Daewoo history

Daewoo Motors is one of the best-known and largest automotive companies from South Korea. Sharing the same name with a large Daewoo conglomerate, which consisted of many companies, Daewoo Motors appears to be one of the most successful divisions among Daewoo units. It has history full of important events that greatly influenced the automotive industry. If you are interested in the development of Daewoo Motors or want to know how South Korean companies developed and gained success throughout their history, keep on reading this article.

Daewoo history

The first title ever used with this automaker was National Motor. It was founded in Incheon in 1937. Later, in 1962, the company was renamed into Saenara Motor. During the initial years of its existence, the company cooperated with other Asian automakers, including Datsun. Its cooperation with Datsun was very effective because Saenara Motor assembled one of the most popular Datsun models, Bluebird PL310. Due to this success, Saenara Motor later managed to become the first company to produce cars in South Korea. From 1965 to 1982 the owners of the company changed several times.

In 1982, Saenara Motor was finally purchased by the Daewoo corporation and was renamed into Daewoo Motors. Although previous years had been good for the automaker, its golden era began after purchase by Daewoo. The automaker had adopted an effective strategy of manufacturing cars that are based on models by General Motors. In 80s, the company produced models of Royale series, including Royale Duke, Royale XQ, Royale Salon, and Royale Prince. Besides, Daewoo Imperial, a luxury car, was added into the range.

Daewoo Royale series

Daewoo Royale series

In 90s, the cooperation between Daewoo Motors and General Motors came to an end. After the production of Espero and Arcadia, both of which were based on models by other manufactures, Daewoo Motors started to produce its authentic models. The first one of these was Daewoo Lanos in 1996. Daewoo Lanos was soon followed by Nubira, Leganza, and Matiz. All these models were quite successful and received facelifts later.

Daewoo Lanos, 1996 year

Daewoo Nubira, 1998 year

Daewoo Leganza, 1998 year

Daewoo Motors was heavily affected by the financial crisis in Asia that took place in the end of 90s. This crisis prevented Daewoo Motors from developing and growing, which is proved by the fact the company had to sell SsangYoung Motor just two years after buying it. The crisis also caused the change of the automaker’s owner. By the end of 90s Daewoo Motors was bought by General Motors. Besides, in 2002, Daewoo Motors divided into two companies. While Daewoo Motors remained the property of General Motors, Daewoo Commercial Vehicle Company was purchased by Tata Motors, the largest automotive company in India. GM Daewoo was defunct in 2011 and Tata Daewoo operates until today.

International activity takes the special place in the history of Daewoo Motors. This Korean company has aggressively expanded, especially in Eastern European states. The best-known cooperation is probably with Ukrainian AvtoZAZ that lasted from 1998 to 2003 and was marked by full-scale production of Lanos models. Besides, Daewoo Motors actively worked in the markets of Romania, Poland, Czech Republic, Russia, and Uzbekistan.

Daewoo logo history

Daewoo had several logos during the course of its history. Despite the origin of Daewoo’s logos remain unclear, we can say that the design of these logos appears to be quite effective. It is proved by the fact that this South Korean company was growing rapidly and gained popularity not only in South Korea but also in Eastern European states situated far away. A common feature of all the logos ever employed by Daewoo Motors is the presence of the company’s title on the logo.

Daewoo logo

2015 Daewoo premiere

Recently, rumors were spreading that an automobile manufacturer Vauxhall plans to produce its new cars based on the cars previously developed by Daewoo Motors. Although there is sufficient proof of this news, we believe it is really possible because Vauxhall has some similar features with Daewoo in terms of both design and specs, so such type of cooperation may occur in the nearest time.

Daewoo Concept

There were plenty Daewoo concept cars developed during the course of this company’s history. Some of them were developed in cooperation Chevrolet, including Trax, Beat, Orlando, and many others. There are also Daewoo concept autos that were developed by the company when it was a part of a larger automaker. For example, GM Daewoo G2X, GM Daewoo T2X, and GM Daewoo M3X are those concept models that were developed by Daewoo when it used to be a unit of General Motors.

GM Daewoo G2X

Daewoo G2X

GM Daewoo T2X

Years: 1967 – Present
Headquarters: Seoul, South Korea
Founder/Parent Company: Kim Woo-jung

by Irene Green