or motor car
is a wheeled motor vehicle
used for transporting passengers
, which also carries its own engine
or motor. Most definitions of the term specify that automobiles are designed to run primarily on roads, to have seating for one to eight people, to typically have four wheels, and to be constructed principally for the transport
of people rather than goods.
However, the term automobile
is far from precise, because there are many types of vehicles that do similar tasks.
As of 2002, there were 590 million passenger cars worldwide (roughly one car per eleven people).
Around the world, there were about 806 million cars and light trucks on the road in 2007; they burn over 260 billion gallons of gasoline and diesel fuel yearly. The numbers are increasing rapidly, especially in China
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