What Do The Specifications Mean When Buying A Car?

When you buy a car, the first thing to look at is the specifications on the brochure of the car. Many people know what type of engine a car has just by looking at it, whilst others need to have a proper breakdown of what these specifications mean.

  • Engine – you will only get three types of engines. In this instance, electric hybrids will be excluded. The two main types of engines you will get are diesel and petrol options. Each has a completely different set up to the other, such as the construction of ignition system.
  • Cylinders – this is the amount of cylinders found inside the chamber. Smaller cars have four cylinders whilst the most powerful engines that get used on race tracks will have twelve cylinders. Sometimes, cars will be described with a “straight-six” which means that all cylinders are in a single line opposed to V-Types and horizontal set ups.
  • Displacement – on most of the cars you will notice there is a number like this: 1.4 or 2.0, etc. This is the amount of litres the car will use in a single cycle. Motorbikes will have a number like this for example: 800cc; which means eight hundred cubic centimetres.
  • Transmission – There is a four-speed transmission, five-speed transmission and so on. The number indicates how many gears your car can be put into. There is also manual transmission and automatic transmission which are two different driving systems.
  • Power – Many car owners will know the power of the car by using the unit Horsepower. In simple terms, one horsepower would be the equivalent to the power of one horse. So image what power you will have if the car has 700hp. That is a very fast car.
  • Fuel Tank Capacity – this is a pretty straight forward specification. This is the amount of fuel that the fuel tank can hold. In other words, it could be a 30 litre tank or a 40 litre depend. It will depend of the particular type and size of car. This helps you to understand how much fuel you can use with one full tank so that you can plan your fuel budget.
  • Drivetrain – your car will either be a FWD (front wheel drive), a RWD (rear wheel drive) or a 4×4 (four wheel drive). Keep in mind that a four wheel drive does not mean that the car is an off road vehicle and rather that power gets sent to all of the wheels and tyres. Front wheel drive means that the power gets applied to the front wheels. With FWD the car needs to be pulled. Rear wheel drive sends the force to the back wheels which means that the car is being pushed.

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