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About tomcotez

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  1. Jon, Thanks that is really helpful and confirms what I had thought. The corporate history of Zenith and Solex (in Europe at least) is complex and i only have a rough idea of it. I think that both companies established subsidiaires in different markets which were initially wholly owned by the parent company but presumably they gradually turned into franchises with rights to use certain products. The director of Solex UK acquired the Zenith UK franchise in the 30's even the though the parent companies were presumably competitors. Zenith became connected with stromberg in europe in the 30's, maybe some sort of share swap? They were branded Zenith Stromberg in europe from the late 30's. Solex bought out Zenith completely in 1965, and the hole lot was merged into Magnetti Marelli (along with Weber) in 1986 and the brands disappeared. I have seen references to Bendix in the UK too, not sure how that ties in! I'd be happy to send a copy of my article when it is published (in the bulletin of the Vintage Sports Car Club). I have a couple of interesting documents, one is a general history of Zenith in French and another is an article on Zenith Detroit from the 20's which I have just got from the Detroit Public library. I'll send them by PM when I have time. Tom
  2. Hi all, I am based in France and researching the history of two French carburettor manufacturers – Solex and Zenith for a magazine article. I have a couple of questions about their presence in the US market that I am hoping you can help me with. Zenith – I know that they had success in the US in the teens and 1920’s and they built a factory covering 47,000sq ft on Hart Avenue in East Detroit. I believe that their carbs were standard fitment on Model A Fords – can anyone confirm this and tell me what else they were fitted to as standard? I don’t know what happened post war, presumably they were squeezed out by domestic manufacturers? Solex – Maurice Goudard, the director of Solex, visited the states a few times and met Henry Ford. However, I can’t find any trace of their products being made or sold in the States pre-war. Has anyone come across a solex carb fitted to a US built automobile? Any help will be gratefully received! Tom