(See “DISC BRAKE”)
A shaft located in the engine or cylinder head which opens or closes the intake and/or exhaust valves. The camshaft is driven by belts, gears, or a chain connected to the engine’s crankshaft. Also known as a “cam”.
CARGO CAPACITY (VOLUME)
Also referred to as cargo volume or luggage capacity, or luggage volume. With automobiles, cargo capacity refers to trunk space. With station wagons, vans, and SUVs, cargo capacity is determined by the size of the area behind the rear seat. Cargo volume is calculated by putting various suitcase sized boxes in the cargo area (or trunk) of a vehicle and adding all the volumes.
A net which is attached within the cargo area of a vehicle to help keep cargo from rolling around the cargo area as you drive. This feature is especially helpful in minivans and SUV's.
CATALYTIC CONVERTER (CATALYST)
A muffler-like canister mounted in a vehicle’s exhaust system designed to reduce emissions. Catalytic converters typically use metals such as platinum or palladium as a catalyst to chemically convert some harmful emissions into water vapor and carbon dioxide. (See “EMISSIONS CONTROL SYSTEM”)
CD (COEFFICIENT OF DRAG)
(See “AERODYNAMIC DRAG”)
A casing located between a vehicle’s front seats. A partial or miniconsole does not join up with the dashboard. Center consoles typically house the shifter lever and various controls and switches. Some center consoles include storage areas and an armrest.
CENTER OF GRAVITY
The center point of a vehicle where it is balanced in every direction. Vehicles such as sports cars and most passenger cars have a lower center of gravity. Trucks, vans, and SUVs typically have a higher center of gravity. A higher center of gravity means that the vehicle may be more likely to roll over in abrupt maneuvers.
CFC-FREE AIR CONDITIONING
An air conditioning system which does not contain chlorofluorocarbons. Chlorofluorocarbons (CFCs) have been identified as the cause for the depletion of the ozone layer in the upper atmosphere. All Hyundai air conditioning systems are CFC-free.
The support and running gear of a vehicle, sometimes called the undercarriage. A chassis includes the frame, suspension, wheels, brakes and drive-train components. In other words, it’s the complete vehicle minus the body.
CHILD SAFETY REAR DOOR LOCKS
Rear door locks that can be activated to prevent a child from accidentally opening a rear door from the inside. The feature can be disengaged by flipping a switch in the door.
CHILD SEAT ANCHORS
Specially designed anchors that allow the attachment of child seat tether straps. The anchors are part of the ISOFIX and LATCH child seat safety systems used on vehicles, and are located on the rear sear package tray (the area above and behind the rear seats) on most passenger cars. On vehicles without a rear package tray, such as hatchbacks, station wagons, vans, and SUVs, they are located at the rear of the cargo area.
A friction device that couples the engine to the transmission, thereby causing the vehicle to move, or allowing the engine to run when the vehicle is stopped. In a manual transmission equipped vehicle, it is the clutch components that allow the engine to be engaged or disengaged from the transmission so that the driver may change gears. Automatic transmissions use hydraulically controlled clutches that perform the same basic function.
CLEAR COAT (PAINT)
The transparent coating applied as the final, or surface coating of the vehicle’s paint. clear coat paints typically have a shinier, deeper look than non-clear coated paints.
(See “AUTOMATIC CLIMATE CONTROL SYSTEM”)
CO2 (CARBON DIOXIDE)
A heavy, colorless, odorless gas, present in the atmosphere or formed by the burning of fossil fuels containing carbon, such as gasoline. Carbon dioxide is also exhaled by animals and used by plants in photosynthesis. A vehicle’s catalytic converter converts some harmful emissions into water vapor and carbon dioxide.
CO (CARBON MONOXIDE)
A colorless, toxic gas produced by the incomplete burning of carbon-based fuels including gasoline, oil, and wood. High level carbon monoxide exposure can cause serious health risks.
CONSTANT VELOCITY JOINT (CV)
A flexible joint in the axle shaft that is normally connected to the wheel hub. CV joints provide constant driveshaft speeds regardless of the angle of the axle. CV joints are commonly found in frontwheel-drive vehicles, where the front wheels move up and down, turn side-to-side, and power the vehicle. They are also found in the front wheels of a 4-wheel-drive system, or in the rear wheels of rearwheel-drive vehicles with independent suspension.
CONTACT PATCH (TIRE)
The portion of a tire tread that is in contact with the road. A larger contact patch provides greater braking and traction performance.
CONTINUOUSLY VARIABLE VALVE TIMING (CVVT)
Provides the performance characteristics of a larger-displacement engine without increasing the displacement. Engine “breathing” is optimized with CVVT because this system continuously adjusts the timing of the intake camshaft to improve throttle response and lowend power, all while minimizing emissions. CVVT eliminates the traditional compromise between low-end torque and high-rpm horsepower by optimizing valve overlap throughout the engine’s speed range.
A liquid mixture of several chemicals, including ethylene glycol, which is added to the water in a vehicle’s cooling system to reduce the possibility of engine overheating and system corrosion. (See “ANTI-FREEZE”)
COOLANT RECOVERY SYSTEM
A system that catches coolant overflow as the engine warms and the coolant expands. The coolant then is returned to the radiator when the engine cools after it is turned off.
The system that keeps an engine operating at its best operating temperature. Automotive engines burn fuel (gasoline or diesel fuel), which generate heat. Excessive heat is harmful to an engine’s components. The primary task of a cooling system is to remove this heat. The cooling system moves coolant through the engine and the various cooling system components via a coolant pump. The coolant flows first through the engine block and cylinder heads, then into the radiator, and finally back to the pump. The radiator transfers heat from the hot coolant to the air that is drawn through it by the cooling fan. Cooling fans can be either electric or engine driven. Cooling systems also have a thermostat which shuts off coolant flow to the engine when the engine is cold, allowing the engine to warm up faster. The radiator cap increases the boiling point of the coolant by maintaining a constant pressure in the system. Cooling systems are also connected to the vehicle’s heater (core) inside the cabin.
The lower part of an engine that houses the crankshaft. In most engines, the oil pan and the lower part of the engine block form the crankcase.
An engine’s main shaft with one or more cranks, or “throws”, that are connected via connecting rods to the engine’s pistons. The downward movement of the pistons is transferred to the crankshaft, causing it to spin. The crankshaft extends from both the front and the rear of an engine.
Normally, the rear of the crankshaft is connected to a coupling device on the transmission. The front end of a crankshaft drives engine accessories such as the water pump and the alternator.
The component of an engine that connects the piston to the crankshaft.
A feature that allows you to maintain a predetermined set speed with your foot removed from the accelerator pedal. The system can be turned off by depressing an off button or the brake pedal. Cruise control can be convenient during long stretches of highway driving when no other traffic is present.
CRUMPLE ZONES (CRUSH ZONES)
Areas at the front and rear of a vehicle that are designed to crush in a predetermined manner and at a controlled rate in the event of a collision. Crush zones are designed to absorb collision energy before it gets to the passenger compartment.
CRYSTAL LENS MULTI-PARABOLA HEADLAMPS
A clear lens, halogen projector-type headlamp system. (See “PROJECTOR BEAM HEADLAMPS”)
The weight of an empty vehicle, without passengers or cargo, as it comes from the factory, including oil, lubricants, coolant, spare tire, tools, and a full tank of fuel.
The cylindrical holes in an engine block in which the pistons travel and also where combustion of the fuel occurs. Engines are usually described by the number of cylinders they have and how those cylinders are arranged.
Also referred to as the “engine block”, it is the core of an engine which houses the cylinders, and to which other engine parts are attached. It is usually a machined cast piece of metal which includes the upper crankcase.
The upper part of the engine that attaches to the cylinder block directly above the cylinders. The cylinder head seals the cylinders and houses the combustion chamber, intake and exhaust ports, spark plugs, and most of the valve train. Cylinder heads can be made of iron or aluminum.