An automobile, also known as a motorcar or car, is a wheeled motor vehicle used for passenger transportation that uses an internal combustion engine powered most often by gasoline (a liquid petroleum product) to create propulsion. It is one of the most universal of modern technologies. The branches of engineering that focus on the design and manufacturing of cars are known as automotive engineering.
The automobile revolutionized the world’s culture by giving people access to work and leisure activities in far-flung places, spawning new industries and services such as motels, hotels, restaurants and amusement parks. It brought harm to the environment through exhaust pollution and its use of dwindling world oil supplies. And it sparked social changes through the imposition of laws and government requirements like seatbelts, driving licenses, highway rules and safety features.
Today, automobiles are essential to most people’s lives. Owning a car means freedom from having to share a cramped space with other people in public transit; it allows us to swiftly evacuate during natural disasters and travel to hospitals for medical emergencies. And it gives families the ability to spend time together in places that may not be accessible through other forms of public transportation. In some ways, the automobile is the most important invention of modern times.