Nov 29 2013

Video of the Week: The First Self-Propelled Vehicle: The 1769 Fardier du Cugnot

Seven years before the American Revolution in 1769, Nicholas Joseph Cugnot assembled the first self-propelled vehicle for the French military- the Fardier du Cugnot (Cugnot's flatbed truck). 

The original  1769 “fardier” is presently on display at the CNAM – Musee des Arts et Metiers in Paris (see above). It is in fairly good condition; some parts were replaced in the 19 th century. However, since its wheels are very fragile, it does not run.

Several replicas of the Fardier du Cugnot have been built including one built by the Tampa Bay Automobile Museum, which is documented in the following videos.


Howard Kroplick

Tampa Bay Automobile Museum's replica in motion.

Animation of the Cugnot's engine. Note: There is no sound.


Nov 30 2013 Ted 8:00 PM

Hope all of you had a very nice Thanksgiving,I’m visiting in Sarasota and hope to go to the Tampa Bay Automotive Museum and let you know how it is

Dec 01 2013 Joseph Indusi 9:25 AM

I visited the Tampa Bay Auto Museum and spoke with the owner about 5-6 years ago.  I found the collection of vehicles very interesting and as I recall, most were foreign makes.  There are also very informative displays on the early constant velocity joints used on military vehicles.  The Fardier du Cugnot took me by surprise as I did not expect to see a self propelled vehicle from that era.  This museum is worth the visit.
Thanks for all you do Howard.

Dec 01 2013 Howard Kroplick 10:14 AM

From Ron R:

“Not all that different from most of the cars built in France today!”

Dec 01 2013 frank femenias 11:37 AM

We’ve come a long way though this design is brilliant. This machine looks like something out of a nightmare; Sounds, looks, and all. It should be dubbed The Monster Machine.

Dec 01 2013 Ted 7:51 PM

I got to go to the Museum,what a collection of cars,as Joe,Ron and Frank said and it is well worth going to visit.

Dec 02 2013 Ted 11:46 PM

While I was visiting a relative in Sarasota,they know of a place where we could go to see a collection of 55 or more farm tractors,unrestored and restored,not open to the public,has his own shop to restore them.He let us take pictures. Would you want me to send you some,so that you can post them? He doesn’t have a website or does’nt want to give out any information about it,he keeps it to himself. They where tractors that I have never seen before. I was amazed when I saw them.Let me know if you want them

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