Ageless Changes

Over the past 130 years, which is pretty much as long as the automotive industry has been around, there have been many ageless cars that were developed to change the world. These cars showed up with a revolutionized features and manufacturing process that were the product of years of research and development. It’s never easier to admire the lengths we have travelled in the automotive world than to take a look at some of the vehicles that have shaped the market and blazed the path toward success in the market. When it came to automotive technology and the landscape of the business in America these are the ones that have given us what we needed to be ready to accept new and better vehicles.

1880s – Benz Patent MotorWagenIn the dawn of the industry we see many experimenting with vehicles that had a motor but where simply a carriage without a horse, hence the term “horseless carriage”. Benz created the first actual internal combustion automobile in 1886 with this name, using a one-cylinder engine and only three wheels this carriage could carry two passengers where they wanted to go.

1890s – Duryea Motor WagonThis was one of the first automobiles that were sold commercially in North America. This vehicle used a four horsepower one-cylinder gasoline engine and it was the first vehicle to win a race in America in 1896. Built with four large wagon wheels this was the perfect vehicle of the time for the unimproved roads of America before the dawn of real roads. there was only about fifteen of these ever built.

1900s – Oldsmobile Curved DashNearly twenty years into the automobile industry and they still looked like a wagon with a part missing; the horse. This was a bit of a more sophisticated machine than the previously mentioned models and was the first vehicle to be mass produced. This model was the top seller for years until the dawn of the Model T which overtook the sales near the end of the decade the Curved Dash used a one-cylinder engine as well.

1910s – Ford Model TThere is no doubt this car that debuted in 1908 was the car that turned the automotive world on its head. Although we still see the large wagon-styled wheels the Model T looked like a proper car and was more efficient and less expensive than any other car at the time. You could carry four passengers in the Model T and the price only got lower with the increase in sales and mass production. This was a car you could buy for under $500 at the time.

1920s – Ford Model AWith the Ford Model T being the best-selling vehicle in the world by the end of the decade, nearly twenty years of the same model was getting to be a little much which brought about the Model A. This was a modern car for the times with a full hard shell, wheels that were much closer to what we see today and four colors to choose from. This was the car most of the consumers at the time wanted and this new model was a huge hit.

1930s – Tatra 77This car was nothing more than well ahead of its time. It never made its way to America and during this decade we were in no shape for a new vehicle at all. This was one of the first cars to have advanced aerodynamics and it had a drag coefficient of only 0.212 which was amazing for the time and even for today as that is lower than the coefficient of the Toyota Prius and the Tesla Model S which both rely on aerodynamics for their performance.

1940s – Willys CJ-2AThe first version of the Jeep Wrangler that had been the most capable vehicle to carry troops during World War II was the right choice as a vehicle that made serious advancements in this decade. This 4×4 was able to handle large trees, boulders and most inclines and declines with the ride that would get you where you needed to go and back. Those who drive a Jeep Wrangler today should thank this vehicle for being the beginning of the brand.

1950s – Volkswagen BeetleThe Beetle actually began in the 1930s, but the plant it was built in was converted for munitions during World War II and eventually was destroyed. In an effort to boost the German economy this affordable small car was designed and built to be a statement of being back in the market for German. Over the years the Beetle has become the best-selling vehicle ever built when it finally surpassed the Model T.

1960s – BMC MiniThis car truly offered technological advancements. First of all it offered a transversely mounted engine and a shape and size that was small enough to maneuver on the tight streets of Europe, but large enough to fit four adults. This little hatchback used the engine oil to lubricate the transmission and set the standard for how front-wheel drive cars would be built in the future using the transversely mounted engine technology.

1970s – Honda CivicWhat happened when the oil crisis took place and the large muscle cars and behemoth monsters of the 1950s and 1960s were no longer affordable to drive? We started to look for the small Japanese cars that would make it easier for us to deal with the skyrocketing gas prices and the Honda Civic was the perfect car for the job. This was a FWD compact car that eventually became known all around the country.

1980s – Dodge CaravanFor many decades we had loved the large and heavy station wagons, but because of the oil crisis these were not as popular for families on a budget. IN order to have something that would haul the entire family and offer us the fuel efficiency we needed the Dodge Caravan was created in 1984. Until this time larger vehicles had been based on truck platforms, this was the first to be built on a car platform and it was a huge success.

1990s – Ford ExplorerThis was one of the first and original SUVs on the market and it was built to begin the replacement of the minivans that had been so popular for the past several years. This gave a family the size they needed and the ability to enjoy a ride to the outdoors with a vehicle that had true off road capability. By the end of the 1990s the Ford Explorer was one of the most popular vehicles sold in America.

2000s – Toyota PriusAs we saw gas prices skyrocket once again we needed a sustainable answer to these prices and hybrid powertrains had already been considered for some time but the Prius was the first acceptable answer to this problem in a shape that was attractive and with fuel efficiency that would make it much easier to afford to drive. Since the Prius was such a huge success we see hybrid powertrains on nearly every type of vehicle made to date.

06.06.16 - Ford Model T

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