Power Vs. Torque: What is the Difference Between the Two?

In every vehicle's brochure, the terms 'Power' and 'Torque' are mentioned under technical specifications. They are often placed near each other, which is done to provide the interested buyers with an estimate of the vehicle's top-speed and acceleration. These are the two key output parameters that determine the quality of performance of a vehicle.

Now, you might have some questions as to Power Vs. Torque: what exactly are these, and how do they differ from each other? How do they affect a vehicle's performance and efficiency? And many more.

In this post, we will try to answer all of these questions. Along with the biggest question of all: Which one of these is better? And in the end, we will also talk about how a Bike Loan provides you with the means to buy the right bike for you.

Additional Read: Long Stroke Vs Short Stroke Engines

Engines produce torque and power when you turn the key, start the car and step on the accelerator. The air and fuel that is ignited in the combustion chambers causes the crankshaft, transmission, and drive axles to do the twist. This process is an example of energy conversion: the potential energy contained in the oil and system is changed efficiently into the required kinetic energy.

Energy (definition):

Energy is the capacity for doing work. Here, the engines transform one form (potential energy) of energy into another form (Kinetic energy).

SI Unit: Newton-meters (Nm)

Work (definition):

Work is the result of a special force acting over an object at some distance.

SI Unit: Newton-meters (Nm)

Power (definition):

Power is the rate at which work is being accomplished. According to the Scottish inventor, James Watt: one horsepower is the power required to lift 33,000 pounds precisely one foot in one minute.

It is a scalar quantity, i.e., it doesn't have multiple values like the direction of the applied force, associated with its measurement. In simpler words, power is calculated only in terms of magnitude and doesn't have any direction associated with it.

SI Unit: Kilowatt (KW)

Torque (definition):

Torque is a rotating force produced by the crankshaft. The more torque an engine produces, the higher its ability to perform work. It is a vector quantity which implies that it has and can be calculated using both magnitude and direction.

SI Unit: Newton-meters (Nm)

In simpler words, torque is the amount of force required to rotate an object. Unlike power, torque has direction; this means that the effectiveness of the applied torque is directly related to the direction in which it's applied.

With regards to engines, torque is the turning force that pushes down the piston, turns the crankshaft and rotates the flywheel when the piston moves. Whereas, horsepower can be defined as the product of torque and the rate of work done. So torque is the force generated during the combustion of the air-fuel mixture, and the rate of production of this torque is the power.

To answer the most crucial question: Power Vs. Torque: What is the difference between the two?

A machine that has higher horsepower (or power) will accelerate faster and have a higher maximum speed limit. However, such machines won't be able to accommodate any heavy load. However, a vehicle with higher torque will be much slower as compared to one with a higher horsepower; but will be able to accommodate any amount of heavy load.

Two-Wheeler Loan

Can't afford to buy the bike of your dreams due to lack of funds? A Bike Loan offers loans at unbelievably low rates of interest with EMIs that do not jeopardise your long term financial stability. The tenor for these EMIs lasts from 1 year to 3 years, giving the borrower enough time to pay back their loan.

Additional Read: How to Choose the Best Two Wheeler Loan


Power and torque define different features and functions of the same part of a vehicle and together provide an apt judgement of capabilities, performance and efficiency of a motorcycle. In this post, we discussed the differences and similarities between Power and Torque and have aimed to answer any queries that you had.

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