What Is a Car Bonnet?


The car is a worldwide phenomenon. There are car makers in numerous countries, from Japan to Italy and the United States to Britain. Because there are cultural differences depending on where the car is made, there are different words that can describe the same parts. Bonnet is one of the words that the British use in automotive terminology.


  • The British have been in the car making business for nearly as long as the car has been around. Over the years, the British have come to refer to different parts of the car with different names. "Bonnet" is the British word that refers to the hinged part that covers the engine.


  • In the U.S., people refer to the part in the front of the car as the "hood," as in the hood that covers the engine. However, if one were to use the word "hood" in reference to a car in Britain or to a British person, they would probably think you were referring to the soft, stowable top on a convertible.

Other British Automotive Terminology

  • Rather than the work "trunk lid" to refer to the panel that covers the trunk, the British use the word "boot" and "boot lid" to refer to this area of the car. Other commonly used British automotive references are "petrol" instead of fuel, "tarmac" instead of asphalt, "lorry" instead of truck and "wing" instead of fender.

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