Need a part or service found for you?
Call our experts on 1800 595 454

Car Grille: What Are Its Functions?

Educational  ·  August 10, 2020

Car Grille: What Are Its Functions?

Have you ever thought about what that small net-ish frame in front of your car is or what it does? The poor thing rarely gets in the limelight; we see it a lot but don't bother too much about it. Well, that ‘thing’ is called a car grille. It does serve a few vital functions, and you're about to find out what those functions are. Let's dig in.

What Is a Car Grille?

A car grille is a protective metal or plastic latticework or grating located on the front of your vehicle between both headlights. It is one of the auto parts that complete the face of a car. Sometimes, the grille bears the logo of the manufacturer. 

Most people see the car grille as just an aesthetic feature to enhance the vehicle's appearance. In reality, it does that and more. I'll try to bring this underrated accessory to limelight by stating three essential functions it performs. Just before I jump into it, there's a common misconception over whether it is grill or grille. It's grille (with an e). We're not in the kitchen, alright? (wink)

What Are the Functions of a Car Grille? 

1. Help in air circulation

The grille covers the car’s front end yet allows air to get through its gaps. So, while it protects the engine from road debris, its ultimate function is help air circulation to the engine room. Air that’s allowed through the grille helps cool the moving components under the hood. Isn't that what a radiator is for, you may wonder? In fact, it is. But the car grille performs an essential supportive role. The air that comes through the grille cools the temperature of the water in the radiator to avoid overheating. In short, the grille enables the radiator to perform optimally.

2. Aid aerodynamics and performance

The car grille’s design is often integrated into a vehicle's aerodynamics, which enhances the car's performance. Without an opening, air resistance would build-up against a car and impact on its speed. With a grille present, and one designed to optimally aid aerodynamics, air shifts smoothly through the grille, the side, and top of the vehicle, lessening the impact of air resistance significantly.

Some automakers have even adopted a technology that automatically opens and closes the grille’s cavity as needed by the engine.

3. Improve aesthetics 

The aesthetic benefit is undoubtedly the most apparent function of a car grille, although not the most important. Since we all care about beauty, it’s a function worthy of being mentioned. 

Virtually all car brands treat the grille as a part of the brand’s identity. Grilles are so unique and distinctive in their appearance that you can tell an approaching car by its grille. You’ve noticed too, right? 

Some auto manufacturers deliberately maintain the design of their grille because, over time, it has become an iconic thing for the brand. Others modify the car grille design more frequently but have the grilles carry their logo as part of their brand design.

BMW, for instance, has had the same twin-oval design for several years, although she often revises them slightly for a new look. Consider Volvo too, for instance. Relative to other brands, she changes her grille design pretty often. But the grille still always has the brand logo or signature as an emblem. 

Is It Okay to Drive Without a Grille? 

Despite the advancements in engineering and technology, it is still impossible to have an internal combustion engine vehicle without a grille. The aesthetic and aerodynamics features could be overlooked. Without air passage, the cooling system won't function at optimal capacity. Without a grating to cover air passage, you will put the vehicle at risk. 

But what if your car’s grille was removed for whatever reason, and you needed to hastily drive your car without it? In emergency cases, you may drive without car grille, because its absence does not block the air passage. That’s not to say that it’s okay, because it’s not advisable. You’ll need to check with transport laws if you’re allowed to drive without car grille. Also, with an unprotected front end, your car’s radiator and engine will be exposed to debris and wind. 

With the future rolling more and more toward electric cars—which have no need or less need for air cooling— we may be seeing more grille-less cars. And if we did see them, it’d be mostly for design purposes. 

5 Most Distinctive Car Grilles

(Bow) I now present to you 5 of the unique car grilles technology has birthed:

1. The Rolls-Royce Phantom

It’s royal and self-righteous. A grille saying “out of my way, kid” to other vehicles on the road but yet still loveable and that’s why we love it!

2. The BMW 7 series (X7)

BMW says the new 7 Series' monster-pig nostrils means the lower bumper is less fussy and looks more imposing. I consider this one an Angry Birds pig look-alike.

3. The Audi Q8

Audi loves making their grilles look merry. Happy-looking scary but elegant.

4. The Lincoln MKT

This machine grille is styled to bear a resemblance to a wild tapir wearing a Kanye West’s shutter shade.

5. Lexus LS

It took Lexus 3.5 years to perfect its spindle grille, finally creating the most angular yet sophisticated and point-blank scary-looking personality in a mask. 

As the split or twin double-oval grille is to BMW (aka kidney grille), so is the XXL wide-scream grille to Audi. 

Wrap Up

The grille is gradually becoming a way to which we perceive how friendly a car’s appearance is. An upturned grille instinctively appears ‘friendly’ while some downturned grille styles can look ‘aggressive’. It’s safe to say that the car grille has become a major language or signature in the automaker’s decision on their brands.

Since your brand is defined as how people perceive you, the grille isn’t only a design, airway, or performance improvement thing but also a tool to build brand credibility. 

Should you ever want to pimp your ride or get a new or used car grille, please feel free to visit You may browse the ads section and search for car grilles. You may also send us a request for a grille or any auto part, and our 500+ certified sellers will search their inventory and send you their quotes if they have what you need.  

By Damilare Olasinde

More from the Blog

Explore the Opportunity of Owning!

For Sale: - Your Gateway to the Automotive World

Are you ready to own a premium domain in the automotive industry? is now available for purchase, offering you an exclusive chance to step into the driver’s seat of this established online platform.

What’s Included in the Package?

  • Domain Name: Secure the highly sought-after, a single-word domain that speaks volumes in the automotive realm.
  • Website: Acquire the entire website, featuring the single largest directory of automotive suppliers. Benefit from top-notch Google rankings, providing instant exposure to a vast audience.
  • Instagram Page: Take over the Instagram page (@carpartdotcom) with a whopping 240,000 real car enthusiasts following. Become an instant influencer and leverage years of engaging content.
  • Carpedia: Dive into a treasure trove of automotive information. includes Carpedia, a comprehensive resource that draws daily traffic seeking valuable insights into vehicles.


  • Instant Exposure: With thousands of top-ten Google rankings, you can own the next car parts marketplace and enjoy instant visibility in a competitive market.
  • Endless Possibilities: The opportunities are boundless with a domain like In a time where single-word domains are rare, secure your place as a key player in the automotive industry.

Price: $1.45 Million AUD

How to Inquire: For inquiries or to express your interest, call the number at the top of the page telling us your interested in the sale of the website. Leave a message with our office, and expect a prompt call back.