A hybrid vehicle is any vehicle that uses two or more power sources to move the vehicle instead of just relying on gas. By this definition, Robert Anderson of Aberdeen, Scotland actually built the first electric vehicle way back in 1839. Granted, these “electric vehicles” aren’t nearly as powerful as the ones we have today. Still, it marked the forefront of a whole new possibility, one that arrived before we even started worrying about automobile-exhaust pollution.
Believe it or not, the first hybrid car was made in 1898! It was made by Dr. Ferdinand Porsche (yes, of Porsche cars fame). It had an internal combustion engine that in turn moved a generator that produced electricity that powered the car. Actually, electricity was often experimented with as a potential power source for cars back in those days -a purely electric vehicle was made way back in 1839- but gasoline won out in the end.
Hybrid cars have gone way back, all-electric cars even farther, with the first electric vehicle invented in Scotland in 1839 by Robert Anderson. Speed and range were the biggest issue, making cars a novelty hobby until the late 1800s, when they began to appear more frequently, including as New York cabs. The first hybrid car invented, combining battery and gasoline, was made by Dr. Ferdinand Porsche in Germany in 1903. Hybrids were in the top 3 of the 1900s boom of cars, with steam and gasoline powered cars. Eventually though, self-starting gasoline cars by Henry Ford won out over the cars made by the Electric Vehicle Company, and hybrid cars feel into total disuse by the 1920s. Only in 1965 did hybrid cars start to make a comeback.
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