top gear


: a vehicle's highest gear
She got to the highway and shifted into top gear.
: a state of great or intense activity
The project is now in top gear.
The party hit top gear when the guest of honour arrived.

Examples of top gear in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web Many countries in Europe are already suffering from the inflationary surge that jumped into top gear when Russia invaded Ukraine sending the costs of natural gas and oil higher, especially for those people operating in Europe. Simon Constable, Forbes, 28 Mar. 2024 But the threat to sales from China, mainly with electric vehicles, won’t reach top gear before 2025, while next year European Union carbon dioxide emission rules will tighten. Neil Winton, Forbes, 14 Feb. 2024 And the range of gears is fairly narrow—there's not a huge difference in the number of teeth in the top gear ring and the count on the lowest ring. John Timmer, Ars Technica, 4 Nov. 2023 These are our top gear picks for camping with kids — from infants to preteens. Mandy Harris, Travel + Leisure, 18 Oct. 2023 The differences are even greater in top gear: the convertible needs more than nineteen seconds to amble from 30 to 50 or from 50 to 70 mph, whereas the earlier car ran both tests in the high-twelve-second range. Csaba Csere, Car and Driver, 11 Aug. 2023 The Giulia's engine contains its excitement when cruising at low rpm and in top gear. Drew Dorian, Car and Driver, 15 Apr. 2023 On the high school scene, the 2023 track and field season hit top gear over the weekend and the soccer season was in its third week of action with impressive performances from athletes in both sports. Josh Reed, Anchorage Daily News, 11 Apr. 2023 Above 3000 rpm, however, throttle response is immediate, even in top gear. Csaba Csere, Car and Driver, 2 Apr. 2023

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

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Cite this Entry

“Top gear.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 23 May. 2024.

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