Robert L. Norton
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This is a general-interest trade book that describes the development of automotive technology and engineering from the start of the industry before 1900 to the present day. It explains how various systems and elements in the automobile work in layman’s terms, without resorting to mathematics, and highlights the key milestones in the historical development of automotive technology. All photos and illustrations are in full color.
The intended audience is older teens to adults of any age who are interested in cars and may be involved with them as a hobby. Sometimes referred to as “gearheads” or “motorheads,” they form a huge market. Over the years, many of the author’s engineering students were in this category, and he often would meet with on-campus car clubs to explain the internal workings of automobiles, being careful to damp down or eliminate any complicated mathematics—just as he does in this book.
The other books that cover this subject are either “hard-engineering oriented”—such as publications from the Society of Automotive Engineers (SAE)—or just compendiums of dates without much explanation at all of how the changes in technology actually work, which is the aim of this book.