The Car Enthusiast Dictionary!
Author: Sterling Feathers
January 20, 2021
A feature that will need to be added when being tuned, anti-lag allows the engine to hold boost when lifting off the throttle. This results in no lag between shifts when the car has to spool the turbo again.
An axleback is an exhaust system that usually just replaces the rear mufflers. The term axleback came from these exhaust systems only replacing parts of the exhaust that are sit after the rear axle of the vehicle.
"I wanted a little more sound from my car, so I delete the factory rear muffler and bought an axleback exhaust."
A slang term for Air Suspension, bags refers to the air struts in a car that allows the vehicle to raise and lower on command.
"Bro, that A6 is on bags and looks sooo clean!"
Boost refers to the force induction system in a vehicle, such as a supercharger or turbo, that forces more air into the engine where it combines with fuel to make more power.
An acronym for Cold Air Intake. This is a performance part that is designed to bring colder, more dense air into the engine and replaces your factory airbox. The result is more induction noise, especially on boosted vehicles, and potentially more power depending on the application.
Camber refers to the angle of the wheels in relation to the vehicle. While camber adjustment stems from motorsport, it has found its way into the car scene. Some enthusiasts adjust their camber to get the fitment they're looking for. This could mean just getting a flush fitment or going to extreme levels like the cars you see driving around with slanted wheels.
Catback refers to a type of exhaust system for a vehicle that replaces the section of pipe after the catalytic converters, hence the name Catback. These exhaust systems usually include removing or replacing the resonator or rear muffler to get better flow and sound out of the exhaust
A term used in the car scene to refer to a car that is in rough condition or would require a ton of work to be considered "in good shape". This usually ends up being that old 240sx sitting in your garage covered in boxes.
A technique often used in drifting that forces the wheels of a car to break loose. The process often results in broken parts, worn clutches, and curbed wheels but goes something like this:
1. Drive car towards corner
2. Clutch in
3. Turn steering wheel in the direction you want to go
4. Press gas to increase engine RPM
5. Quickly let clutch out and the tires will break loose.
An acronym for Diamond Star Motors. This usually refers to the early generations of the Mitsubishi Eclipse that shared platforms with the Plymouth Laser and Eagle Talon. One of the biggest automotive communities in the scene thanks to their capable drivetrain and insane amount of aftermarket support.
Often confused with wrap or even paint (for some reason), dip refers to a sprayable coating applied to a vehicle's factory paint. This coating forms an almost rubberized coating in just about any color you could want and will protect the paint beneath. Get's a bad rep for being the "cheap" way to change the color of your car, but that hate usually only comes from people who messed up the application of the dip.
The downpipe is a part of the exhaust that attaches to the turbine housing of a boosted car. Factory downpipes usually include catalytic converters that restrict air flow to meet emission requirements. Most people will replace their factory down pipe with an aftermarket one that has either a high-flow catalytic converter or no catalytic converter at all. The result is usually a decent bump in power for boosted cars, but often requires a tune to achieve the best performance.
As the name suggests, Euro refers to a car brand that's based in Europe such as BMW, Volvo, and Jaguar.
An acronym for Full Bolt On. When a car is known as being "Full Bolt On" it usually means that the car has all of the aftermarket modifications installed that can be done without extensive tools or opening up the engine. These parts usually include intake, exhaust, BOV, ignition coils, and more.
Fitment refers to the ride height, wheel gap, and overall look of your car from a wheel, tire, and suspension standpoint. This includes wheel size, bolt pattern, offset, backspacing, clearance, and more.
Flush fitment means that the wheel is pretty much perfectly aligned with the fender, this can be a little tricky to do when you are going off the rails with tires/rims because it requires very precise accuracy in your measurements. This is by far the most common fitment from stock, especially so for performance-oriented cars.
Heel Toe is a driving technique that is often used in motorsport. Applying only to manual transmission vehicles, heel-toe is used when a driver is slowing down the car and downshifting. During the downshift, the driver presses the brake with the top of their right foot and twist so that their heel blips the throttle. The result is a smooth, crisp downshift that can save seconds on their lap times.
Hooning is a slang term for speeding, drifting, street racing, burnouts, and all other forms of thrilling driving. If you're in this dictionary, chances are that you've already experienced hooning at some point.
Acronym for Japanese Domestic Market. This is often used to categorize a group of cars who's companies are based in Japan such as Nissan, Honda, and Mitsubishi.
An acronym for Korean Domestic Market. This categorizes car companies based in Korea, such as Kia and Hyundai.
An acronym for Limited Slip Differential. A limited slip differential allows your two drive wheels to turn at different speeds but places a limit on the difference in speed between each wheel. This is used to help reduce wheelspin which is why you see a lot of higher power cars or track cars tend to run an LSD.
It's not what you think. Meth is short for Methanol. This is a fuel mixture of atomized water and fuel that is directed into your intake manifold. This reduces that inlet air temperature while also increasing octane. The result is more power, even in naturally aspirated platforms.
Possibly the grand-daddy of driving mistakes. Money shifting is primarily done in manual transmission cars since automatics tend to have a safety feature that prevents this. Money shifting is when the driver intends to shift to the next gear, let's say 4th to 5th, and instead ends up going to the next lower gear. the result is pretty violent as the entire car will buck and depending on how fast you're driving, you might hear the tires squeal and a loud bang from the engine. There are videos all over the internet showing people money shifting and blowing up their cars. Ouch.
An acronym for Natural Aspriated. This means that the vehicle doesn't have any sort of force induction, such as a supercharger or turbo.
Offset is the distance from the hub mounting surface of a wheel to the center line of the wheel, located on the barrel.
Poke refers to how the wheels sit in relation to the car. When you hear someone talk about poke, it means that the wheels and tires stick out past the fenders. This isn't uncommon in the car scene and is actually super common in the truck scene.
Rep wheels is a term used to refer to smaller, less expensive wheel companies that create similar designs to some of the more expensive companies. They get a lot of hate but tend to be the most common type of wheel out there. Haters seem pretty sus right about now.
What was once an intermediate driving technique for manual transmission owners to learn has now become automized by some cars like the 370Z and C7 Corvette. Rev matching is a technique used when downshifting where the driver will blip the throttle before engaging the next lower gear. The result is a much smoother, cleaner downshift.
A term used primarily by older generations to talk down on smaller displacement foreign cars when they don't realize that the "riceburner" could probably outrun their C4 Corvette with ease. Not throwing shade though.
THE OUTER EDGE OF A WHEEL!
Arguably the most popular term in the entire car scene, shitbox is used to refer to a car that needs a lot of work, similar to Clapped. However, the word has now found its way into just about every conversation at every car meet as people make jokes that their brand new, bagged, BMW M3 is a "shitbox".
Refers to a car that rides extremely low to the ground and often has a static suspension setup. A slammed car is one that spends more time scraping than it does driving.
Stance is the way a car sits. Broad definition, I know, but it's essentially categorizing the type of look the car is going for based on wheel fitment and ride height.
Can also be used to reference a car that is extremely low and has a lot of negative camber. This is known as a "stance" build.
Static means that the car runs a suspension setup that is not readily adjustable, such as coilovers or lowering springs. Unlike bagged cars, static cars must have their ride height manually adjusted which involves removing some parts to get the desired height.
Tandem is a type of drifting style where two vehicles simultaneously drift around a track. The purpose of tandeming is to get as close to the other car while drifting as you can. This is a pretty insane thing to watch, if you ever get the chance, and takes a ton of skill.
Tucked fitment is where the wheel and/or tire sit behind the quarter panel or fender of the car after being lowered. This style is pretty common on bagged cars since they can be lowered more than the average static setup.
A feature that usually requires a tune to be activated, two-step allows the car to hold a set RPM, similar to launch control, to be able to get the best launch. This feature can be enabled on both boosted and naturally aspirated engines.
If you want to do mad skids in your RWD car, this is the cheapest way to do it. Often used in drifting, a welded diff consists of someone opening the differential and welding a plate into the differential that forces both wheels to turn at the same rate. Since one wheel is going to try and spin faster than another in a corner, the tire tends to lose traction, perfect for initiating a drift.
Incorrectly referred to as a "rim" the wheel is the entire metal area that your tires are mounted on. This includes the face, barrel, and rim/lip. Remember: The rim is not the wheel, but the wheel has a rim.
Often confused with dip, a wrap is made of vinyl and applied using adhesive sheets rather than a sprayable liquid. This is a huge trend in the car scene and will protect the paint underneath when done right.
Did We Miss Something?
Do you have a word that you think should be added to the dictionary? Let us know in the comments section at the bottom of the page!