Archive for the 'Automobiles' Category

INTRODUCED BY CHEVY ON THIS DAY IN 1958

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On October 16, 1958, Chevrolet began to sell a car-truck hybrid that
it called the El Camino. Inspired by the Ford Ranchero, which had
already been on the market for two years, the El Camino was a combination sedan-pickup truck built on the Impala body, with the
same “cat’s eye” taillights and dramatic rear fins. It was, ads trilled,
“the most beautiful thing that ever shouldered a load!” “It rides and handles like a convertible,” Chevy said, “yet hauls and hustles like
the workingest thing on wheels.”

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IT MADE HISTORY ON THIS DAY IN 1914

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The world’s first electric traffic signal (above) was put into place
on the corner of Euclid Avenue and East 105th Street in Cleveland,
Ohio
, on August 5, 1914.

In the earliest days of the automobile, navigating America’s roads
was a chaotic experience, with pedestrians, bicycles, horses and streetcars all competing with motor vehicles for right of way. The problem was alleviated somewhat with the gradual disappearance
of horse-drawn carriages, but even before
World War I it had
become clear that a system of regulations was necessary to keep
traffic moving and reduce the number of accidents on the roads.

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FIRST ORDER TAKEN ON THIS DAY IN 1903

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Ernest Pfenning of Chicago (above) became Ford’s first car owner – 23 July 1903.


On July 15, 1903, the newly formed Ford Motor Company took its
first order from
Chicago dentist Ernst Pfenning: an $850 two-
cylinder Model A automobile with a tonneau (or backseat). The car, produced at Ford’s plant on Mack Street (now Mack Avenue) in
Detroit, was delivered to Dr. Pfenning just over a week later.

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Henry Ford (July 30, 1863 – April 7, 1947)

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FIRST CORVETTE ASSEMBLED ON THIS DAY

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On June 28, 1953, workers at a Chevrolet plant in Flint, Michigan, assembled
the first Corvette, a two-seater sports car that would become an American
icon. The first completed production car rolled off the assembly line two
days later, one of just 300 Corvettes made that year.

The idea for the vehicle originated with General Motors’ pioneering designer Harley J. Earl, who in 1951 began developing plans for a
low-cost American sports car that could compete with Europe’s
MGs, Jaguars and Ferraris.

 

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PORSCHE PROTOTYPE COMPLETED IN 1948

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On June 8, 1948, a hand-built aluminum prototype labeled “No. 1″ became
the first vehicle to bear the name of one of the world’s leading luxury car
manufacturers: Porsche.

The Austrian automotive engineer Ferdinand Porsche debuted his
first design at the World’s Fair in Paris in 1900. The electric vehicle
set several Austrian land-speed records, reaching more than 35 mph
and earning international acclaim for the young engineer.

 

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Ferdinand Porsche
(September 3, 1875 – January 30, 1951)

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