Made by William Morrison in 1891, some say the Morrison was the first electric vehicle in America. It had a four horsepower engine , and could carry 6-12 passengers. Top speed was about 20 mph. The batteries needed to be recharged every 50 miles.
It has been said the car was actually completed in 1887 and was driven in a Des Moines parade in 1888. If that is true, the Morrison was first built 122 years ago, and it was built in America, where today they are almost no electric cars on the roads.
Electrobats were made for several years in Philadelphia. The first ones were very heavy and used steel tires to support a large lead battery. They employed twin 1.5 hp motors and had a top speed of 20 mph. They could go 25 miles on one charge.
A bulky enclosed cabin four passenger sedan that was made about the turn of the century, the Riker featured electric sidelamps, wooden-spoked wheels, and a voice tube so passengers could communicate with the driver. Cabin windows could be raised and lowered. 48 battery cells were onboard, with an electric engine near each rear wheel. The driver’s seat was about 6-7 feet in the air.