Otto Builds his First Functioning Four-Stroke Engine

Though Otto had great success with his atmospheric engines, the really reliable and effective engine was not yet found.

Otto was looking already for a long time for a solution of the problems which prevented the explosion engines from delivering a regular work: The burn was jerky. Otto finally found the right way. His improvements were fantastic: He learned how to let a mixture burn slowly and safely. At the same time, he could hold the performance of the engine on a high level by a compression of the gas.

In the year 1876 he built his first four-stroke engine. Wilhelm Maybach (1846-1929), one of the most important German engineers, perfected the construction, which was produced in large quantities already at the end of the year 1876.

The question of the fuel interested not only the engineers before Otto, but himself, too. After a strong occupation with the combustion process for his first four stroke engine, he was now able to burn the gas he used in a regulated way. 1883, Karl Benz and Gottlieb Daimler, who are still very famous because of their cars, built an engine, where gasoline is induced into the induction air through a surface carburetor. For the first time people succeeded in using liquid fuels. A large step was done toward the automobile with this, because liquid fuel needs less space than gaseous and can be transported more easily.