History of cars

The history of cars goes back much farther than one might realize. Leonardo da Vinci and Isaac Newton drew up the first theoretical plans for a vehicle with a motor in the 15th and 17th centuries!

The first self-propelled vehicle for the road was not, however, invented until 1769, by Nicolas Joseph Cugnot. This vehicle, powered by a steam engine, moved on three wheels at only 2 1/2 miles per hour, and required stopping every ten to fifteen minutes so that it could build of steam power. The first accident in the history of cars happened in 1771, when Cugnot drove one of his vehicles into a wall (imagine that, 2 1/2 miles per hour, and he couldn't avoid the wall!).

The first U.S. patent granted for a steam-powered land vehicle in the history of cars was given to Oliver Evans in 1789. The first elective carriage was invented by Robert Anderson of Scotland between 1832 and 1839. The electric cars at this time required rechargeable batteries that powered an electric motor. The first inventors to use non-rechargeable electric cells were Thomas Davenport of America and Robert Davidson of Scotland. The interest in cars increased greatly in the late 19th century and early 20th century, with the first fleet of taxis entering New York City in 1897.

The electric vehicle began to decline in the 1920's because of the need for longer-range cars, the reduction in the price of gasoline, and the mass-production of gasoline cars by Henry Ford.

The history of cars would not be complete without speaking of Henry Ford. In 1903, the Ford Motor Company was incorporated, and the Model T was introduced in 1908. The company opened its first factory in 1910, and in 1913, a continuous moving assembly line was put into place. By 1927, Ford's idea of mass-production of vehicles was perfected.