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History of PEVs

Electric Vehicles have been around for longer than we all may think. Check out the history of electric vehicles.

Early Battery 1800
Alessandro Volta makes the first device that can produce a large electric current. It becomes known as a battery.

To this day, it has never been included with anything that needed it.

Early Electric Cart 1830
Dutch inventor Sibrandus Stratingh creates an electric cart, the great-great granddaddy of the electric car.

It takes him years to get credit because no one can agree on the spelling of his last name.

Buggy 1891
William Morrison of Des Moines, Iowa builds the first successful electric automobile in the United States. It seats six and has top speed of 14 mph.

Horses everywhere are unimpressed.     

Early Car 1900
40 percent of American automobiles were powered by steam, 38 percent by electricity, and 22 percent by gasoline.

100% of them break down a lot.

Engine 1912
Charles Kettering invents the electric starter which makes gasoline-powered cars much easier to use. Between this, the use of a muffler, to reduce noise, and the lower cost of gas-powered vehicles, the world decides to settle for the internal combustion engine.

It is not an elegant solution.

Electric Studebaker 1901-1920
Electric cars are produced in the U.S. by Anthony Electric, Baker, Columbia, Anderson, Detroit Electric, Edison, Studebaker and Riker.

Many believe that electric cars are the wave of the future. Especially the people who hold stock in these companies.

Early Car 1920
The electric car drops out of commercial production.

It seems that fossil fuels have won the day.

Plymouth Barracuda 1970
The 1970 Plymouth Barracuda get six miles to the gallon.

Owners learn to plan their drives carefully.

Gas Lines 1970's
The Arab Oil Embargo and a growing environmental movement spark renewed interest in electric cars from both consumers and producers.

Plymouth Barracuda owners go broke just trying to get to work.

Electric Buick Skylark 1973
Victor Wouk builds the first full-powered, full-sized hybrid vehicle out of a 1972 Buick Skylark.

This time, horses are afraid.

Vanguard-Sebring 1975
Vanguard-Sebring is the sixth largest automaker in the country. Their CitiCar has a top speed of 30 mph and a range of 40 miles.

In the history of the automobile, only the Reliant K car has been uglier.

EVI 1988
G.M. funds research efforts to build a practical electric car. This results in the creation of the EV1.

Gasoline powered cars do not see this as a threat, but they should.

Toyota Prius 1997
Toyota unveils the Prius, the world's first commercially mass-produced and marketed hybrid car.

To the dismay of people who think the 1970 Plymouth Barracuda is cool, the Prius makes its owners more attractive to the opposite sex.

Tesla Roadster 2006
Tesla Motors unveils the ultra-sport Tesla Roadster.

Not only is it electric, it's faster off the line than a 1970 Plymouth Barracuda.

Gas Sign2008
Gas prices hit $4 a gallon.

For some reason, electric cars sound like a good idea again.

Nissan LEAF and Chevy Volt 2011
A whole new world of transportation has begun. The electric vehicle is truly a reality. And it will change the way Americans drive into the future.

SOURCE: PBS.org