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The first electric car?

Discussion in 'Electric Vehicles' started by syzygy, Oct 9, 2017.

  1. syzygy

    syzygy 2017 MS75D

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  2. busaman

    busaman Member

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  3. igotzzoom

    igotzzoom Supporting Member

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    I always thought the Baker Electric was the first series-production electric. I'm sure there were a few one-offs before then, but Baker was the first manufacturer to make a serious attempt at building EVs in any significant quantity.
     
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  4. busaman

    busaman Member

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    thiswas alomst certainly the first electric truck 1920 built 200 yards from where i live and where i was an apprentice when i left school..
     

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  5. jbcarioca

    jbcarioca Active Member

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    There seem to be many competitors for that "first series-production electric" position, as for:
    the "first electric truck".
    Without even trying to figure out who really was first I do have a perspective.
    First, one of the first cars I ever drove was a Baker owned by a friend and mentor when I was about 14 years of age. Among their large antique cr collection was that Baker, which was used as a daily driver. It had quite adequate range for local use in 1961, when I first saw and later drove it. The real problem for both Baker, Detroit and the earlier builders was that their cost was much higher than were the ICE. Even worse, most houses did not ahem electricity at all, so charging was a serious problem.

    Of the many discussions of early electric vehicles this one is illustrated and is pretty good. It does short shrift of the Porsche innovation of a motor for every wheel though, which deserves mention too.

    History Electric Vehicles History News
     
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  6. wws

    wws Member

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    GMC built electric delivery trucks around 1914-1916. And there were many electric trucks before that.

    While there were a couple of one-off electric carriages in the mid-1800s, there were electric taxis in New York City and elsewhere in the 1890s.

    Besides GMC, GM could probably claim the experimental electric Olds cars that were built just after 1900. IIRC they were destroyed by a fire. However those efforts predated Olds becoming part of GM.
     
  7. wws

    wws Member

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    Even those that did barely had enough service for a few light bulbs. And then there was the whole AC vs DC debate...

    A lot of folks attribute the electric starter with accelerating the trend towards ICE. But there were many other factors. E.g., Fords Model T, which cost 1/3-1/4th of what electrics were selling for. Oil discoveries in Texas and Oklahoma. Massive production of ICE vehicles during WW 1. Improved roads meaning that 25 mph electrics couldn't pass muster. And so on...

    The above link is really excellent reading.
     

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