Karl Benz and the Benz Patent Motorwagen

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Alek Krikorian

Western Civilization Essay

The significance of Karl Benz, Gottlieb Daimler and the first Automobiles

Towards the end of the industrial revolution, as the internal combustion engine developed, the opportunity to find an alternative to horse powered carriages arrived. According to G.N Georgano, Karl Benz, a German engineer who worked in his own workshop in Mannheim developed and built engines for a living. In the year 1885, he develops his first prototype. Named the Benz Patent Motorwagen, his three wheeled car is patented in 1886 and considered by many as the first car ever made. According to the same author, Gottlieb Daimler, a German engineer like Benz, leaves his work to get his own patent and create the first fuel powered motorcycle. He then proceeds in the 1890's to create Benz's 4 wheeled counterpart, with slightly more advanced technology. Gottlieb's company hires fellow engineer Wilhelm Maybach and will later merge with Benz & Cie to become Daimler-Benz. In the process, the automotive revolution starts in the United States, Germany and France. [1]

According to Overy, the first gas powered internal combustion engine was invented and in use by 1878, however, its not until 1885, for reliability issues, that it was not successfully used on what we know today as the automobile. According to the same author, the Patent Motorwagen was the first self propelled vehicle that used an electric ignition coil and battery. Ignition coils and batteries are used in every internal combustion engine cars produced today, making it a definite milestone for automotive history.[2] According to Mcgraw, Daimler, along with Maybach developed the first carburettor on an internal combustion engine, along with the first radiator system. Although these technologies were commonly used, Karl Benz (independent at the time) chose not to use it in his patent. Carburettors were continued to be used until the late 1980's and radiators are a must on all gas...
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