An Indian family has common goals such as buying a car,having a house,going for foreign trip, education of kids,marriage of kids and retirement. One of the first big investments that one makes after starting a job getting bugged by commute on public transport system or haggling with the auto rickshaws is buying a car. Okay so one fine day you say I want to buy a car. You have an idea what you like but you want to check out. When google devta is around,all you need to do is click and Voila you are inundated with so many choices. You check out the website dedicated to take you closer to choosing a dream car and you are bombarded with information and questions. Should you go for a hatchback or sedan, what is wheelbase, track,is 67 PS@5500RPM better than car with 65PS@6200RPM, what about airbags or ABS. ( i wanted a car with airbags till I found out that is a security feature useful during accident), what about the car segments surely A1,C1 segment stand for something. This article tries to clarify some basic terms related to car to help you in buying car.
Classification of Car based on Body Shape
A car has broadly three areas such as engine area, passenger area and luggage area. Depending on how physically they are put together car is classified as one-box car,two box car, three box car as shown in image below.
One Box (VAN/MPV) : Engine area, Passenger area & boot space (space for luggage popularly called as dikki) are all in one box, there are no separate compartments. For eg. Omni, Ace Magic, Versa
Two Box popularly called as Hatchback: Engine area is a separate compartment while Passenger area and luggage area are together, For example in Maruti 800, Alto, Santro, i10, A Star, Swift etc.
Three box or Sedan or Saloon or Notchback – Engine area, Passenger area & luggage area have different compartments For ex : SX4, City, Fiesta, Dzire, Ambassador, Indigo CS etc. In cars sedan is synonymous to luxury.Some Variations
SEMI NOTCHBACK – Its a sedan whose boot door can be opened like a hatchback (wagon r, swift), where the rear wind sheild too opens along with the boot door. Unlike sedan whose rear wind sheild is always fixed. There are only few examples for SEMI NOTCHBACK – Skoda Octavia, Accent Viva.
ESTATE or STATION WAGON – Its nothing but sedan whose roof is extended till the rear to create more boot space. For eg. Indigo Marina, Octavia Combi, etc.
Multi Utility Vehicle (MUV) is a type of vehicle designed like a shape of van but is meant for personal use which can be used for both passengers and luggage. For example Toyota Innova, Tata Sumo,Mahindra Bolero etc
Sport Utility Vehicle (SUV) stands for meant for usage in all road conditions like level road,uneven roads,hilly areas, etc. The engine area is separate, but the passenger & luggage area are enclosed together These vehicles have large tyres, higher seating, higher ground clearance.It looks like a station wagon. It means that is has a mini truck kind of platform. Example Skoda Yeti,Mahindra XUV 500 etc.
Terms related to Car
Some terms that one comes up in reading description of cars are as follows
Dimensions of Car
Wheelbase is the distance between the centre lines of the vehicle’s front and rear axles.
Track is the distance between the centre lines of the left and right tyres.
Ground Clearance or simply clearance is the amount of space between the base of an automobile tire and the underside of the chassis; or, more properly, to the shortest distance between a flat, level surface, and any part of a vehicle other than those parts designed to contact the ground (such as tires, tracks, etc.). Ground clearance for cars, is usually given with no cargo or passengers. Given the bad roads in India, ground clearance is an important factor.