Definition of "overdrive" []

  • A gearing mechanism of a motor vehicle engine that reduces the power output required to maintain driving speed in a specific range by lowering the gear ratio. (noun)
  • Informal A state of heightened activity or concentration: shifted into overdrive toward the end of the semester. (noun)
  • To drive (a vehicle) too far or too long. (verb-transitive)
  • To push (oneself) too far, as in the performance of tasks. (verb-transitive)
  • A very high gear in a motor vehicle used at high speeds to reduce wear and save fuel (noun)

American Heritage(R) Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition. Copyright (c) 2011 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.

  • To drive too hard or too far; overwork or overuse (verb) (c) HarperCollins Publishers Ltd 2016

Use "overdrive" in a sentence
  • "We will be smarter; we will be a “populace stuck in overdrive, searching out the last bits of competitive advantage.”"
  • "With national support now ramping up for Brown and the Brown Brigade kicking in overdrive results are going to change quickly in favor of brown."
  • "That motor was in overdrive as Sablikova crossed the finish line in 6 minutes, 50.91 seconds in the final pair."