Having your own automobile can be a big benefit, especially if you live in a rural area far from the city. It saves you time on your daily commute, shopping trips or even visiting friends and family members. The freedom and convenience of having a car means you don’t have to worry about time schedules or public transportation, which can be unreliable. Using public transport can be costly, especially if you have a long commute.
An automobile (also called a car) is a motor vehicle designed primarily for passenger transportation, and usually powered by an internal-combustion engine with a volatile fuel. Most modern automobiles use gasoline, but they can also run on diesel fuel, electricity or another type of fuel. The automobile is a complex technical system that includes many subsystems with specific design functions. The automobile industry has grown into a global enterprise with the development of new technologies such as electronic computers, high-strength plastics and advanced alloys of steel and nonferrous metals.
Automobiles come in different shapes and sizes for people with varying needs. Some have roofs that can be opened for an open-air drive, while others are sportier and have no roof at all. Some automobiles are made with luxury features such as heated seats and power steering. Others are built for utility and safety, such as the police vehicles or ambulances.
The term automobile comes from the Latin word “auto-mobilis” meaning self-moving, and they indeed do move on their own, with no help from outside. They are a great mode of transportation for people who want to get around quickly and conveniently, but they can be dangerous to other road users if not driven properly.
In the early days of the automobile, engineers and inventors experimented with various designs to create a reliable vehicle that would sell well. It wasn’t until the industrial revolution and the invention of the assembly line that cars became affordable enough for most families to afford them. Currently, there are more than 100 automakers worldwide that make cars in a variety of styles and sizes.
The first self-propelled vehicles were steam powered, with the earliest examples dating back to the 1700s. Nicolas Joseph Cugnot of France is widely credited with building the first automobile in 1769. Gottlieb Daimler and Karl Benz are generally considered to have invented the modern automobile, with a gas-powered engine, in 1885 and 1886 respectively. Siegfried Marcus claimed to have built the first electric automobile in 1870, but his design did not go beyond the prototype stage. The automobile industry has grown to be a huge business that includes many research and development engineers working to improve the engine, transmission, suspension, body, fuel-systems, controls, electrical systems, computerized safety systems and other components. The automobile is a popular mode of transportation and a vital part of the world economy. It is also an important tool for global commerce and tourism. Its ability to move large numbers of people in a relatively short period of time makes it one of the most useful tools ever created.