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Parts of a Car

Get to know the importance of your vehicle and its parts so you can better understand why they were invented.
Listed below are just a few of the inventions of what our vehicles are made up of:

1. Electric Headlights:
In 1898, the first invention of the electric headlights were introduced. In 1912, they were redesigned to be weatherproof.

Why this is important: Drivers had to drive in all conditions with minimal to no lighting which increased the risk of accidents. Headlights are now mandatory in all vehicles and serve as a safety precaution.

3. Radio:

In 1929, the radio was first introduced.

Why this is important: Radios were invented with the intention of providing drivers information about bad weather and road conditions and to prevent them from falling asleep at the wheel.

5. Steering Wheel:
The first production of vehicles used a lever to steer. In 1894, Alfred Vacheron made his mark with a fitted steering wheel while competing in the Paris-Rouen race.

Why this is important: The steering wheel allows drivers to have complete control over their vehicle which also includes a key safety feature; the airbag.

7. Electric/Power Windows:
The electric/power windows were introduced in 1948 by an automobile company called Daimler.

Why this is important: This invention gave drivers easier access to windows, allowing them to lower or raise them quickly. As technology continues to enhance, they can now detect when an object or a child's
arm for example is in their path and won't roll up as a safety precaution.

9. Brake:
1902 was the year Frederick Lanchester created and patented the disc brake.

Why this is important: The braking system is a major safety feature drivers rely on to get their vehicle to a complete stop. Technology has provided this invention with assist ability and continues to improve its safety capability.

11. Heated Seat:
Robert Ballard invented the heated seats in 1951.

Why this is important: Heated seats gave additional heating while targeting certain areas of the body. It became a luxury feature and may help reduce lower back issues for some.

2. Windshield Wipers:
Mary Anderson invented the automatic windshield wipers in 1903.

Why this is important: During bad weather conditions, the windshield wipers are something we heavily rely on to clear the windshield and help improve our visibility. Without them, driving would potentially be a hazard in certain environments.

4. Odometer:
Benjamin Franklin originally designed the odometer to help him measure the best routes for delivering post in 1763.

Why this is important: The odometer is able to calculate the distance between travels which helps drivers prepare for road trips.

6. Airbag:
In 1941, German Engineer Walter Linderer and North American John W. Hetrick created the airbag specifically for vehicles.

Why this is important: During an accident, a vehicle is meant to crumple and absorb the impact; your body is not. The airbag was designed to help protect and reduce damage to your body in a collision.

8. Rear (third) Brake Light:

Psychologist John Voevodsky designed a third brake light and mounted it at the back of the rear windshield as a warning for other drivers to slow down in 1974.
Why this is important: This invention proved to reduce rear-end collisions by 60.6% and quickly became a requirement on all vehicles.

10. Tire:
The first air-filled tire was invented by a veterinarian named John Boyd Dunlop in 1888.
Why this is important: Tires are the only contact your vehicle has to the ground. They provide grip for steering, braking, acceleration and absorb shock to help drivers avoid hydroplaning in wet road conditions.

12. Car Battery:
Batteries were first made primary, meaning they weren't rechargeable. In 1859, Gaston Planté, a French Physician created the first rechargeable battery.

Why this is important: Without the battery, vehicles wouldn't run. A jolt of electricity powers the electrical components and keeps a constant, steady motion, allowing the vehicle to stay on.
13. Turn Signal:
In 1929, the turn signal was introduced by Oscar J. Simler. This invention didn't become more widespread until the late 1940s.

Why this is important: Turn signals are meant for drivers to warn others on the road of their intended direction. Turn signals are to be used when a sudden lane change or merge is necessary to help prevent collisions and let traffic know their whereabouts.