What is the difference between All-Wheel Drive and Four-Wheel Drive?

July 14th, 2019 by

If you’re on the market for a quality used SUV or heavy-duty pickup truck, you’ve no doubt been faced with the choice between two of the most popular drivetrains out there – All-Wheel Drive and Four-Wheel Drive. There’s a lot to cover with these two systems, so if you’ve ever wondered “What is the difference between All-Wheel Drive and Four-Wheel Drive?” Our Kelley Lakeland team will take you through them today, as well as which model types they are most common on, and how they operate!

All-Wheel Drive features and operation

The first type of powertrain we’ll be looking at today is All-Wheel Drive, which is most common on today’s SUVs and crossovers. These models feature three differentials (gear trains that distribute power and torque to your axles as needed), located in the rear, center and front parts of your vehicle. As you drive, your SUV can detect which wheels need the most torque to promote traction and grip over the road, and for this reason, All-Wheel Drive is always operational.

Four-Wheel Drive features and operation

On the other side of the spectrum lies Four-Wheel Drive, the trusted and proven powertrain on most light and heavy-duty pickup trucks on the market. As opposed to All-Wheel Drive, which features three differentials, Four-Wheel Drive only offers two, at the front and rear wheels. In the center lies a transfer case, which can redirect power if you toggle your truck’s powertrain settings to initiate Four-Wheel Drive capability.

In any case, the main difference between AWD and 4WD lie in how they function, considering that they both carry largely the same benefits for your model. This means that whether you’re looking at a used SUV or truck, you can expect the same high level of performance on any terrain!

Test drive a used pickup truck or SUV in Lakeland FL

Here at Kelley Lakeland, we carry many top-tier used SUVs (such as the Jeep Wrangler, GMC Terrain, and Chevrolet Tahoe) and pickups (like the Chevrolet Silverado, Ford F-150 and Ram 1500) – we encourage you to contact our sales team if you’d like to schedule a test drive today!

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