The recent S3 vs TDI vs Civic Type R threads have led me to ask "What is torque, and how does it affect performance?". I did a definition search on Google but it wasn't much help: http://www.google.co.uk/search?hl=en&q=define%3A+torque&meta= My thoughts: Torque is not the same as acceleration, but has an effect on it. However, a TDI has bags of torque but cannot accelerate like a VXR220 which has low torque. Torque affects a car's ability to tow a load - I think. Can anyone offer a simple explanation that doesn't involve too much physics?