Blog: Dave LeggettBrush with Vauxhall history - original Viva, Job 1

Dave Leggett | 22 May 2015

Original first Viva off the line, pictured yesterday (and in fine fettle, 51 years, 11 months and 21 days later)

Original first Viva off the line, pictured yesterday (and in fine fettle, 51 years, 11 months and 21 days later)

I was at an event yesterday organised by the UK's automotive trade association, the SMMT. It was a drive event at Millbrook Proving Ground. Lots of vehicle manufacturers make their cars available for journalists to drive, so it's an opportunity to get behind the wheel of latest product, catch-up with PRs and also bump into people. At the Vauxhall stand, I bumped into Vauxhall MD Tim Tozer and did a quick interview with him. Interview done, I turned around and was faced with a bit of history: the first Vauxhall Viva off the Ellesmere Port assembly line way back in 1964. Still in mint condition, but alas not available to drive.

Seeing the car jogged a memory though. I recalled a rather magnificent picture of that car from that milestone day, happy and proud people gathered around it. I know we have seen many such pictures before, but I just thought it was a particularly good one. I have therefore used the picture in the published article of the interview with Tim as I could not resist digging it out. And accompanying this blog posting is the picture taken with my cell phone of that same vehicle yesterday. There's always something a little poignant about seeing history up close. Click the below link for the article and that pic from '64.

UK: Car market has topped out - Vauxhall chief

Sectors: Vehicle manufacturers

Companies: Vauxhall


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