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  #21  
Old 22.09.2017, 02:09
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Re: AWD or front-wheel drive?

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Another question is Automatic or shift. IMO shift is better for winter driving or any driving for that matter. By the way the new Golf Alltrack looks like a fun little wagon.
Sitting in a traffic in a manual shift car is not fun at all.
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  #22  
Old 23.09.2017, 16:00
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Re: AWD or front-wheel drive?

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The one on the right also has variable limited slip diff ;-)
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  #23  
Old 24.09.2017, 09:42
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Re: AWD or front-wheel drive?

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Sitting in a traffic in a manual shift car is not fun at all.
Yes! Sitting in traffic is not fun at all. But a shift can help you pass the time.
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  #24  
Old 24.09.2017, 11:16
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Re: AWD or front-wheel drive?

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The one on the right also has variable limited slip diff ;-)
diffs work with the tires. If there is not "enough" tire on the wheel, it doesn't matter what kind of diff you have, as prominently displayed by the AWD car in the gif.
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  #25  
Old 25.09.2017, 13:07
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Re: AWD or front-wheel drive?

Don Molina: While I appreciate everyone's feedback, I must admit your response was my favorite both for the information and a bias stemming from me being a die-hard F1 fan. I'm totally jealous of you and your friends. We've gone to the USGP three years in a row and are looking forward to checking out the European races next season. Any recommendations of which race to try out first?

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FWD is inherently a stable configuration since the front wheels are pulling the car.

RWD is inherently an unstable configuration since the rear wheels are pushing the car.

4WD (which is 4-wheels all the time) is quite neutral

If you want to see the above in practice, take your phone and start pulling it, pushing it, and then pulling and pushing at the same time. See what is more stable.

AWD depends on the implementation, as AWD means that all wheels are driven only when the primarily-driven wheels are slipping. If the primarily driven wheels are the front, then the car is more a FWD and vice versa.

Also if the 4WD is not symmetrical, then FWD bias makes it more stable, and so on and so forth.


All of the above are reflected in the geometry settings of the suspension for each layout (toe angles for example).


Now, the FWD, due the nature of the design tends to undesteer. That means, that if you go too fast in a corner the car will not steer and go straight on (figuratively).
That is the safest thing a car can do at the limit, as:
  • the medicine to understeer is to get off the gas, a natural reaction for even the most inept driver
  • even if the understeer is terminal (i.e. you're having an accident), it's much safer to hit something straight on than in any other direction. Crumble zones and most passive safety features of a car are designed for such collisions

that is also why ALL "civilian" cars, i.e. cars that everyone will buy, are designed to understeer at the limit. Because UNDERSTEER IS SAFE.

This is increasingly the case with sports cars as well. It turns out that just because people want to buy one car, doesn't mean that they know how it should be driven. Greatest example is the Honda S2000, that began life as an oversteering madman, and then became a much more sedate (and boring?) animal in a mid-cycle refresh.



Source:
a bunch of mates and I used to design and build from scratch actual prototype race cars that would do 0-100 in 3.5s and hit way over 1g in the skidpad. Some of them work in championship winning F1 teams now
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  #26  
Old 25.09.2017, 14:40
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Re: AWD or front-wheel drive?

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The one on the right also has variable limited slip diff ;-)
is it a BMW E46 M3?
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  #27  
Old 25.09.2017, 17:48
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Re: AWD or front-wheel drive?

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is it a BMW E46 M3?
Yeap, here's the original vid
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  #28  
Old 25.09.2017, 20:16
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Re: AWD or front-wheel drive?

Imagine the M3 with summer tires in winter... = death.
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  #29  
Old 25.09.2017, 21:01
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Re: AWD or front-wheel drive?

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Imagine the M3 with summer tires in winter... = death.
They're quite safe because you can't even get off the driveway.
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  #30  
Old 25.09.2017, 21:12
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Re: AWD or front-wheel drive?

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They're quite safe because you can't even get off the driveway.
I can attest to this. Many years ago I drove an E60 and in winter it was tricky to get out of garages even with proper tires. There was just too much torque and the throttle response was way too vicious to gently feather it uphill.

The garage exit at the my workplace at the time was basically an L shaped road with the last straight stretch being steep uphill into a busy road. Getting out of there during snowfall was like russian roulette. You accelerate on the level road, execute a right hand turn, attempt to correct it on the uphill and then slam the brakes at the last minute because a bus is approaching. Then you gently slide back down while your heart rate returns from the low 200s. Rince and repeat.
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  #31  
Old 25.09.2017, 21:19
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Re: AWD or front-wheel drive?

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I can attest to this. Many years ago I drove an E60 and in winter it was tricky to get out of garages even with proper tires. There was just too much torque and the throttle response was way too vicious to gently feather it uphill.

The garage exit at the my workplace at the time was basically an L shaped road with the last straight stretch being steep uphill into a busy road. Getting out of there during snowfall was like russian roulette. You accelerate on the level road, execute a right hand turn, attempt to correct it on the uphill and then slam the brakes at the last minute because a bus is approaching. Then you gently slide back down while your heart rate returns from the low 200s. Rince and repeat.

I think that damn SMG was more to blame than anything else.
Also, that sounds like a lot of fun

I used to live at a very steep hill and that was during the crazy '12-'13 winter season. Unfortunately that was with the least fun car I've ever owned, but it still was RWD so quite a bit of fun slowly drifting the slalom between the blue-zone parked cars
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  #32  
Old 17.10.2020, 18:54
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Re: AWD or front-wheel drive?

Reading this thread, I made a couple of observations
  • people are comparing AWD on one car against FWD on another car they owned. I don't feel that is a valid comparison as the cars and tyres differ in many other ways.
  • some of the posts appear to conflate the AWD and 4WD concepts or use 4x4 ambiguously so it was hard for me to be certain about which system they were really referring to.

My own observations on the issue:
  • AWD and 4WD are not the same
  • true 4WD is the only solution in the most extreme conditions
  • AWD over FWD introduces additional up-front cost
  • AWD over FWD introduces additional maintenance cost. If I own an AWD I would ask the guy servicing it to check certain things for me every year and I would expect to pay for that. There are more components that can fail in AWD than FWD and those components could be more expensive overall.
  • AWD over FWD introduces extra risk of failure and you are stuck somewhere waiting for help. It isn't going to kill you but it might be inconvenient. You can mitigate this risk by having the AWD components checked and having high-risk components replaced proactively. As an example, some people have complained about plastic components in some of the more lightweight cars, the components wear out and the car stops.

Despite all that, for some types of vehicle, the vendor is only offering AWD and automatic transmission, they have eliminated the choice of FWD or manual transmissions.
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  #33  
Old 17.10.2020, 19:29
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Re: AWD or front-wheel drive?

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Reading this thread, I made a couple of observations
Like this thread is three years old?
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  #34  
Old 17.10.2020, 19:33
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Re: AWD or front-wheel drive?

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Like this thread is three years old?

Because no horse is dead enough to show automotive expertise
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  #35  
Old 17.10.2020, 19:37
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Re: AWD or front-wheel drive?

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Because no horse is dead enough to show automotive expertise

my own expertise is definitely nothing to boast about, I've never even had the experience of running over a cat



seriously though, as this thread comes up high in search engines, it didn't appear smart to open a new thread
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  #36  
Old 17.10.2020, 19:47
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Re: AWD or front-wheel drive?

One other word of advice: if anybody reading this thread is still uncertain but intent to drive through an avalanche, please consider buying a vehicle with a winch.

If you really get stuck in snow or mud, neither AWD or 4WD will save you but the winch will get you out of it. You can then rescue other vehicles too.



From a practical perspective, a Toyota 4Runner with a winch and snorkel can get out of more situations than a BMW X5 that costs twice as much.


You probably don't need a snorkel in Switzerland because the Swiss build lots of bridges. But the winch is cool for snow and mud.
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  #37  
Old 17.10.2020, 19:53
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Re: AWD or front-wheel drive?

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One other word of advice: if anybody reading this thread is still uncertain but intent to drive through an avalanche, please consider buying a vehicle with a winch.

If you really get stuck in snow or mud, neither AWD or 4WD will save you but the winch will get you out of it. You can then rescue other vehicles too.
.
From a practical perspective, a Toyota 4Runner with a winch and snorkel can get out of more situations than a BMW X5 that costs twice as much.


You probably don't need a snorkel in Switzerland because the Swiss build lots of bridges. But the winch is cool for snow and mud.
Cool, I will remember this for the next time I intend to drive through an avalanche. Also pleased to hear that the Swiss build many bridges.
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  #38  
Old 17.10.2020, 19:57
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Re: AWD or front-wheel drive?

Or just don't drive through an avalanche, which is anyway a lot safer.

Strange choice of comparison vehicles, they're nothing alike - one is a proper off road machine, the other is a luxury SUV.

Practically speaking you could go a step further and get something with tracks, or a piste bully, then you could drive up the avalanche for a laugh.
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Old 18.10.2020, 23:43
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Re: AWD or front-wheel drive?

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One other word of advice: if anybody reading this thread is still uncertain but intent to drive through an avalanche, please consider buying a vehicle with a winch.

If you really get stuck in snow or mud, neither AWD or 4WD will save you but the winch will get you out of it. You can then rescue other vehicles too.



From a practical perspective, a Toyota 4Runner with a winch and snorkel can get out of more situations than a BMW X5 that costs twice as much.


You probably don't need a snorkel in Switzerland because the Swiss build lots of bridges. But the winch is cool for snow and mud.
this is not relevant for people who drive up mountains as a choice anyway. If you don't live there, you can just avoid going when heavy snowfall is announced, it's not like you're going to do much anyway.
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  #40  
Old 19.10.2020, 00:27
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Re: AWD or front-wheel drive?

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this is not relevant for people who drive up mountains as a choice anyway. If you don't live there, you can just avoid going when heavy snowfall is announced, it's not like you're going to do much anyway.

I was thinking about the winch as something like the spare tyre, you don't go out seeking to use it every weekend but if you accidentally drive into something a bit deeper than you thought it would be, the winch might save you
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