The History of Automotive Repairs – Why We Need Trained Technicians in the Collision Repair Industry

Vehicle History Overview

They don’t make them like they used to.
The First Cars

The first motor cars were nothing more than a buggy and engine (Generally repaired by blacksmiths and carpenters. These cars were very expensive, which only the wealthy could afford)
Model T was the first car mass production on an assembly line in 1908 (Ford’s Vision was to produce an affordable car the average person could purchase)
Model T’s came in black only to keep the costs down. (The price came down once the assembly line was streamlined, but in 1908, the cost for a Model T started at $825. By 1913 the cost of the car reduced to $550)
Cars in the 1960s

Cars were made the same basic way up through the 60s

Body Over Frame
Rear Wheel Drive (Same concept, but the cars were very big, bulky, and heavy)
Except people in the 60s wanted SPEED! They achieved this with Big Block Motors, which created a lot of Horsepower. (The Birth of Hotrods, Rat Fink, Flames, and Pin Striping).

Cars in the 1970s

The government place strict fuel economy and emissions control laws
Customers demanded cars with increased fuel economy
New laws and customer demands started the automotive explosion of engineering ideas and changes in the automotive industry
Changes to comply with Demands and Laws

Smaller bodied cars and smaller engines
Aerodynamics (Increase Fuel Mileage)
Lighter cars by using different materials and designs
More work-hardened areas created during formation of panel (Body Lines)
Construction of Interstate Highways + Higher Speed Limits + More High Performance Cars = Accidents and More

Deaths from Auto Accidents

Federal Laws were passed to regulate safety. These laws included:

Installation of seatbelts
Safety glass windshields
Head restraints
In 1979, the first driver side airbag was introduced
Airbags are mandatory in motor cars produced after 1990
Unibody Torque Boxes: Allow controlled twisting and crushing
Crush Zones: Made to collapse during collision (To act as an absorber, absorbing the impact)

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