If you’ve ever been browsing automaker or dealership websites and asked yourself, “What does torque mean?” you aren’t alone. While most drivers know what horsepower is and does, torque is a bit more of a mystery to those outside of the enthusiast circle. Here’s a quick breakdown of what torque actually does in your car from us here at L&L Motors.
At its very basic, torque is the ability to do work while power is how quickly something can be reached. That doesn’t help much when it comes to modern engines though but don’t worry. We’ll skip the complicated mathematical equations.
Essentially, torque causes a car to accelerate and the number you see listed on specifications pages is the maximum torque the engine can produce. That number is usually higher than the torque the wheels receive but it’s still very telling about how fast a car is.
Odds are you’ve noticed that larger engines produce more torque but what you probably didn’t know is that the amount of torque produced is caused by the amount of air flowing through the engine.
Once in the engine, the air meets fuel in the combustion chambers where it’s compressed to produce a small explosion. That explosion ultimately results in horsepower and torque. A car with higher torque will accelerate faster than a car with lower torque. The combination of high torque and high horsepower, like that found in the Ford Mustang, leads to a very fast, incredibly powerful car.