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There are a few success stories that you really have to respect, because some people are innovative and forward thinking to the point that they can see over the horizon and be prepared to shift gears when necessary to continue their record of success. The Opel company certainly falls into his category, and their histor...y is an interesting one.

The Opel company was founded all the way back in 1863 by a fellow named Adam Opel as a sewing machine manufacturer in Hesse, Germany. They grew rapidly due to the fine quality of their products, and subsequently began building high-wheel bicycles in 1886, and before long they were outselling the sewing machines, so the company shifted focus.

Opel expired in 1895, and his sons took over the business and began making cars in 1899. Their first successful model was called the "Doctor's Car" that they released in 1909 that was popular with physicians for making house calls because of its sturdy durability and low price for the day.

That was the start of a long, storied and successful car making enterprise. Opel was purchased by General Motors in increments between 1929 and 1931 for a total more than $33 million.

They are still manufacturing Opel cars today, including the futuristic electric Ampera. Classic models that are cherished by collectors include the Kadett and the Kapitan. It's incredible to think that Opel went from sewing machines in the 1860s, to bicycles in the 1880s, and continued to evolve through to the present with cutting edge high tech vehicles such as the Opel Ampera.

(Learn More About Opel)(See less)

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