The PCC (Presidents' Conference Committee) streetcar (tram) design was first built in the United States in the 1930s. The design proved successful in its native country, and after World War II was licensed for use elsewhere in the world. The PCC car has proved to be a long lasting icon of streetcar design, and PCC cars are still in service in various places around the world.
The unusual name comes from the fact that the car was designed by a committee, formed in 1929, representing various electric street railways. The Electric Railway Presidents' Conference Committee, or ERPCC, was tasked with producing a new type of streetcar that would help fend off competition from buses and automobiles. The committee produced a high-performance design that was commonly used in the following decades. The cars were popular because of their distinctive streamlined design and smooth acceleration and braking, sometimes quoted as soft ride. The design patents were held by a business called the Transit Research Corporation, who licensed features to various streetcar manufacturers.