Cars Simplified: Everything Automotive Explained


Fenders are an automotive body component which are usually around or above the wheels. They are also sometimes referred to as wheel arches.

Modern fenders are designed to keep air flowing up and around wheels, as opposed to around the side of it, where it is moving forward twice as fast as the vehicle is going. Some sportier vehicle models have vents on them either for aesthetics or to allow air out of the engine bay and/or wheel well.

Some fenders will have cut-outs or attachment points for badges, reflectors, or lights. Most modern fenders curve inward and provide attachment points for wheel well splash gaurds.

Fender Flares

Fender flares, also called flared fenders, are widended fenders that are typically an aftermarket option, though some factory vehicles are said to have them when they are wider than the base model. Fender flares serve an aerodynamic function, covering wheels that would otherwise stick out from the body. They are also sometimes legally required to cover the wheels in some regions. Fender flares can also provide slight added protection for paint from branches when off-roading.