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Famous Automobile Makers

Famous Automobile Makers

There are several geniuses that need to be mentioned, who were the early pioneers at the dawn of automobile history. These are 8 of the most significant people behind the over 100,000 patents that created the modern automobile.

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Nikolaus August Otto

Nikolaus August Otto's four wheeled Otto cycle.

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One of the most important landmarks in engine design comes from Nikolaus Otto who in 1876 invented an effective gas motor engine. Nikolaus Otto built the first practical four-stroke internal combustion engine called the "Otto Cycle Engine."

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Gottlieb Daimler

Gottlieb Daimler (rear) enjoys a ride in his 'horseless carriage.'.

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In 1885, Gottlieb Daimler invented a gas engine that allowed for a revolution in car design. On March 8, 1886, Daimler took a stagecoach and adapted it to hold his engine, thereby designing the world's first four-wheeled automobile.

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Karl Benz (Carl Benz)

The first automobile powered by an internal combustion engine, built by Karl Benz.

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Karl Benz was the German mechanical engineer who designed and in 1885 built the world's first practical automobile to be powered by an internal-combustion engine.

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John Lambert

John W. Lambert built the first American automobile in 1851--pictured above is the Thomas Flyer from 1907.

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America's first gasoline-powered automobile was the 1891 Lambert car invented by John W. Lambert.

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Duryea Brothers

Charles and Frank Duryea's early automobile.

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America's first gasoline-powered commercial car manufacturers were two brothers, Charles Duryea (1861-1938) and Frank Duryea. The brothers were bicycle makers who became interested in gasoline engines and automobiles. On September 20, 1893, their first automobile was constructed and successfully tested on the public streets of Springfield, Massachusetts.

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Henry Ford

Henry Ford at wheel, John Burroughs and Thomas Edison in back seat of the Model T.

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Henry Ford improved the assembly line for automobile manufacturing (Model-T), invented a transmission mechanism, and popularized the gas-powered automobile. Henry Ford was born July 30, 1863, on his family's farm in Dearborn, Michigan. From the time he was a young boy, Ford enjoyed tinkering with machines.

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Rudolf Diesel

Modern internal combustion car engine.

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Rudolf Diesel invented the diesel-fueled internal combustion engine.

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Charles Franklin Kettering

Charles Franklin Kettering (1876-1958), the holder of 140 patents, was the inventor of the self-starter for car engines, the electrical ignition system, and the engine-driven generator.

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Charles Franklin Kettering invented the first automobile electrical ignition system and the first practical engine-driven generator.