Learning about Vehicle Systems (Part One)

The first car powered by an internal combustion engine was invented in 1807 by FrancoiIssac de Rivaz. This primitive vehicle bore very little resemblance to the amazing, high-tech cars we routinely drive today. It featured a simple hydrogen-fueled engine, a bench for sitting, and a thin pair of wheels. Modern cars have so many systems it is almost hard to keep track of them all. Today, we will learn about a few basic vehicle systems and the function the play inside your automobile.

Power System

The power system converts fuel and air into energy, or power, which is used to make your car go. Without the power system, your car is not going to go anywhere. Traditionally, cars used internal combustion engines as their power system, although newer electrical cars are moving away from this. The power system is one of the most basic and essential systems in your car.

Powertrain System

After the power system creates power, the powertrain system delivers it to the wheels where it can actually be put into use. It does this through the use of transmissions, axles, and differentials. It is the job of the transmission to regulate the engine’s output and deliver it to the wheels at a steady rate in accordance with the desired speed of the driver. The powertrain includes a number of complex subsystems such as the transmission, which is also composed of a number of complex assemblies.

Starting and Charging System

Something has to wake up your car in the morning. This is the job of the starting and charging systems. The starter gets the engine going when you put the key in (or hit the button for Prius owners). The charging system powers the cars electrical systems and takes the load off of the battery. Power from the car battery is necessary for starting the car.