Air Bag – A passive safety device, supplemental to safety belts that inflates to provide a cushion to absorb impact forces during moderate to
severe frontal collisions. This system can help lessen the chance of contact with the steering wheel, instrument panel and windshield.
The airbag is actuated automatically by sensors located in the front of the vehicle. To maximize effectiveness, seat and shoulder belts
must always be used in conjunction with this system.
Air Injection – A system that injects air into the exhaust ports of the engine for combustion of unburned hydrocarbons in the exhaust gases,
thus producing “cleaner” exhaust emissions.
Alignment – Generally refers to wheel alignment, which is the proper adjustment of the vehicle’s front and rear suspension for camber, toe,
caster and ride height.
A-Pillar – Side foremost roof support of a vehicle, located in most instances between the outer edge of the windshield and the leading
edge of the front door upper. Also known as an A-Post.
Alloy Wheels – A generic term used to describe any non-steel road wheel. The most common alloy wheels are cast aluminum.
Technically, an alloy is a mixture of two or more metals. These wheels are known for their light weight and strength.
All-Wheel Drive – Often confused with Four-Wheel Drive (4WD), this drive system features four, full-time active drive wheels to reduce
wheel slippage and provide greater driver control over the vehicle. All-Wheel Drive automatically splits engine torque between the front and
rear wheels as needed, improving on-road traction in unfavorable road conditions. Unlike Four-Wheel Drive, All-Wheel Drive (AWD) is an
on-road system and is not designed for off-road use. AWD does not require the driver to actively engage the system. It is operational at all
times, and requires no switches, lights or visor instructions for system operation.
Amazon Automotive Products – List of Automotive products for use by car owners
Car Care Exterior Accessories Interior Accessories Tires & Wheels Motorcycle & ATV
Performance Parts & Accessories RV Parts & Accessories Replacement Parts Tools & Equipment
Paint Body & Trim Oils & Fluids General Best Sellers
Anti-Lock Brake System (ABS) – On a vehicle equipped with Anti-Lock Brakes, the wheels are equipped with speed sensors. When a
sensor determines that a wheel is decelerating so rapidly that lockup may occur, the electro-Hydraulic Control Unit (EHCU) is activated.
The EHCU then modulates the brake pressure in the appropriate brake lines by means of the solenoid-operated vaves. This is intended to
prevent wheel lockup and help the vehicle maintain directional stability during potentially hazardous braking situations.
Axle Ratio – The ratio between the rotational speed (RPM) of the drive shaft and that of the driven wheel. Gear Reduction in final drive is
determined by dividing the number of teeth on the ring gear by the number of teeth on the pinion gear.
Anti-Theft System – Systems that contain codes to prevent the use of a stolen device to work in another vehicle without modification or
Automatic Day/Night Mirror – A rearview mirror miade with two layers of glass separated by a light-sensitive chemical. The chemical
automatically darkens to absorb glare from the headlamps of a following vehicle. Also known as an electrochromic mirror.
Automatic Power Door Locks with Programmable Feature – A safety feature which automatically locks all doors when the transmission
is put into gear or the odometer reaches a certain MPH. Depending on the vehicle, this feature offers different programming options to suit
B-Pillar – The roof support between a vehicle’s front door window and rear side window, if there is one.
Balance Shaft – A shaft designed so that, as it turns, it counter rotates the rotational direction of the engine crankshaft in a manner that
reduces or cancels out some of the vibration produced by the engine.
Ball Joint – A flexible joint consisting of a ball within a socket. Ball joints act as pivots which allow turning of the front wheels and
compensate for changes in the wheel and steering geometries that occur while driving.
Base-Coat / Clear Coat – A paint system that adds a final clear-coat paint layer over primer and color coats to provide a deep, “wet-look”
shine that resists fading.
Bias-Ply tires – A type of tire in which the plies or layers of cord in the tire casing are laid diagonally, criss-crossing one another at an
angle of 30 to 40 degrees.
Biodiesel – is a domestic, renewable fuel for diesel engines derived from natural oils like soybean oil, 1%-FAME (Fatty Acid Methyl Esther,
initially derived from coco-methyl ether)
Bluetooth – A wireless communications technology that connects mobile phones enabled with Bluetooth to a vehicle for hands-free
calling. With the use of a compatible Bluetooth enabled mobile phone in most vehicles, a driver can place and answer calls, browse and
select phonebook contacts from their phone simply by using the multifunction steering wheel controls and radio keys.
Body-On-Frame Construction – A type of automobile construction in which the body structure is attached to a separate frame.
Bore – The diameter of an engine cylinder or bearing.
Brake Linings – The replaceable friction material which contacts the brake drum in a drum brake system to slow or stop the car.
Brake Master Cylinder – A cylinder containing a movable piston activated by pressure on the brake pedal. The piston produces hydraulic
pressure that pushes fluid through the lines and wheel cylinders. This forces the brake lining or pad against the drum or disc to slow or
stop the car.
Brake Pads – In a disc system, they are the replaceable flat segments consisting of a rigid backing place plus frictional lining that takes
the place of the shoe and lining in a drum brake. Brake pads are sometimes referred to as brake pucks.
Brake Shoe – The arc-shaped carrier to which the brake linings are mounted in a drum brake. They also force the lining against the
rotating drum during braking.
Brakes, Drum – A type of braking system that utilizes a metal drum mounted on a wheel to form the outer shell of a brake. The brake
shoes press against the drum to slow or stop drum and wheel rotation for braking.
Brakes, Disc – A type of braking system in which brake shoes, in a vise-like caliper, grip a revolving disk mounted on a wheel to slow or
stop disc and wheel rotation for braking.
C-Pillar – The roof support between a vehicle’s rearmost side window and its rear window. Also known as a C-Post. On a
vehicle with four side pillars, the rearmost roof support may be called a D-pillar.
Camshaft – The shaft in the engine which is driven by gears, belts or chain from the crankshaft. The camshaft has a series
of cams that opens and closes intake and exhaust valves as it turns.
Catalytic Converter – Often simply called a “catalyst”, this is a stainless steel canister that is part of a vehicle’s exhaust
system and contains a thin layer of catalytic material spread over a large area of inert supports. It induces chemical reactions
that convert an engine’s exhaust emissions into less harmful products prior to entering the environment.
Center of Gravity – Point where the weight of a vehicle appears to be concentrated and if suspended at that point would
balance front and rear.
Combustion Chamber – The volume of space at the top of the cylinder where burning of the air/fuel mixture begins.
Common Rail – A modern variant of direct injection system for diesel engines. It features a high-pressure fuel rail feeding
individual solenoid. Common rail engines require no heating up time, and produce lower engine noise and lower emission
than the older systems.
Crossmember – One of several horizontal members in a vehicle frame which join the side members and add to overall
strength and stability.
CVVT – Continuously Variable Valve Timing