—v.t. 1. to catch up with in traveling or pursuit; draw even with: By taking a cab to the next town, we managed to overtake and board the train. 2. to catch up with and pass, as in a race; move by: He overtook the leader three laps from the finish. 3. to move ahead of in achievement, production, score, etc.; surpass: to overtake all other countries in steel production. 4. to happen to or befall someone suddenly or unexpectedly, as night, a storm, or death: The pounding rainstorm overtook them just outside the city.
—v.i. to pass another vehicle: Never overtake on a curve.