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What is an ATV?

ATV is an abbreviation for all-terrain vehicle, a vehicle with specialized treads and/or wheels that allows it to travel on off-road terrain.

ATVs are designed to travel over rocks, snow, and other difficult terrain. In the U.S., the term typically refers to a vehicle that has four (or at least three) wheels, a straddle seat, and handlebars for steering. ATVs are typically designed for one person, though some can accommodate two riders.

ATV is used as a noun, as in My cousin and I used to race ATVs in the hills near our neighbourhood. ATV is a common way to refer to such a vehicle—it’s more common to call it an ATV than to say all-terrain vehicle.

The term quad is commonly used to refer to an ATV that has four wheels and is typically used for recreation.

Example: You’d need an ATV to cross those rocky paths.

Where does ATV come from?

The first records of the abbreviation ATV come from around 1970. The first records of all-terrain vehicle come from the mid-1960s, so it seems that ATV has been used as an abbreviation almost from the beginning. Other types of vehicles are also commonly referred to with an abbreviation, as in SUV (sport utility vehicle) and ORV (off-road vehicle).

ATVs are used for a variety of purposes, such as recreation and professional uses. Certain manufacturers even sell ATVs designed for children since ATVs don’t require a driver’s license. However, ATVs are strictly regulated. It is recommended that ATV drivers be at least 16 years old and practice proper safety, such as wearing a helmet.

Did you know ... ?

What are some other forms related to ATV?

What are some synonyms for ATV?

What are some words that share a root or word element with ATV

What are some words that often get used in discussing ATV?

How is ATV used in real life?

ATVs are popular for recreation, such as off-roading. But they are also used for practical and professional purposes.



Try using ATV!

True or False?

The term ATV typically refers to a vehicle with two wheels.

How to use ATV in a sentence

British Dictionary definitions for ATV


abbreviation for
all-terrain vehicle: a vehicle with treads or wheels designed to travel on rough uneven ground
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012