There Are Differences in Four-Wheel-Drive and All-Wheel Drive


Many people will confuse the terms 4-wheel-drive and all-wheel drive. It is easy to feel that both terms are describing the same thing, but that is not quite true. While the ultimate goal is to provide power to all four wheels of a vehicle, the two terms describe different uses for each.

Four-wheel-drive has been available for quite a while, so most folks have heard of it. It is mainly used for pickup trucks and oversized off-road SUVs that operate in an off-road manner. It uses a split differential and a lower gear ration to achieve its result.

All-wheel-drive powertrains send an equal amount of power to each wheel with some variation as needed when road conditions differ. It is used for the most part in sedans, crossover vehicles, and high-performance cars. It is designed to give a steady, smooth ride on paved surfaces in rainy, snowy, and icy types of conditions.
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