A vehicle used for transporting passengers that has four to eight tires and is powered by a fuel-injected, internal combustion engine. The automobile is a vital link to jobs, family, and social contacts, and is also used for recreation, shopping, and visiting friends and relatives.
The modern car has been developed to be faster, more efficient, safer, and more comfortable than its predecessors. The branches of engineering that study automobiles are known as automotive engineering.
Automobiles are a major force of change in twentieth-century America. They have served as the backbone of a consumer goods-oriented society and have driven the development of many ancillary industries, such as steel and petroleum. The automobile also has facilitated Americans’ predilection for freedom of movement, action, and living.
In the late 1700s and early 1800s, inventors developed steam and electric powered vehicles. But it wasn’t until Karl Benz invented the gasoline internal combustion engine that automobile production really took off. The first cars were very expensive and remained so for decades. It was only in the 1910s that Henry Ford introduced his Model T, which made cars affordable for middle class America.
In the present day, most people cannot imagine their lives without an automobile. Being able to travel long distances in a matter of minutes makes life so much more convenient and frees up time for other activities. However, driving an automobile can be dangerous because you are in the hands of other drivers on the road. Luckily, if you are smart about your driving you can keep yourself safe from other people’s mistakes and accidents.