As many other more exoteric sub-types of bicycle, the history of quadracycle began with the organized manufacture of first bicycles in the middle of 19th century. After they were first introduced, quadracycles became popular for many uses, at first mostly for recreation and easier transfer of people and goods between city locations. The defining characteristics that separate quadracycles from carriages or cars are that they have to be light (made from wood or light metals), have four wheels, place for at least one passenger, and have to be powered by human power either utilizing levers or pedals that can be operated by hands of feet. First recorded design of quadracycle appeared on the 1853 Exhibition of the Industry of All Nations World's Fair in New Youk City. This initial design was improved in the following years, most notably with the Coventry Rotary Quadracycle in 1885 (which was at first look just a doubled penny-farthing) and Rudge Quadracycle in 1888 that was hailed as first practical and easy to use quadracycle on the worldwide market. Another very popular quadracycle model was made in France in 1924. Velocar pedal design featured 2 seats and later supported 3 gears, and was used even throughout World War II when gasoline was hard to find in France and rest of Europe.
Because of the proliferation of cars and much greater popularity of bicycles, even shortly after they were introduces quadracycles became used only for specific purposes of short range travels on good terrain. Those use cases scenarios eventually forced manufacturers of quadracycles to build them as separate families of those vehicles, which can be separated in six categories: