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A Co Down racing car maker who took an iconic fictional vehicle and made it a reality

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Brian McCrory, Chief Operating Officer, OSG Cloud, presents the Excellence in Innovation Award to Paul McMorran from The Crosslé Car Company Limited

Brian McCrory, Chief Operating Officer, OSG Cloud, presents the Excellence in Innovation Award to Paul McMorran from The Crosslé Car Company Limited

Kelvin Boyes / Press Eye

Brian McCrory, Chief Operating Officer, OSG Cloud, presents the Excellence in Innovation Award to Paul McMorran from The Crosslé Car Company Limited

Since 1960, Crosslè Car Company has constructed racing cars for customers worldwide from its factory in Holywood.

Success on the race tracks of Europe and the USA brought growth and commercial success, with hundreds of cars exported through the 1970's and 1980's.

Many famous racing drivers began their career at the wheel of a Crosslè.

From 2020 to 2021 the company delivered ‘Vaillante by Crosslè’, a project that it says transformed its approach to product development and brought “our best financial results for many years”.

The story began at a trade show in France, where MD Paul McMorran met the owner of the Michel Vaillant brand. Michel Vaillant is a fictional racing hero of more than 20 million books, drawn driving a spectacular range of machinery.

Crosslè offered to construct a real-life Vaillante for the first time. An iconic example from one of Michel's most famous adventures was selected, and Vaillante by Crosslè was born.

It was no easy feat to create a vehicle from a 2D print, but the company succeeded beckoning this year’s Excellence in Innovation Award.

Paul McMorran, managing director of Crosslè Car Company said: “A company like ours depends on innovation,. We are in a competitive market from a commercial and racing point of view. This innovative idea came about during lockdown and it didn’t just create a new car, it created a new market in France.

“It took us two years and was a half a million pound project using local talent. It was a real team effort.

“We sold 13 of these cars to grown up fans of these books and did it all using local talent in Holywood.”


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