You can’t beat a bit of ambition to drive human performance. Most are content to potter along keeping the head down and nose clean, but every so often you get an outlier, like the first pharaoh who said: "Tombstones are for wimps. I’m going to get the slaves going on something a bit more impressive." There’s Alexander the Great blubbing because he had no more worlds to conquer; Napoleon rattling on about the field marshal’s baton in his knapsack; and Ludwig of Bavaria telling his architects not to hold back on Neuschwanstein.Into this illustrious company we can now add Metair, which had been trundling along gently since it was formed in 1948, supplying components to automotive manufacturers without seeming to have any particular aim of kicking on towards global domination.

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