REO was founded by Ransom Eli Olds in 1904 as "R. E. Olds Motor Car Company". Ransom Eli Olds was also the founder of the
"Olds Motor Works" (later: Oldsmobile) and this other company forced Olds to rename the R. E. Olds Motor Car Company to
"REO Motor Car Company". The company was active between 1905 and 1975.