A

ABS: Antilock braking system. ABS prevents brakes from locking and the car from skidding when braking hard.

Adjustable Suspension: Allows the driver to adjust the suspension to suit different conditions.

Airbag: A cushion that is filled with air and is deployed when a major impact occurs to reduce the chances of contact with the cars dashboard / steering wheel / windscreen.

Airbag Deactivation: A system which uses sensors in the front passenger seat to determine whether to activate the seat’s front airbag – detected by the sufficient weight of an individual.

Air Conditioning: A system which allows the driver to warm of cool the interior of the car which is circulated via the vents.

Air Filtration: The removal of solid particles in the air such as dust, bacteria and pollen by a filter placed in the ventilation system

AWD: All-wheel drive. A drivetrain that employs a front, rear and center differential to provide power to all four wheels of a vehicle.

B

Backup Assistance: A device or system of devices (usually a park distance sensor or a back-up camera) designed to aid a drivers control of a vehicle in reverse

Beverage Cooler: A refrigerated storage area intended to cool beverages using a vehicles air conditioning system or a separate phase-cooling system

Blind spot indicators: A sensor on the wing mirror that lights up to detect other vehicles located near the driver or passenger side.

Booster Seat: An extra seat placed on an existing seat for a small child to sit on.

Brake Assist: A system that monitors the swiftness of a driver’s brake pedal application and applies additional braking force if it determines a that panic stop is occurring.

C

Child Seat Anchors: Square metal loops that protrude from the seat back and attach securely to a child’s carseat. They are located between the seat back and the seat bottom.

Childproof Safety Features: The option(s) to disable a vehicles windows, door locks and/or passenger air bag in order to prevent injury to children.

Climate Control: Similar to air conditioning, but the driver is able to set a temperature which remains constant.

Convertible: A car with a roof that can be folded down / across. Also known as a cabriolet.

Coupe: A vehicle which has a sloping rooflien and generally have two doors and two seats (some newer models maybe larger).

Crash Test Ratings: Ratings that represent a vehicles performance in various crash tests, published by the organization(s) that conduct such tests

Crossover: A car that is inbetween a family hatchback and the sports model.

Cruise Control: A system which can maintain a speed without the driver needing to break or even accelerate.

D

Dashboard: A control panel set within the central console of the car.

Deceleration Fuel Cutoff: A system that automatically cuts the fuel supply when coasting or braking in order to achieve better fuel efficiency and more effective engine braking, and resumes fuel supply when acceleration is once again needed

Digital Cockpit: The rev counter and speedometer are on a digital screen instead of being on a traditional analogue dashboard.

Door bin: Storage space in the passenger doors.

Drive System: The type of drive system: two-wheel drive, four-wheel drive or all-wheel drive

Dual Climate Control: A climate control system with two sets of controls to select the desired temperature: one for the driver and one for the front passenger.

E

Electric (EV): A car that runs purely on electricity.

Entry Level: The basic model of a car often without any of the extra essential features.

Estate: A car that features a long rear which often has a larger boot.

Ex Demo: A car that used be dealerships for test drives.

Exterior Camera: A video camera mounted outside a vehicle that relays its signal to a monitor within the cabin

F

Fastback: A two or four door car with a sloping rear.

4WD: Four Wheel Drive

H

Hatchback: A bodystyle type where the top of the boot hatch hinges from the car’s roofline which gives a wide opening boot.

Head up display: A technology that projects an image onto the vehicle’s windshield or a panel, just beneath the driver’s line of sight.

Horsepower: A unit that is used to measure the power of engines and motors.

Hybrid: A car that runs on petrol or diesel where the engine is supported by an electric motor.

Hydrogen Fuel Cell: A powertrain that converts hydrogen into energy and runs the electric motor.

I

Infotainment: A screen (often a touchscreen) generally sat in the middle of the dashboard which controls sat nav, media, bluetooth etc and sometimes the actual climate control / systems.

Isofix: An universal attachment point that is built into the car seat, for securing a child’s car seat into.

K

Keyless Entry: An automatic system where the key fob unlocks the vehicle once in close proximity and there is push button to start the car.

L

LED Lights: Lights which are brighter and yet use less energy.

M

Mild Hybrid: A mild hybrid motor is only able to assist the running of the car engine, it cannot be run soley on electric. Unlike a hybrid, where the electric motor can power the car on its own.

Micro: A small car which is mainly designed for city driving.

Mini MPV: Not as large as an MPV.

MPG: Miles per gallon

MPV: Multi Purpose Vehicle. A taller car which is designed for increased interior space often described for vehicles with over 5 seats (people carriers).

N

Navigation Interface: The means by which a vehicles navigation system is controlled, including touch screen, jog dial, push button and/or voice activation.

O

Optional Equipment: Equipment that is not included in the manufacturers base configuration of a vehicle

P

Panoramic Roof: A pane of glass that runs along most of the car’s roof allowing more light into the car.

Park Assist: It parks the car for you using a combination of cameras and sensors around the vehicle.

Parking Camera: A camera which is able to show a visual image on the car’s screen to assist with parking – some have cameras around the whole vehicle.

Parking Sensors: A feature that assists the driver with parking and able to alert if there are any obstacles in the blind spots.

PHEV: Plug in Hybrid Electric Vehicle.

Plug-in Hybrid: A hybrid car with a battery that can be plugged in to charge it up. They have a petrol or diesel engine and an electric motor,.

Powered tailgate: A motorised boot that opens and closes electronically.

Privacy Glass (Tinted Windows): Usually on the back windows – the glass has been covered with a darker film to reduce the light/sun in the car.

R

Rain Sensing Wipers: Windscreen wipers which switch on automatically when water / rain is detected.

Range Extender: The engine is powered by fuel but only used to extend and charge the range of the battery in an electric car.

Remote Central Locking: The driver is able to lock or unlock the car quickly usually via a key fob.

Roadster: A two door convertible.

Run Flat Tyre: A tyre that is capable of being driven on temporarily after losing its pneumatic pressure.

S

Saloon: A car where the boot lid is hinged just below the rear window.

Seating Capacity: The number of people that can be safely seated and restrained in a vehicle, including the driver.

Smartphone Integration: Allows you to access your smartphone’s apps safely through the car’s onboard computer.

SOS button: An eCall system that automatically notifies the emergency services if a car is involved in an accident.

Start-Stop System: A system that automatically stops and restarts the engine, when the car is at a standstill, to reduce the amount of time the engine spends idling and improve fuel economy.

Station Wagon: Also known as an estate car which feature a longer rear and larger boot.

SUV: Sports Utility Vehicle – a car where you sit higher to the road with sporting handling such as all wheel / 4 x 4 drive cars.

T

Touring: Also known as an estate car which feature a longer rear and larger boot.

Towing Capacity: The maximum amount of weight a vehicle is capable of towing (according to its manufacturer)

Trim: A car trim is another version of the same model of car. The higher the trim level, the higher the specs on the vehicle.

Z

ZEV: Zero emission vehicle. The most restrictive emissions standard