Differences Between FWD, AWD, & 4WD

AWD RAM Truck driving down a dirt trail
 

We have a large selection of new vehicles featuring FWD, AWD, and 4WD. While FWD means front-wheel drive, you might be wondering the difference between all-wheel drive and 4 wheel drive since they often get confused. Let’s take a closer look to learn more about front-wheel drive, and compare all-wheel drive vs. 4 wheel drive to see which option works best for your Anaheim commute.

 

 

FWD vs. AWD vs. 4WD Meaning

Depending on your needs, each drivetrain provides different capabilities for your Yorba Linda adventures. Let’s look at the meaning and differences between FWD, AWD, & 4WD:

FWD

FWD or front-wheel drive means power is sent to the front wheels. When you compare FWD vs. AWD, you’ll find that FWD vehicles are typically more fuel-efficient but sacrifice added traction. Typically, when choosing between FWD vs. AWD, the more cost-effective option will likely be FWD.

AWD

AWD refers to all-wheel drive. This means power is sent to the front and rear wheels via a differential. When referring to AWD, there are typically two kinds of AWD systems, full-time and part-time AWD. Full-time AWD means power is sent to the front and rear wheels all the time, and part-time AWD means power is sent to the front/rear axle when a loss of traction is detected. AWD systems are typically found on most crossover SUVs.

4WD

4WD stands for four-wheel drive. 4WD is typically associated with a traditional 4×4 drivetrain on truck-based vehicles. While 4WD is the same as AWD in the sense that all four wheels receive power from the engine, the difference between all-wheel drive and 4 wheel drive is 4WD is able to also direct power between the left and right wheels as well.

Which is Better? Front-Wheel Drive vs. All-Wheel Drive vs. 4 Wheel Drive

Now that we know the difference between all-wheel drive and 4 wheel drive, you might be asking, ‘which is better?’ Each drivetrain is purpose-built for specific needs, but without a doubt, front-wheel drive vehicles are typically more fuel-efficient than their all-wheel drive and 4 wheel drive counterparts. If you’re looking to stay within budget and fuel efficiency is your priority, we would recommend a FWD vehicle for your drives around Santa Ana. 

However, if you’re looking for added traction and you’re comparing all-wheel drive vs. 4 wheel drive, AWD vehicles will typically provide enough capabilities for most drivers. If you’re looking for added ruggedness to take your vehicle off the beaten path or to the Placentia worksite, we recommend a vehicle with 4WD.

Explore FWD, AWD, & 4WD Vehicles at McPeek's Chrysler Dodge Jeep Ram of Anaheim Today!

Our inventory is full of different vehicles with a FWD, AWD, and 4WD drivetrain for all of your driving needs. Whether you’re looking for a budget-friendly, fuel-efficient vehicle or a rugged 4WD vehicle, apply for financing and explore your dream vehicle today. Please reach out and contact us with any questions – we look forward to meeting you!

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