Ayrton and Perry Starley EV

Ayrton and Perry EVNeed further proof that electric vehicles have been around at least as long as those powered by internal-combustion engines? Look no further than Ayrton & Perry's Starley Tricycle.

A full five years before Karl Benz patented what many consider the first proper automobile, two British professors, William Ayrton and John Perry, crafted for themselves a fully electric vehicle capable of a sustained speed of over eight miles per hour with a range of about 25 miles.

Though even this three-wheeled machine wasn't the first to be powered by electricity, Ayrton and Perry's electric tricycle could actually be considered useful as transportation.

Not wanting such an impressive feat of old-time engineering to go unremembered, the museum AUTOVISION in Germany spent a full year tracking down blueprints and original examples of the Ayrton & Perry electric tricycle with the intent on building one from scratch.

The best part? The project was a resounding success, as you can clearly see in the video after the break. If you're good at reading German, you can see plenty more details right here at the AUTOVISION website.