The evolution of Hubcaps into Wheel Covers

Little is being known about wheel covers. When wheel covers came into the automotive scene, hubcaps were classically recognized as grease or dust caps.  They strung right above the central hub on the wheel (in the form of wood, wire & steel). In 1932, the level of awareness increased which made them increasingly popular. Earlier, most hubcaps and wheel covers were crafted out of brass and as well plated in nickel. Over the years, manufacturer came up with the usage of metals like aluminum which was considered to be of a lesser weight and an affordable form of metal.

And in the late 30’s, almost all the vehicles on the road were using hubcaps that were properly fitted as compared to its introduction when they were being squeezed to fit in. The wire versions were frequently fitted with the help of a spring-loaded retention clip which has been the typical technique for a very long time in hubcaps even up to today.

Tracing it back to the 40’s, manufacturing companies switched over to using affordable steel wheels which could easily be produced in a lager quantity. At the end when the result came out, these wheels were perceived as unattractive, and not only that, they would also fade off and rust easily if not properly maintained.

Alas, it finally came to the point where the need for wheel covers became so strong that they were seen beyond being used to keep away dust from finding its way into the grease of the wheels. To give it a better look, companies started coming up with fascinating & sexy wheel covers made of chrome-plate or stainless steel to make the car shine more. Then, the size was still small, as focus was majorly on the center hub.

Evolution of Hubcaps

To bring about more luxury to vehicles, manufacturing companies started coming up with an outer rim that would clip to the wheel. This outer rim came in the form of chrome or stainless which was used to draw attention to the center hubcaps. Just before everybody knew it, the outer rim and likewise the center hubcaps were fixed together to bring about a full-face cover.

As soon as the full size hubcaps came into play, people got to know about how heavy they were. When heavy metal rotates over a long distances, there’s a good chance that they’ll get off on their own, and this was exactly what happened in this case.

This similar problem still carry on up to today, although it is not often. Many replicas are made from ultra-light aluminum or plastics that grip tightly. Some manufacturers like Honda for instance, have developed systems that bolt the hubcaps and which also covers it in place to guarantee their secure placement.

Giving the Wheel a new Look

Also, German engineering has another view on the wheel cover. These particular models are attached to the wheel at first, and then bolted to the car in such a way that it appears as if the driver or vehicle mechanic were changing the tire out. Ordinarily, these wheel covers are made from aluminum and designed in such a way that it brings about a major improvement as regards the airflow in and around the wheel to create a greater down force variant, which depends largely on the shape of the hubcaps. This particular innovation has been in use since 1970, mainly in the racing circuit, and these elegant wheel covers has been able to prove that hubcaps can be attractive and yet be so functional in the world of automotive accessories.