Grace's Guide

British Industrial History

Grace's Guide is the leading source of historical information on industry and manufacturing in Britain. This web publication contains 136,205 pages of information and 218,941 images on early companies, their products and the people who designed and built them.

AC Spark Plug Co

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1889/99 Albert Champion, a champion bicycle racer, left his native France for Boston, Massachusetts.

During the early 1900s, France was the dominant manufacturer of spark plugs.

As a sideline, Champion manufactured and sold spark plugs, to support himself, in Boston, Massachusetts.

1904 GM founder William Durant brought Champion and his operation to Flint, Michigan and established the Champion Ignition Company.

1905 Albert Champion broke up with his investors, who kept the Champion Ignition Company name.

1908 Champion founded the AC Spark Plug Company, based in a Buick building in Flint.

1909 Buick Motor Co acquired Albert Champion's spark plug business to supply the growing automobile company.

1916 United Motors Corporation absorbed AC Spark Plugs and formed United Motor Services Inc. (UMS) to sell and service parts; it consolidated many of the automotive accessory manufacturers to reduce duplication of products and services. Another of these manufacturers was the Dayton Engineering Laboratories Co., or Delco.

1918 UMC became part of General Motors which included Delco, Klaxon Co and Remy Electric Co.

1922 re-named AC Spark Plug Company

1927 After Albert Champion's death, General Motors purchased the rest of the company.

1933 Renamed as AC Spark Plug Division

1971 United Motor Services changed its name to United Delco Division.

1974 The merger of AC Spark Plug Sales Division and United Delco Division created the AC-Delco Division of General Motors.

1995 became part of Delphi Automotive Systems, which was spun off from GM in 1999.

See Also

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Sources of Information

  • History of AC Delco [1]
  • AC Spark Plug [2]