The automobile industry is one of the most important in the world. It is based on the internal combustion engine. These engines are fueled by gasoline and diesel. Automotive manufacturers also have to use industrial materials like aluminum and steel. Automobiles are designed to carry a large number of passengers and cargo. They are primarily used for passenger transportation on land.
The earliest vehicles were made of steam. However, they were inconvenient to start and their range was limited. In the late 1800s, the first modern self-propelled vehicle was created. This machine, the horseless carriage, was developed by Sylvester Howard Roper. His design was similar to a less advanced velocipede.
The early gas-powered automobiles dominated the streets of Europe by 1920. Inventors like Daimler and Gottlieb Daimler began experimenting with combining a traditional bike with a gas engine. Their Reitwagen engine was an innovation in the mid-1880s. Although it was not a car, the invention was a significant technological advancement for the time.
By the time the Asian economic crisis hit, the automobile industry had already seen its production drop 70 percent. Fortunately, these numbers have steadily improved. Sales increased to a record 1.43 million vehicles in 2012.
Cars are motor vehicles with four wheels that run on a gas, diesel, or electric engine. They typically have a seating capacity of 4-5 people and a steering wheel. A driver must wear a seat belt and a helmet. Some cars can be towed. If the car is a sedan, the rear brake is operated by a foot pedal and the clutch is operated by twist-type controls on the handgrip.
Motorcycles are self-propelled vehicles. They have two or three wheels. They are usually propelled by an engine that displaces 150 cubic centimeters (cc) of fuel. Occasionally, power is transmitted by a chain or belt. Riders need a license to operate these machines. For sidecars, a Class C driver’s license is required.
A motorcycle can be considered an automobile, but many definitions of automobiles exclude it. Most definitions say that an automobile is a self-propelled motor vehicle that has four or more wheels and runs on the road. There are many differences, though.
Motorcycles are generally more fun to ride. They are also more reliable. They can be a romantic date. They can be customized to fit your tastes. Also, they are easy to maintain. Many manufacturers invest heavily in research and development.
While motorcycles have been ruled to not be automobiles in several court cases, the Motorcycle Riders Foundation has filed a letter with the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration asking for clarification. The letter was signed by Congressman Collin Peterson, Congressman Michael Burgess, Congressman Tim Walberg, and Troy Balderson.
One of the most universal technologies of the 21st century, the automobile is the answer to a 19th-century dream. Using an internal combustion engine, the automobile was invented by Dutch scientist Christiaan Huygens. He sparked the invention by using gunpowder to ignite a fire in his steam engine.