Pros and Cons of Automobiles
Automobiles are powered by internal combustion engines that burn fuel, typically gasoline or diesel fuel, to generate mechanical energy. This mechanical energy then drives the wheels of the car to propel it forward. The automobile is a widely used mode of transportation that offers many benefits to its users. However, it also has a number of disadvantages and should be weighed carefully before purchasing one.
OPENS UP THE WORLD: The automobile allows people to travel long distances with ease. This enables them to live in one area and work in another, and expands their social circles. It allows them to take more vacations and to have more time to spend with family and friends. It also provides them with more freedom than public transportation, which can be restrictive and unreliable.
SAVES TIME: Having a vehicle can save drivers valuable time, especially when travelling long distances. This is due to the reduced travelling time, which can allow them to avoid lengthy commutes or frequent shopping trips. Furthermore, owning a car can help reduce the risk of being late for important events or meetings, which can be particularly stressful when working in a deadline-driven environment.
AFFORDABILITY: The development of the automobile was largely driven by the availability of cheap raw materials, the relative equity of income distribution, and the lack of tariff barriers between states. With a vast land area, the United States was uniquely positioned to benefit from automotive transportation. In fact, its relatively low population density and affordable labor rates allowed it to produce cars in far greater numbers than European countries. This led to the development of modern mass production techniques by companies such as Ford.
INNOVATIONS: There were many innovations to automobiles in the early twentieth century, including the electric starter, a closed all-steel body, hydraulic brakes, and syncromesh transmission. These advances, however, were mainly incremental rather than revolutionary. The first modern, high-performance car was the 1901 Mercedes, designed by Wilhelm Maybach for Daimler Motoren Gesellschaft. This was the first car to reconcile state-of-the-art design with moderate price and running expenses. It is also considered to be the first modern automobile in the true sense of the term.
CONS: The greatest disadvantage to owning an automobile is the environmental impact. Most cars use gasoline, which releases carbon dioxide, a greenhouse gas, into the atmosphere. It is estimated that transportation is responsible for 27 percent of the United States’ greenhouse gas emissions. There are a number of ways to limit this, such as driving an efficient vehicle and regularly maintaining it.
The automobile symbolizes both the promise and the perils of the modern age. It has made life easier by allowing people to move from place to place more quickly, but it has also contributed to sprawl and traffic congestion. In some cases, it has even become a substitute for family life. A number of movies have reflected this tension, such as “Casino” and the recent hit, “American Sniper.” Despite these drawbacks, the automobile is an essential part of American culture.