Have you ever given a thought about car parts and how they get invented? Well, cars have been an integral part of modern history. From the Ford Model T to the T-Bird, from the German people car VW Beetle to the minivan, from the American Cadillac to the Japanese Toyota Camry, the whole world is crazy for cars. But at times, we forget that every car is just a collection of different components. Here are the origins of some of these car components. Let’s take it further and share some exciting stories about the car parts and their inventions.
When cars started appearing in large numbers during the 19th century, they didn’t have a steering wheel; instead, they had tillers, same as the tillers that were used to steer boats. The tiller was a simple mechanism in cars that made its front wheels turn when the tiller was pushed in the right or left direction. Then in the year 1894, Alfred Vacheron, a French engineer, modified his Panhard runabout by replacing the tiller with the wheel, and that’s how the steering wheel was invented.
We are sure that most people don’t know who came up with the idea for the glove box or glove compartment, but the automobile historians give that credit to the Packard Motor Car Company and their Packard Model B, which was introduced back in 1900.
The early car model used the same type of lights that were used in horse-drawn carriages i.e., kerosene or oil lamps. In the late 19th century, these were replaced by acetylene gas lamps, and they were the most common headlight until the 1910s. Small gas tanks powered acetylene headlights, but they looked like a modern headlight.
The first electric headlights appeared back in 1898, on the Columbia Electric Car, manufactured by the Electric Vehicle Company of Hartford. But their filament technology wasn’t exactly up to the needs of a car, and these dim and fragile headlights weren’t the best.
Workable electric headlights didn’t appear until car manufacturer Cadillac introduced the modern automobile electrical system back in 1912.
High- and low-beam headlights
When electric headlights became famous in 1912, some incidents came in the knowledge when few drivers got blinded temporarily by oncoming lights, which became a real issue. This led to the invention of low-beam headlights by Guide Lamp Company, a Cleveland based company back in 1915. But they didn’t work the way now low beams do. The driver had to get out of the car and had to tilt the headlights down manually. So, we can feel lucky that we have great benefit from being born in the 21st century. We can’t give a thought of managing the car headlights beam manually.
Early car models used to have bells, whistles, and squeeze-activated bulb horns to warn walkers and other drivers. But as with time, cars got faster and more dangerous, then more powerful horns were needed. That led to the invention of modern horns, invented by Claud Foster, an automotive pioneer. With each passing year, the car horn became sophisticated and as per the car variant.
These were some of the details of history behind the origin of car parts. Well, we know there will be quite a lot of people who didn’t know about the inventors of different car parts. This article would have surely made you aware of these pioneers behind the invention of different automobile parts.