About Borg & Beck

With over 100 years’ history of engineering excellence and OE pedigree, Borg & Beck has established itself as a world renowned brand offering premium quality automotive components to the vehicle aftermarket.

Starting life back in 1903 and being the first to patent the sliding clutch, Borg & Beck has been a trusted brand by some of the world’s largest vehicle manufacturers, and during a certain period in its history was fitted to almost every single British-made vehicle.

In 2006, the Borg & Beck brand was purchased by First Line Ltd, who have invested heavily in new product development to bring the range up to date and increase the product portfolio. Today, the brand is a vital part of the company’s global growth ambitions and offers a portfolio of over 60 product lines, 37,000 references and is available globally to the world’s aftermarket.

Borg & Beck History

When Charles Borg and Marshall Beck started their tool company in 1903, which by 1910 was supplying the first sliding clutch to over a dozen car makers, it probably never occurred to them that their names would still be world famous over 100 years later.

Both of them came from humble roots; Charles Borg had emigrated from Sweden to America in 1881 and had worked as a furniture maker and as a machinist for some years before teaming up with Marshall Beck, who was of German origin. Together with Charles’ son George and their chief machinist Gust Nelson, they developed and patented the original sliding clutch.

In 1918 they moved their factory from the original site in Moline, Illinois to Chicago. In 1928 Borg & Beck was merged with Warner Gear and other companies to form Borg-Warner, with George as its first President.

In 1931, such was the increasing demand for Borg & Beck coil spring clutches, the decision was taken to start a British manufacturing plant. The first British Borg & Beck clutch left the factory of Automotive Products in Leamington spa and by the outbreak of World War II A.P had produced their millionth Borg & Beck Clutch. The pace continued in line with vehicle production and by 1958 the 10 millionth cover assemble was taken from the production line.

By 1971 nearly 4 million Borg & Beck clutches were being produced annually as Original Equipment and over 3.5 million genuine replacements going into the motor trade from the service and spares division of AP in Banbury

In the racing world, a Borg & Beck clutch enabled the Jaguar XK120C and later in the 1950’s, the D-Type to dominate the Le Mans 24 Hours. Drivers like Stirling Moss, Mike Hawthorn and Graham Hill all relied on Borg & Beck.

The success story continued throughout the decades both in terms of a continuous presence in motor sport and OEM contracts won. The aftermarket also grew in volume and diversity thus becoming an important and integral part of the development of the Borg and Beck business.

As vehicle designs changed over the years, so has component technology with Borg & Beck at the forefront of product and range development.

Take a step back in history and view some of the old Borg & Beck factory images and advertising

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Borg & Beck History
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Borg & Beck History