Chapter 1

The Evolution of Unsustainable Road Transport

Abstract

There is a consensus that the present status of road transport in the developed world is unsustainable for a variety of reasons – urban congestion, pollution, petroleum depletion and greenhouse gas emissions. Measures are being taken to combat this serious threat but, as yet, they are clearly inadequate. This introductory chapter outlines the emergence of the present precarious situation over the course of the 20th century and provides descriptions of the different types of vehicle and motive power source that have been progressively investigated and developed. The internal-combustion engine has proved to be the key technology that has allowed the production of the most successful ...

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