Automobiles, also called cars or motor car, are wheeled vehicles designed primarily for passenger transportation and commonly propelled by an internal combustion engine using a volatile fuel. They have seating for one to seven people and typically have four wheels.
The modern automobile is a complex technical system employing thousands of component parts. They include the body, chassis, engine, drivetrain, control systems, safety systems, and emission-control systems.
In addition to these, automobiles are equipped with an assortment of electronics and safety devices such as brakes, airbags, and anti-lock braking systems. These technologies are essential to protect the occupants in case of an accident.
Vehicles are available in a wide range of sizes, from small passenger cars to large sport utility vehicles. Depending on their intended use, they can also have different body styles and configurations.
Some examples of these include the sedan/saloon, hatchback, station wagon/estate, and minivan. In addition to the body style, passenger capacity and luggage space are important considerations for car design.
There are also many types of engines for automobiles including gasoline, diesel, and steam. Several new fuel sources have been introduced over the years to meet evolving consumer demand.
The development of the automobile is largely a matter of scientific innovation and invention. Some of these innovations were made hundreds of years ago, while others have only recently been invented or patented.