History of STIHL

STIHL started out as one man with a vision. Now, more than 80 years later, the STIHL Group provides jobs for more than 7,800 people, including 370 designers and engineers. As a company, we have over 35,000 Dealers in more than 160 countries and, due to the excellence of our products and craftsmanship, STIHL has become the preferred choice of many professionals and hobby gardeners worldwide.

1926
Founded by Andreas Stihl in Cannstatt near Stuttgart, Germany. Designed the first bucking chain saw with an electric motor.

1929
Introduces the first STIHL two-man petrol-driven chain saw.

1931
Becomes the first company to export chain saws to America and Russia.

1950
Develops the world's first chain saw that can be operated by one person.

1959
Revolutionises the market with the lightweight and handy-sized STIHL Contra chain saw.

1971
Achieves an annual output of 340,000 units, making STIHL the most widely sold chain saw brand in the world.

1973
Hans Peter Stihl takes over from his father Andreas Stihl as Managing Director.

1974
STIHL Incorporated in the United States is founded.

1978
Andreas Stihl Ltd in Great Britain is founded.

1988
Develops the world's first catalytic converter for two-stroke engines, reducing the level of harmful hydrocarbons in the exhaust gas by 70-80%.

1992
Acquires 100% of shares in the Austrian garden equipment manufacturer VIKING.

1993
Dr. Nikolas Stihl, the grandson of the STIHL company founder, is appointed Managing Director of VIKING.

2001
The new VIKING Centre of Excellence opens in Kufstein, Austria, to accommodate full design, production, sales and marketing facilities.

2002
Innovative 4-MIX engine technology introduced, combining the advantages of two-stroke and four-stroke units: fewer emissions, lower weight and higher torque.

2003
Adds clever ErgoStart starting aid to compact chain saws and light brushcutters, making these machines much easier to start.

2004
VIKING wins Design Awards for its new GE 150 chipper and GE 250 shredder, which feature an advanced design and patented blade system.

STIHL invests €40 million in its new R&D Engineering Centre in Waiblingen.

2006
STIHL marks its 80th Anniversary, and VIKING celebrates 25 years of business success.

STIHL becomes an Official Partner to Westonbirt – the National Arboretum Tree Team.

2007
STIHL introduces a successor to its legendary and world-leading TS 400 cut-off saw. The new generation TS 410 incorporates the very latest technologies from STIHL to guarantee its superb handling and performance whilst minimising maintenance for the user. The new TS 410 immediately takes on the legendary status.

The STIHL Group acquires the world's largest manufacturer of carburettors for handheld outdoor power tools - Zama Japan KK and Zama Corporation, Ltd., Hong Kong.

2008
Robin Lennie is appointed Managing Director of STIHL’s wholly-owned British subsidiary, Andreas Stihl Limited. STIHL GB celebrates its 30th Anniversary.

STIHL introduces its first range of electric garden tools with new grass trimmers, hedge trimmers and leaf blowers previously marketed under the VIKING brand.

VIKING celebrates record lawn mower sales in Great Britain and launches its first roller model designed specifically for the British market.

The STIHL Group inaugurates its second saw chain plant in Switzerland. The only chain saw manufacturer to design and produce its own saw chain, STIHL’s investment in the new plant amounts to SFR 160 million.

STIHL GB becomes an Official Sponsor of the British Superbike Championship, setting two of the country’s most popular outdoor brands together on track.

2009
Hans Peter Stihl and Eva Mayr-Stihl are awarded the prestigious Social Market Economy Prize of the Konrad Adenauer Foundation. The prize recognises their responsible entrepreneurial accomplishments, combining a commitment to sustainable corporate success with social and communal responsibility.

STIHL enters the cordless power tool market with a range of high performance hedge trimmers powered by its advanced new lithium-ion battery technology.

Following four years in development, VIKING introduces an exclusive range of lawn tractors to Britain and two of the new models receive an International Design Award.

STIHL enters the cordless power tool market with a range of high performance hedge trimmers powered by its advanced new lithium-ion battery technology.

2010
Marking 25 years since the inception of the STIHL® TIMBERSPORTS® Series, the first ever live showing of this major league lumberjack sport takes place at the STIHL-sponsored APF Forestry Exhibition.