On this audio file, at 1:40, what does in the rack mean?

It's what I hear:

I got three cars in the rack, it's all over the place down here, you know.

Source: The ILI English Series, Intermediate 2, Page 87

  • I think he said on the rack. I think he was talking about leaky fluid being all over the place. I'm not sure how that ties into cars being on the rack though.
    – shawnt00
    Aug 16, 2016 at 16:51
  • At 1:40 I hear the male voice say "Er...".
    – Kreiri
    Aug 16, 2016 at 16:53
  • Presumably he's lying to her so it might just be nonsense anyway.
    – shawnt00
    Aug 16, 2016 at 17:01

1 Answer 1


I agree that it's probably on the rack, not in the rack.

Rack likely means either something like this, which is a car lifter for maintenance work:

Car lifter for maintenance

Or something like this, which is just a lifter to hold cars for storage:

Car lifter for storage

Being on the rack means "on a lifter", probably the first type since they're inside a mechanic's garage. From the context, a car radiator is apparently leaking around the three cars on the rack.

Note that there doesn't need to be a single rack for the mechanic to use on the rack, since it's similar to a construction like on the road. As long as the cars are in (a) rack(s), then he's saying something true about those cars. Whether he's telling the truth about the radiator in the lady's car is another thing altogether!

  • 1
    I'm not so sure about him telling the truth. He may have three cars in (or on) the rack, as you say, but it still sounds to me like he's trying to take her for a ride.
    – J.R.
    Aug 16, 2016 at 17:25
  • @J.R. I'll amend my answer to specify that he's telling the truth about the rack––not her radiator!
    – eijen
    Aug 16, 2016 at 17:27
  • 1
    I hesitated to start drawing too many conclusions. I wasn't sure if there was an important difference between a lift and a rack especially since that video was produced in the 70s or 80s.
    – shawnt00
    Aug 16, 2016 at 17:39

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