Car Basics: Components A Car Owner Should Know

Look, there’s no shame in not knowing everything about cars. We are humans at the end of the day, after all!

However, as a discerning owner, enthusiast, or even basic user of cars, one must have a handle on some of the basic elements. No excuses!

If you drive a Ford, might we suggest you visit the Ford India YouTube Channel which houses some great content on #KnowYourCar. These videos can come in very handy for quick info.

And to help feel more confident as a car owner, take a look at a few things mentioned below to know before getting behind the wheels:


The battery is a component that powers the car in the first place. Without it, the car won’t start. It stores energy in chemical form so it can be released as electricity to run the vehicle’s electrical components.


An alternator is an electricity-generating device that converts mechanical energy to electrical energy in the form of alternating current. This charges the vehicle’s battery while the engine is running. That’s why the car lights can kill the battery if left on when the engine isn’t running.


The engine is the heart and soul of an automobile. The powerplant of a vehicle, it is the main source of power and is made to the best quality standards ensuring proper functionality.  This component burns the fuel to produce mechanical power. The heat produced by the combustion creates pressure which is then used to drive a mechanical device – the vehicle. To withstand its heavy workload, the engine must be a robust structure as a healthy heart delivers great vehicle performance.

Having driven a Ford, you would have experienced the fun-of-driving, reliability, and efficiency of the engine, a benchmark experience thanks to the precision and highest quality standards maintained in putting it together. The Ford engines offer the quality and durability you need. However, a machine is after all a composition of parts and components which requires regular checks to avoid any issues, so ensure to get your vehicle inspected and serviced only at a Ford Authorised Service Centre.


An axle is a rod or shaft that connects a pair of wheels to propel them and retain the position of the wheels to one another. Part of the steering and suspension system, the axle transfers power from the engine via transmission and differential. A vehicle comprises a front and rear axle. It aids in steering, turning, and braking.

For a car to remain sure-footed while in motion, the axle plays an integral role as it rotates the wheels and supports the car’s weight. No matter how powerful your car, its performance will be compromised and won’t perform to expectations if there comes an issue in this component of the entire structure. Hence, in case it is required to be repaired or replaced, it is always advised to use original parts like the Ford Genuine Parts.


Found on all four wheels, brakes are one of the most crucial safety components on a vehicle. Brakes convert the car’s kinetic energy (its momentum) into heat energy via friction, thereby slowing the car down. It also keeps it in place when parked. Modern brakes are a marvel of engineering. Through the magic of hydraulics, they allow you to stop a car that weighs a ton or more with very little force at the pedal. Being a Ford owner, you would have experienced the Anti-lock Braking System (ABS) with Electronic Brake Force Distribution (EBD) as well, which helps to stop safely and in a shorter distance in all conditions – including the most challenging ones when fully loaded.


A car engine produces a lot of heat when running, so it makes sense that there will be a cooling system to help manage it – the Radiator. It is a component in a vehicle’s system that keeps the engine from overheating. It works to remove heat via liquid coolant before it circulates back to your engine, thereby increasing performance and longevity.


The transmission, also known as the car’s gearbox, transmits the engine’s power to the wheels through various components and allows movement. Without it, one would simply go nowhere!

There are two types of transmissions: Automatic Transmission (AT) and Manual Transmission (MT).


There is an automotive exhaust-system component, made of stainless steel in every vehicle that transforms harmful gases and pollutants into less harmful emissions before they leave the car’s exhaust system. It’s called the Catalytic Converter. This converter contains a catalyst to reduce oxides of nitrogen (NOX), and/or hydrocarbon (HC), and carbon monoxide (CO).

These were some of the very basic components that should be known to anyone who owns a vehicle. And while you learn about more such parts, do make note of the fact that a car is made of tens of thousands of parts, which are a composition of different elements. And like any well-oiled machine, each part needs to be in good form to function seamlessly and hence requires regular maintenance.

At Ford, we make every effort to ensure that your car feels like new after a service i.e., the engine runs smoother, all the little niggles disappear. If your car is in need of an inspection to fix any issue or if it’s time for the regular service, all you need to do is make a quick visit to a nearby Ford Authorised Service Centre. You can also Dial-A-Ford and fix an appointment for a check-up or service of your vehicle

All Ford service centres are well-equipped with Ford genuine spares and trained staff to offer you a quality service experience with absolutely no hassle.

As a car owner, it is our responsibility to regularly maintain your car like you would for any other type of property you own.