The evolution of the automobile is a long and fascinating story. Throughout history, new developments were introduced that greatly accelerated the development of the car. Today, computerized driving systems have made it possible to assist human drivers or even replace them completely. Though the idea of fully automatic vehicles has been around since the 1920s, it wasn’t until the 1980s that real work began on the technology. Although early automatic driving systems were not commercially viable, they are already helping to prevent crashes and passenger injuries.
The first electric vehicle was built in the early 1800s and was a revolutionary design. It was not until the 1990s that electric vehicles became a viable option for cars. The introduction of GPS navigation technology in cars in the United States led to the popularity of self-driving cars. Eventually, the self-driving vehicle technology found its way into commercially available vehicles. During this time, the Toyota Prius and other hybrids were developed and marketed as environmentally friendly vehicles.
In the late 1970s, the first self-driving vehicle was introduced. It was a self-driving prototype that had the ability to navigate on its own, but the technology was far from perfect. In fact, the first commercially available car had a manual transmission. In the early 1990s, the technology was advanced enough to allow a self-driving vehicle to cross a bridge. Currently, Google is testing a self-driving car in the streets and is now known as Waymo.
In the late 1800s, Nicolas Joseph Cugnot, a Parisian inventor, built the first self-propelled vehicle. He used a steam engine to propel a carriage that contained three wheels. The speed was three miles per hour. In 1801 British engineer Richard Trevithick built a three-wheeled steam-powered automobile. During this period, the automobile was limited to four miles per hour and pedestrians needed to walk with a red lantern while traveling at night.
As the automobile industry evolved, many countries began to develop their own automotive centers. Vincke copied Benz, Germain copied Panhard, and Linon and Nagant copied Benz. Other early innovators included Hammel in Copenhagen, which built one car in 1886. Irgens also attempted to manufacture a gas-guzzling vehicle. In Italy, FIAT started in 1897 and was sold in Japan in the early 1900s. In Australia, Pioneer set up shop in 1898 and created the first centre-pivot steerable wagon.
During the 1800s, the first electric vehicle was built. It was a Toyota Prius that could not sense the surrounding traffic. However, in the late 1900s, Tesla and other companies began producing self-driving cars, which are now known as Waymo. Despite its shaky beginnings, the automobile has made many advances in the last century. With this evolution, it has become possible for cars to drive themselves through cities.