However, the Anasagasti´s
plan was the mass-produced car, and in 1909 he decides to
forsake his partners and stars his career as constructor.
He builds a facility and founds Horacio Anasagasti Mechanical
Engineers Company in 1600 Alvear Ave.
The plan consisted of manufacturing from imported components,
specially from Italy and France and, gradually replaced them
with national products.
From the beginning, Anasagasti equipped his facility with
an important set of machinery powered by a great electric
motor that moved an aerial leather strips transmission, to
activate the corresponding machines. For the vehicles bodyworks,
the facility included also a sector destined to metalwork,
bodywork and painting work.
The facility staff was about twenty workers, most of them
were European immigrants with some type of specialization,
between them were Spanish, French and Italian people. Anasagasti´s
treatment was excellent and he instructed the workers in their
own languages because he had a good command of English, French
In the international railway and transport by land exhibition
carried out in Buenos Aires in 1910, Anasagasti y Cia. showed
some of the components for cars produced in his facility,
among them a gear box of four forward and backward speed and
a motor of four cylinders of his own design, constructed from
imported steel. These components were carefully showed and
protected by means of some glass panels in their edges in
order to let the visitors watch their inner operation. The
exhibition jury awarded him with the diploma of grand prize,
the highest prize awarded to the national industry in the
The sportive success
On September, 1911, the engineer Anasagasti,
very fond of car races, took part in Rosario-Cordoba-Rosario
car race. The car had a French Ballot 12 hp motor of four
cylinders, water refrigerated by thermo siphon. The cylinder
size was 75mm. X 120 mm., what means a total capacity of 2,125cc.
The valves were lateral situated in the same side of the block.
Anasagasti intended to prove his cars were as reliable as
the imported ones. So he traveled Europe when he took part
in some tour car competitions.
The competition more demanding was the France tour with a
route of 5,500km. Three cars with 15 hp motors were driven
by the English engineer Brown, Marquis D´avaray, and
Jacques Repoussean, finishing among the first ones and without
points against, excelled European and American makes.
On his return from Europe, Anasagasti was training for the
commercial public presentation of his cars. The facility manufactured
blocks, carters, connecting rods, crankshafts, gear boxes
and their gears, axle tips, elastics for suspension, transmission
axles, cardan axles and their crossroads, steering mechanism
On January, 1912, the showed cars were offered into two versions
of motor: 12hp normal and 15hp sport, meanwhile the bodyworks
which only had one lateral and front door, were available
in Double Phaeton and Lanadaulet versions.
The price of the 12hp engine model was 6,000 pesos and they
could entirely be financed in dues of 200 pesos.
Unfortunately the Argentinean public distrusted the quality
of Anasagasti´s ones and they preferred the European
cars, in spite of its high price. The most of Anasagasti´s
cars finished like taxis in Buenos Aires.
A honest man
His technical knowledge made of engineer Anasagasti
a respectable man, and his human conditions turned him into
an exceptional being. The social, human and economic conditions
of his company´s staff were excellent, to such an extent
that many of the benefits given by Anasagasti to his employees
turned into law some years later. The salaries were the highest
in that time. The day work did not overpass the eight hours
and in summer each worker had a fan in his place of work.
Also the facility had a refrigerator with soft drinks for
Two reasons plotted against the company continuity. On the
one hand, the financial difficulties produced by the delay
in the payments of the buyers who chose from the payment in
dues. On the other hand, the first World War outbreak finished
with the delivery of the products imported from Europe and
to replace them locally was impossible because of the lack
of raw material.
After manufacturing hundred of cars the facility closed its
doors in 1915, Anasagasti was only 35 years old. His staff
in gratefulness by the received treatment kept on working
without earning salaries until 1916, when Anasagasti finally
decides to sell off the society.
of Horacio Anasagasti (Spanish)