How Much Does a Car Weigh?


Safety doesn’t only involve doing things that are hazard-free; sometimes, it means being informed. There are things to know – a minute or comprehensive, that would guarantee your safety. When it comes to cars, the body parts are often considered; however, there is something more – the car’s weight.

Knowing a car’s weight is a piece of crucial information in automotive safety. Now, the consideration is: “how much does a car weigh?” According to the United States Environmental Protection Agency (USEPA), the average weight of a car was 4,094 lbs. in 2018. The factors for this increase in weight compared to that of 1975 models were new footprint, fuel economy, and technological effects.

Here, you’ll see various things about the weight of a car, and how you could relate them to yours.


Why Do You Need to Know How Much a Car Weighs?

Everything about your car concerns you – even the way it sounds. It pays so much to know every detail so that you can get help when an issue arises. With knowing a car’s weight, you are informed about the following;

  • Fuel Emission
  • : The amount of fuel consumed and waste emitted is often dependent on a car’s weight. You will find larger cars or trucks consume more fuel and emit carbon into the atmosphere.

  • Payload
  • : The description of a car’s capacity is called the “Payload.” Your car’s weight determines the number of passengers, it can carry – irrespective of who or what it is.

  • Tool Selection
  • : When a car develops faults, you need tools to fix the problem. Sometimes, the weight of a car determines the type of tools to use. For instance, when fixing a car tire, the floor jack needs to be able to raise the car, with the weight in consideration.

  • Safety
  • : More importantly, safety is an ideal reason why you need to know your car’s weight. In a head-on collision, smaller cars are likely to suffer more impact than larger ones.

What are Car Categories and Their Weights?

Every car is categorized into 3 divisions based on its weights – Heavy, mid, and Light. Now, each of these divisions has different types, which will be described below.

  • Light Cars
  • Smart Car

The first set of cars you can easily judge their weight based on their appearance are smart cars. They are tiny cars with two doors, that are most comfortable for two people. It is the lightest car; it weighs between 2,050 to 2,090 lbs.

  • Sub-Compact Car

Another light car much better than smart cars is the sub-compact car. Examples include Hyundai Accent, Kia Rio, Nissan Versa, etc. They weigh between 2,300 to 2,700 lbs.

  • Compact Car

A little further on light cars, which are quite common around is the Compact Car. It is almost midsize judging from its appearance; however, its capacity and fuel efficiency are less. Toyota Corolla, Honda Civic, Volkswagen Jetta, are examples of Compact Car; they weigh between 2,800 to 3,010 lbs.

  • Midsize Cars

Most office cars you see around are midsize cars. They blend nicely with any occasion – for work, casual purposes, family rides, etc. They are the bestsellers of all time due to their moderate fuel efficiency and strength. Most midsize cars are within the weight range of 3,200 to 3,510 lbs.

  • Heavy Cars
  • Large Car

Most luxurious cars are heavy. The first set is the large cars that weigh between 3,800 to 4,030 lbs. Their fuel efficiency is a little on the high. Dodge Charger, Nissan Maxima, Toyota Avalon are examples of large cars.

  • SUVs

SUVs are a special type of heavy car. They are big, bulky, and spacious. However, there are different types of SUVs depending on these factors for weight. They include; Sub-compact SUV (2,991 to 3,299 lbs.), Compact SUV (3,451 to 3,728 lbs.), Midsize SUV (4,135 to 4,673 lbs.), and Large SUV (5,468 to 5,738 lbs.).

  • Half Ton Truck

The Half Ton Trucks are one of the heavyweight cars known. They are strong, often with an aluminum body, and improved fuel efficiency. Ford F150, Toyota Tundra, and Chevrolet Silverado belong to this category of cars. The weight range is between 4,450 to 5,410 lbs.

What Factors Contribute to a Car’s Weight?

Cars are different from one another due to the following factors;

  • Design

Every brand has a special design they use for their cars. One look at these cars (with the design), you know whether they are heavy, mid, or light. For instance, smart cars have a small or portable design, showing that they aren’t as heavy as the regular types.

Due to the constant need for footprints for cars, there is always a new design.

  • Technology Effects

The technology in today’s world is different from the way it was decades ago. Currently, there are more advanced techs that are used in car production, and they often affect the weight of a car. Moreover, you will find exquisite features that contribute to the increased weight.

  • Fuel Economy

Heavy cars are more likely to consume more fuel than smaller ones; therefore, the higher quantity needed increases weight.

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What are the Terms Used to Describe Weight?

If you are going to be defining the weight of a car, there are terms to use. These terms are the most correct way to use words when describing how much a car weighs.

  • Curb Weight
  • : A term often used by car manufacturers to describe the weight of a car without passengers.

  • Gross Vehicle Weight
  • : GVW describes the total weight of a car when passengers are involved.

  • Gross Vehicle Weight Rating
  • : GVWR is the maximum weight the car can carry without stress.

  • Payload
  • : The total amount of weight a car can carry – passengers, loads, etc.


After reading everything above, do you still think you need to concern yourself with “how much does a car weigh?” Yes, you should. With this piece of information, you have a clear insight into what your car is capable of and not.