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Bosch Power Tools

Our roots

A hair trimmer as the forerunner of the hammer drill, the angle grinder, and the cordless screwdriver? In response to the profound crisis in the European automotive industry, Bosch opened up new areas of business for itself as an automotive supplier almost 100 years ago and ushered in the era of power tools. The power and speed of innovation are firmly anchored in our DNA. A journey through time.

A black and white picture of the Forfex hair trimmer.


Bosch's first power tool

Developed in response to the automobile crisis of 1926, the Forfex hair trimmer was the first Bosch power tool to be launched on the market in 1928. Very popular with hairdressers, the Forfex provided Bosch with the starting point for the development of other hand-held compact power tools – based on the principle of the motor in the handle.

A black and white photo of a woman working with the universal hand motor.


The ancestor of today's drills

In the following years, Bosch further developed the hair trimmer into the ancestor of all modern-day drills. The so-called "universal hand motor" could be used for screwing and drilling, depending on the attachment selected. From 1930, Bosch used the universal hand motor in its own factories, two years later, Bosch sold it exclusively to craft businesses.

A black and white photo of two workers working with the Bosch hammer drill.


The first hammer drill

The first hammer drill came onto the market in 1932. With its swirl impact mechanism, the device proved itself in tough continuous use and was the world's first electric hammer drill of this type to be used on construction sites. It could not only drill but also chisel. And because it was so unique, it was soon no longer called a hammer drill on construction sites, but a "Bosch hammer".

A black and white photo of the "Bosch Combi" from the 1950s.


Entry into the DIY market

After the Second World War, Bosch also entered the DIY business and hit the bull's eye, because the small tools for DIY at home in the hobby cellar enjoyed great popularity. The “Bosch Combi” electric power tool could be used in many different ways according to the chosen attachment – as a drill, screwdriver, sander, or even a hedge-cutter.

A black and white photo of the company premises in Leinfelnden from 1959.


Independent division

In 1955, the company premises in Leinfelden were purchased and in August of the same year, the production of power tools was finally relocated from Stuttgart to the new site. On July 1, 1959, power tool manufacturing in Leinfelden was finally renamed an independent division of the Bosch Group.

The cordless revolution

A black and white photo of the first cordless power tool, a hedge cutter.


The end to tangled cables

In 1969, Bosch Power Tools launched the first cordless power tool on the market, a hedge cutter with a battery that could be slung over the shoulder. The battery still weighed a hefty 5.5 kg – but the hedge cutter could be operated for a whole hour.

A photo of the world's first cordless hammer drill – the GBH 24 V from 1984.


The first cordless hammer drill

Bosch set the next milestone in 1984 with the world’s first professional cordless hammer drill – the GBH 24 V. The company has thus met the needs of professional users and further expanded its position as a battery pioneer. The cordless hammer drill represented the only way to carry out certain work far away from power sockets, for example, during installation work in the revived prefabricated house construction industry.

A photo of the first Ixo generation from 2003.


Small but mighty

In 2003, the world’s first power tool with a lithium-ion battery revolutionized the market: the Ixo cordless screwdriver. The world’s most popular power tool has now been sold more than 20 million times and has long since become an icon. Thanks to lithium-ion technology, which at that time was only known in mobile phones, the Ixo was always ready to use and, at 300 g, a lightweight.

A worker with the GBH 18V-45 C Professional cordless rotary hammer on a construction site.


Top performance thanks to BITURBO

In 2019, Bosch Power Tools introduced BITURBO Brushless, the next generation of cordless tools that are optimized for maximum performance with ProCore18V batteries. They are therefore more powerful than previous cordless tools and offer professionals the equivalent power from a 1,000 to 1,800 watts corded tool.

Strong together

The two batteries from the "Professional 18V System" and the "18V Power for All System".


Opening of the battery systems

In 2020, Bosch Power Tools opened up both 18V battery platforms, the "Professional 18V System" and the "18V Power for All System", to other manufacturers. The two battery alliances AMPShare for professionals and POWER FOR ALLIANCE for DIY enthusiasts offer user groups greater flexibility and application diversity.

The cooperation logo of WWF Germany and Bosch Power Tools.


Bosch Power Tools & WWF Germany

The long-term cooperation with WWF Germany began in 2023. The aim of the partnership between the two companies is to accelerate Bosch Power Tools' commitment to sustainability and give the transformation an additional boost.

Learn more

Bosch's long tradition shows what makes us special and where our journey may take us next. Discover exciting posts from over 130 years of Bosch history in the History Blog or browse through our news and stories.