Alvis cars were produced by the manufacturer Alvis Car & Engineering Company Ltd of Coventry, England from 1919 to 1967. The company was also involved in aero-engines and military vehicles, the latter continuing after the car production was stopped.
The original company, TG John & Co. Ltd., was founded in 1919. Its first products were stationary engines, carburettor bodies and motorscooters. The company founder TG John was approached by Geoffrey de Freville with designs for a 4-cylinder engine. The design called for aluminium pistons and pressure lubrication, unusual for the period. Some have suggested that de Freville proposed the name Alvis as a compound of the words "aluminium" and "vis"(Latin=strong) - although it is well known that de Freville himself vigously denied this theory; it is also possible that is was named for the Norse mythological weaponsmith, Alvis, but the true origin is unknown.
The first car model, the 10/30, using de Freville's design was an instant success and set the reputation for quality and performance for which the Alvis brand became famous. The company logo of an inverted red triangle incorporating the word 'Alvis' was used from this period. In 1921, the company changed its name to become Alvis Car & Engineering Company Ltd. and moved to Holyhead Road, Coventry.
Captain GT Smith-Clarke joined from Daimler as Chief Engineer & Works Manager in 1923 and was soon joined by WM Dunn as Chief Draughtsman. This partnership lasted for 25 years and was responsible for many designs.