Belt up and enjoy this 365-day ride as you cruise past the most momentous motoring events in history. Packed with fascinating facts about races, motorists and the history of the mighty engine, this is a must-visit web site for any car enthusiast.
A random selection of firsts from the world of motoring.
The first car with a dipstick to check oil was launched in 1915 – the Morris Cowley. Unlike many automobile inventions this one is still used, unchanged in nearly all cars
The first Lamborghini was a tractor built up of war-surplus Morris, Ford and General Motors bits and pieces, constructed in 1948 by Ferruccio Lamborghini.
The first roadside petrol pumps became operational in St Louis, USA in 1905. Roadside petrol pumps were first installed in Britain in 1913, though they did not enter into general use until 1921. In 1920 the Automobile Association opened the first roadside petrol station (solely for the purpose of supplying fuel as opposed to being a garage) at Aldermaston, Berkshire. A number of similar stations were established around the country. They were operated by AA Patrolmen and exclusively for the use of AA members. They established the modern pattern of vehicles pulling off the public road and drawing up alongside petrol pumps rather than being filled at the kerbside as at garages. Britain’s first self-service petrol pump became operational in November 1961 at Southwark Bridge, London.
The first successful radial-ply tyre was the Michelin “X”, marketed in 1853.
Ernest Holmes of Chattanooga, US invented the first tow truck in 1916 after needing blocks, ropes, and six men to pull a Motel T Ford out of a creek. Holmes assembled a system consisting of three poles, a pulley and a chain, all connected to the frame of a 1913 Cadillac. Holmes soon patented his invention, and began manufacturing the equipment to sell to garages and other interested customers out of a small shop on Chattanooga’s Market Street. The Holmes brand went on to earn an international reputation for quality in the towing industry.