Some settings you're applying depend on track, some depend on your own preferences (I mean driving style), rest of them is connected with a specific car. Some settings are basics, other are advanced and you should avoid to play with them if you have no idea what you are doing.
You can save your car's configuration with a Ctrl key (on settings screen) to force the computer to remember your setup: this makes your life easier when coming back to game after a long pause (you don't need to experiment with settings again then).
Before we start off with car configuration two important terms must be probably explained: over- and understeering. Both terms refer to the vehicle's behaviour on the road.
Oversteering is the vehicle's tendency to tighten the corner's bend. In the moment when the vehicle is turning its front enters into the corner stronger then the rear. In other words: the rear of the vehicle starts to outrun the front, causing the rotation of the vehicle around its own axis and pushing the car off road, to the side in which the car is turning.
Understeering is a term opposed to oversteering. An understeered car has a tendency to widen the corner. The vehicle is being blown off-course (outwards), in other words: reacts with a delay on wheel's turn.
Both cases aren't advantageous. However, you must learn how to react on non-typical car's behaviour by tightening the corner (in case of understeering) or letting out the steering wheel (in case of oversteering).
Oversteering is preferred only by a few rally drivers, rest of them sticks to a light understeering and obtains the oversteering needed in some situations by such channels of steering like the drive and braking. Even F1 bolides are set up for slight understeering to have a reserve of grip in rear wheels in the critical moment of exiting the corner.
Ok, now we can start with a proper part of this chapter.