Automobiles are the vehicles people use to get around, from the car you drive to your work and school to a truck or van that hauls supplies. The automobile revolutionized the way people live by allowing them to travel quickly and easily. It also brought new jobs and services like hotels, gas stations, restaurants and fast food. However, the automobile also caused harm to the environment through exhaust and by using up undeveloped land. Today, automobiles are one of the biggest industries in the world.
Getting your own automobile is an important step toward independence. Owning a car means you can go when you want, without worrying about missing the bus or having to leave early to avoid traffic. And, if you take good care of your car and obey the rules of the road, you’re much safer on the road than if you ride in a taxi or bus.
The automobile’s history began with the invention of the internal combustion engine, a technology developed in the late 1800s. But the modern automobile didn’t become truly popular until a businessman and engineer named Karl Benz designed the first gas-powered automobile. He built his car with an engine and carriage that were a single unit. Other inventors and engineers followed suit with their own designs, but none were as successful as Benz’s.
In the 1900s, manufacturers began making cars that ran on steam, electricity and gasoline engines. These were more efficient than steam cars, which had to be fueled with water that had to be brought to boiling. However, they still had problems with speed and needed to be recharged often.
After the 1910s, the automotive industry exploded with innovation. Inventors developed electric ignition, independent suspension and four-wheel brakes. Manufacturers introduced more models and features to meet consumer demand. They also introduced new materials, such as steel, to make cars stronger and lighter. Many of these innovations made the automobile more comfortable, too. For example, heaters and power windows became standard.
The automobile has helped change the economy by creating new jobs in the manufacturing industry and allowing people to travel more freely. It has also changed the lives of individual consumers, allowing them to have more leisure activities, such as trips to amusement parks and other recreation. And it has helped families bond by enabling them to spend more time together on the road.