The name “Hispano-Suiza” still sets pulses racing because of the company’s legendary history in both automobiles and aviation. For more than a century now, whether in France or abroad, this brand has evoked an image of performance, quality and innovation, qualities that are just as much in evidence today.
Marc Birkigt (Swiss engineer) and Damian Mateu (Spanish industrialist) create Hispano-Suiza in Barcelona to develop internal-combustion engines.
1911 - Hispano-Suiza moves to France, in Levallois-Perret, near Paris, and starts the design of luxury automobiles. The first model, boasting 15 HP, is named Alphonse XIII after its first owner, the King of Spain.
Hispano-Suiza opens another plant near Paris, in Bois-Colombes, and supports the war effort by producing aircraft engines, especially for the SPAD VII flown by French ace Georges Guynemer. A cicogne (“stork”) drawn on his plane by an unknown artist during the liberation of Alsace will become the symbol of his squadron – and this emblem will soon be adopted by Hispano-Suiza in honor of the valiant pilots and their planes powered by the company’s engines.
At the Paris Auto Show, Hispano-Suiza introduces the elegant H6 32CV, nicknamed the “French Rolls Royce”.
Sadi Lecointre, flying a Nieuport-Delage with a 300-HP Hispano-Suiza engine, sets a new world speed record at 375 km/h (about 230 mph). Another plane makes a non-stop flight from Paris to Omsk, covering 4,700 kilometers (2,920 miles) in 29 hours.
Automobile manufacture comes to an end, as Hispano-Suiza concentrates on the production of aircraft engines and builds a wind tunnel in Bois-Colombes for engine testing.
After the war, Hispano-Suiza is determined to resume its business as an aircraft engine manufacturer. It acquires a license from Rolls-Royce to manufacture the Nene jet engine with centrifugal compressor (which will power the Mistral and Ouragan), followed by the Tay.
Based on the Tay, Hispano-Suiza develops a more powerful engine known as the Verdon. This engine will power the legendary Dassault Mystère IVA. Through 1970, Hispano-Suiza continues to develop a series of innovative solutions for the aviation, rail, naval and nuclear markets.
Hispano-Suiza makes a breakthrough in the industrial sector (gas turbines and turbochargers).
Hispano-Suiza joins Snecma, and its Bois-Colombes plant becomes a division of the company.
Hispano-Suiza is no longer an engine manufacturer, and stakes out a position as top-tier equipment supplier.
Hispano-Suiza merges with CNMP (Compagnie Normande de Mécanique de Précision). This Le Havre-based company had actually been working closely with Hispano-Suiza since 1969, to develop components for the CFM56.
Hispano-Suiza named prime contractor for production of transmission systems in the group. The Le Havre plant enters the thrust reverser business, making its first model in May 1979.
Production of first accessory gearboxes for the CFM56.
Hispano-Suiza selected as supplier of the thrust reverser for the A320, as well as accessory gearboxes and flex-shafts for the M88 engine powering the Rafale fighter.
1989 Hispano-Suiza chosen to design and produce the power transmission for the Rolls-Royce Trent 700 engine. Hispano-Suiza also wins a contract for the lubrication unit on the power transmission for the Tiger helicopter.
Delivery of the 5,000th CFM56 power transmission.
Delivery of the first power transmission systems for Trent 700 engines powering the A330.
Transfer of power transmission and Tyne parts production from Bois-Colombes to Colombes.
Hispano-Suiza starts production of precision mechanical parts for aircraft at a plant in Bezons, along with the design and production of turbochargers for diesel engines.
Aircelle selects Hispano-Suiza to develop the electrical actuation system, the first in the world, for the thrust reversers on the Trent 900 and GP7200 engines for the A380.
All engine control and power transmission system design, production and integration operations consolidated within Hispano-Suiza.
Hispano-Suiza and BAE Systems create an equal joint venture, Fadec International.
Construction of the Réau plant.
Hispano-Suiza becomes prime contractor for the M88 control system.
Hispano-Suiza transfers turbocharger business to Turbomeca.
Hispano-Suiza and BAE Systems supply the FADEC for the Engine Alliance GP7200 engine on the A380.
Hispano-Suiza selected by Rolls-Royce to develop and produce the power transmission system for the BR710 engine powering the Bombardier Global 5000 bizjet.
The FADEC electronic engine control made by Hispano-Suiza Canada is chosen along with the Pratt & Whitney 610 for the Eclipse 500 twin-engine business jet.
Hispano-Suiza control system selected for the TP400 engine powering the A400M.
Hispano-Suiza delivers the 14,000th CFM56 power transmission.
Hispano-Suiza selected to supply the complete SaM146 control system.
Hispano-Suiza delivers the 1,000th Trent power transmission to Rolls-Royce.
Merger of Snecma and Sagem, creating the Safran group. Hispano-Suiza becomes a subsidiary of Safran, an international high-tech corporation. In July, Snecma Polska becomes a subsidiary of Hispano-Suiza and is renamed Hispano-Suiza Polska. This production plant produces gears for the company’s power transmissions.
Hispano-Suiza Canada, previously part of Messier-Dowty International, becomes a subsidiary of Hispano-Suiza. This company is specialized in the design, development and production of electronic control units for business aircraft.
Delivery of 3,000th power transmission to Rolls-Royce.
Eurocopter selects Hispano-Suiza to develop the accessory gearboxes for the main gearbox on the EC175.
General Electric selects Fadec International for the development, production and support of the FADEC on the GEnx engine, intended for the Boeing 747-8 and 787.
Hispano-Suiza selected by Rolls-Royce to design, develop, produce and support the power transmission for a new BR725 version of their business jet engine, for the G650.
First flight of the A380 on the Singapore-Sydney route, with successful service entry of the ETRAS electrical thrust reverser actuation system on the Rolls-Royce Trent 900 engines.
The ETRAS system for the Engine Alliance GP7200 engine is also certified.
Delivery to Eurocopter of the first shipset of prototypes for the accessory gearboxes, to be used on tests of the main gearbox for the EC175 helicopter.
Hispano-Suiza delivers to Rolls-Royce Deutschland the first accessory gearbox for the BR725 engine that will power the Gulfstream G650.
Hispano-Suiza selected by Rolls-Royce to design, develop, produce and support the power transmission for the Trent XWB on the A350 XWB.
Hispano-Suiza is reorganized, and now includes the Power Transmissions division at Colombes, and a new division at Réau, Safran Power, for electronic power controllers and electrical systems.
Delivery of the 20,000th power transmission for the CFM International CFM56 engine family.
Successful first flights of the A400M, Boeing 787, Gulfstream G650 and EC175, all featuring engine or aircraft equipment developed by Hispano-Suiza.
Delivery of the first power transmission for the Rolls-Royce Trent XWB engine.