ton·​neau ˈtä-ˌnō How to pronounce tonneau (audio)
plural tonneaus
: a rear seating compartment of an automobile
also : the entire seating compartment
: a shape of watch case or dial resembling a barrel in profile

Examples of tonneau in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web However, when the tonneau lifts and reveals a large trident logo embedded below the clear coat and finished in titanium, the MC20 becomes an intangibly cooler looking supercar whose spirit brings a bit more sprezzatura than the non-alfresco alternative. Basem Wasef, Robb Report, 25 May 2022 Convertibles have a cover for the top mechanism that hides the engine, even with the convertible tonneau raised. Ezra Dyer, Car and Driver, 26 Oct. 2022 Users close the tonneau with the help of the webbed nylon strap, like those on wetsuit zippers. Dan Neil, WSJ, 21 Oct. 2021 This Pickup Truck Storage System offers the benefits of a hard tonneau (lockable, weatherproof, out-of-sight storage) along with slide-out drawers to organize gear while retaining the ability to haul large, heavy items. Car and Driver, 24 Oct. 2022 The manual tonneau will consist of four interlocking panels, which can be stored in an accompanying cargo bag when not in use. Jack Fitzgerald, Car and Driver, 26 Oct. 2022 That's because the deck isn’t flush with the top of the bed, like a tonneau. Car and Driver, 24 Oct. 2022 Most tonneau covers offer either security or versatility, but not both. The Editors, Outside Online, 8 Oct. 2022 In any event, the indispensable bit is the integrated tonneau. Dan Neil, WSJ, 21 Oct. 2021 See More

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'tonneau.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History


French, literally, tun, from Old French tonel — more at tunnel entry 1

First Known Use

1901, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

Time Traveler
The first known use of tonneau was in 1901

Dictionary Entries Near tonneau

Cite this Entry

“Tonneau.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 3 Dec. 2023.

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