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All-Wheel Drive Systems and 4×4 Drive Systems are often considered one and the same, but that isn’t true. An All-Wheel Drive System will allow the engine to continuously provide all wheels with the same amount of power. However, while 4×4 Systems can do that as well, they can also allow you to choose which wheels you want to power.
Number Of 4×4 Systems
So, how many 4×4 Systems are out there and what’s the difference between them! Well, there are three types of 4×4 Systems and they all work a little bit different than the other.
The first one is the Permanent 4×4 Drive System. It features three differentials, one on each axle and a center unit. When it comes to the engine, it can be both transversely and longitudinally mounted.
When you’re driving on very rough terrains that have a lot of rocky obstacles, a Permanent 4×4 Drive System is ideal. This system makes all wheels spin at the same speed, providing extra traction if you get stuck. On the other hand, it’s not recommended for taking corners at high speeds.
The second type is a Selectable 4×4 Drive System. You can use cars with this type of system on proper off-road terrains. It has a mechanical transfer case and a low range. This means that the vehicle’s engine will be able to send equal power to both the front and rear axles.
Generally, they have only two differentials, one on each axle, and a longitudinally installed engine. When the 4×4 is not selected, the default mode is the rear-wheel drive. It has some of the highest fuel efficiency levels.
And the last type is the On-Demand 4×4 System. This system is mainly used by performance-oriented vehicles. Unlike the previous system, this one is made to run as a default two-wheel drive, usually front-wheel drive. And when the time comes, it will automatically turn into a four-wheel drive.
Ofcourse, all these systems need proper all-terrain tires in order to provide the maximum grip and traction.
When buying a new vehicle, you have to take into consideration what kind of 4×4 System is ideal for your needs