4WD vs FWD vs AWD


4WD vs FWD vs AWD

4WD, which stands for Four-wheel drive, is a drive system mostly found in vehicles that were designed for extreme off-roading. So if you need a car that will perform well on steep hills with poor traction surfaces, a 4WD vehicle would make a great option. Such models are quite smooth even when it comes to traveling in deep waters or climbing over rocky boulders. Usually, 4WD vehicles operate in a rear-wheel-drive mode until the driver decides to enable the 4WD mode when four-wheel traction is required. You simply have to shift gears or press a button to enable the 4WD mode. Most 4WD cars come with a high and low gear range, with the low gear range being used for increasing climbing power on low-speed. Some 4WDs have differentials that can be locked when you need maximum traction.

FWD stands for front-wheel drive. It simply means that in vehicles with an FWD driving system, the engine delivers most of the power to the front wheels. A majority of cars available in the market today are FWDs, including most SUVs. Since the weight of the engine is focused primarily on the front wheels, FWD vehicles are great for improved traction while driving on slippery roads. Another reason why FWD cars are so common today is that they are easier and cheaper to manufacture, while also freeing up plenty of space inside the cabin. This makes it an efficient system ideal for many vehicles.

AWD stands for all-wheel drive. AWDs and 4WDs are very similar and are often used interchangeably. But the truth is that these two driving systems actually have significant differences. For instance, while a 4WD tries to deliver power to all four wheels as equally as possible to increase traction, AWD cars deliver varying amounts of power to each of the wheels. This is achieved either electronically or mechanically.

Usually, an all-wheel drive system is found in road-going vehicles such as wagons, crossovers, sedans, and several large SUVs. Thanks to the system being so user-friendly and the clear advantages it provides to drivers, it is increasingly becoming more popular today, especially among performance vehicles.

Source: Jeep