motor

noun
mo·​tor | \ ˈmō-tər How to pronounce motor (audio) \

Definition of motor

 (Entry 1 of 3)

1 : one that imparts motion specifically : prime mover
2 : any of various power units that develop energy or impart motion: such as
a : a small compact engine
b : internal combustion engine especially : a gasoline engine
c : a rotating machine that transforms electrical energy into mechanical energy
3 : motor vehicle especially : automobile

motor

adjective

Definition of motor (Entry 2 of 3)

1a : causing or imparting motion
b : of, relating to, or being a motor neuron or a nerve containing motor neurons motor fiber
c : of, relating to, concerned with, or involving muscular movement motor areas of the brain
2a : equipped with or driven by a motor
b : of, relating to, or involving an automobile
c : designed for motor vehicles or motorists

motor

verb
motored; motoring; motors

Definition of motor (Entry 3 of 3)

intransitive verb

1 : to travel by automobile : drive
2 : to move or proceed at a vigorous steady pace motored down the field for a touchdown

transitive verb

: to transport by automobile

Keep scrolling for more

Other Words from motor

Noun

motordom \ -​dəm How to pronounce motordom (audio) \ noun
motorless \ -​ləs How to pronounce motorless (audio) \ adjective

Examples of motor in a Sentence

Noun

the device was equipped with a small electrical motor to make the gears spin went shopping for a new automobile at Valley Motors

Adjective

motor areas of the brain

Verb

We spent the afternoon motoring through the countryside. The car motored slowly up the hill.
See More

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

Like a Model 3 Performance, the Polestar 2 uses dual electric motors and all-wheel-drive. Ezra Dyer, Popular Mechanics, "The Polestar 2 Is the First Car to Directly Challenge the Tesla Model 3," 27 Feb. 2019 Much like battery-powered cars, fuel-cell vehicles use electric motors. David R. Baker, SFChronicle.com, "Fuel-cell ferry coming to San Francisco Bay," 25 June 2018 Put up the kickstand and propel the scooter down the street with your foot three times before pushing the throttle on the handlebar to kick on the electric motor. Ethan May, Indianapolis Star, "Here's what you need to know about Bird electric scooters," 21 June 2018 Up to speed: Acceleration from the 1.8-liter engine and electric motor was not bad for 122 horses, 11 seconds to 100 kph (62 mph). Scott Sturgis, Philly.com, "Traversing France in the Toyota C-HR Hybrid," 14 June 2018 The screen also reminds you when to clean your filters, if there are any blockages- using a pressure sensor in the motor, and how to clear said blockages using a quick clip on the screen. Sarah Bogdan, Good Housekeeping, "Dyson’s New V11 Torque Drive Stick Vacuum Has Features That Will Blow You Away," 20 Mar. 2019 The motor is very short ranged, in the region of a few hundred yards. Kyle Mizokami, Popular Mechanics, "Iran Shows off Unusual Ship-Killing Torpedo/Missile Combination," 28 Feb. 2019 At the rear, the motor is coaxially mounted for better packaging and 50:50 weight distribution. Jonathan M. Gitlin, Ars Technica, "We’ve driven Audi’s first proper electric car, the 2019 e-tron SUV," 7 Dec. 2018 The motor draws its energy from the lithium-ion battery tucked inconspicuously under the rear seats until the charge gets too low, then summons the four-cylinder to crank the generator. Gary Gastelu, Fox News, "The 2019 Honda Insight is a strangely normal hybrid," 24 Aug. 2018

Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

Current owner Queen Elizabeth II, who carries on the family tradition and spends summers there, and can sometimes be spotted motoring to Sunday services at Crathie Kirk, the nearby parish church. Cathy Newman, WSJ, "A Chic Scottish Sojourn Among the Manors," 7 Dec. 2018 Few on this car-crazed strip seemed to realize the white Porsche motoring silently between two Los Angeles County Sheriff cruisers last week. Tom Voelk, New York Times, "Porsche Mission E Cross Turismo Review: ‘Silence Is the New Power’," 6 June 2018 After a weekend spent motoring around the San Francisco Bay Area in the Model 3 Performance Edition, here are the 10 features that required the largest mental adjustment. Andrew Moseman, Popular Mechanics, "The 10 Hardest Things To Get Used to on the Tesla Model 3," 10 Oct. 2018 But sailing along the B3212 from Two Bridges to Moretonhampstead will provide more than enough lonely vistas, road-hugging sheep, native ponies—and motoring Zen. Peter Saenger, WSJ, "A Driving Tour of Devon, England—on Perilously Narrow Roads," 30 Oct. 2018 Upon motoring up to a private shore, his loyal friend — a stingray nicknamed Georgette — swam up to greet us. Caroline Picard, Good Housekeeping, "How to Vacation Like the Royal Family in the Bahamas," 30 Aug. 2018 In the fourth installment of the open-world driving franchise, Forza Horizon 4, gamers and car enthusiasts will be motoring around jolly old England. Anthony Alaniz, Popular Mechanics, "Everything We Know About Forza Horizon 4," 11 Sep. 2018 Servo-motored pirates still attack defenseless villagers for the sake of plundering and pillaging, eventually drinking to excess and burning down the town. Scott Craven, USA TODAY, "Disneyland's 'Pirates' ride to reopen with new female pirate, without bride auction," 7 June 2018 Reddick motored from first to third, allowing Tony Kemp to bat with runners at the corners. Chandler Rome, Houston Chronicle, "Bizarre ending secures Astros' extra-innings victory over A's," 11 July 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'motor.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

See More

First Known Use of motor

Noun

1586, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Adjective

1823, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

Verb

1895, in the meaning defined at intransitive sense 1

History and Etymology for motor

Noun

Latin, from movēre to move

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about motor

Statistics for motor

Last Updated

21 Apr 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for motor

The first known use of motor was in 1586

See more words from the same year

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for motor

motor

noun

English Language Learners Definition of motor

 (Entry 1 of 3)

: a machine that produces motion or power for doing work

motor

adjective

English Language Learners Definition of motor (Entry 2 of 3)

: of, relating to, used in, or involving a vehicle that is powered by a motor (such as a car or motorcycle)
: having a motor
technical : of or relating to the part of the nervous system that controls the movement of muscles

motor

verb

English Language Learners Definition of motor (Entry 3 of 3)

: to travel in a car
of a car, truck, etc. : to move in a specified manner or direction

motor

noun
mo·​tor | \ ˈmō-tər How to pronounce motor (audio) \

Kids Definition of motor

 (Entry 1 of 3)

: a machine that produces motion or power for doing work an electric motor

motor

adjective

Kids Definition of motor (Entry 2 of 3)

1 : of, relating to, or designed for use in an automobile a motor trip motor oil
2 : equipped with or driven by a motor
3 : causing or controlling movement motor nerves

motor

verb
motored; motoring

Kids Definition of motor (Entry 3 of 3)

motor

adjective
mo·​tor | \ ˈmōt-ər How to pronounce motor (audio) \

Medical Definition of motor

1 : causing or imparting motion
2 : of, relating to, or being a motor neuron or a nerve containing motor neurons motor fibers motor cells
3 : of, relating to, concerned with, or involving muscular movement motor areas of the brain

Keep scrolling for more

More from Merriam-Webster on motor

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with motor

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for motor

Spanish Central: Translation of motor

Nglish: Translation of motor for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of motor for Arabic Speakers

Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about motor

Comments on motor

What made you want to look up motor? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).

WORD OF THE DAY

an act or instance of returning to life

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

Words from Greek and Latin Quiz

  • roman forum
  • Which of the following months comes from a Latin word for “ten”?
How Strong Is Your Vocabulary?

Test your vocabulary with our 10-question quiz!

TAKE THE QUIZ
Add Diction

Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.

TAKE THE QUIZ
Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!