It’s every driver’s nightmare to experience worst handling, but should you consider rear wheel drive cars? Check out why there is a rise in RWD lovers! – Brought to you by PartsAvatar Auto Parts Online.
It might sound conflicting, but the fact remains that RWD is still the choice for purists. Rear wheel drive is generally considered to be the best power train layout for handling, may be this fact attracts its lovers the most!
While the auto market is introducing FWD cars back to back, but there are plenty of reasons that have shifted car manufacturer’s interest towards RWD cars again. So, to begin with, let us brush up our knowledge about FWD and RWD cars. Then you can easily give a thought!
Why are front wheel drive vehicles so common?
A decade ago, it seemed that every car was rear-wheel drive. FWD or RWD has always been a topic for debate. But each technology has its own advantage and disadvantage, though some tag FWD as superior. FWD has gained accolades for its outstanding traction in the snow.
But why were RWD cars replaced by FWD cars? Well the answer is- Fuel efficiency and car safety. Front wheel drive cars are not only lighter in mass with few auto parts involved, but there can also be small yet powerful thus giving an optimized performance.
RWD’s lack of car safety pressured the car manufacturers to think of some other alternative. Auto giants realised that it would be much safer to drive a car with front wheels. As the majority of the weight is on front wheels, if by any chance the car skids or goes out of control, a FWD enables the driver to regain control thus avoiding a fatal accident.
But it is very important to know how to handle skidding situation for such vehicles. If you don’t know how to regain the control for such vehicles, you might get into more trouble. This is because at least half of the weight of the car is on the rear side which could result in car rotating.
A rear wheel drive adds more bulky differential and driveshaft to the equation making the engine perform less efficiently.
In front wheel drive the car’s engine uses a significant portion of its energy just to spin mass in your vehicle. In some road conditions like heavy snow, they can be less intuitive to drive as accelerating while turning sometimes produces undesirable results.
Well, a common driver will definitely choose front wheel drive. But people still want a rear wheel classic power that can be optimized further by auto giants. Even some luxury cars and racing cars are designed with rear wheel drive mechanism. This is because as the weight is uniformly distributed, there is greater balance when the car is in motion.
This makes them easier to handle and if the car needs to be stopped suddenly, yet they outsmart FWD again here.
Why RWD Cars?
It is claimed by RWD lovers that powering the rear wheels gives drivers more ultimate control in corners, because tires begin to lose traction and driver can take turn by reducing or increasing throttle to induce a power slide.
There are various reasons to prefer RWD. Since the entire auto parts are spread out over a wide area, the repair and replacement of car parts is not so expensive. Their repair is not so complicated as it does not require complex disassembly and uses simple tools.
Under dry conditions, more power can be applied on rear wheels and more friction can be utilized towards steering. Even the braking can be smooth. As the weight is uniformly divided between rear and front end, the car stops smoothly while applying brakes.
Also, it provides more predictable steering in low traction conditions as the steering wheel maintains traction and ability to affect the motion of the vehicle even if the drive wheels are slipping.
It has no torque steer. As no complicated drive shaft joints are required at the front wheels it is possible to turn them further than would be possible resulting in smaller steering radius.
Rear wheel ride makes towing easy by putting the wheels closer to the point where the trailer articulates, helping steering for larger loads. Drifting is easier where the rear wheels break free from the pavement as they spin allowing the rear end of the car to move freely from left to right. Counter steering can also be done by turning the wheel in the opposite direction and preparing for the straightway.
Cons of RWD
FWDs have more room, get better mileage and are safer. Since the engine in RWD is in front, this increases the weight of the body. Only experts can handle these cars, those who are newbie find it difficult to maneuver them.
Due to their high cost of assembly and long transmission tunnel they are more expensive than FWD cars. On wet surfaces like rain, snow, they are tougher to navigate as the car is powered from behind.
Due to presence of long transmission tunnel under the body, there is less interior space and leg room which is not quite comfortable with the drivers.
How to Drive RWD in snow?
Driving in snow is not a rookie’s job. It is relatively more dangerous to drive RWD than FWD in snowy roads. But keep some precautionary measures in mind, if you are somehow stuck with your RWD.
It would be better to stay in slow pace. Speed will only make matter worse, so drive slowly.
Don’t take sharp turns. You should know how to control a car in skid. You might get into grave problem because uncontrolled car will eventually lead to fatal accident.
Make sure that you know the road well. Last but not the least- be prepared.
There are various RWD cars such as Ford Mustang, BMW 3 Series, Chevrolet Camaro, Lexus SC and Toyota Supra that are still the best.
Though these cars are risky for inexperienced drivers, auto giants are constantly working for optimization of the safety factors of these cars through constant engineering.
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