AWD vs. 4WD vs. 2WD


Nissan

AWD vs. 4WD vs. 2WD

Driving technology has seen tremendous development in the last decade. Electronic stability control is an innovation that provides cars with added steadiness on roads. Many of these vehicles are designed and developed to hold their grip on different kinds of terrain to assist the driver with a smooth journey.

2 Wheel Drive (2WD)
Front-Wheel Drive
Typically, vehicles that have front-wheel driving technology consist of an engine that provides the most power to the two front wheels. Special Utility Vehicles are built with this. Front-wheel drive is best suited for cars that are exposed to different terrains. In some instances, when the car is climbing uphill, this operation is especially advantageous as the car’s weight is carried by its front wheels. Front-wheel drive cars are comparatively cost-effective and are built to use lesser space.

Rear Wheel Drive
On the other hand, rear-wheel-drive cars are built to withstand more weight on the rear wheels. The RWD technology is typically found in old-school pickup trucks. Everyday cars do not use RWD technology mostly because the front wheels do not provide much steering potential and therefore aren't ideal to drive on slippery roads.

All Wheel Drive (AWD)
These vehicles are designed in a way that enables the engine to feed power to each of the four wheels. The AWD technology is most beneficial if the car is exposed to multiple terrains. The engine powers the wheels based on whichever end requires the most traction.

All-wheel drive technology can run smoothly over mud, sand, ice, and gravel too. These cars provide the maximum stability as the engine divides the output amongst various axles as and when the weight is distributed unevenly.

4 Wheel Drive (4WD)
Although 4WD is often confused with AWD, the two technologies have some key differences. The engines built into 4WD cars are made for driving on harsh terrain, including over boulders and shallow water. These engines use both high-gear and low-gear modes in order to give the car a boost on difficult surfaces. The car can also enable the front and rear or left and right pairs of wheels to turn in order to enhance grip and power.


Source: Nissan