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The Future of the Automobile.

American Government Special Collections Reference Desk

The Future of the Automobile.

The New York Times
November 24, 1901

From The Review of Reviews.

It is hardly necessary to predict the future of the automobile, and the question as to whether it will supersede horses is by no means an important one.  The automobile is not a fad or plaything, although probably a large percentage of the present owners have merely taken it up on account of its novelty.  There is no doubt that the bicycle was largely used at one time as a fad, but now it has come to be the boon of millions of workingmen.  It appears that the demand for bicycles is as strong as ever, only a different class of people are employing them.

As time goes on, automobiles of all types will undoubtedly show material improvement, although radical changes are hardly to be expected.  It must be remembered in this connection that although the automobile is novel, it merely consists of the application of well-known and tried devices to a road carriage, the combination forming, indeed, a strict innovation.  The first few years of the automobile industry in this country have shown a remarkable demand for motor vehicles.  So far, the greater part of the machines have been for pleasure purposes.  This demand is not likely to decrease, for with the improvement of the roads automobile touring will become even more popular than it has been.

As to the commercial importance of the automobile, it can be said that it is already a boon to physicians, and a necessity to many business houses.  As a method of transporting passengers or freight, it has unlimited possibilities.

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