Definition of motor in English:

motor

Line breaks: motor
Pronunciation: /ˈməʊtə
 
/

noun

  • 1A machine, especially one powered by electricity or internal combustion, that supplies motive power for a vehicle or for another device with moving parts: these electric motors are highly reliable the sander has a smooth and powerful 520 watt motor
    More example sentences
    • The steam engine had symbolized the First Industrial Revolution and the electric motor and internal combustion engine the Second.
    • Electricity powers the electric motor, which in turn propels the vehicle.
    • Instead of an engine, a stack of fuel cells and an electric motor will supply power - but you won't even see them.
  • 1.1A source of power, energy, or motive force: hormones are the motor of the sexual functions
    More example sentences
    • For example, the force generation by molecular motors has been studied as well as the mechanical properties of biopolymers.
    • Molecular motors generate force and motion by continually binding and breaking down energy-releasing molecules at a rate of about 100 molecules per second.
    • Atomic force microscopy and optical traps are used to probe cellular and subcellular forces, such as those of kinesin motors.
  • 2British informal A car: we drove out in my motor
    More example sentences
    • One can only respond enthusiastically to the idea that the compact, prestige Beemer represents a hot motor among people in their 70s.
    • Together since 1951, Peugeot and Pininfarina have created some of the most stylish mass-market motors of all time.
    • The motor vehicle driver should always allow at least a half-car-width between the bike and the motor.

adjective

[attributive] Back to top  
  • 1chiefly British Driven by a motor: a motor van
    More example sentences
    • When the business expanded with the move to a larger premises in Leinster Street, his mode of transport changed and a motor van was provided.
    • He has a 1915 steam roller and a 1935 motor roller of his own, which he takes to the summer shows.
    • During the summer months the harbourmaster is responsible for more than 2000 moorings and has to deal with hundreds of day-sailors, big yachts and motor cruisers from all over Europe.
  • 1.1Relating to motor vehicles: motor insurance
    More example sentences
    • He eventually moved to the Daily Herald, where he made his name as a motoring and motor sports commentator, and later worked for the BBC.
    • Many older drivers resent the high cost of motor insurance - especially if they have never had an accident and do not use their cars very much.
    • The most expensive components of motoring are: financing the car, motor insurance and car tax.
  • 2Giving or producing motion or action: demand is the principle motor force governing economic activity
    More example sentences
    • It's being driven by the fact that creativity has become the economic motor force.
    • Germany is accustomed to thinking of itself as the motor force of European recovery rather than what it has become in recent times.
    • But the working class still exists and it will be the motor force of the transformation of society.
  • 2.1 Physiology Relating to muscular movement or the nerves activating it: the motor functions of each hand
    More example sentences
    • In the muscular dystrophies pharyngeal motor function is usually only moderately affected.
    • Her higher functions, cranial nerve examination, and motor and sensory examinations were all within normal limits.
    • Generally, the left side of the brain controls the motor movements of the right side of the body, and vice versa.

verb

[no object, with adverbial of direction] Back to top  
  • 1Travel in a motor vehicle: they motored north up the M6
    More example sentences
    • Here I find myself writing to the Richmond News again, first about the fires on the dyke and now about motorists motoring through red lights at pedestrian walks.
    • If I remember rightly, she did eventually go on to pass her test, and is now motoring around quite happily.
    • Looking like fugitives from a bankrupt circus, the platoon slowly motored down a narrow muddy road to rejoin Charlie Company.
  • 1.1 informal Run or move as fast as possible: he had motored along to second base on a passed ball
    More example sentences
    • How was I supposed to know that his little legs could motor so fast?
    • Armstrong followed his move a split second later, motoring around the others and up behind Beloki as if he were being winched out of a ditch.
    • Silver Star really motored from half way and she got up to take second place two lengths behind the winner and it was a similar distance back to Moonbeam in third.

Origin

late Middle English (denoting a person who imparts motion): from Latin, literally 'mover', based on movere 'to move'. The current sense of the noun dates from the mid 19th century.

More definitions of motor

Definition of motor in:

Get more from Oxford Dictionaries

Subscribe to remove adverts and access premium resources

Word of the day grotesquerie
Pronunciation: grəʊˈtɛskəri
noun
grotesque quality or grotesque things collectively