the father of the modern automobile is one Mr. Henry Ford, he didn't invent the car, but he did develop the idea of the assembly line and developed a car that could be manufactured at a price that was affordable to consumers.
so technically he isn't the father of the car baby lol he is just the doctor that delivered them. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Automobile
the point can be argued forever depends on how you determine fatherhood of a product like the car.... Henry Ford made a car that was easy to produce... affordable... and relatively easy to drive. so in essence he's the father of the modern automobile... with its assembly line production and replaceable parts. he may not have invented the car... but without him idk if we'd be driving around in such nice cars at decent prices. so henry ford may not have invented the car... but in my book he's the father... cause he took it to a whole nother level. maybe not the father of automobiles... but the father of the modern car for sure.