The automotive world is vast, with a history that stretches all the way to the root of the automobile in 19th century Germany. Cars have been made all over the world, modified by people in their garages, and drive just about everywhere. We love our automobiles, but most people understand relatively little about them. They take their car to the shop when there's a problem, try to remember to check the oil once in a while, and pretty much hope everything will be okay. If you're reading this, likely you know more than that.
But are you a car expert? It's one thing to know the difference between a C4 and C5 Corvette, and yet another to remember the firing order of the engines. It takes a special level of interest and expertise to truly rise above pretty much everyone else, knowing things about cars no regular human would even fathom are a possibility.
This test spans automotive knowledge. You'll need to have a firm grip on repairs and maintenance, along with automotive history, engineering, and trends. Do you have what it takes to claim the title of a car expert? Take the quiz now and find out!
Without spark plugs in a gasoline engine, your car wouldn't go anywhere. They are literally the thing that ignites the fuel in the cylinders, with oxygen in the air feeding that instant explosion, which makes the wheels turn.
Thanks to the growing popularity of automatic transmissions and CVTs, manual transmissions aren't even available in a majority of vehicle models sold today. Still, some drivers prefer the level of control and engagement a manual transmission provides.
You'll constantly hear automakers, car reviewers, and others talk about torque. It's the thing that helps a car really get moving in a hurry from a standstill, plus it helps determine how much weight a truck or SUV can haul or tow.
Coolant expands when it heats up, so the cooling system in your car needs somewhere for it to flow when this happens. The overflow reservoir is a plastic container, not too dissimilar to a plastic orange juice jug, only it can hold hot coolant and not melt.
Wheel spacers are controversial among some enthusiasts, but they can allow you to easily switch up the bolt pattern on your vehicle, since they bolt onto the hub and can feature their own bolts. They also push the wheels out, increasing the offset, if that's the look or effect you want.
When you ford a body of water, you cross it without putting the vehicle on a boat, raft, etc. In other words, you drive straight through the water. Taller vehicles like trucks and SUVs in general have higher fording depths, which you can increase further with a a snorkel.
"Simplify, then add lightness," was what Lotus founder Colin Chapman was famous for saying constantly. That has become the company's mantra, with Lotus cars boasting incredibly low curb weights and designs that are simple, yet fun to drive.
In general, race cars don't have air conditioning, so the hood scoop helps direct some airflow through the cabin. Really, it's a comfort thing, plus in rally races it can keep dust from flying in through the windows.
Americans started claiming that their Audis would accelerate out of control, causing a number of accidents. A government investigation didn't conclude there was anything wrong with the cars, but Audi's image in the country was tarnished for some time.
Not only do Koenigseggs look wild, they have crazy performance to back that up. The brand has claimed all kinds of records, including a top speed record that had been set not too long before by the Bugatti Chiron.
In the 1990s, General Motors released its own coolant called Dexcool. It's longer-lasting than other coolants since you can wait for 150,000 miles to flush it. Dexcool does have some drawbacks, with more corrosion when the coolant level gets low, and the tendency for the coolant to eat at gaskets.
Some all-wheel-drive and even front-wheel-drive cars use torque vectoring as a way to improve handling in any situation, and to increase traction in slippery conditions. The technology is fairly simple, but the results are pretty amazing to experience,
When a car has a mix that's extra rich, unburnt fuel will make its way into the exhaust system. Once there, it can suddenly ignite, which is what causes the flames shooting out of the exhaust tip.
Pace notes contain detailed explanations of what's to be expected on the rally course, including junctions, turns, landmarks, etc. Being able to speak this unique language clearly in a roaring rally car is definitely a skill, especially as the car flies by trees and other obstacles.
The voids and lugs combine to create the tread pattern on a tire. You might not realize it, but the lugs help with traction in water, mud, snow, etc. since it gives a pathway for liquids, etc. to escape out from under the tire.
The dreaded check engine light is perhaps one of the most misunderstood warnings on a car. In this case, the system detects there's something wrong with fuel containment, allowing vapors to escape into the air. That could be caused by a cracked gas cap, or just not tightening it until you hear one or more clicks.
Ford, along with Willys-Overland and American Bantam Car Company stepped forward to make jeeps for the United States Army during the war. The lightweight, maneuverable, and capable vehicle quickly proved itself, becoming the envy of the Allies and Axis.
Gasoline direct injection means the fuel is sprayed right into the combustion chambers, instead of being pre-mixed with the air in the intake manifold. This design results in better efficiency and performance, which is why it's become quite popular.
Throttle body spacers have grooves in them that are supposed to increase air velocity, charging the intake air for the engine, leading to better performance. They're controversial modifications, with some claiming they're nothing more than snake oil, while other enthusiasts swearing by them.
The friction produced by a burnout heats up the tires, so they stick to the drag strip better, which helps with acceleration. Also, burnouts will clean rocks and other debris off the tires, which can cause problems on the drag strip.
Many people think a resonator is like a muffler, but they're pretty different. A resonator will make your exhaust louder, plus it doesn't restrict the flow of exhaust gases like a muffler, making it a popular choice for people who want the best performance possible and don't care about noise.
Riding your brakes means the pads and rotors are rubbing together so much, a tremendous amount of heat is generated through friction. That can boil the brake fluid, leading to the brake fade issue.
Ford has pushed its EcoBoost engines as a way to enjoy improved fuel economy, without sacrificing performance. Many shoppers have gravitated to these engines because they provide the best of both worlds.
The secret to efficiency and extreme power you get with a Hemi engine is the hemispherical combustion chambers. The design is still relevant today, which is why Dodge, Chrysler, and Jeep still use Hemi engines in several high-performance models.
Nitrous oxide by itself isn't explosive, but it does contain high levels of oxygen that would feed a fire. The fire would first need to reach about 565 degrees Fahrenheit, which shouldn't be difficult, then the oxygen would feed the fire, causing it to spread faster.
Really a Roots supercharger has a simple design with meshing lobes that spin, forcing air through the supercharger housing and into the engine. Essentially, it's a giant air blower. You'll see this type sticking out of the hoods of old hot rods and muscle cars.
You might hear car reviewers and enthusiasts use this term, and it's important to get what it means. Also, understeer is when the car wants to keep going straight as you turn the wheel, making it unresponsive.
Karl Benz was the first one to create this design, which gets its name because the moving pistons look like a boxer's gloves as he punches at an opponent. Since the engine sits flat, the weight sits lower, which is a big advantage for handling on a road or track.
Some cars, like the VW GTI and Ford Focus ST have an overboost function, which temporarily sets the ECU to allow the turbo to provide full boost. That means engine output raises to a level higher than any other time, which is nice when you need an extra burst of speed.
Shooting brakes aren't too horribly common in the United States and Canada, but they're all the rage in Europe. There are plenty of examples of these automotive masterpieces, including the Ferrari FF and BMW M Coupe.
In a sequential turbo system, you have one smaller turbo that provides boost earlier. A second, larger turbo provides even more boost, but takes more time to spool up. This design eliminates the turbo lag you get in a traditional twin turbo setup.
Thanks to its absolute dominance in racing, journalists started referring to the Skyline GT-R as Godzilla. The name stuck, and ever since has been applied to the car, and more recently to the Nissan GT-R, which carries on that legacy.
Many people in the 1980s thought the Porsche 959 was excessive in many ways, thanks to the advanced onboard technologies included on the car. That's funny, because many of those technologies are included on non-exotic vehicles today.
Chrysler took the Plymouth Road Runner and modified it big time, including putting a nose cone on the front and a humongous wing on the rear, all in the name of having the ultimate NASCAR racer. It mirrored a lot of the modifications used in the Dodge Charger Daytona, becoming a dominant force in races.
Audi demonstrated the superiority of all-wheel drive in tough environments in Group B rally races of the early 1980s. Since then, the German automaker has perfected this technology, which gets its name from the Spanish word for "four."