1900 - 1950

In 1886, the German inventor Carl Benz patented his motorised tricycle. A few years later, Rudolf Diesel laid the foundations for the engine that went on to be named after him. However, it was only in the early twentieth century that the car began to take on a shape that distinguished it from earlier means of transport and started to be mass produced. The Model T created by Henry Ford’s factory in the US paved the way for the new industrial system. 

Henry Ford nel 1919
Ford Model T

I will build a car for the great multitude… But it will be so low in price that no man making a good salary will be unable to own one

Henry Ford  

Catena di montaggio della Ford negli anni dieci

Car manufacturers focused on developing models that the average person could afford. The years leading up to the Second World War saw the launch of the Fiat 500 in Italy and the Volkswagen Beetle in Germany. The prototype for the Citroën 2CV also took shape during the same period, leading to its debut in 1948.   

Il Maggiolino Volkswagen
Una Citroën 2 CV
La Fiat 500