This Month In Automotive History: July

Although a highly debatable topic, it’s been nearly 130 years since Karl Benz invented the first gasoline automobile powered by an internal combustion engine. In that relatively short period of time in human history, the automobile has come an awfully long way. Although automotive history has certainly had its share of key players, thousands of people have contributed to the evolution of the automobile. This month we decided to highlight the achievements in automotive history that haven taken place in the month of July.

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July 3, 1886: Invention of the Automobile

Karl Benz is often credited as the inventor of the automobile, as he created the first gasoline-powered auto in 1885. On July 3rd, 1886, Benz unveiled his invention to the world in Mannheim, Germany.

July 5, 1865: Locomotive Acts Enacted in Britain

The Locomotives and Highway Act, commonly known ass the Red Flag Act, restricted automobile speed to a maximum of four MPH speed limit in the country for all automotive vehicles. This law actually required someone to walk ahead of the vehicle with a red flag or lantern for safety reasons.

July 11, 1916: Federal Road Act Enacted (also known as the Bankhead-Shackleford Act)

President Woodrow Wilson signed the Federal Road Act to improve road quality and encourage the building of a national highway system. Evidently, most of the Midwest still hasn’t received this memo.

July 12th 1933: First Dymaxion Car

Innovative and influential automobile inventor Buckminster Fuller’s company Dymaxion produced the first Dymaxion car.

July 16, 1935: Birth of the Parking Meter

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Much to the dismay of drivers everywhere, the first parking meter is installed in Oklahoma City, invented by Carl C. Magee.

July 17, 1923 Lincoln Trademark Registered:

Just over a year after purchasing Lincoln, Ford registered the Lincoln Motorcar Company trademark.

July 21, 1904 First Car to Top 100 mph:

In Ostend, Belgium, Lous Rigolly achieves a speed of nearly 104 mph, becoming the first person to drive a car over 100 mph.

July 23 1903: First Ford Car Sold

1928 Ford Model A

Ford sells its first car, the Model A. The car was sold to Dr. Ernst Pfenning of Chicago, Illinois.

July 24, 1910: Alfa Romeo Founded

A.L.F.A. (Anonima Lombarda Fabbrica Automobili) was founded in Milan, Italy. By 1920, the company would officially be known as Alfa Romeo.

July 27, 1888 Electric Tricycle Demonstration:

The first electric tricycle is unveiled to the public by Philip W. Pratt in Boston, Massachusetts.

July 29, 1909: Buick Buys Cadillac

Buick acquires Cadillac on behalf of General Motors for nearly $5 million.

July 30, 1898: First Printed Car Ad

Scientific America features the first car advertisement in print, promoting the Winton Motor Car Company.

July 31, 1928: Chrysler Acquires Dodge Brothers

For a staggering $170 million, the Dodge Brothers Company are acquired from investment bankers Dillon Read by the Chrysler Corporation.

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