The 108th annual Indianapolis 500 will be held on May 26, and the event always makes our team at Marmon look back on our history and how far we’ve come –– and where we still want to go. 

Marmon’s history with the famous race stretches back to the very first Indy 500 in 1911, when an engineer named Ray Harroun rolled up to the starting line in his race car, the Marmon Wasp. Unlike the other racers, Ray didn’t have a rear-facing passenger to tell him where the other cars were –– instead, he had the first known rearview mirror. 

Ray and the Marmon Wasp won that race and in doing so, set Marmon on a groundbreaking path, both at the Indianapolis 500 and in the wider world. 

Ray Harroun and the Marmon Wasp

Ray Harroun in the Marmon Wasp

“We have a lot of different companies and I think there’s something to be drawn upon if we look back toward our heritage,” said Tom Hewer, team leader of the Marmon Wasp Engineers tasked with helping to create a replica of the iconic race car. 

Another Marmon company, AP Emissions Technologies, is also part of our innovative history with the Indy 500. In 1957, AP bought Belond Headers and that same year the Belond Exhaust Special, which had a reconfigured engine to lower the car’s center of gravity and reduce wind resistance, won the Indianapolis 500, a feat that they then repeated in 1958. 

AP Emissions Indy 500 Winner

The Belond Exhaust Special

As we look forward to watching the competitors take to the track at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway, we also use this moment to reflect on our innovative past and consider all future innovations to come. With a diverse group of employees and companies each bringing something unique to the table, Marmon is in a stronger position than ever before. 

Marmon Wasp Engineers on the Indy 500 Podium

The Marmon Wasp Engineers on the podium at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway.

If you think you’d be a good fit for our team of innovators, click here to learn about our history of innovation dating back to 1911, and here to discover the world of opportunity and experience that is within reach at Marmon.


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