The first major period in automobile history is known as the Brass or Edwardian period. The former refers to the amount of brass used in the cars and the latter refers to the king of England at the time. During these 14 years between the turn of the century and the start of the First World War in 1914, the developments in the technology were incredibly quick. This was mainly due to many companies who were competing in the market to try and make some money in this expanding industry. Inventions during this period include the four-wheel break and suspension on cars, things we take for granted today.
In the latter part of this period, up until 1912, the high-wheel motor buggy was the most popular car ever produced. These cars trembled a horse and cart, were incredibly high and had little protection from inclement weather as they often had an open roof. At this point in time, cars were made of wood. One problem with this was the durability of the car while another issue was the lack of quality wood for furniture makers as most of the best materials were being used for cars and such as the demand that this left little for other purposes.
It was not only the United States and Europe who was keen on getting into the industry. Just as is the case today, Japan was also making headway into the market and produced some of the best cars of the brass or Edwardian era. The Hatsudoki Seizo Co. Ltd began to produce its own models and sell them to the Asian market. It was now that the Ford company in American began to make a name for itself too.
Despite the rapid growth and demand in the car market, the industry was to be shattered and halted for several years. The First World War effectively stopped all other activity that wasn’t related to warfare. Though interestingly, cars themselves played a role in the war in a way which has never been seen before. Soldiers could transport troops, food and ammunition in a much easier manner than had previously been the case. This was the first major conflict to incorporate such transport and it would revolutionize all battles to come.