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Updated: 3/28/2003 1:53 pm
A spoiler is an aerodynamic device attached directly to a car's body, usually on its back end. It gets its name because it 'spoils' the normal flow of air over or under the car when you're travelling at extremely high speeds. More specifically, it's designed to push the airflow in a downward direction towards the rear of your car, so you can maintain traction and stability when cornering or braking at speeds in excess of 100 miles per hour. For this reason, racecars are frequently equipped with spoilers. Without them, a racecar's rear wheels, during a high-speed turn, could actually lift off the ground and cause a driver to lose control. But unless the speed limit changes on our roads, spoilers generally won't make a difference in normal day-to-day driving, other than to give your car a sporty appearance. Priced at around a few hundred dollars, this popular stylistic accessory is available for most cars in a variety of different shapes and sizes. If you'd like more information on spoilers, consult an auto dealer or a car buying professional.

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