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Old 03-03-2008, 05:27 PM   #41
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Oh yes front wheel drive in deep snow. Not good at all.

Dont tell that to the Sweedish engineers. Saab of Sweeden is a pioneer of front-wheel drive.

Front wheel drive is much, much better for snow traction compared to RWD, generally because the wieght distribution is 70% or so over the drive wheels. The same could be said pretty much for the old rear engine RWD Volkswagon beetles, but front engine and front wheel drive lets you counter steer if one tire has more traction. A front engine-rear drive layout is sometimes compared to pushing a wet noodle. Improved traction control technology and transmission features like 2nd gear start are helping rear wheel drive make a comeback, but front-wheel drive is generally more fuel efficient.
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Old 03-03-2008, 05:30 PM   #42
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interesting reading

FRONT WHEEL DRIVE CAN GET YOU KILLED
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Old 03-03-2008, 05:45 PM   #43
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Summary: Someone learned how to fake a drift with fwd and had to tell the world.

I like the lead-in. But, as someone that has been driving fwd in snowy country forever, I wouldn't be able to tell you how to drive a rwd car in the snow. I can, however, show you some impressive donut maneuvers with a fwd. Bottom line, if you've never driven a rwd then I would think it's a moot point to bring up things like 'front wheel drive is different!'

And, not to toot my own horn or anything, but I was able to safely navigate my car and keep from spinning out while going 75 down the highway in the winter on slick roads when a van in the other lane pulled a pit manuever on my little Accord. Hands down, the scariest 10 seconds of my life.
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Old 03-04-2008, 02:59 AM   #44
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actually the article is pretty true,. when my son first got his license years ago, living in a snow belt i took him one sunday morning to a nice empty slippery parking lot.

we took the pathfinder and the altima .the goal was to let him drive and i would unexpectedly put the emergency brake on throwing the vehicle into a slide and teaching him to recover.

first the pathfinder in rear wheel drive,. i put the e-brake on and the truck slid. he had no problem recovering. piece of cake.

next we put it in 4 wheel drive. took a little longer but again recovered from the slide nice and easy.

then we did the altima. he couldnt recover once it started to skid and slide sideways. being the expierenced snow driver i took the wheel and let him do it to me. ooooh man i couldnt recover the car from the slide either. i never knew why i had so much trouble until i saw that article.
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Old 03-04-2008, 10:48 AM   #45
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My only comment is I think there's a GOOD REASON no NASCARs are FWD...........
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Old 03-04-2008, 12:02 PM   #46
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Front wheel drive can get you killed?


Everything in the article supports the fact that front wheel drive is superior to rear wheel drive. Ignorance is the danger.
Not stated in the article are some exceptions I can think of where weight transfer on acceleration is an issue. Situations like drag racing and tractor pulls are examples.
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Old 03-04-2008, 12:24 PM   #47
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Oh yes front wheel drive in deep snow. Not good at all.
It depends. Tires can make all the difference in the world. In the mid-80's my employer issued fwd Chevy Celebrities in a cost-cutting move. They were driven in all weather (law enforcement). Initially the things were worthless in a half-inch of snow. They put different tires on and then they would keep going until the snow was so deep it packed under the front end. I never got stuck in that car, or any other for that matter.

Snow driving is all about managing momentum.
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Old 03-04-2008, 12:46 PM   #48
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4 snow tires make all the difference in the driving capability of any car when it comes to driving on snow.
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Old 03-04-2008, 04:36 PM   #49
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Front wheel drive can get you killed?


Everything in the article supports the fact that front wheel drive is superior to rear wheel drive. Ignorance is the danger.
Not stated in the article are some exceptions I can think of where weight transfer on acceleration is an issue. Situations like drag racing and tractor pulls are examples.


everything is superior with front wheel drive in bad weather except the thrust of the article was if you start to skid and slide in a fwd dont follow the instructions in the manual that comes with the car. recovering requires gas and brake at the same time to pull out.following the manuals recommendation which was never revised is for rear wheel drive.
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Old 03-04-2008, 04:50 PM   #50
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You've got me curious, I'm going to pull out my manual.. I've never even looked in it to see how to drive.
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Old 03-04-2008, 06:02 PM   #51
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everything is superior with front wheel drive in bad weather except the thrust of the article was if you start to skid and slide in a fwd dont follow the instructions in the manual that comes with the car. recovering requires gas and brake at the same time to pull out.following the manuals recommendation which was never revised is for rear wheel drive.
When I took emergency manuever driver training, my instinct was to stay on the throttle while attempting to recover, but I learned from trail and error it does not work as well as getting completly out of the throttle before gaining directional control. The advice in the article which is ten years old seems oriented to rally driving /power drifting.
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Old 03-04-2008, 07:43 PM   #52
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when it comes to fwd thats kind of how you regain control. modern stability control does exactly that, works gas and brake together at the same time to regain control.
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Old 03-04-2008, 11:39 PM   #53
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when it comes to fwd thats kind of how you regain control. modern stability control does exactly that, works gas and brake together at the same time to regain control.
good point...I agree, sort of. It's just not the same unless you can modulate brakes individually and feather throttle to balance between wheelslip and wheel lock in milliseconds.

Sorry....I feel responsible for driving this thread into the ditch.....lost control and could not recover. I merely wanted to address someone's comment that 4WD helps in braking situations which many of us agree is wrong and a common misconception among SUV drivers.
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Old 03-05-2008, 09:45 AM   #54
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We have had one of the most severe winters here in 20 years. Based on MY observation alone, the majority of vehicles I have seen in the ditch, rolled over in the median, etc, are SUV's..........I doubt that is an anamoly across the USA........

Which type of vehicle are you more likely to get your "doors blown off" by passing you, a Camry or an SUV? Case closed..........
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Old 03-05-2008, 09:47 AM   #55
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We have had one of the most severe winters here in 20 years. Based on MY observation alone, the majority of vehicles I have seen in the ditch, rolled over in the median, etc, are SUV's..........I doubt that is an anamoly across the USA........
I think it's due to a false sense of security. People try things in 4WD SUVs because they assume the vehicle is more immune to the laws of physics, and drive accordingly. As they find out the hard way, they aren't immune.
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Old 03-05-2008, 05:41 PM   #56
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as a 4x4 and fwd car owner i agree. the stability of it cruising compared to a front wheel drive makes it feel like dry pavement . that is as long as you dont have to stop or turn fast. i constantly have to watch my speed ..... its the same on rain slicked roads, theres no fishtailing when you go thru unexpected puddles on the highway like with a 2 wheel drive car and again you just seem to go to fast for conditions..
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