Cars – one vehicle that amazes us; probably, also one that we use every day! Racing, driving, drifting, dragging, grooving, fish-tailing – some terms familiar to every man and some only to those whose life is cars! From branded ones to remodeled ones, cars are a big business, and for some, their only business.
Did you know that the total number of cars on our Earth crossed the 1 billion mark in 2010! And it has been growing at a very rapid rate ever since. General Motors (GM) is considered the biggest car manufacturer in the world and it alone offers over 50 brands of cars! Then you can imagine how many brands are there on the whole of our planet!
A car is a machine; and like all other machines, it consists of a whole lot of spare parts. On an average, a car has around 30,000 spare parts including its screws, bolts and washers.
Cars are included with all kinds of accessories and features that are built based on various needs – either real or imagined! But this must be the worst case of imagination! One version of Hyundai’s Tucson comes with a survival kit that is intended to help you survive a zombie apocalypse. If that is not weird enough, here is the name – The Walking Dead Special Edition!!
Karl Benz is considered the inventor of modern cars. He built the Benz Patent-Motorwagen in 1886. But it was Ford Motor Company that made cars available to the common man through its ‘Model T’ vehicle in 1908.
But history credits two others as the original car manufacturers of America – Charles and Frank Duryea. They started the Duryea Motor Wagon Company, the first commercial automobile manufacturer, which was based in Springfield Massachusetts. They managed to sell 13 identical vehicles in the year 1896 alone.
Unfortunately, that is not the only credit they enjoy in history – it also has the credit of being involved in the first recorded automobile accident! In March 1896, Henry Wells who was driving a Duryea vehicle collided with a bicyclist. The latter had a leg fracture and the former spent the night in jail.
The first step towards faster automobile production was initiated by Henry Ford, who introduced the conveyor belt to assembly lines. This not only helped to speed up the manufacturing process but also to lower per unit cost of the vehicles. They could now build a ready for sale Model T in 93 minutes!
If you are ever sold a vintage vehicle that was manufactured between February 1942 and October 1945, beware! Because the entire American automobile industry did not produce any civilian automobiles during this period; not even spare parts! They were all engaged in the manufacture of military vehicles such as tanks, jeeps, and trucks.
The honor for the best-selling American car of all times is enjoyed by the Ford F-Series light truck. From 1948 onwards, it has sold over 34 million trucks!
Once the US automobile industry was a big-time employer offering jobs for more 1.3 million people! However, that was in 2000; things have changed and today job opportunities have come down to around 700, 000. Thanks to automation and technology!
If you have been driving cars, you know how integral music and radio are to it! Did you know that the first car radio was sold in the year 1930 by Paul V. Galvin? This first model was known as the Motorola 5T71 and it sold at around $110 to $130! That is more that $1500 at today’s rate!!