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Jargon Buster Directory  

The Central Source for all Jargon

Transport - Cars

Car jargon.


ABS – anti lock braking system, prevents the wheels from locking in an emergency braking situation, thus retaining directional control

A/C – air conditioning

Adaptive cruise – Intelligent radar cruise control that will maintain the cars speed but also apply the brakes if you get to close to the car in front.

ASR – anti-slip regulation (traction control)

A drink – a back hander, unofficial commission paid on the sale of a car, about £50

A big drink – as above but normally near £500

A dipper – a deposit

A Gorilla - £500

Alcantara – suede like leather

Ambla – fake leather

AW – automatic windscreen wipers

18AW – 18-inch Alloy wheels


Bidet – rear wash wipe usually on a hatch back

Big music – loud and expensive stereo

Billy – Billy Bunter rhymes with Punter meaning customer

Blower - supercharger

Bose – top quality stereo system


CAN – controller Area Network, a multiplex wiring network

CBC – cornering brake control (BMW’s EBD)

CC – either climate control or cruise control… big difference so be sure to check

Chucky man – the person that can arrange car finance

C/L – central locking

Climate – more sophisticated form of air conditioning

Clifford – make of alarm

Cut and shut – a car that has been constructed out of more than one vehicle


Declined (finance) – refused credit

Double Vanos – variable inlet and exhaust valve timing (BMW)

Duel Fuel – a car that will run on more than one fuel, usually LPG/petrol or electric/petrol

Drip – finance agreement (‘would you like to out it on the drip?’)

DSC – (Dynamic Stability Control) a BMW traction control system

Duvet boy – rich customer


EBD – electronic brakeforce distribution, distributes braking force appropriately according to the level of grip each wheel has.

EDM - electric door mirrors

EFM – electric folding mirrors

EFS – electric front seats

EFW – electric front windows

EGSR – electric glass sunroof

EMFS – electric memory front seats

ERRB – electric rear roller blind

ERW – electric rear windows

ESC – electric steering column adjustment

ESP – electronic stability programme (same as DSC)

ESR – electric Sunroof

Ever so gently - Bentley


FAR – front arm rest

FBMWSH – full BMW service history

FRRSH – full Rolls Royce service history

FSH – full service history

FSR – factory sunroof

FTVRSH – full TVR service history

TDI – turbo direct injection

FDSH – full dealer service history


GT – Grand Tourer


Harman Kardon – top spec stereo manufacturer

HFS – heated front seats or heated front screen

History – service history

Hybrid – vehicle powered by a combustion engine and an electric motor


ICE – In car entertainment, anything from a CD player to a TV and video!

Intercooler – radiator to cool the air being pumped back into the engine by a turbo or supercharger

ISOFIX – dedicated child seat anchorage system


Leakey – distinguished gentleman customer who is accompanied by young attractive women

Left hooker – left hand drive vehicle

Leggy – high mileage

LOTUS – loads of trouble, usually serious

LPG – liquid petroleum gas (cheaper fuel alternative)

LWB – long wheel base, in off road vehicles normally a 5 door. Also additional rear legroom in a luxury saloon e.g. Mercedes Benz S-class or Jaguar XJ.


Magic feet – cruise control

MB Tex – a synthetic plastic like trim found in Mercedes Benz, very hard wearing and easily mistaken for leather

Mickey – coming from Disney land means it is a work of fiction ‘the car has Mickey history’

Monster spec – a car with lots of equipment

MSR – manual sunroof

Multiplex wiring – state of the art wiring system that does away with massive, heavy wiring looms and uses a number of controller units networked by simple low voltage wiring


Nosebleed – accident damage to the front end of the car

Norman – as in ‘1996 on a Norman’ – meaning an ‘N’ registered car


OBC – on-board computer

OBD – on-board diagnostics

OTG – outside temperature gauge


Park/Park aid - system of sensors fitted in the cars bumpers that signal when you are nearing an object

PAS – power assisted steering

Pitch – dealer forecourt (As in there’s a Billy on the Pitch)

Pipe - exhaust

Privacy glass – dark tinted windows

Poverty spec – low specification

Porker - Porsche

PSM – Porsche stability management


Ragged – driven hard

Rain Sensors – automatically activate windscreen wipers when rain falls on the windscreen

Rari - Ferrari

Rent – road fund license

Rims – alloy wheels

RCL – remote central locking


Sat Nav – satellite navigation

Scuttle shake – body flex on a poorly made convertible that translates into a very un-connected feeling with the road as the suspension struggles to do its job

Smoking – ‘What are you smoking at the moment?’ – What are you driving?

Skin and wind – air conditioning and leather upholstery

Scooby – Scooby do/Subaru

Space saver – skinny spare tyre usually found on high performance cars that will ‘get you home’ and saves valuable boot space

SRS – supplementary restraint system (airbag)

STI – Subaru Technical International


Ticket – MOT

Tip or Tiptronic – automatic gearbox that also offers clutch less manual gear changes

Tracker – security system that will locate the car for police if the vehicle is stolen

T/T or T&T – taxed and tested (MOT test)

Three-legger – a three wheeled car

Tin top – a coupe as opposed to a convertible


Vanos – variable inlet valve timing (BMW)

VSC – vehicle stability control (Toyota/Lexus DSC)

VVT – variable valve timing

Vette - Corvette


WRX – world rally cross

WV – walnut veneer


Xenons – high powered headlamps





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