A lot more goes into making the cars we drive fun than just cramming a ridiculously large motor under the hood and hoping for the best. Engines are designed and tuned for a specific duty – whether it’s for fuel efficiency for peak performance. Two terms tossed around often are horsepower and torque. They’re often spoken about in the same breath. Your best friend may tell you one or the other is the only number that matters; however, it’s a tad more complicated than that. Thankfully, Engineering Explained on YouTube has a great video that explains how both horsepower and torque are related to making a car move. Let’s break it down.

Torque is a force applied at a distance. For example, combustion is the force applied to the crankshaft at a distance through the connecting rod. Horsepower is the rate at which work is done. Horsepower also torque multiplied by rpm. Your head should be spinning at this point if you’ve struggled with introductory physics or algebra. Or both. In the video, Jason Fenske, host of Engineering Explained, gives a far better explanation of the differences between the two terms than I can do with words.