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Kilogramme vs. Kilogram — What's the Difference?

By Fiza Rafique & Urooj Arif — Updated on April 25, 2024
A kilogramme and a kilogram refer to the same unit of mass in the metric system, though "kilogramme" is the older British spelling, while "kilogram" is the modern and internationally accepted spelling.
Kilogramme vs. Kilogram — What's the Difference?

Difference Between Kilogramme and Kilogram


Key Differences

A kilogramme, historically used in British English, represents the same metric unit of mass as a kilogram. Whereas, the term "kilogram" is the standard spelling adopted in American English and by international standards.
In documentation and scientific literature, "kilogramme" might still occasionally appear as a variant form. On the other hand, "kilogram" is universally used in scientific, educational, and international contexts, aligning with the International System of Units (SI).
The spelling "kilogramme" evokes a sense of traditional and older British usage, whereas "kilogram" aligns with contemporary usage and the global consensus on metric unit terminology.
Some educational texts in the UK may still reference the spelling "kilogramme" to highlight historical context. Conversely, "kilogram" is preferred in all modern educational materials worldwide to maintain consistency.
While the use of "kilogramme" has declined significantly, "kilogram" continues to be reinforced by international standards, ensuring uniformity in scientific and international communication.

Comparison Chart


Older British spelling
Modern and international spelling


Limited, mostly historical
Universal, across all modern contexts


Occasionally in older UK texts
Scientific, educational, and international documents

International Standards

Less aligned
Fully aligned with the International System of Units (SI)

Preference in Literature

Seldom used today
Predominantly used and recommended

Compare with Definitions


A unit of mass equivalent to one thousand grams.
He purchased a kilogramme of apples.


The SI unit of mass, equal to 1000 grams.
The recipe required one kilogram of flour.


The base unit for mass in the older British metric system.
The museum artifact weighed about two kilogrammes.


Standard measurement unit in metric systems worldwide.
She adjusted the balance to measure 20 kilograms.


Often used interchangeably with "kilogram" in historical texts.
They used a scale calibrated in kilogrammes.


Reflects modern spelling and usage in technical and everyday contexts.
The bag clearly stated its weight as 25 kilograms.


Occasionally appears in discussions of historical measurement standards.
His lecture mentioned the term kilogramme in a historical context.


Commonly used in educational materials globally.
Students learn that a liter of water approximately weighs one kilogram.


A metric unit used historically in some English-speaking countries.
The old textbook listed weights in kilogrammes.


Used universally in science and commerce.
The satellite's weight was precisely 730 kilograms.


(UK) kilogram


The kilogram (also kilogramme) is the base unit of mass in the International System of Units (SI), the metric system, having the unit symbol kg. It is a widely used measure in science, engineering and commerce worldwide, and is often simply called a kilo in everyday speech.


Abbr. kg The base unit of mass in the International System, equal to 1,000 grams (2.2046 pounds). See Table at measurement.


Kilogram force.


In the International System of Units, the base unit of mass; conceived of as the mass of one litre of water, but now defined by taking the fixed numerical value of the Planck constant h to be 6.626 070 15 × 10-34 when expressed in units of kg⋅m2⋅s−1. Symbol: kg


(proscribed) The unit of weight such that a one-kilogram mass is also a one-kilogram weight.


A measure of weight, being a thousand grams, equal to 2.2046226 pounds avoirdupois (15,432.34 grains). It is equal to the weight of a cubic decimeter of distilled water at the temperature of maximum density, or 39° Fahrenheit.


One thousand grams; the basic unit of mass adopted under the Systeme International d'Unites;
A kilogram is approximately 2.2 pounds

Common Curiosities

What does kilogram mean?

A kilogram is the modern spelling of a metric unit of mass, universally recognized and used.

Are kilogramme and kilogram the same thing?

Yes, both terms represent the same unit of mass, though "kilogram" is the preferred and modern spelling.

Where is the term kilogramme still used?

"Kilogramme" may still appear in some older texts or for historical emphasis in the UK.

Is kilogramme accepted in scientific documents?

While not incorrect, "kilogram" is strongly preferred in scientific documents for consistency with international standards.

How do you spell kilogram in British English?

Modern British English also uses "kilogram," though "kilogramme" appears in historical contexts.

How does the International System of Units affect the spelling of kilogram?

The International System of Units standardizes the spelling as "kilogram" to ensure global consistency.

How has the usage of kilogramme changed over time?

Usage of "kilogramme" has declined as "kilogram" became the standard spelling in alignment with the SI.

What is a kilogramme?

A kilogramme is an older British spelling for a unit of mass, equivalent to one thousand grams.

Why is kilogram preferred over kilogramme?

"Kilogram" is aligned with international standards and is used universally to ensure consistency in scientific and technical communication.

How do you spell kilogram in American English?

In American English, it is spelled as "kilogram."

What is the origin of the word kilogramme?

The word kilogramme comes from French, originally denoting a thousand grams.

What are some examples of kilogram used in sentences?

"The patient's weight was recorded as 80 kilograms."

What are some examples of kilogramme used in sentences?

"In an old British novel, weights were often given in kilogrammes."

Is kilogramme considered outdated?

While not entirely outdated, its use is limited compared to the universal adoption of "kilogram."

Can kilogram and kilogramme be used interchangeably?

Yes, they can be interchangeably used in contexts not strictly requiring adherence to SI norms.

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Author Spotlight

Written by
Fiza Rafique
Fiza Rafique is a skilled content writer at, where she meticulously refines and enhances written pieces. Drawing from her vast editorial expertise, Fiza ensures clarity, accuracy, and precision in every article. Passionate about language, she continually seeks to elevate the quality of content for readers worldwide.
Co-written by
Urooj Arif
Urooj is a skilled content writer at Ask Difference, known for her exceptional ability to simplify complex topics into engaging and informative content. With a passion for research and a flair for clear, concise writing, she consistently delivers articles that resonate with our diverse audience.

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