History

 
Will electric cars take over as quickly as cars displaced horses from 1900 to 1925?

Will electric cars take over as quickly as cars displaced horses from 1900 to 1925?

So here's a question for you: when was the last time you traveled by horse to ... well, to anywhere other than the stable you started from? In 1900, horses were the de facto way for Americans to travel, whether riding them or in horse-drawn carts. By 1925, that had changed: 15 years of the Ford... read more

July 28, 2017 by -
 
Smog obscures George Washington Bridge, 1973 [From EPA Documerica series]

Photos reveal how polluted the U.S. was before EPA was founded

It can be argued that the current presidential administration appears to lack interest in the traditional mission of the Environmental Protection Agency. As a candidate... read more March 3, 2017 by


 
1991 BMW M5

Overall U.S. vehicle fleet gas mileage rose only slightly over last 25 years

The average fuel economy of the new cars and light trucks sold in the U.S. is appreciably higher than it was 10 years ago. The University of Michigan Transportation Research... read more March 2, 2017 by


 
Nikola Tesla drives a Tesla Model S in fan-made video

Nikola Tesla drives Tesla Model S: amateur fan video imagines

As an auto company that exclusively produces electric cars, Tesla Motors has a very appropriate name. It is, of course, named after Nikola Tesla, a famed engineer who... read more February 10, 2017 by


 
Bentley works, Crewe - stacks of veneer for woodwork

The original biofuel for motor vehicles: wood (and why we don't use it today)

When it comes to alternative fuels, the discussion usually centers around compressed natural gas, or biofuels like ethanol or biodiesel. But before the concept of low-carbon... read more February 3, 2017 by


 
1996 General Motors EV1

Modern electric cars at 20: from EV1 to Bolt EV, where are we now?

Twenty years ago today, the very first GM EV1 electric cars were delivered to 40 lessees in California in a blaze of publicity. Since then, plug-in electric vehicles have... read more December 5, 2016 by


 
2010 Volkswagen Golf TDI

VW ends contract of historian researching its WW2 past; questions remain

More than a year after it was revealed that Volkswagen used illegal "defeat device" software in diesel cars to cheat on emissions tests, the company is still working to... read more November 7, 2016 by


 
1976 Chrysler Cordoba Sport Coupe

Did you know Exxon researched hybrid cars (then ignored them)?

Hybrid cars are often thought of as a fairly recent development, but few things under the sun are truly new. In response to the 1970s oil crises, engineers began... read more October 14, 2016 by


 
GM Electrovan fuel-cell prototype, 1966

Hydrogen cars celebrate half a century; have they made a difference?

Electric cars are virtually as old as the auto industry, but hydrogen fuel-cell vehicles are not. In fact, exactly fifty years ago this month, GM showed off the first one... read more October 12, 2016 by


 
2001 Toyota Prius Sedan

The 12 most influential green cars in history

The automobile has been with us since 1885, but only over the last 50 years have governments started to face up to its ill effects on the environment. The world's major car... read more June 21, 2016 by


 
Utopia sedan concept by designer Brooks Stevens, 1960  [image courtesy Milwaukee Art Museum]

Fuel-cell concepts from 50 years ago: famed designer Brooks Stevens

Most car buyers would be hard-pressed to name a single automobile designer working today. But it wasn't always that way: names like Raymond Loewy and Harley Earl were known... read more April 8, 2016 by


 
E.J. Potter's 'Super Slot Car' was an MG 1100 sedan with 4 jet-engine starter motors, one per wheel

Super Slot Car: Electric Drag Racing Via V-12 Engine And Cables!

The sport of drag racing has been with us almost as long as the automobile has. Over the last decade, advances in high-power lithium-ion batteries have given rise to a new... read more December 23, 2015 by


 
Automobile accident, Washington, D.C., 1923

Overall U.S. Fuel Economy: Higher Now Than In 1923, But Only A Little

The average fuel economy of new cars and trucks sold in the U.S. today is the subject of intense regulation, but what about over a much longer period of time? Has the... read more August 18, 2015 by


 
1914 Detroit Electric car, owned by GE scientist Charles Steinmetz, Schenectady, NY, June 2011

Electric Car Drivers: Be Thankful You Didn't Recharge In 1900!

Charging an electric car today isn't necessarily quite as easy as pulling up to the gas pump in a gasoline or diesel model. Long charging times and sparse public charging... read more June 15, 2015 by


 
1977 Volkswagen Microbus

VW Bus Hybrid That Never Was: The Microbus Prototype Of 1977

There truly is nothing new under the sun, as the saying goes. Now, a Volkswagen bus from almost 40 years ago has surfaced to prove the point. While hybrid cars have only... read more March 27, 2015 by


 
Road trip on historic U.S. Route 66 (Images: Antony Ingram)

Famed U.S. Route 66 To Go Electric In Illinois, With State Support

As the song says, you can "get your kicks" on Route 66--but soon you'll also be able to get a charge. The historic highway and the towns it passes through were largely done... read more December 2, 2014 by


 

 
 

 
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