White Motor Company

The White Motor Company was a major American manufacturer of steam cars and later of trucks and other vehicles.


Founding and early activities

The origin of the company was the 1876 founding of the White Sewing Machine Company by Thomas H. White and William L. Grout in Cleveland, Ohio. It initially only sewing machines were manufactured. This segment was later continued under the name White Consolidated Industries ( WCI ). This company now belongs to the Swedish company Electrolux.

10,000 steam car

The production initially only of passenger cars began about 1900, when the three sons (Windsor, Rollin and Walter ) went into the company. The first automobiles possessed a two-cylinder steam engine with chain drive. The vehicle production in 1902, legally independent under the name of White Motor Company. The company developed very successfully. In the next few years, about 10,000 steam-powered automobiles were produced, more than from the more well-known in this sector company Stanley Steamer.

1909 was the switch to a petrol engine. The last steam engine was manufactured in 1911. 1910, the first gasoline-powered trucks was produced and this product line has rapidly developed into a success. From 1918, the company has focused entirely on producing trucks.


In the 20s and 30s to White Motor Co. has developed into a leading manufacturer of trucks in the USA. In 1932, the Indiana Truck Corp.. purchased and relocated their production to Cleveland. Developed during the Second World War and produced White armored military vehicles, including the scout car White M3 Scout Car.

In 1951, White sales and service for the products of Freightliner Corp.. under the name "White Freightliner ". More competitive firms were to buy: Sterling Trucks (1951 ), Autocar Company ( 1954), Diamond T ( 1958) and REO Motor Car Company ( 1961). These acquisitions were partly continued as an independent brand under the name " Autocar " and " Diamond REO ". From 1968 to 1977 was also the manufacturer of Euclid Trucks for White Group. 1968, the business line Western Star Trucks was established, which was to supply the American West Coast. The collaboration with Freightliner ended in 1977.

1980 White got into financial difficulties and was forced to declare bankruptcy. 1981 White truck production without Western Star Trucks was taken over by Volvo and Volvo White Truck Corp. in. renamed. The trademarks White and Autocar were initially continued. 1988 merged belonging to General Motors GMC with their heavy loads and Volvo White to the new brand name WhiteGMC. All other trade names other than Autocar have been set. 1995 WhiteGMC brand was changed to Volvo. In 1997, Volvo all shares in the company. The brand name " White" then disappeared completely - since then carry all products from this company the name "Volvo". Seat of Volvo Trucks North America Corp.. Today Greensboro, NC.


The White Motor Company took over in the 1960s, several tractor manufacturers in North America, which eventually led to the founding of White Farm Equipment.


  • WA
  • WC
  • WX42 pumper / rescue
  • White Horse (1939 -1950s )
  • 50A bus
  • 700
  • 800
  • 1500
  • 3000
  • 4000
  • 5000
  • 7000
  • 9000
  • Construcktor
  • PDQ Delivery (1960-1966)
  • Road Boss
  • Road Commander
  • Road Xpeditor


  • Howard Bailey Odell; John Gilmore Utz: Test of a White steam automobile using superheated steam; Cornell University, 1902. OCLC 23,776,837
  • Frederick Weaver: White and Stanley steam automobiles '';, 1949. OCLC 13,404,262
  • Rosemary Solovey Hritsko: The White Motor story; University of Akron in 1988. OCLC 20,238,019
  • White Motor Company: White Motor Company, 1920; , 1920. OCLC 26,414,445
  • White Motor Company: A quarter century of White transportation, 1900-1925; , 1925. OCLC 29,201,061