Without cars there wouldbe no drive-ins, drive-thru fast food restaurants, and shopping centers. People depend on their cars whether they’re earning their living, or travelingto their dream vacation spot. The United States is the leading producerof automobiles and is often called the “Nation On Wheels. ” The U. Shas become very dependent on cars for transportation.
Racing automobilesis also a very popular sport which attracts millions of enthusiasts nation-wide. Whether it’s a local race track, or a huge Nascar track, people love racingand the thrill, and also the danger. The history of automobiles is a long, andlaborious one. From the first self propelled road vehicle createdin the 1790’s, to the modern road machine of today, it hasn’t been an easyroad to follow (no pun intended) for the automobile. Many peoplemocked the car, and you used to hear the phrase “Get a horse” a lot backwhen cars were first mass produced.
Even with these vicissitudes,the automobile has overcome these hardships to become one of the most requiredinventions ever assembled. The steam car was the first road vehiclethat could travel by themselves, even though they had a top speed of awhopping 3 miles per hour, and had to stop every 10 to 15 minutes to buildup steam. The first vehicle that could carry passengers was produceduntil 1801. These steam carriages annoyed people very much by beingnoisy, dirty, and by frightening horses. Many american inventorstampered with steam automobiles such as J.
N Carhart, Richard Dudgeon, andSylvester H. Roper, but the most sucessful were the Stanley twins, FrancisE. and Freelan O. The electric car was actually popular inAmerica in the late 1890’s and early 1900’s.
One of America’s pioneer electriccars was built in about 1890 by William Morrison in Des Moines Iowa. People liked the electric car because it was easy to operate, ran quietly,and didn’t excrete putrid fumes. But of course there were drawbackslike you couldn’t go over 20 miles per hour and the battery had to be rechargedconstantly. For these reasons the electric car was replaced by thegasoline engine. The general design of modern automobileswas developed in France. Emile Levassor and Rene Panhard built theirfirst cars in 1890 using a Daimler engine.
These cars used chainslike those found in bicycles to carry the engine’s power to the back wheels. Many American inventors experimented with gasoline powered vehicles inthe early 1890’s. Many claimed that they were the first to designand build sucessfully a automobile. Most pioneers of the automobile laterbecame famous in the industry.
The creation of the first auto assemblyline was caused by a fire that destroyed the Olds Motor Works in Detroit. This caused Olds to sign contracts with the owners of small machine shopsto manufacture many parts for his cars. With this method, the companybuilt 425 cars in 1901, 3750 in 1902, and 500 in 1903. Most car companiesfollowed the Olds company by using mass production. Henry M. Leland,president of the Cadillac Automobile Company developed the concept of usinginterchangeable parts.
This was a big step because the interchangeableparts could be used to assemble or repair any car of the same model. Henry Ford’s goal was a low-priced carthat many people in all walks of life could afford. The outcome ofhis goal: The Model T. It sold for $850, but Ford installed a movingassembly line in his factory and they could then produce a car in a hourand a half which then caused the car to be sold for $400, the lowest priceof any automobile. Over 15 million were sold.
During the 1920’s it was a race betweenFord and GM. They were the leading producers of cars at that time. By 1937, GM was producing about 35% of the worlds automobiles. Designchanged a lot during 1920’s. Body lines became more graceful andthe closed car became popular.
Engines became more powerful and quieterand many other improvements came during this period. DuringWorld War 2 production of cars for civilians almost halted because thefactories were being used for military supplies. After WW2, moreimprovements were made and foreign cars became more popular. Today41 millions vehicles are produced every year in which one third come fromthe U. S Gasoline shortages and wrecks are a few of the problems ofthe industry today.
Even with all the problems the auto industry went through,the good part is that it did make it through.