ANSWERS: 6
  • In 1929, American Paul Galvin, the head of Galvin Manufacturing Corporation, invented the first car radio. The first car radios were not available from carmakers. Consumers had to purchase the radios separately. Galvin coined the name "Motorola" for the company's new products combining the idea of motion and radio. The am radio was common in the late 60's then FM radio in the 70's. I recall my first car the 1970 Chevy Monte Carlo it had an AM 8 tract player factory installed// my have things improved since then// great question
  • I have a 1929 Packard 645 Convertible Coupe that was built by Raymond Dietrich (Individual Custom) for Lloyd W. Smith who was the CEO of what is now Chase National Bank in 1928. It has a radio installed in the dash by Dietrich which was built by two Harvard professors who had designed it for installation in an automobile. It predates the Galvin radio by almost a year. It has been the topic of much discussion over the last ten years. My car is considered by the AACA, CCCA, PAC, and PCI to be the first automobile with a radio installed in the dash at the time of its manufacture. A prominet vintage radio restorer, and a group of his friends, worked on the radio and drew the schematics for me. They were able to track down the necessary vaccum tubes and restore the radio to working condition. They believe it is the earliest example of a superhetrodyne radio in existance as well as the first autombile radio. I have never found an automobile radio any older, and I also believe it is the first radio installed in an automobile, based on a decade of research and consulting with other radio and automobile experts. I am attaching a photo of the radio in my 1929 Packard dash and would be happy to furnish additional photos, or to discuss this radio with you, if you are interested. Best Regards...........Paul
  • It is generally acknowledged that the 1931 Cadillac was the first to offer a radio as an option. The controls were mounted on the steering column as there was no room yet in the dash. Dash controls came out in 1933 for GM models. The first mass produced car radio was the 1927 Transitone which became Philco; it was an aftermarket model and not car specific. The first actual production Motorola car radio was a 1930 model, even Motorola acknowledges that date on their web page; it also was not car specific. One-off custom bodied cars for the wealthy may very well have had earlier radios but they are not considered more than an adaption of an existing commercial set or a hand built curiosity. I have seen a Transitone in a 1928 Springfield Rolls Royce. In fact an adaption of a battery operated house radio was done in 1922 to a Model T. By 1925 radio amateurs had home made receivers and transmitters operating in cars. Geoff
  • It is generally acknowledged that the 1931 Cadillac was the first to offer a radio as an option. The controls were mounted on the steering column as there was no room yet in the dash. Dash controls came out in 1933 for GM models. The first mass produced car radio was the 1927 Transitone which became Philco; it was an aftermarket model and not car specific. The first actual production Motorola car radio was a 1930 model, even Motorola acknowledges that date on their web page; it also was not car specific. One-off custom bodied cars for the wealthy may very well have had earlier radios but they are not considered more than an adaption of an existing commercial set or a hand built curiosity. I have seen a Transitone in a 1928 Springfield Rolls Royce. In fact an adaption of a battery operated house radio was done in 1922 to a Model T. By 1925 radio amateurs had home made receivers and transmitters operating in cars. Geoff
  • According to the book "Chronicle of the American Automobile over 100 Years of Auto History," copyright 1994 by Publications International, LTD, it was possible to buy a 1922 Chevrolet with a Westinghouse radio installed. The radio cost $200., and an advertising flyer included in the article, which apeared on page 97 of the book, stated, "The Radio Sedan. This NewSuperior Model Chevrolet Sedan has been specially equipped with a Wwestinghouse Two-Step Amplifying radio Receiving Set, at a total cost of $200." Other flyers published in the article spelled out additional details, and all were printed with a Chevrolet logo. That may not have been the first car radio, but I don't know of any earlier models.
  • 1) "From the earliest days of radio, enthusiasts had adapted domestic equipment to use in their cars. The commercial introduction of the fitted car radio came in the 1930s from the Galvin Manufacturing Corporation. Galvin Manufacturing was owned and operated by Paul V. Galvin and his brother Joseph E. Galvin. The Galvin brothers purchased a battery eliminator business in 1928 and the corporation’s first product was a battery eliminator that allowed battery-powered radios to run on standard household electric current (see also Rogers Majestic Batteryless Radio). In 1930, the Galvin Corporation introduced the first commercial car radio, the Motorola model 5T71, which sold for between $110 and $130 and could be installed in most popular automobiles. Founders Paul Galvin and Joe Galvin came up with the name 'Motorola' when his company started manufacturing car radios. A number of early companies making phonographs, radios, and other audio equipment in the early 20th century used the suffix "-ola," the most famous being Victrola; RCA made a "radiola"; there was also a company that made jukeboxes called Rock-Ola, and a film editing device called a Moviola. The Motorola prefix "motor-" was chosen because the company's initial focus was in automotive electronics." Source and further information: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Car_audio#History 2) "A Model T-Ford was fitted with a radio 85 years ago in the United States and the first industrially-produced radio came out 80 years ago in Philadelphia and was called Philco Transitone." Source and further information: "Listening In, September 2007" http://www.odxa.on.ca/listeningin/ODXA-Listening-In-Sample.pdf 3) "The first car radio on record was fitted to the passenger door of a Ford Model T by 18-year-old George Frost, President of Lane High School radio club, Chicago, and was in use by May 1922. The first commercially produced car radio was the Philco Transitone, introduced by the Philadelphia Storage Battery Company in 1927. By 1933 there were claimed to be 100,000 cars fitted with radio in the USA. (New Shell Book of Firsts) The Marconi V2A (cabinet radio) was mounted on the running boards by some enterprising motorists in the early twenties." Source and further information: http://www.weddingsetc.co.za/index.php?option=com_content&task=view&id=29&Itemid=2

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