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Whether you’re an avid camper who’s always outdoors or someone who likes to occasionally drive off the beaten path, we’re sure you’ve looked into buying yourself an all-wheel-drive (AWD) vehicle at some point in your life. Regardless of which brand of car you decide to go for, there are a few things to know before buying an AWD vehicle.
Additional Car Maintenance
Even though most of the internal components of an AWD vehicle are basically the same as those found in a regular car, one of the most notable differences between the two is that AWDs have transfer cases. A lot goes into understanding what a transfer case does, but the key thing to be aware of is that they regulate the amount of power that goes to each wheel.
However, this extra component means that you’ll need to put in some additional effort to keep it in working order. That means topping off its fluids often and changing out broken parts when required. It’s not a huge hassle, but it’s worth noting.
Tire Type and Size are Important
An AWD system is only as good as the tires it has to work with. If you have small, worn-out tires, your AWD will struggle to work as intended. You’ll need to buy tires made specifically for snow, dirt, or whatever else you might drive through. On top of that, some cars work better when the back tires are larger than the front, so be sure to check the manufacturer’s suggestions for your specific vehicle.
Lower Overall Fuel Economy
One of the biggest downsides to AWD is that it has a lower overall fuel economy when compared to other cars. This is because your engine has to power four tires simultaneously instead of two. While that doesn’t mean you’ll go through gas twice as fast, you will notice that you need to fill up your tank slightly more often than you did with your old car.
Can’t Handle All Terrains
Usually, this downside doesn’t bother people because they purchased this car to have improved handling in rougher conditions. However, the most important thing to know before buying an AWD vehicle is that they can’t handle all terrains well.
These vehicles are great at driving through snow or riding through the grass to get to your campsite, but if you want to do some real off-roading, you’ll want to buy a 4WD vehicle instead. As long as you plan to keep your off-road usage to a minimum, though, AWD will be perfect for your needs.