Rába is a very large engineering company that originated in 1896 as the Hungarian Railway Carriage and Machine Works. It produced more than a thousand railway wagons in its first two years. The company supplied the Habsburg imperial army and produced its first road vehicles in 1904. In 1906 it constructed a new forge based on designs by Gustave Eiffel (1832-1923), and began casting steel in 1910. The first passenger cars were produced in 1914 before large-scale expansion during the First World War. In the 1920s and 30s the company’s products included lorries and aircraft engines, and tanks were made during the Second World War. The plant in Győr was greatly expanded during the period of Communist rule and at its peak employed more than 20,000 people. After privatisation in the early 1990s its size was much reduced but it remains one of Europe’s principal producers of automotive components, particularly of axles. In 2011 the company opened a technological centre displaying its products over more than a century, including buses, tractors, military vehicles, displays history of the Hungarian automotive industry generally.