The history of the cars begins as early as 1769, with the creation of steam engine automobiles capable of human transport.
In 1806, the first cars powered by an internal combustion engine running on fuel gas appeared, which led to the introduction in 1885 of the ubiquitous modern gasoline- or petrol-fueled internal combustion engine.
The year 1886 is regarded the year of birth of the modern automobile - with the Benz Patent-Motor wagon, by German inventor Carl Benz.
Cars powered by electric power briefly appeared at the turn of the 20th century but largely disappeared from use until the turn of the 21st century. The early history of the automobile can be divided into a number of eras, based on the prevalent means of propulsion. Later periods were defined by trends in exterior styling, size, and utility preferences.