4WD vs AWD

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As you shop for pre-owned vehicles, you’ll likely come across the all-wheel drive and four-wheel drive options. These may sound like the same thing, but they actually have some differences. Continue reading to learn more about all-wheel drive and four-wheel drive and to determine which may be the better selection for you.

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The differences between all-wheel drive versus four-wheel drive lie in the distribution of power to the wheels. All-wheel drive automatically sends engine torque back and forth between the front and rear wheels without driver input. All-wheel drive can even shift power from wheel to wheel on the same axle. The point behind all-wheel drive is to automatically maintain traction on all surfaces, whatever the conditions.

On the other hand, four-wheel drive is a part-time, driver-activated system of torque distribution. The complexities of four-wheel drive vary from manufacturer to manufacturer, but most systems lock the front and rear axles together when the four-wheel drive is activated. This means all four wheels receive equal power and rotate at the same speed. If one or two wheels lose grip of the surface below, the other wheels continue to propel the vehicle forward.

Both all-wheel drive and four-wheel drive have their perks. You may consider all-wheel drive if you want a system that is always activated. If you’re more interested in a part-time system, four-wheel drive is for you. No matter which option you pick, both systems can help you drive on wet, icy, or muddy roads, as well as off-road terrain.

Whether you’re looking for a vehicle with all-wheel drive or four-wheel drive, shop with Vista Auto Group to discover what you’re looking for. You can find our dealership at 7418 Frankford Avenue in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.


Vista Auto Group