Rotax is the brand name for a range of internal combustion engines developed and manufactured by the Austrian company BRP-Rotax GmbH & Co KG (until 2016 BRP-Powertrain GmbH & Co. KG), in turn owned by the Canadian Bombardier Recreational Products.
Rotax four-stroke and advanced two-stroke engines are used in a wide variety of small land, sea and airborne vehicles. Bombardier Recreational Products (BRP) use them in their own range of such vehicles. In the light aircraft class, in 1998 Rotax outsold all other engine manufacturers combined
The company was founded in 1920 in Dresden, Germany, as ROTAX-WERK AG. In 1930, it was taken over by Fichtel & Sachs and transferred its operations to Schweinfurt, Germany. Operations were moved to Wels, Austria, in 1943 and finally to Gunskirchen, Austria, in 1947. In 1959, the majority of Rotax shares were taken over by the Vienna-based Lohner-Werke, a manufacturer of car and railway wagon bodies.
In 1970, Lohner-Rotax was bought by the Canadian Bombardier Inc. The former Bombardier branch, Bombardier Recreational Products, now an independent company, uses Rotax engines in its ground vehicles, personal water craft, and snowmobiles.
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