Fuel injection is nothing new, but when you think about it, it took a hell of a long time for it gain widespread adoption. Ben Wojdyla digs into the story of fuel injection's origins, market failure, and roaring comeback:

Hop in the car on a subzero winter morning and crank the ignition switch. For the first 85 years of motoring, nothing guaranteed successful ignition in this situation. Back then, we relied on the crude but easily serviced carburetor. Today, that serviceability is gone, replaced by the fuel injection system.

Fuel injection is reliable, far more efficient, functional at every temperature, and not at all a new idea. The technology's been around since almost the advent of the internal combustion engine. Rudolph Diesel made it work on his engines, but the idea wasn't universally implemented in gasoline power plants until the 1980s.

One noteworthy standout brought fuel injection to the masses back in the 1950s, but it wasn't to be. Here's how General Motors tried and failed to popularize it with the 1957 Corvette, and how revolutions in sensors and electronics turned fuel injection into shorthand for a car that starts every morning.

Go read the whole thing.

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