Table of Contents
- All about all-wheel drive?
- How does all-wheel drive work?
- Advantages of all-wheel drive
- Disadvantages of AWD
- AWD vs. four-wheel drive
- Conclusion to our AWD info article
All about all-wheel drive?
Ever heard of AWD? Well don’t worry if you haven’t as we are going to do a full writeup all about AWD cars.
All wheel drive cars are gaining popularity in the United States, but what exactly is all wheel drive? All wheel drive, also known as four-wheel drive, is a type of car propulsion system that sends power to all four wheels of a vehicle simultaneously. This can be done either through a separate set of gears for each axle, or via a central differential that directs power to the wheels as needed.
While all wheel drive used to be found exclusively in SUVs and other off-road vehicles, it is now becoming more common in sedans and other passenger cars. This is thanks to advances in technology that have made all wheel drive more efficient and less expensive to produce.
We will go over how all wheel drive usually works, the benefits and drawbacks of these drive systems as well as our favorite. The difference between all wheel drive vs. four wheel drive.
How does all-wheel drive work?
In recent years, all wheel drive cars have become increasingly popular. But how do they work? All wheel drive cars have a system that allows them to send power to all four wheels simultaneously. This results in better traction and handling, especially in slippery or icy conditions.
Advantages of all-wheel drive
All wheel drive cars have better traction
When it comes to traction, all wheel drive cars have a big advantage over their two-wheel drive counterparts. That’s because all four of the car’s wheels are being powered by the engine, instead of just two. This means that all wheel drive cars can better handle slippery and icy conditions.
All wheel drive cars can handle different weather conditions better
All wheel drive cars are a great choice for those who want to be able to handle different weather conditions better. They provide extra traction and stability, making them ideal for driving in snow, ice, or even just wet conditions.
All wheel drive cars have better resale value
Most car shoppers know that all-wheel drive vehicles have better resale value than their two-wheel drive counterparts. But it might not make sense to many people the reason?
It’s simple: all-wheel drive cars are more capable in adverse conditions, and thus more desirable to used car buyers. Whether it’s snow, rain, or even just mud, an all-wheel drive car will be able to get through it while a two-wheel drive car will get stuck.
Disadvantages of AWD
There are a few disadvantages to all wheel drive. The first is that it is just a more expensive care to purchase. This is because there are more moving parts as 4 wheels more and 2 axels are going, versus 2 wheels and one axle going on FRD or RWD cars. All wheel drive also adds weight to the vehicle, which can affect fuel economy. So be prepared to spend more buying the AWD car, and more for using it. Upkeep is usually pretty close to the same price as AWD doesn’t make a car break down more than their counterparts.
One other thing is that because AWD cars cost more there are some models that get a lot less sales than cheaper options. Probably not a big deal right? But when it comes to modding cars you want a large user base. This allows you to get used parts and in turn making upgrades for your car cheaper. We found this when we were looking for parts for our Touring Accord to lower it, as it is a bit rarer of a model. So we couldn’t imagine a car that is pretty rare having a lot of support for aftermarket parts for sale.
AWD vs. four-wheel drive
There are a few key differences between all wheel drive and four wheel drive that we actually had to research because in all honesty they were a bit hazy to us. Isn’t 4 wheels being powered in four wheel drive the same as ALL the wheels going in AWD? If there are only 4 wheels and it’s 4 wheel drive doesn’t that by default make it AWD?
All wheel drive systems typically power all four wheels of the vehicle at the same time, while four wheel drive systems typically have a high and low range that can be selected by the driver depending on the terrain. All wheel drive is typically more efficient than four wheel drive because it doesn’t require as much energy to power all four wheels, but four wheel drive may be necessary if you’re regularly driving in off-road or inclement weather conditions.
Another difference between all wheel drive and four wheel drive is that all wheel drive vehicles typically have independent suspension systems, while four wheel drive vehicles often have solid axle designs. Here is a great video that breaks it down even better if our explanation didn’t help enough:
Conclusion to our AWD info article
After reading through our write up of all the info regarding all-wheel drive, we hope that we helped to provide a bit of information . But in case we haven’t here is our quick rundown of our article:
First – all-wheel drive is not a cure-all for poor driving habits or bad weather conditions. It’s important to remember that all-wheel drive vehicles still require good tires and proper maintenance in order to function properly.
Secondly – all-wheel drive can improve a vehicle’s performance in certain situations, such as off-road driving or in inclement weather. However, it’s important to weigh the pros and cons of all-wheel drive before making a decision to purchase an all-wheel drive vehicle.
If you are wondering if AWD is the right drive setup for you check out this video as you might not actually get any benefits from it:
We have limited experience with AWD cars, but did own an Audi A4 and we could tell the difference for sure when driving in snow versus our Accord. We don’t miss the price tag that came with keeping that Audi going, but the handling was amazing.