People required resources for transportation in the past that could easily be used. this could primarily be done by quadrupeds, and human used different four-legged animals with respect to their financial conditions.
Iranian rulers were among the first powerful governments that dealt with construction of roads. The Iranian capital used to be connected to all the other states by the networks of various roads, during 500-400 BC. By the reign of Dariush the 1st of Achaememian dynasty, the quadrupeds used to take the orders and other messages rapidly from a point in the country to another. Among the famous roads that had prominent historical importance were the Royal Road, the Silk Road, the Pearl (Morvarid) Road, and the Spice (Advieh) Road, which connected ways inside and outside of the Iranian borders.
During the Abbasid dynasty, when the governing areas of the Muslims were extended, Mecca pilgrimage and commercial activities became easier due to construction of different roads, the most famous of which was the “Great Khorasan Road”. That road used to connect the eastern lands and Transoxiana via Neyshabour, Rey, and Hamadan to Bagdad and then to Hijaz. The commercial roads were also expanded during Saljukid era, and construction of roads in the country was developed a great deal during Safavid era. Moreover, the roads were further developed during Afsharid era, due to the military campaigns of Nader Shah.
The people’s attitudes were changing by the end of 12th century H., and carriages found their ways into the royal courts in 1189 H. from then on and gradually, using it was promoted among the royal family and the government authorities and then in a wider range, among people. By the beginning of 1230s, quality carriages were produced in the cities of Isfahan and Tehran, due to encouragement by the government. The limitation of them was also abandoned and various notifications were published for using carriages not only for the wealthy people and government authorities but also for ordinary people, as more convenient means of transport.
A little while after that, transportation was being done in one or two simple defined routes in Tehran, and carriages with horse were moving in those routes. The other action that was done in continuous movement of carriages with horse was changing the tires horses by the end of the routes.
Emergence of “smoky cars (machine doodi)” in Tehran
Nasser al=Din Shah of Qajarid dynasty ordered the construction of a railway from Tehran to the Tomb of Shazadeh Abdol-Azim (in Rey), and the moving of steam locomotives, called “machine doodi”, happened in the route from Tehran to Rey for the first time in 1251 H.
The Iranian Railway and tramway Co. was established in 1257 H., and the cars that were called “machine doodi” started working in the capital city. The railway for “machine doodi” was opened in 1265 H. by the presence of Nasser al-Din Shah.
Importation of cars to Iran
Mozafar al-Din Shah (1900 AD) ordered to buy two cars in his first visit to Europe, and cars came to Iran for the first time. People used to call these vehicles as “smoky (doodi) carriages or “fiery chariots”. The speed of first cars that came to Iran did not exceed 40 km/h and they had the capacity of 4 passengers. Vehicles became a widespread means of transportation, especially among the aristocrats and wealthy people, from 1294 H.
Establishment of Tehran municipality in 1906 H. provided more prominent organization of urban life. By the beginning of World War I (1912-1916 H.), cars became more popular among the public, and enacting special regulations became essential. The vehicles found their ways first to the royal court and the houses of one or two ministers, but they became more popular afterwards and were also provided for ordinary people. After the importation of cars and trucks to Iran, the point of transporting the passengers had become the point of concern, and therefore modern vehicles had to be replaced with the existing ones. Thus, some buses were purchased from Denmark and by 1926, the first bill was ratified by the National Parliament, and the buses started to work in 7 different routes. Serious efforts were made for the communication networks, and the first main railway of the country, i.e. the “national railway system” was constructed. Road charges were cancelled, and based on the “Roads development plan”, 14000 miles of roads were constructed until 1941. The number of vehicles were increased considerably in Iran, especially in the city of Tehran. Finally, Tehran Police issued a public circular in 1916 in 16 articles for the people to attend in the Police Station and participate in a driving test and also for the cars to get number plates.