Automobiles are wheeled vehicles that can be used for passenger transportation on land or for goods transportation. They can be powered by a variety of engines. Some of these engines are internal combustion, while others are electric.
Today, the automotive industry is one of the world’s largest industries. With more than a billion vehicles manufactured each year, automobiles play an important role in modern society.
Thousands of component parts go into making an automobile. They can be designed to improve comfort, speed and handling.
The automotive industry experienced significant growth during the first half of the twentieth century. This growth was fueled by government subsidies and increased demand. It also benefited from American manufacturing tradition, which made automobiles affordable for middle-class families.
The automobile industry began to rebound after World War II. The “Big Three” automakers, Ford, General Motors, and Chrysler, were formed. These companies produced over 500,000 vehicles in 1996.
Today, a global industry has developed to produce 70 million passenger cars each year. These cars include cars from foreign manufacturers as well as those from the United States. The numbers are growing rapidly.
In the early days of automobiles, they were simple two-wheeled, horseless carriages. They were designed to carry small numbers of passengers. They were cheap to manufacture and could be adapted to a wide range of uses. The steam engines that were used at the time had short range and were inconvenient to start.
In the mid-19th century, bicycle builder Sylvester Howard Roper created a machine similar to an automobile. The machine was called the Stout Scarab.