As the world becomes more technically refined, it is remarkable how little we know the specifications of the appliances we use daily. For example, most need to be aware of exactly how our phones, televisions, coffee machines, and refrigerators work.
The same can be true of the everyday vehicle that we rely on as a crucial component of our daily lives. In particular, most people will not know how much their car even weighs.
It may not seem like a relevant piece of information. Still, it can substantially influence numerous elements of the driving experience.
Therefore, this article will describe exactly what influences the weight of a vehicle, why it is relevant, and how heavy it is likely to be.
Why Car Weight Matters
There will be a number of car owners that need to be made aware of the weight of their cherished car. Even though these incredible pieces of technology help us in our day-to-day lives, it is amazing how little is understood about how they work.
Most people will be left in a state of confusion if you ask simple questions about their vehicle’s statistics. From top speed to braking style, many will need to be made aware of these technical figures that were probably used to sell the car to them in the first place.
One of the more primitive statistics would be the weight of the car. As it always stays the same, it is a straightforward metric many will need to be aware of. However, the weight of a car influences many features of the driving experience.
Most of us are money-conscious, appreciating value for money. However, this is a significant implication dictated by the weight of your car.
Most vehicles are driven using the power of a combustion engine fueled by gasoline or diesel. Basic laws of physics clearly show that the heavier the load, the more energy is required to move it.
In simple terms, the heavier the vehicle, the more fuel is required to move it around. Filing a car is a vast cost associated with its ongoing use. Over time the costs will seriously mount up.
Other factors will influence fuel economy. This includes the friction generated by the tires, the size of the engine, and air pressure.
But ultimately, the vehicle’s weight will always dictate whether it is economical or expensive to run.
Similar to the physics applied in the fuel economy scenario, a similar effect is used to the pressures experienced by the car’s components. Essentially, the vehicle’s weight will create pressure on the suspension components, tires, wheel, and braking system.
Over time, heavier vehicles will break down components at an accelerated pace. Although heavier vehicle manufacturers often compensate for this by providing larger, more rugged parts.
These will be factored into the cost of the overall vehicle. So, effectively, the heavier it is, the more you will spend on the initial or replacement of components over time.
Ferries and Bridges
Suppose you have ever experienced driving in more unusual conditions. In that case, you may know the importance of car weight.
This is firstly due to the fragile nature of particular infrastructure elements, particularly in rural environments.
Some people live and work on islands or wish to travel with their vehicle on holiday. In either case, it is critical to understand the weight limits of the ferries taking them.
Often it is a requirement for smaller, most remote ferry services to input precisely the weight of the vehicle so they can better organize the safety of their service.
Similarly, rural locations will often use single-track roads as an inexpensive means of expanding their infrastructure. These smaller roads often incorporate bridges not designed for typical heavy traffic conditions.
In addition, there are regular weight limits for these bridges, which cannot take excessive payloads without risking damage.
Heavier vehicles will often have the capacity to take a large payload or weight internally. Cars are designed to take around an additional 25% of their overall weight. But, again, this is to accommodate people, luggage, and transport items.
The heavier the vehicle, the higher the weight they can take on board as a proportion of their body weight. Therefore, understanding the weight of your car can significantly influence the payload which is carried by the vehicle.
Heavier vehicles are often considered safer than lighter vehicles. Although this is not strictly true, it is generally the case.
Larget vehicles offer additional protection in an accident or are produced with more vital metals like steel that are more effective during impacts.
What Influences a Cars Weight
There are several components of a vehicle that will significantly influence its weight of it. This is particularly true of modified cars that have installed engines that are larger than their factory original, which will substantially change the car’s weight.
However, there are some key features to consider that will make some cars heavier than others.
A surge in the automotive market has occurred in the form of electric vehicles. Improved electrical charging infrastructure and pressure to be more environmentally conscious consumers.
However, these typically sized vehicles are deceptively heavy. Battery technology needs to be improved in terms of weight-to-power ratio.
These enormous onboard battery packs weigh considerably, making electric vehicles among the heaviest modern 4-seater cars.
Older vehicles were typically heavier as they utilized less sophisticated alloys to build their bodies and frames. Typically they used steel which is remarkably strong but also incredibly heavy.
The same can be said for modern vehicles. Contemporary materials like carbon fiber are renowned for their weight-saving potential. Developing lighter cars with the same safety rating has also been developed using cleverly engineered components.
The engine is the heart of any vehicle. It provides the power and electrical energy necessary for cars to provide us with endless freedom.
Engines comprise a huge amount of solid metallic components, making them the heaviest overall element of a vehicle after the frame and bodywork. Generally, the more powerful the engine, the heavier it will be.
How To Weigh a Car
Weighing a car is a reasonably tricky process. As you can imagine, it requires some very specialized equipment.
However, suppose the vehicle has not been modified. In that case, there should be information available from the manufacturer regarding the overall weight.
The best course of action to find the weight of your car is to find the VIN number, which is typically on the interior of the passenger door frame. This number can be input into various web pages online to provide you with the technical specification of your vehicle for free.
Alternatively, many garages, particularly near ferry ports, will have vehicle-weighing equipment available. Although you will have to pay for the service, it is the best and most accurate way to understand precisely how heavy your particular vehicle is.
How Much Does a Car Weigh
Reviewing the above information illustrates exactly how many factors can influence the weight of every car. However, even with many factors, cars typically fall within a particular range of weight.
Generally speaking, the weight of a car can range between 2600 and 4900 pounds. This will broadly incorporate the weight of vehicles from small compact cars to larger SUV models.
Should you need a specific weight, then you should use the facilities of a local garage to accurately understand how much it weighs exactly.
As a base of reference, here are some weights of the common vehicles to better illustrate how heavy cars can be:
- Toyota Camry – 3,300lb
- Honda Civic – 2,850lb
- Chevrolet Silverado – 5,000lb
- Toyota Corolla – 2,800lb
Although they can vary quite dramatically, their overall weight can generally be assessed approximately by reviewing how high and long the vehicle is as well as the number of seat available.
However, it should be noted that trucks will often look lighter due to the empty space in the rear for carrying materials. However, they are generally heavier with more robust components to ensure they can easily pull substantial payloads.
Ultimately, the weight of a car is a surprisingly critical factor for the entirety of the driving experience. It will influence everything from safety to running costs and the overall life span of your vehicle.
Additionally, it is an essential piece of information when traveling to more remote destinations to ensure you travel safely. Although your car will fall within a particular weight range, if you need an accurate number, you can use the services of a local garage to put your mind at ease.