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History of Cars

  • The first self-propelled car was built

    The first self-propelled car was built
    Nicolas Cugnot, a French military engineer developed a steam powered road-vehicle for the French army to haul heavy cannons.
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    History timeline of Cars

  • Britain’s steam powered cars

    Britain’s steam powered cars
    Richard Trevithick improved the design of steam engines, by making smaller and lighter with stronger boilers generating more power. In 1801, he put one of his new compact steam engines on wheels.
  • Uphill struggle

    English engineer, Samuel Brown adapted an old Newcomen steam engine to burn a mixture of oxygen hydrogen gas.
  • First Coal-gas engine

    First Coal-gas engine
    Belgian-born engineer, Jean Joseph Étienne Lenoir invented and patented (1860) a two-stroke, internal combustion engine. It was fuelled by coal gas and triggered by an electric spark-ignition.
  • Speed restrictions introduced in UK

    The act effectively required three drivers for each vehicle; two to travel in the vehicle and one to walk ahead waving a red flag. For the next 30 years cars couldn’t legally travel above walking speed.
  • Stroke of genius

    Nikolaus August Otto invented and later patented a successful four-stroke engine, known as the “Otto cycle.”
  • Motor age moves forward

    The first vehicles driven using internal combustion engines were developed roughly at the same time by two engineers working in separate parts of Germany – Gottlieb Daimler and Karl Benz.
  • The First Motor Company formed

    The First Motor Company formed
    Two former French wood machinists, Rene Panhard and Emile Levassor, set up the world’s first car manufacturers. Their first car was built in 1890 using a Daimler engine.
  • Maybach speeds things up

    Wilhelm Maybach built the first four-cylinder, four-stroke engine. Three years later, he develops the spray-nozzle carburettor, which becomes the basis for modern carburettor technology.
  • The Ford Motor Company Formed

     The Ford Motor Company Formed
    After fitting moving assembly lines to the factory in 1913, Ford became the world's biggest car manufacturer.
  • Car Manufacturers get green

    Manufacturers have acknowledged that oil reserves will dry up in the future. They’re now developing engines that use more than one fuel source – hybrid engines.