sourced locally ??

    Was it a tax thing, it was less on a CKD assembled here than on a fully assembled car shipped here??




  • Cars imported CKD were liable for less duty than those imported fully assembled.

    It created substantial employment for the semi-skilled workers in assembly plants aswell as sourcing lots of parts locally such as tyres, batteries, paint, glass, upholstery (leather), springs, spark plugs, carpets and wiring looms.




  • FIAT - Kylemore Road.. I think they assenbled Fiats in 70's early 80's ..I think the Datsun - (Nissan) assembled DATSUN van in Dublin Naas Road




  • bijapos wrote: »
    A couple of pics of the Brittains plant in Portobello, its all housing now, one of the arches has been converted into a shop.

    I'd walked past that place for several years and always knew that there was once a car assemblers there. It's only now I find out that where the chiropractors is was also one of the arches.
    Assemblers Garage on Townsend Street assembled RHD Hudson

    Would this have later been Huet Motors' premises by any chance?

    I once heard that where M. Kelly Interiors is in Sallynoggin today was where they used to assemble Peugeot's.




  • Hennessys assembled Studebakers and later DKW cars vans & bikes at their plant in Ballincollig where the Aldi supermarket now stands on the main street.
    I have a few photos of a gathering of DKWs outside the factory before it was demolished.




  • I think Triumph were assembled in Cashel Road in Crumlin, where the Leo Labs plant is now. When I worked in Leo the warehouse was known as the BL (for British Leyland) building.


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  • Vw were assembled in Island Bridge where Glorneys used to be




  • Hootanany wrote: »
    Vw were assembled in Island Bridge where Glorneys used to be

    Source:
    http://www.vwmadeinireland.com/main.htm
    Ireland's place in Volkswagen history was established in 1950 when a consigment of six Beetles arrived into Dublin packed in crates in what was termed 'completely knocked down' form ready to be assembled. A former tram depot was aquired for this purpose at 162 Shelbourne Road, Ballsbridge - the premises now occupied by Ballsbridge Motors.
    There, the first Volkswagen ever built outside Germany was assembled thereby establishing Ireland's unique place in the history of Volkswagen worldwide. That first Volkswagen ever assembled outside Germany, which survives in its original condition is exhibited in the Volkswagen Museum in Wolfsburg, Germany.
    With assembly output rising from 46 units in 1950 to 2155 units in 1952, the business quickly outgrew the Shelbourne Road facility leading to the purchase of new premises at Naas Road, Dublin.

    history1.jpg In 1955, assembly was transferred from Shelbourne Road to the new factory on Naas Road - premises which had earlier been commissioned by tayloring company Montague Burton then placed on the market for sale before ever being used.
    In the new Naas Road premises, Beetle assembly continued non-stop until September 1977 when the production of the Beetle ceased in Europe. During this period, the Naas Road facility - which remains the headquarters of the company today - also assembled the renowned Volkswagen Transporter van.


    Interestingly it seems the Beetle was still being assembled here when the Golf Mk1 was on sale elsewhere in Europe, and I presume here as well.




  • vwadd.jpg

    The first Beetle assembled in Ireland, from a VW ad from the 60s




  • The Ford plant in Cork was absolutely enormous, by Irish industrial standards, even by today's standards. At it's peak it employed 7,000 people! Think of it like two Intels, only probably more economically significant as there were no equivalents at the time and it had much wider levels of spin off pulling in all sorts of smaller companies, local and international who had bases near by.

    It was an 18 acre campus with a 750,000 sq ft assembly line and at one stage even cast its own engine blocks and exported them to other ford plants.

    There was also associated industries like Dunlop tyres and various other smaller companies supplying into the car production facility.

    When that closed in 1984, it sent Cork into a spiral of absolute disastrous depression which it didn't really recover from until the mid 1990s as pharma jobs replaced the income. Remember, a lot of the car workers would not have been able to get other jobs as they'd no appropriate skills and were often a bit older, so couldn't really start out in a new industry like pharma / biotech.

    But, as Ireland's car industry history goes, the Ford Cork plant was by far the most significant and largest industrial facility other than those found in Belfast.

    The plant was built on Cork's Marina Central Park, which was a bit like the idea of building a car plant on the Phoenix Park in Dublin. Sadly, the Marina has never really recovered or been fully rehabilitated. It still bears the scars of a century of manufacturing industry and has loads of tumble-down bits and pieces of various Ford and other plants, wearhouses and a really ugly 1950s power station, ESB Marina. They're now largely used as kinda industrial-retail / commercial units. But, it's still not really anywhere near rehabilitated. The plans to redevelop the area were shelved with the end of the property bubble.

    http://www.ford.ie/AboutFord/CompanyInformation/HistoryOfFord

    Link to a Flickr account with a lot of pics of the Ford Cork location over the decades:

    http://www.flickr.com/photos/ifhp97/4499358388/in/set-72157623598476427/




  • Interesting that Brittains factory in portobello. It was a fire station at one time I remember.
    I used to look at it and think what an amazing loft style apartment it would make with it's huge semi circular window. Funny as I now live in the Brittains old family home which I've heard was inspired by wendys house in peter pan. I guess we share a taste for quirky architecture. Haven't found any old morris minor memorabilia around unfortunately :)




  • Solair wrote: »
    The Ford plant in Cork was absolutely enormous, by Irish industrial standards, even by today's standards. At it's peak it employed 7,000 people! Think of it like two Intels, only probably more economically significant as there were no equivalents at the time and it had much wider levels of spin off pulling in all sorts of smaller companies, local and international who had bases near by.

    It was an 18 acre campus with a 750,000 sq ft assembly line and at one stage even cast its own engine blocks and exported them to other ford plants.

    There was also associated industries like Dunlop tyres and various other smaller companies supplying into the car production facility.

    When that closed in 1984, it sent Cork into a spiral of absolute disastrous depression which it didn't really recover from until the mid 1990s as pharma jobs replaced the income. Remember, a lot of the car workers would not have been able to get other jobs as they'd no appropriate skills and were often a bit older, so couldn't really start out in a new industry like pharma / biotech.

    But, as Ireland's car industry history goes, the Ford Cork plant was by far the most significant and largest industrial facility other than those found in Belfast.

    The plant was built on Cork's Marina Central Park, which was a bit like the idea of building a car plant on the Phoenix Park in Dublin. Sadly, the Marina has never really recovered or been fully rehabilitated. It still bears the scars of a century of manufacturing industry and has loads of tumble-down bits and pieces of various Ford and other plants, wearhouses and a really ugly 1950s power station, ESB Marina. They're now largely used as kinda industrial-retail / commercial units. But, it's still not really anywhere near rehabilitated. The plans to redevelop the area were shelved with the end of the property bubble.

    http://www.ford.ie/AboutFord/CompanyInformation/HistoryOfFord
    They actually started off making tractors in the 1920s. All for export to Britain as very few Irish farmers could afford a tractor.
    When the Sierra was launched there was much excitement because some of them would be built in Cork.
    However it turned out to be the last car made there as the closure happened soon after.




  • shagman wrote: »
    Interesting that Brittains factory in portobello. It was a fire station at one time I remember.
    I used to look at it and think what an amazing loft style apartment it would make with it's huge semi circular window. Funny as I now live in the Brittains old family home which I've heard was inspired by wendys house in peter pan. I guess we share a taste for quirky architecture. Haven't found any old morris minor memorabilia around unfortunately :)

    Theres a couple of interior pics here.

    2e5c93fc5fcb277c88837e18ff8cc045b64581975a901cb793e2c07f57d6ccaa.jpg




  • Blue850 wrote: »
    The first Beetle assembled in Ireland, from a VW ad from the 60s

    Here it is in 2008.

    kaefer-13027.jpg
    I was in the VW museum in May, sadly the car wasn't on display, like a lot of museums they change the displays around. Well worth a visit though.




  • According to local wags in cork when the ford factory was working, if you bought a car you would go to your local dealer and buy the basic model escort for example. You would then give your mate working there your order docket, when the car started production, some indication was put in it to tell the people on the line it was a mate of a worker, so the car got the works better engine the ghia trim leather etc. Then at the end it would have the basic trim badges afixed and be delivered.


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  • baalthor wrote: »
    They actually started off making tractors in the 1920s. All for export to Britain as very few Irish farmers could afford a tractor.
    When the Sierra was launched there was much excitement because some of them would be built in Cork.
    However it turned out to be the last car made there as the closure happened soon after.

    Well, I wouldn't go as far as that most Irish farmers couldn't afford a tractor, there were quite a few of them around. There were plenty of British farmers who couldn't have afforded one either in those days. Only big farms could. The Irish market was and still is pretty tiny due to the population i.e. 4 million (Ireland) vs 62 million (UK). The UK was wealthier back then, but agricultural economies of scale help sell machinery. Irish farming in those days was still pushing towards small family farms and using manual labour.

    Modernisation started after WWII, mostly with Marshall Plan aid, which despite stories to the contrary, Ireland did receive $133 million in total, which was pretty significant ! A lot of that money went into agricultural modernisation and into things like rollout of the ESB's network, P&T installation of crossbar switching, airport upgrades/building, etc etc.

    The Ford Cork location was probably undermined by economies of scale in the end too. It wasn't really practical to manufacture heavy items like cars in a location that far from market, particularly when all of your raw materials had to be imported. Ultimately, it was just cheaper to do it all in a few big centralised locations.

    That being said, VW still has plants in far flung places like Pamplona in Spain which is easily as isolated as Cork from the main European markets. Although, it does have the advantage of being linked by land/rail.


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