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Abbreviations and acronyms for cars

4WD-Four Wheel Drive
Mostly cars are two-wheel drive, but driving all the wheels gives greater grip off-road or in snow also in ice.

4WS-Four Wheel steering
With four-wheel steering, the back wheels are turned electronically to give additional stability along with manoeuvrability.

A/wheels- Alloys (alloy wheels)
These are wheels made from aluminium alloy rather than steel. They are lighter, tend to look better and they are less likely to rust than steel ones; they cost more though.

A/C: Air-conditioning
This cools and dries the incoming air in your car to keep it is comfy in the summer heat.

ABS- Anti-lock Braking System
ABS prevents total brake lock-up in urgent situations and it also shortens the stopping distance but you can still maintain control of the steering.

BHP- Brake Horse Power
This refers to the useable power that is generated by your engine. It is one of the factors that persuade car performance.

C/coded- Color Coded
This is when the bumper as well as mirrors is the same color as the bodywork of a car.

C/con- Cruise Control
This is a device that keeps your car at a particular speed with no need to have your foot on the accelerator.

C/L or CDL- Central Locking or Central Door Locking
Central locking allows you to open all your car doors at the turn of a key or the press of a button.

Clim/con or ECC
Electronic climate control that automatically keeps your car at a fixed temperature either by cooling or heating the incoming air.

CRS- Child Restraint System
Child Restraint System (CRS) refers to a child’s car seat, booster cushion or booster seat.

DVLA- The Driving and Vehicle Licensing Agency
The Government agency is responsible for maintaining the registers of vehicles and drivers. The DVLA is also responsible for collecting car tax.

E/M- Electric Mirrors
External mirrors can also be adjusted from inside the car using an electric switch.

E/seats- Electric Seats
Seats can also be adjusted using an electric switch.

ESP- Electronic Stability Program
The Electronic Stability Program (ESP) is a system which uses sensors to analyze a vehicle’s cornering stability, and if essential the system will automatically reduce power and/or apply gentle braking to correct any under or over-steering. Normally modern sports cars will have this feature.

ESR- Electric Sunroof
A sunroof is a glass panel in the roof of your car. If it is electric then it can be opened electrically, rather than physically.

E/W- Electric Windows
Windows can be opened or closed using an electric switch, rather than using a handle to wind them up and down physically.

FDSH- Full dealer service history
This is when the complete service history shows that all the services have been carried out by a main seller.

FFS/R- Factory Fitted Sunroof
A sunroof is a glass panel in the roof of your car. If it is factory fitted then it was fitted at the moment of manufacture.

FSH- Full Service History
This is proof of servicing according to the manufacturer’s recommended service schedule along with MOT certificates, repair invoices and whatever documents that relates to the work done on a car. This gives a complete view of how a car has been used and maintained.

GC- Good Condition
A car that is in good condition.

GPS- Global Positioning System
The use of satellite-generated information is to establish a car’s exact position and this information forms the base for Satellite navigation (Satnav) and Trackers.

H/L/W/W- Headlamp Wash Wipe
Headlamp Wash Wipe will clear your car’s headlamps for you.

H/seats- Heated Seats
This will literally heat your car seats to keep you warm on cold winter mornings.

ICE- In-Car Entertainment
This might be entertainment equipment that is fitted to your car such as car audio and car stereo device, CD and MP3 stereos, iPod kits or DVD players.

Immob- Engine immobiliser
It is as electronic device that stops your car from starting unless the proper key is used.

IRS- Independent Rear Suspension
Independent Rear Suspension denotes that each rear wheel can move in isolation from the other wheel, rather than them both being attached to a shared axle and it can make handling the car easier as well as making it more relaxed.

LHD- Left-Hand Drive
Countries are moreover left-hand drive (LHD) or right-hand drive (RHD). This denotes the side of the car where the steering wheel is placed. In UK it is right-hand drive and a left-hand drive car is one that has been imported from a left-hand drive country.

LPG- Liquefied Petroleum Gas (fuelled)
LPG is an alternative fuel to petrol or diesel.

LWB- Long Wheel-base
A long wheelbase vehicle usually has added space inside.

MOD-Manual Over-Drive
This is the highest gear in the gear system of a manual car. It allows the engine to operate at a lower RPM for a particular speed; as a result the car uses less petrol.

MOT- Ministry of Transport Test
An annual test is essential for the largest part of vehicles in UK over 3 years old to establish their safety along with roadworthiness.

MPV- Multi Purpose Vehicle
More commonly referred to as a people carrier. It is a huge family car with plenty of space inside and the alternative to move the seats around.

ONO and OVNO- Or Near Offer, Or Very Near Offer
This term is most frequently used with the price of a used or second-hand item that is for sale. It means the seller is open to negotiation, but he doesn’t want to go much below their asking price.

P/x or P/ex- Part exchange
This is when you give goods as part payment for a more exclusive item. Often when you purchase a new car from a dealer you have the choice of trading in your old car as part payment.

PAB- Power Assisted Braking
Many braking systems are ‘assisted’ so that the pressure that you apply with your foot on the brake is magnified by an unusual device fitted to the car.

PAS- Power Assisted Steering
Steering that is powered either electrically otherwise by a hydraulic system.

PDM- Power Door Mirrors
See E/M

REV- Revolutions
This refers to the revolutions per second inside the vehicle engine, increased by using the accelerator. Therefore the phrase “revving the engine”.

RDS- Radio Data System
This is a standard system used to send small amounts of information using the FM frequency. It allows a radio to display such information as station name, time and song information.

RHR- Rear Head Rests
The head rests positioned over the back seats.

RPM- Revolutions per minute
This refers to the total number of revolutions per minute.

RWD- Rear Wheel Drive
A vehicle in which the power is fed to the rear wheels rather than the front wheels.

SIPS (Side Impact Protection System) Revolutions per Minute
This term refers to the safety features in a vehicle that have been incorporated in order to reduce the chance of injury to passengers, or damage to the vehicle, upon impact from the side.

SatNav- Satellite Navigation System
The use of satellite-generated information to find out a car’s exact position and then it will provide the driver with mapping and directions. See also Global Positioning System (GPS).

SUV- Sports Utility Vehicle
The Sports Utility Vehicle combines the passenger capacity of a people carrier together with significant towing capacity as well as off road capability.

TC- Traffic collision
Term used as a substitute for “accident”.

TG- Top Gear
The highest gear available in a vehicle, normally fifth or sixth gear.

It is a technology produced by Volkswagen for modern diesel engines, which aims to produce better engine performance and reduce emissions.

TNT- Taxed and tested
A phrase used in car adverts to make it clear that the car is taxed and it has to pass the MOT test.

TP- Target Price
This is a feasible price that you should aim for prior to buying a car. Setting a target price gives you something to aim all the way through your negotiation.

TW- Tinted Windows
Windows has to be colored in order to restrict the glare of the sun also to increase privacy within the vehicle.

This certificate will be issued when the vehicle is officially registered with the DVLA and you should inform the DVLA of both your personal as well as the key vehicle details as soon as you turn out to be the legal owner of a vehicle. This certificate is then issued.

VGC- Very good condition
A car that has a fantastic nick.

VIN- Vehicle Identification Number
Vehicle Identification number uniquely identifies a vehicle. This is different from the registration number and it consists of 17 characters.

VTEC- Variable Valve Timing and Lift Electronic Control
Basically this is a technology that Honda has developed to maximize the power of an engine while also raising its fuel effectiveness.

WLC- Whole Life Cost
Whole Life Cost (WLC) denotes the cost of running a motor vehicle for a defined period of time, taking into account depreciation cost, running costs, servicing along with all other expenses.

WO- Write off
A term that is used to express a vehicle which is worth less than the costs of the repairs required in order to make it road praiseworthy. The term is generally used after a vehicle has been into an accident.


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