Do You Know Your TPMS From Your ADAS?

Mon 10th Sep 2018

Some of the most baffling terms used in motoring are confusing the motor-buying public and car manufacturers are being encouraged to revert to ‘plain English’ to clear things up.

Car ownership and maintenance service, MotorEasy has revealed a top seven list of baffling lingo, with its ‘Lost in Translation’ campaign hoping to convince the industry to lose the jargon, or lose customers.

It seems that a new model of car cannot be launched these days without a new dumbfounding element of technology, or an abbreviation or two added to the spec, leaving many car buyers unsure on what it is they are buying.

MotorEasy founder, Duncan McClure Fisher, said: “Using complex names and abbreviations might sound impressive on an options list but is simply confusing for the everyday driver.

“While garages are guilty of using baffling lingo when talking about repairs, car manufacturers must also do better when it comes to explaining what is fitted to a vehicle rather than using meaningless names and terms.

“Our ‘Lost in Translation’ campaign is focusing on making the whole industry easier to understand for everyone to build trust among drivers, manufacturers and mechanics.”

Top Seven Tech Translations (Source: MotorEasy)

Vauxhall OnStar
OnStar is the personal in-car assistant available on new Vauxhalls with crash response, roadside assistance and vehicle diagnostics included. It’s due to be turned off in 2020.  

Audi Mechatronics
The Mechatronic unit is a posh way of saying the brain of VW Group’s DSG gearbox. It operates the clutch and gears and is derived from a combination of mechanics and electronics.

This tech allows you to hook up your mobile phone to your car’s touchscreen with big driver friendly buttons to make calls, use the sat nav and listen to music.

ADAS stands for advanced driver-assistance systems – essentially any of the latest tech that helps a driver. Included under the umbrella are cruise control, lane departure, autonomous emergency braking and parking systems – plus much more.

VW Climate Windscreen
This is just a complicated way of saying it’s got a heated windscreen. It’s clever because it doesn’t have tiny wires in the glass that regular systems use but it will still just stop your windshield freezing up.

Stands for tyre pressure monitoring system – which has been mandatory on all new cars since 2014. It’ll keep track of your tyre pressures and alert you on the dashboard when anything is wrong.

Mercedes Distronic Plus
This is the complicated name Mercedes gives to its semi-autonomous system. It combines automatic speed regulation with proximity control to a car traveling in front plus helps steering in a lane.

Unsure what technology is on your favourite car? Ask one of our online advisors to clear things up.