Explore our comprehensive list of commercial vehicle terminology
Commercial Vehicle Glossary
Accessibility is the quality of being able to enter and exit a vehicle with ease. For commercial vehicles, accessibility should always be a priority to ensure that passengers of all mobility levels can use the vehicle without additional assistance.
The market for spare parts, accessories, and components for motor vehicles.
Alternative fuels, also known as non-conventional and advanced fuels, are fuels derived from sources other than petroleum.
For transit vehicles that experience rigorous daily usage, Altoona Testing verifies that the vehicle is capable of performing according to its usage. Certification involves a standardized set of procedures to measure the vehicle’s maintainability, reliability, safety, performance, structural integrity, and noise.
The Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) protects people with disabilities from discrimination. We offer lifts and ramps in select vehicles to help your fleet achieve ADA compliance and equal access to everyone.
CALACT was created to facilitate coordination between diverse transportation service groups, providing a variety of programming, resources, and support for the transportation community.
The California Privacy Rights Act of 2020 (CPRA) gives consumers more control over the personal information that businesses collect about them and the CPRA regulations provide guidance on how to implement the law.
Class A vehicles are any combination of vehicles with a gross weight combination rating (GWCR) of 26,001 or more pounds provided the gross vehicle weight rating (GVWR) of the vehicle(s) being towed is in excess of 10,000 pounds.
Class C vehicles are designed to transport fewer than 24 passengers, including the driver. This includes single vehicles less than 26,001 pounds or towing trailers with a gross vehicle weight rating (GVWR) less than 20,001 pounds.
Class D vehicles weigh fewer than 10,000 pounds.
A commercial driver’s license (CDL) may be required to operate larger vehicles and heavy loads. CDL guidelines vary from state to state in the U.S.
Compressed natural gas (CNG) is an eco-friendly alternative fuel, offering an important role in reducing greenhouse gas emissions and environmental pollution. CNG vehicles operate much like gasoline-powered vehicles with spark-ignited internal combustion engines.
A cutaway bus is designed with a bus body mounted on the chassis of a van or light- to medium-duty truck. Cutaways typically have a gross vehicle weight rating (GVWR) between 14,000 and 26,000 pounds.
A dual fuel vehicle is capable of operating on an alternative fuel and on gasoline or diesel fuel. These vehicles have at least two separate fuel systems which inject each fuel simultaneously into the engine combustion chamber.
EVs are vehicles that are entirely powered by electricity.
Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standards (FMVSS) are U.S. federal vehicle regulations specifying design, construction, performance, and durability requirements for motor vehicles and regulated automobile safety-related components, systems, and design features.
The Federal Transit Administration (FTA) is one of ten administrations within the U.S Department of Transportation (USDOT). The FTA assists state and local governments with planning, implementation, and financing to help improve public transportation projects.
The GEM car is an electric vehicle (EV) engineered for local streets. Unlike golf carts, GEM is street legal on most roads at speeds of 35 mph or lower.
This number communicates the maximum weight that can be placed on an individual axle, including the weight of the vehicle, passengers, cargo and trailer tongue weight (if applicable).
Hybrid electric vehicles are powered by an internal combustion engine and one or more electric motors, which uses energy stored in batteries. A hybrid electric vehicle cannot be plugged in to charge the battery. Instead, the battery is charged through regenerative braking and by the internal combustion engine.
Fuel cell cars are powered by compressed hydrogen gas that feeds into an onboard fuel cell stack that doesn’t burn the gas, but instead transforms the fuel’s chemical energy into electrical energy. This electricity then powers the car’s electric motors.
A low-floor bus or trolley bus has no steps between the ground and the floor of the bus at one or more entrances, and a lowered floor for part or all of the passenger cabin.
Liquefied Petroleum Gas (LPG) consists of propane and butane.
A Multi-Function School Activity Bus is a small bus with a gross vehicle weight rating (GVWR) of 15,000 pounds or less. These buses are utilized for purposes that do not include transportation between home and school for students. However, these vehicles meet all construction and safety standards of a typical school bus.
Non-emergency Medical Transport/Transportation (NEMT) can be defined as a transportation service provided to individuals who are not in an emergency situation but need more assistance than a taxi service is able to provide. Service providers will be specially equipped to transport riders in wheelchairs, stretchers or with other special needs.
Propane, also known as liquefied petroleum gas (LPG), or propane autogas, is an alternative fuel option.
An upfit is a set of vehicle accessories or augmentations for an existing vehicle that are customized to the workers or passengers needs. Upfits can include shelving, roof units, cooling units, hangers, and more.
The U.S. Department of Transportation (USDOT) is one of the executive departments of the U.S. federal government. It is headed by the secretary of transportation, who reports directly to the President of the United States and is a member of the President’s Cabinet.
A vehicle identification number (VIN) is composed of 17 characters (digits and capital letters) that act as a unique identifier for the vehicle. A VIN displays the vehicle’s unique features, specifications and manufacturer.
A warranty is a written guarantee, issued to the purchaser of an article by its manufacturer, promising to repair or replace it if necessary within a specified period of time.
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