What Is A Spoiler On A Car? The Purposes And Advantages

Spoiler is a component to be seen in different types of cars—from drag racers to sports cars and heavy-duty trucks. Some high-performance cars like Ferrari F1 also have spoilers on front and back. But, what is a spoiler on a car? Well, many people interchange the term with “wing,” which generates downforce at the time of air passing around it, not just disrupting the patterns of existing airflow. Also, its function is quite opposite to that of a spoiler.

What Is A Spoiler On A Car?

A spoiler is an aerodynamic component used in automobiles to decrease drag. The spoiler on a car spoils unfavorable air movement across the body of a car that is in motion. The adverse motion of the air is known as turbulence or drag. The spoiler is known as air dams when it is attached to the front of an automobile.

car spoiler purpose
Spoilers are mainly used in racing cars. (Photo Source: wheelsage)


Once, only the high-performance sports vehicles and racing cars used to install spoilers for having aerodynamics benefits. But, they are pretty common in passenger cars these days. Some people use it for only aesthetic purposes and those spoilers can even increase the drag.

What Does A Spoiler Do For A Car?

What are spoilers for? Well, a car spoiler purpose is to increase the vehicle’s grip on the road by decreasing the aerodynamic drag.

What keeps the tires of a car grounded to the surface? The weight of the car. The heavier a vehicle is, the better grip it has on the pavement. There are only two ways to increase the traction of lightweight vehicles—inventing new types of tires made of different compounds or increasing the weight.

what are spoilers for
Many passenger cars also use this device. (Photo Source: topspeed)

The first option is quite unrealistic, so increasing the weight seems to be the only solution. But, extra weight is a problem for high-performance and racing cars because it takes a toll on speed and overall performance. A heavy-duty car won’t perform well around the turns where you need excellent traction to avoid losing control. In addition, more weight means added inertia that you have to overcome at the time of turning. This means that adding weight to a vehicle does not help with improving the grip.

What does a spoiler do for a car? It does what extra weight would do. You can compare its mechanism and function to that of an airplane wing, but upside down. It creates downforce on the car’s body so that it performs better against aerodynamic drag.

The Advantages Of Spoilers

You’ve already got a clear idea regarding what is a spoiler on a car and what do spoilers do. But, how you are going to be benefited from this component? Well, a spoiler will:

purpose of a spoiler
Spoilers enhance the look or a vehicle. (Photo Source: wikimedia)
  • Improve traction
  • Reduce drag
  • Improve fuel efficiency
  • Enhance the aesthetic of a vehicle
  • Allow automakers to manufacture lightweight vehicles