January 21, 2022

A car is a two-track motor vehicle, usually a road vehicle, used to transport goods and passengers. Sometimes a car does not mean buses and trucks, ie. only passenger cars are meant. Most car definitions state that they primarily travel on roads, can accommodate up to eight people, have four tires, and mostly transport people, rather than cargo. Cars came into global use during the 20th century, and developed economies are dependent on them. The year 1886 is considered the year of the birth of the modern car. That year, the German inventor Karl Benz made the Benz Patent-Motorwagen. Cars did not become widely available until the early 20th century. One of the first cars available to the masses was the 1908 Model T, an American car manufactured by Ford Motor Company. Cars were quickly adopted in the United States, where they replaced animal-drawn carriages and carts, while Western Europe and other parts of the world needed much more time to settle down. Cars have controls for driving, parking, passenger comfort and safety, and controlling various lights. Over the decades, additional functions and controls have been added to vehicles, making them gradually more complex. Examples are rear-view cameras, air conditioning, navigation systems and in-car entertainment devices. Most cars in use in 2010 are powered by internal combustion engines, which consume fossil fuels. This causes air pollution, contributes to climate change and global warming. Vehicles that use alternative fuels, such as ethanol vehicles with flexible fuels and natural gas vehicles are gaining popularity in some countries. Electric cars, which were invented early in the history of cars, and began to appear on the market in 2008. There are costs and benefits associated with using a car. Costs include vehicle purchase, interest payments (if the vehicle is purchased on credit), repairs and maintenance, fuel, depreciation, driving time, parking costs, taxes, and insurance. Society's costs include road maintenance, land use, road congestion, air pollution, public health, health, and end-of-life vehicle disposal.

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