вторник, 28 августа 2007 г.


CHEAPCARS (also motor car or simply car) is a wheeled passenger vehicle that carries its own motor. Most definitions of the term specify that CHEAPCARSs are designed to run primarily on roads, to have seating for one to eight people, to typically have four wheels, and to be constructed principally for the transport of people rather than goods.[1] However, the term is far from precise.

As of 2002, there were 590 million passenger cars worldwide (roughly one car for every eleven people).[2]

* 1 History
* 2 Design
* 3 Fuel and propulsion technologies
o 3.1 Diesel
o 3.2 Gasoline
o 3.3 Electric
o 3.4 Steam
o 3.5 Gas turbine
o 3.6 Rotary (Wankel) engines
o 3.7 Future developments
* 4 Safety
* 5 Economics and Impacts
o 5.1 Cost and benefits of ownership
o 5.2 Cost and benefits to society
o 5.3 Impacts on society
o 5.4 Improving the positive and reducing the negative impacts
* 6 Future car technologies
* 7 Alternatives to the CHEAPCARS
* 8 Further reading
* 9 References
* 10 External links

Karl Benz
Karl Benz
Replica of the Benz Patent Motorwagen built in 1886
Replica of the Benz Patent Motorwagen built in 1886
Ford Model T, 1927, regarded as the first affordable CHEAPCARS
Ford Model T, 1927, regarded as the first affordable CHEAPCARS

Main article: History of the CHEAPCARS

Some sources suggest Ferdinand Verbiest, whilst a member of a Jesuit mission in China, may have built the first steam powered car around 1672.[3][4] Francois Isaac de Rivaz, a Swiss inventor, designed the first internal combustion engine which was fuelled by a mixture of hydrogen and oxygen and used it to develop the world's first vehicle to run on such an engine. The design was not very successful, as was the case with Samuel Brown, Samuel Morey, and Etienne Lenoir who each produced vehicles powered by clumsy internal combustion engines.[5]

An CHEAPCARS powered by an Otto gasoline engine was built in Germany by Karl Benz in 1885 and granted a patent in the following year. Although several other engineers (including Gottlieb Daimler, Wilhelm Maybach and Siegfried Marcus) were working on the problem at about the same time, Benz is generally credited with the invention of the modern CHEAPCARS.[5]

Approximately 25 of Benz's vehicles were built before 1893, when his first four-wheeler was introduced. They were powered with four-stroke engines of his own design. Emile Roger of France, already producing Benz engines under license, now added the Benz CHEAPCARS to his line of products. Because France was more open to the early CHEAPCARSs, more were built and sold in France through Roger than Benz sold in Germany. From 1890 to 1895 about 30 vehicles were built by Daimler and his assistant, Maybach, either at the Daimler works or in the Hotel Hermann, where they set up shop after falling out with their backers. Benz and Daimler seem to have been unaware of each other's early work and worked independently.

In 1890, Emile Levassor and Armand Peugeot of France began producing vehicles with Daimler engines, and so laid the foundation of the motor industry in France. The first American car with a gasoline internal combustion engine supposedly was designed in 1877 by George Selden of Rochester, New York, who applied for a patent on an CHEAPCARS in 1879. In Britain there had been several attempts to build steam cars with varying degrees of success with Thomas Rickett even attempting a production run in 1860.[6] Santler from Malvern is recognized by the Veteran Car Club of Great Britain as having made the first petrol-powered car in the country in 1894[7] followed by Frederick William Lanchester in 1895 but these were both one-offs.[7] The first production vehicles came from the Daimler Motor Company, founded by Harry J. Lawson in 1896, and making their first cars in 1897.[7]

In 1892, Rudolf Diesel got a patent for a "New Rational Combustion Engine". In 1897 he built the first Diesel Engine.[5] In 1895, Selden was granted a United States patent(U.S. Patent 549,160 ) for a two-stroke CHEAPCARS engine, which hinderd more than encouraged development of autos in the United States. Steam, electric, and gasoline powered autos competed for decades, with gasoline internal combustion engines achieving dominance in the 1910s.
Ransom E. Olds.
Ransom E. Olds.

The large-scale, production-line manufacturing of affordable CHEAPCARSs was debuted by Ransom Olds at his Oldsmobile factory in 1902. This assembly line concept was then greatly expanded by Henry Ford in the 1910s. Development of automotive technology was rapid, due in part to the hundreds of small manufacturers competing to gain the world's attention. Key developments included electric ignition and the electric self-starter (both by Charles Kettering, for the Cadillac Motor Company in 1910-1911), independent suspension, and four-wheel brakes.

Although various pistonless rotary engine designs have attempted to compete with the conventional piston and crankshaft design, only Mazda's version of the Wankel engine has had more than very limited success.

Since the 1920s, nearly all cars have been mass-produced to meet market needs, so marketing plans have often heavily influenced CHEAPCARS design. It was Alfred P. Sloan who established the idea of different makes of cars produced by one company, so buyers could "move up" as their fortunes improved. The makes shared parts with one another so larger production volume resulted in lower costs for each price range. For example, in the 1950s, Chevrolet shared hood, doors, roof, and windows with Pontiac; the LaSalle of the 1930s, sold by Cadillac, used cheaper mechanical parts made by the Oldsmobile division.


Main article: Automotive design

The 1955 Citroen DS; revolutionary visual design and technological innovation.
The 1955 Citroen DS; revolutionary visual design and technological innovation.

The design of modern cars is typically handled by a large team of designers and engineers from many different disciplines. As part of the product development effort the team of designers will work closely with teams of design engineers responsible for all aspects of the vehicle. These engineering teams include: chassis, body and trim, powertrain, electrical and production. The design team under the leadership of the design director will typically comprise of an exterior designer, an interior designer (usually referred to as stylists), and a color and materials designer. A few other designers will be involved in detail design of both exterior and interior. For example, a designer might be tasked with designing the rear light clusters or the steering wheel. The color and materials designer will work closely with the exterior and interior designers in developing exterior color paints, interior colors, fabrics, leathers, carpet, wood trim, and so on.

In 1924 the American national CHEAPCARS market began reaching saturation. To maintain unit sales, General Motors instituted annual model-year design changes (also credited to Alfred Sloan) in order to convince car owners they needed a replacement each year. Since 1935 automotive form has been driven more by consumer expectations than engineering improvement.

There have been many efforts to innovate CHEAPCARS design funded by the NHTSA, including the work of the NavLab group at Carnegie Mellon University.[8] Recent efforts include the highly publicized DARPA Grand Challenge race.[9]

Acceleration, braking, and measures of turning or agility vary widely between different makes and models of CHEAPCARS. The automotive publication industry has developed around these performance measures as a way to quantify and qualify the characteristics of a particular vehicle. See quarter mile and 0 to 60 mph.

Fuel and propulsion technologies
The Henney Kilowatt, the first modern (transistor-controlled) electric car.
The Henney Kilowatt, the first modern (transistor-controlled) electric car.
2007 Tesla Roadster
2007 Tesla Roadster

See also: Alternative fuel vehicle

Most CHEAPCARSs in use today are propelled by gasoline (also known as petrol) or diesel internal combustion engines, which are known to cause air pollution and are also blamed for contributing to climate change and global warming.[10] Increasing costs of oil-based fuels and tightening environmental laws and restrictions on greenhouse gas emissions are propelling work on alternative power systems for CHEAPCARSs. Efforts to improve or replace these technologies include hybrid vehicles, electric vehicles and hydrogen vehicles.


Diesel engined cars have long been popular in Europe with the first models being introduced in the 1930s by Mercedes Benz and Citroen. The main benefit of Diesels are a 50% fuel burn efficiency compared with 27%[11] in the best gasoline engines. A down side of the diesel is the presence in the exhaust gases of fine soot particulates and manufacturers are now starting to fit filters to remove these. Many diesel powered cars can also run with little or no modifications on 100% biodiesel.


Gasoline engines have the advantage over diesel in being lighter and able to work at higher rotational speeds and they are the usual choice for fitting in high performance sports cars. Continuous development of gasoline engines for over a hundred years has produced improvements in efficiency and reduced pollution. The carburetor was used on nearly all road car engines until the 1980s but it was long realised better control of the fuel/air mixture could be achieved with fuel injection. Indirect fuel injection was first used in aircraft engines from 1909, in racing car engines from the 1930s, and road cars from the late 1950s.freeporn

Gasoline Direct Injection (GDI) is now starting to appear in production vehicles such as the 2007 BMW MINI. Exhaust gases are also cleaned up by fitting a catalytic converter into the exhaust system. Clean air legislation in many of the car industries most important markets has made both catalysts and fuel injection virtually universal fittings. Most modern gasoline engines are also capable of running with up to 15% ethanol mixed into the gasoline - older vehicles may have seals and hoses that can be harmed by ethanol. With a small amount of redesign, gasoline-powered vehicles can run on ethanol concentrations as high as 85%. 100% ethanol is used in some parts of the world (such as Brazil), but vehicles must be started on pure gasoline and switched over to ethanol once the engine is running. Most gasoline engined cars can also run on LPG with the addition of an LPG tank for fuel storage and carburetion modifications to add an LPG mixer. LPG produces fewer toxic emissions and is a popular fuel for fork lift trucks that have to operate inside buildings.


The first electric cars were built in the late 1800s, but the building of battery powered vehicles that could rival internal combustion models had to wait for the introduction of modern semiconductor controls. Because they can deliver a high torque at low revolutions electric cars do not require such a complex drive train and transmission as internal combustion powered cars. Some are able to accelerate from 0-60 mph (96 km/hour) in 4.0 seconds with a top speed around 130 mph (210 km/h). They have a range of 250 miles (400 km) on the EPA highway cycle requiring 3-1/2 hours to completely charge. Equivalent fuel efficiency to internal combustion is not well defined but some press reports give it at around 135 mpg.


Steam power, usually using an oil or gas heated boiler, was also in use until the 1930s but had the major disadvantage of being unable to power the car until boiler pressure was available. It has the advantage of being able to produce very low emissions as the combustion process can be carefully controlled. Its disadvantages include poor heat efficiency and extensive requirements for electric auxiliaries.[12]

Gas turbine

In the 1950s there was a brief interest in using gas turbine (jet) engines and several makers including Rover produced prototypes. In spite of the power units being very compact, high fuel consumption, severe delay in throttle response, and lack of engine braking meant no cars reached production.

Rotary (Wankel) engines

Rotary Wankel engines were introduced into road cars by NSU with the Ro 80 and later were seen in several Mazda models. In spite of their impressive smoothness, poor reliability and fuel economy led to them largely disappearing. Mazda, however, has continued research on these engines and overcame most of the earlier problems.

Future developments

Much current research and development is centered on hybrid vehicles that use both electric power and internal combustion. Research into alternative forms of power also focus on developing fuel cells, Homogeneous Charge Compression Ignition (HCCI), stirling engines[13] and even using the stored energy of compressed air or liquid nitrogen.