2WD vs 4WD - Toyota RAV4 Forums
4.3 Mechanical Intakes, Exhaust, Tune-ups, 4x4 system, Suspension, Brakes, etc.

View Poll Results: Front-Wheel Drive or Four-Wheel Drive?
Front-Wheel Drive 191 20.90%
Four-Wheel Drive 723 79.10%
Voters: 914. You may not vote on this poll

User Tag List

Reply
 
LinkBack Thread Tools
#1 (permalink) Old 03-18-2006, 01:54 AM
Junky
Guest
 
Posts: n/a
Mentioned: Post(s)
Tagged: Thread(s)
2WD vs 4WD

Hey all,

I am close to placing my order for the RAV4 and am having a hard time deciding whether to get a 2WD or 4WD. I currently live in Colorado (snow-belt) and later this year I will move to Georgia.

Are the 2WDs that much of a hazard in snow? What about rain? Are 4WDs considered safe in snow/ice/rain or when you break suddenly?

Arent all Civics, Corollas, Accord, Camrys 2WDs? Then why have this distinction in SUVs such that the 2WDs are not even offered in the snow-belt.

I am confused and am not sure whether its really worth it to spend the extra $1,400 and get the 4WD. Please advice.
 
Sponsored Links
Advertisement
 
#2 (permalink) Old 03-18-2006, 02:17 AM
R4W Moderator
Country: karrock's Flag is: United States
 
karrock's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2005
Location: Northern VA
Posts: 1,457
Thanks: 0
Thanked 4 Times in 2 Posts
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Garage
Hi Junky --

It really is a matter of preference in some ways, and I don't want to over-generalize, but most any 4WD vehicle should be able to overcome snow, sand, mud or similar slippery situations more easily than a 2WD given a knowledgeable driver behind the wheel.

Being able to gain tire traction from any one of four contact points on the road is not just twice the road holding grip. In addition to the traction control, Hill Assist Control and Downhill Assist Control in the latest RAV4, it also employs an electronic part-time 4WD system that is FWD until it detects wheel slippage, in which case it can send power to the rear wheels in a matter of milliseconds. (Staying in FWD keeps the gas mileage numbers higher)

In its best emulation of "low range", if needed, you can lock the transmission in a 55:45 front/rear split at the touch of a button, but it's only good up to about 25mph.

//Tony -- Three-time RAV'er!
karrock is offline  
#3 (permalink) Old 03-18-2006, 09:53 PM
Senior Member
 
John E Davies's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2006
Location: Spokane WA
Posts: 1,786
Thanks: 0
Thanked 7 Times in 7 Posts
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
AWD or 4WD isn't just about snow. Any time you round a turn and encounter black ice, wet leaves, gravel or any other loose debris on pavement, your vehicle can handle the rapid changes in traction much better when 4 wheels are in the equation.

When you go off-pavement, the reasons to have AWD climb. Gravel forest roads, muddy driveways - all are more easily and more safely handled with AWD.

In high performance driving, AWD makes it easy to go fast in challenging conditions.

And it does sometimes snow in the south.

I wouldn't own a vehicle without it.

John Davies
Spokane WA
John E Davies is offline  
#4 (permalink) Old 03-19-2006, 12:11 PM
Senior Member
 
zaitcev's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2006
Location: Tracy, California
Posts: 419
Thanks: 0
Thanked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
You have to examine road codes in Colorado, but in California and Nevada the main advantage of a 4x4 is that a 4x4 on snow tires are exempt from chain requirements. Driving around Tahoe involves significant changes in elevation, and so you have to put chains on and off all the time and it gets old quickly.

With 4x4 you have to pay for it upfront, you have to get winter tires in addition to normal tires, and you burn somewhat more gas on highway (this is actually the case even on a normal truck with locking hubs, simply because of greater weight).
zaitcev is offline  
#5 (permalink) Old 03-22-2006, 08:43 PM
sstarrx3
Guest
 
Posts: n/a
Mentioned: Post(s)
Tagged: Thread(s)
That fortunately is not the case in Oregon. If a vehicle has 4WD it is exempt from having to put on chains unless there is a partial road closure, then it is required. I go up to the mountains just fine with the standard OEM tires and haven't had the VSC kick in once
 
#6 (permalink) Old 03-23-2006, 11:41 AM
CampingColorado
Guest
 
Posts: n/a
Mentioned: Post(s)
Tagged: Thread(s)
First off, AWD/4WD WILL NOT help you stop any better. It is better traction in the rain and snow.

I've lived in Colorado for a few years now (1 hr north of you) and all of our cars are FWD (moved here from FL). There have been only two days (in March 2003 with the 30"+ blizzard) that I have not been able to drive one of my cars. One of those days, no one was going anywhere. The other day, a friend who came to pick me up got stuck with her 4x4 Pathfinder.

Also, out here, they are better at plowing and clearing the roads. If GA gets a little snow (what we wouldn't think twice about), the roads become really nasty and they close the airport. Also, there's a lot more ice back east than we get out here.

I, personally, would go for the AWD, but that's just me. We keep cars forever and I wouldn't want to say "darn, I wish I had gotten the AWD one" a few years from now. Driving out to go snowshoeing or skiing, it's just a little bit extra insurance, a little more security, as long as you don't overdo it. I don't think you'll compromise your safety at all by buying a FWD, especially one with traction control. Do look and see what's available out here, as I think the only way to get a FWD is with a base 4-cylinder, which may or may not be what you're interested in.

On a side note, the chain laws out here only apply to commercial vehicles, I have negotiated the Eisenhower tunnel and Vail pass with my FWD Camry with all-season tires when the chain requirement was in effect.
 
#7 (permalink) Old 05-04-2006, 07:42 PM
kevino25701
Guest
 
Posts: n/a
Mentioned: Post(s)
Tagged: Thread(s)
Just bought my V-6 RAV4 with 2wd only. I've lived in West Virginia for over ten years and never had a problem with winter/wet conditions with front wheel drive vehicles.

The RAV4 4x4 system only works below 25 mph right? Guess it would be good if you got off pavement or into mud or heavy snow to get you moving.
 
#8 (permalink) Old 05-04-2006, 08:12 PM
Senior Member
Country: Raffor's Flag is: United States
 
Raffor's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2006
Location: Connecticut
Posts: 233
Thanks: 0
Thanked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Not quite right. The lock works up to 25mph. The 4wd should work always on demand (the computer looks for slippage). [/quote]
Raffor is offline  
#9 (permalink) Old 05-27-2006, 02:44 AM
nw
Guest
 
Posts: n/a
Mentioned: Post(s)
Tagged: Thread(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by sstarrx3
That fortunately is not the case in Oregon. If a vehicle has 4WD it is exempt from having to put on chains unless there is a partial road closure, then it is required. I go up to the mountains just fine with the standard OEM tires and haven't had the VSC kick in once
Not necessarily the case in CA either...depends how bad the storm is, but often if you have 4WD chains are not necessary, snow tires or not. This is from experience in Northern Sierra (I-80, Hwy 50). It is rare that 4WD+snow tires are required on the major highways.
 
#10 (permalink) Old 05-27-2006, 10:47 PM
DittoDude
Guest
 
Posts: n/a
Mentioned: Post(s)
Tagged: Thread(s)
I live in the Low Country of South Carolina (flat).
I just bought a Rav4 V6 2WD.
It rarely snows here, rain is no problem and I don't go off-road.
I don't need a 4WD, so I didn't buy one. It's just more stuff to wear out and repair. I do most of my own repairs.

Today I replaced a timing belt & water pump on my '01 Accord V6.
Last weekend I replaced a water pump on my '99 Dakota V8.
 
Sponsored Links
Advertisement
 
Reply

Thread Tools
Show Printable Version Show Printable Version
Email this Page Email this Page



Posting Rules  
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are On
Pingbacks are On
Refbacks are On

 
For the best viewing experience please update your browser to Google Chrome