Automobiles are self-propelled vehicles used for transportation of people and goods. The automobile industry is a very large sector of the economy and is based on several sub-systems such as engine, drive train, chassis and control systems etc. The automobile has become one of the most important parts of human life and without it our lifestyle cannot be imagined. The branch of Engineering called automobile engineering deals with the manufacturing and technology of automobiles.
Exactly who invented the automobile is a matter of dispute, but the first modern automobile was built by Karl Benz and was patented in 1885/1886. Benz’s car was powered by an internal combustion gasoline (petrol) engine. It was not the first car, but it was a breakthrough as it was the first mass-produced vehicle and able to be driven.
An automobile has many disadvantages: it causes pollution which damages the environment and human health, it is expensive to maintain and repair, it can be dangerous if driven poorly and it takes a long time to reach the place one wants to go if there is traffic congestion. In cities, where most people live close together, public transport is usually faster than a private automobile and more affordable.
Owning a car can have a number of advantages: it saves you the time needed to catch a bus or wait for a taxi and it allows you to go out more often. Having your own car can also make it easier to visit friends and relatives.