747400sp
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Why Affordable RWD Cars Never Stay Long.

Tue Dec 13, 2011 12:09 am

I when I look at how affordable RWD cars, do not sell well, I wonder why? I would think, people would like the push of a RWD car, yet it seems like only people who can afford $ 30 K+ cars, are the ones who buy RWD cars. What would it take, for somebody to drop their Camry and go buy a Charger? Full size cars, should always be a RWD or AWD car.
 
vikkyvik
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RE: Why Affordable RWD Cars Never Stay Long.

Tue Dec 13, 2011 12:52 am

Quoting 747400sp (Thread starter):
Full size cars, should always be a RWD or AWD car.

Why?

Personally, I don't particularly care whether I drive FWD or RWD. Just like I don't care whether I fly on an Airbus or a Boeing. And the majority of people are probably the same way.

So as for what it would take, I'd have to find a car I wanted - that I could afford - that was RWD.
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aerorobnz
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RE: Why Affordable RWD Cars Never Stay Long.

Tue Dec 13, 2011 1:04 am

Quoting 747400sp (Thread starter):
when I look at how affordable RWD cars, do not sell well, I wonder why?

the RWD production costs more to build than FWD, so a 30K FWD car is usually a much higher interior spec than a 30K RWD vehicle. People have been bought off by interior gizmos and gadgets long ago, so if it means that the FWD gains a satnav or leather or something over the RWD vehicle then they'll go for that every time.
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falstaff
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RE: Why Affordable RWD Cars Never Stay Long.

Tue Dec 13, 2011 1:26 am

The Ford Crown Victoria and Mercury Grand Marquis were both affordable RWD cars and both were made for a very long time. They were very popular at one time too. I bought a new Grand Marquis in 2000 and it was just over 20K. I upgraded to 08 Town Car later.

From a mechanic point of view I wish more cars were RWD, they are usually easier to fix.
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BMI727
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RE: Why Affordable RWD Cars Never Stay Long.

Tue Dec 13, 2011 2:09 am

Quoting 747400sp (Thread starter):
Why Affordable RWD Cars Never Stay Long. 

  What cars are these? The Crown Vic just finished up a long and successful production run, the Mustang has been around for 40+ years and the Camaro has made a successful return. The Chrysler LX platform cars, despite being excessively large and heavy, are still doing well and the styling has improved. Nissan's Z has become a quality competitor with other small and affordable sports cars as well, and the Miata keeps on plugging along. Even Toyota is getting into the game with the Scion FR-S. Yes, there is a lack of RWD cars on the market, but the ones that are there generally do pretty well.

The only RWD cars I can think of that had a premature exit were the Pontiac G8 and Solstice, but that was the result of GM's monumental and mostly unrelated problems. Frankly, Pontiac was very nearly the only thing right with GM at the time, and one can only hope that Chevy comes to their senses and makes the Caprice available as a civilian model.
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MoltenRock
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RE: Why Affordable RWD Cars Never Stay Long.

Tue Dec 13, 2011 2:38 am

Quoting 747400sp (Thread starter):
I when I look at how affordable RWD cars, do not sell well, I wonder why? I would think, people would like the push of a RWD car, yet it seems like only people who can afford $ 30 K+ cars, are the ones who buy RWD cars. What would it take, for somebody to drop their Camry and go buy a Charger? Full size cars, should always be a RWD or AWD car.

For one, in the USA, nearly 1/2 of Americans who live in the snow belt aren't that interested in RWD vehicles. They want FWD or AWD/4WD vehicles. If I was ever transferred back to MSP fulltime, I would never, ever, have a car/SUV that wasn't AWD/4WD.
 
BMI727
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RE: Why Affordable RWD Cars Never Stay Long.

Tue Dec 13, 2011 2:45 am

Quoting MoltenRock (Reply 5):
For one, in the USA, nearly 1/2 of Americans who live in the snow belt aren't that interested in RWD vehicles. They want FWD or AWD/4WD vehicles.

AWD is best in the snow, but failing that I much prefer RWD as it gives me control over both ends of the car. In a front wheel drive car, if you begin to skid through a turn all you can do is brake and hope to regain grip before you run out of road. In a rear wheel drive car, I just tap the gas, the rear end rotates right around the corner and I'm on my way.

And starting off on snowy days, especially uphill, I don't want weight shifting away from the drive wheels when I accelerate.
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Superfly
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RE: Why Affordable RWD Cars Never Stay Long.

Tue Dec 13, 2011 4:21 am

Quoting BMI727 (Reply 4):

That's what I was thinking. In fact, the Crown Victoria was around longer than the Mustang. Crown Victoria used to be a trim level to the LTD until 1992. The LTD was a trim level to the Galaxie 500 in which replaced the Fairlane in 1965, which replaced the Crestline in 1955. You can say that the full-sized rear-drive Ford dates back to 1932. Ever before that if you count those that had smaller engines.
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sccutler
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RE: Why Affordable RWD Cars Never Stay Long.

Tue Dec 13, 2011 4:41 am

Quoting BMI727 (Reply 4):

The only RWD cars I can think of that had a premature exit were the Pontiac G8 and Solstice, but that was the result of GM's monumental and mostly unrelated problems. Frankly, Pontiac was very nearly the only thing right with GM at the time, and one can only hope that Chevy comes to their senses and makes the Caprice available as a civilian model.

If they had the minutest lick of market sense, they'd listen to you.

Have you seen what the resale value on G8s is these days?
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flanker
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RE: Why Affordable RWD Cars Never Stay Long.

Tue Dec 13, 2011 4:59 am

Quoting 747400sp (Thread starter):
I when I look at how affordable RWD cars, do not sell well, I wonder why? I would think, people would like the push of a RWD car, yet it seems like only people who can afford $ 30 K+ cars, are the ones who buy RWD cars. What would it take, for somebody to drop their Camry and go buy a Charger? Full size cars, should always be a RWD or AWD car.

Not sure exactly what you mean. RWD domestics and imports sell like hot cakes. From a simple Miata to a E55AMG... not to mention mustangs, chargers...etc. Especially used RWD cars. It also varies on region!

I personally would always go with Quattro but RWD is nice too.
 
MrChips
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RE: Why Affordable RWD Cars Never Stay Long.

Tue Dec 13, 2011 5:49 am

Quoting MoltenRock (Reply 5):
If I was ever transferred back to MSP fulltime, I would never, ever, have a car/SUV that wasn't AWD/4WD.

I've driven BMWs now for almost five years through Canadian winters (all of them RWD, I might add); not only have I never had a problem in the winter with any of them, I can't see myself ever wanting to drive a FWD or AWD car in the winter, to say nothing of the summer. In fact, a couple of weeks ago, I took my 330Ci into the mountains for a day of skiing; not even driving up a steep, snowy mountain road did I have any any problems getting enough traction. Mind you, a good set of winter tires goes a long way to helping with that.

Quoting BMI727 (Reply 6):
I much prefer RWD as it gives me control over both ends of the car. In a front wheel drive car, if you begin to skid through a turn all you can do is brake and hope to regain grip before you run out of road. In a rear wheel drive car, I just tap the gas, the rear end rotates right around the corner and I'm on my way.

  

The sad thing is, most people are so clueless about car control that RWD is more of a detriment than anything else.
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Kaphias
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RE: Why Affordable RWD Cars Never Stay Long.

Tue Dec 13, 2011 7:13 am

Quoting MrChips (Reply 10):
Mind you, a good set of winter tires goes a long way to helping with that.

This. I found that out the hard way this winter when I was stuck with summer tires on my Subaru (AWD) for the first big snow. Nearly went off the road three times. Got some new studs, and now I can't even get it to slide around in a parking lot.
 
PHLBOS
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RE: Why Affordable RWD Cars Never Stay Long.

Tue Dec 13, 2011 3:22 pm

Quoting MrChips (Reply 10):
The sad thing is, most people are so clueless about car control that RWD is more of a detriment than anything else.

   What's even sadder about this is that many of these individuals learned how to drive at a time when the majority of vehicles on the road came only RWD. I have to keep reminding some of my friends who are my age and older, that most of us dealt with RWD before and should know how to handle one in those situations.

Quoting MrChips (Reply 10):
Mind you, a good set of winter tires goes a long way to helping with that.

   Growing up in Massachusetts and only owning & driving RWD cars; placing snow tires (usually studded) on the rear wheels and removing them in the spring was an annual ritual.

Quoting Kaphias (Reply 11):
This. I found that out the hard way this winter when I was stuck with summer tires on my Subaru (AWD) for the first big snow. Nearly went off the road three times.

2 years ago, following a snowstorm that hit the Northeast that previous evening; at three different locations along I-84 in Connecticut, the only abandoned vehicles I saw (while driving from Greater Philly to Greater Boston in my Crown Vic) in the median (presumably from the night before, they looked like they veered off the road) were Subarus. I guess those 3 drivers got a little too confident that previous evening.

It's also worth noting that the lower profile tires that many sporty vehicles (regardless of whether they're RWD, FWD, AWD) offer don't do ANY themselves any favors when it comes to driving in the snow. Case in point: my sister-in-law's 2003 Taurus w/17" tires drives WORSE in the snow than my brother's 1998 Sable wagon w/15" tires; and these 2 vehicles are essentially the same size, drivetrain (FWD) & platform.

[Edited 2011-12-13 07:25:21]
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Francoflier
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RE: Why Affordable RWD Cars Never Stay Long.

Tue Dec 13, 2011 4:29 pm

Quoting PHLBOS (Reply 12):
It's also worth noting that the lower profile tires that many sporty vehicles (regardless of whether they're RWD, FWD, AWD) offer don't do ANY themselves any favors when it comes to driving in the snow.

This has more to do with the width of the tire than the rim diameter.

Narrower tires spread the weight of the car over a much smaller area and improve traction in wet or snowy conditions.
There was always this unverified legend around here that a RWD Porsche would beaten up a snowy mountain road by a 2CV and its bicycle wheels. Sounds a bit extreme, but it illustrates the point...

As for cheap RWD cars, it's one of the reason I wish I lived in North America. RWD cars are still reachable on a budget, (though they're not all good)...
Here in Euroland, FWD reigns king and has a Diesel engine for a Queen. Unless you are wealthy enough for a BMW or one of the few remaining RWD Audis and Mercs.
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srqmuc
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RE: Why Affordable RWD Cars Never Stay Long.

Tue Dec 13, 2011 4:57 pm

Quoting francoflier (Reply 13):
Here in Euroland, FWD reigns king and has a Diesel engine for a Queen. Unless you are wealthy enough for a BMW or one of the few remaining RWD Audis and Mercs.

Audi unfortunately only offers FWD and AWD, no RWD at all! I just wanted to clarify that, not that you end up buying one, hoping for some RWD fun!  
 
Superfly
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RE: Why Affordable RWD Cars Never Stay Long.

Tue Dec 13, 2011 4:58 pm

Quoting PHLBOS (Reply 12):
What's even sadder about this is that many of these individuals learned how to drive at a time when the majority of vehicles on the road came only RWD. I have to keep reminding some of my friends who are my age and older, that most of us dealt with RWD before and should know how to handle one in those situations.

Interesting how fast people forget.

Quoting PHLBOS (Reply 12):
2 years ago, following a snowstorm that hit the Northeast that previous evening; at three different locations along I-84 in Connecticut, the only abandoned vehicles I saw (while driving from Greater Philly to Greater Boston in my Crown Vic) in the median (presumably from the night before, they looked like they veered off the road) were Subarus. I guess those 3 drivers got a little too confident that previous evening.

It's also worth noting that the lower profile tires that many sporty vehicles (regardless of whether they're RWD, FWD, AWD) offer don't do ANY themselves any favors when it comes to driving in the snow. Case in point: my sister-in-law's 2003 Taurus w/17" tires drives WORSE in the snow than my brother's 1998 Sable wagon w/15" tires; and these 2 vehicles are essentially the same size, drivetrain (FWD) & platform.

  
You should see I-80 between Sacramento & Reno when there is a snowstorm. Most of the vehicles in the ditches are newer SUVs and AWD vehicles. Most of the SUVs are crossovers or luxury brand models.
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Klaus
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RE: Why Affordable RWD Cars Never Stay Long.

Tue Dec 13, 2011 5:05 pm

Quoting francoflier (Reply 13):
or one of the few remaining RWD Audis

I'm not aware of any RWD AUDI model. They're all FWD or 4WD as far as I know.

Quoting francoflier (Reply 13):
and Mercs

They're almost all RWD or 4WD, with the sole exception of the FWD A class, as far as I'm aware.

Quoting MrChips (Reply 10):
I took my 330Ci into the mountains for a day of skiing; not even driving up a steep, snowy mountain road did I have any any problems getting enough traction.

The problem with RWD on snow generally is not traction, it's control.
 
PHLBOS
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RE: Why Affordable RWD Cars Never Stay Long.

Tue Dec 13, 2011 6:48 pm

Quoting francoflier (Reply 13):
Quoting PHLBOS (Reply 12):
It's also worth noting that the lower profile tires that many sporty vehicles (regardless of whether they're RWD, FWD, AWD) offer don't do ANY themselves any favors when it comes to driving in the snow.

This has more to do with the width of the tire than the rim diameter.

True, but many of the low profile tire examples I've seen and are referring to are also wider as well as lower in height than the more standard tires on the smaller rim.

In reference to my earlier comparision of my brother's '98 Sable vs. his wife's '03 Taurus... the 15-inches on the '98 are indeed narrower than the 17-inchers on the '03.
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MarSciGuy
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RE: Why Affordable RWD Cars Never Stay Long.

Tue Dec 13, 2011 9:57 pm

Quoting MoltenRock (Reply 5):

Quoting 747400sp (Thread starter):
I when I look at how affordable RWD cars, do not sell well, I wonder why? I would think, people would like the push of a RWD car, yet it seems like only people who can afford $ 30 K+ cars, are the ones who buy RWD cars. What would it take, for somebody to drop their Camry and go buy a Charger? Full size cars, should always be a RWD or AWD car.

For one, in the USA, nearly 1/2 of Americans who live in the snow belt aren't that interested in RWD vehicles. They want FWD or AWD/4WD vehicles. If I was ever transferred back to MSP fulltime, I would never, ever, have a car/SUV that wasn't AWD/4WD.
Quoting BMI727 (Reply 6):
Quoting MoltenRock (Reply 5):
For one, in the USA, nearly 1/2 of Americans who live in the snow belt aren't that interested in RWD vehicles. They want FWD or AWD/4WD vehicles.

AWD is best in the snow, but failing that I much prefer RWD as it gives me control over both ends of the car. In a front wheel drive car, if you begin to skid through a turn all you can do is brake and hope to regain grip before you run out of road. In a rear wheel drive car, I just tap the gas, the rear end rotates right around the corner and I'm on my way.

And starting off on snowy days, especially uphill, I don't want weight shifting away from the drive wheels when I accelerate.

A former coworker of mine bought a Chrysler (300?) RWD car for the luxe appeal it had - then tried to drive over the Newport - Pell bridge (RI) in the winter after an inch or two of snow had fallen and couldn't make it up the on-ramp, let alone the bridge itself... I've always been told that Front Wheel drive is much smarter/safer to get then RWD in the northeast, especially when you don't need Four or All Wheel drive....
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Kiwirob
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RE: Why Affordable RWD Cars Never Stay Long.

Tue Dec 13, 2011 11:13 pm

Quoting falstaff (Reply 3):
From a mechanic point of view I wish more cars were RWD, they are usually easier to fix.

That would all depend on thecar, I'm sure a prestige RWD car is far more complex than something cheap nasty with FWD.

Quoting BMI727 (Reply 6):
In a rear wheel drive car, I just tap the gas, the rear end rotates right around the corner and I'm on my way.

And lots of other people who today all learn to drive in FWD cars would tap the gas and end up backwards in a ditch.

Quoting MrChips (Reply 10):
In fact, a couple of weeks ago, I took my 330Ci into the mountains for a day of skiing; not even driving up a steep, snowy mountain road did I have any any problems getting enough traction. Mind you, a good set of winter tires goes a long way to helping with that.

Your's must had glue on it's tyres, I had trouble getting our e91 up the street to the main road in deep snow, whereas the V70 we replaced it with never had a problem.

Quoting klaus (Reply 16):
I'm not aware of any RWD AUDI model. They're all FWD or 4WD as far as I know.

The R8 LMS is the only production Audi RWD car, ok it's a low volume model but anyone can buy one, they just can't drive it on the road.

Quoting klaus (Reply 16):
They're almost all RWD or 4WD, with the sole exception of the FWD A class, as far as I'm aware.

And the B class, that's also FWD.

Quoting Superfly (Reply 15):
Most of the vehicles in the ditches are newer SUVs and AWD vehicles. Most of the SUVs are crossovers or luxury brand models.

Must be different drivers in the US, because when ever I see a car off the road, usually 3-4 times a week when it's snowing it's mostly an older model without all the electronic driver aids which new cars have today.
 
747400sp
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RE: Why Affordable RWD Cars Never Stay Long.

Wed Dec 14, 2011 12:44 am

Quoting klaus (Reply 16):
Quoting francoflier (Reply 13):
or one of the few remaining RWD Audis

I'm not aware of any RWD AUDI model. They're all FWD or 4WD as far as I know.



The A8 in the Transporter was RWD.    I know it was an Audi A8 body put on a RWD plat form for the movie.




Audi should at least, look into making a RWD A9 or changing the A8 to RWD. The S class is RWD, the 7 series is RWD and even the newest entry into the German luxury flagship sedans, Porsches Panamerica is RWD. The A8 is going to lack in speed.


Acura need to make a RWD flagship, because the RL can only compete with the Lexus ES, not the LS.
 
L410Turbolet
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RE: Why Affordable RWD Cars Never Stay Long.

Wed Dec 14, 2011 1:07 am

Quoting PHLBOS (Reply 12):
placing snow tires (usually studded) on the rear wheels and removing them in the spring was an annual ritual.

Putting snow tires on one axle only is more dangerous than driving without them.
 
Klaus
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RE: Why Affordable RWD Cars Never Stay Long.

Wed Dec 14, 2011 1:22 am

Quoting KiwiRob (Reply 19):
The R8 LMS is the only production Audi RWD car, ok it's a low volume model but anyone can buy one, they just can't drive it on the road.

Hm. The regular R8 has 4WD. But I guess it's possible to somehow unhook the front wheels. But what for?

Quoting KiwiRob (Reply 19):
And the B class, that's also FWD.

Ah, right. Always forget about that ugly abomination.   

Quoting 747400sp (Reply 20):
Audi should at least, look into making a RWD A9 or changing the A8 to RWD.

Again: What for? It would drive worse than the 4WD and would be less safe.

Quoting MarSciGuy (Reply 18):
A former coworker of mine bought a Chrysler (300?) RWD car for the luxe appeal it had - then tried to drive over the Newport - Pell bridge (RI) in the winter after an inch or two of snow had fallen and couldn't make it up the on-ramp, let alone the bridge itself...

If it had been RWD with the same (probably summer) tires, he would likely not just not have made it either, but also might have gone into the ditch.
 
BMI727
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RE: Why Affordable RWD Cars Never Stay Long.

Wed Dec 14, 2011 4:23 am

Quoting MarSciGuy (Reply 18):
A former coworker of mine bought a Chrysler (300?) RWD car for the luxe appeal it had - then tried to drive over the Newport - Pell bridge (RI) in the winter after an inch or two of snow had fallen and couldn't make it up the on-ramp, let alone the bridge itself...

You should tell him that summer tires are for summer. And maybe he shouldn't get a rental spec 300.

Quoting KiwiRob (Reply 19):
And lots of other people who today all learn to drive in FWD cars would tap the gas and end up backwards in a ditch.

If you're an idiot the only way to stay safe is to stay home.

Quoting klaus (Reply 22):
The regular R8 has 4WD. But I guess it's possible to somehow unhook the front wheels. But what for?

It depends on the architecture of the system I think. Considering that Lamborghini hasn't had any issues building RWD Gallardos, I would think that Audi could do it if they really wanted to.

Frankly though, on a track it's probably a wash that comes down to driver preference and the exact details of the AWD system vs. RWD. On one hand, a smart AWD system can probably put power down effectively enough to negate the weight disadvantage in some cases, but then advanced RWD traction systems could probably draw those pretty close to AWD performance as well. It's a close call either way and is really something that should be looked at on a case by case basis. A good compromise might be hybrid systems like the Porsche 918's. Batteries or a flywheel large enough to drive around town pose a serious problem, but enough juice to get a bit more power and effectiveness putting it down out of corners is not such a poor tradeoff, especially considering the weight of a conventional AWD system.

But sports car people, the good ones anyway, seem to agree on one thing: front wheel drive sucks.
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PHLBOS
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RE: Why Affordable RWD Cars Never Stay Long.

Wed Dec 14, 2011 1:29 pm

Quoting L410Turbolet (Reply 21):
Quoting PHLBOS (Reply 12):
placing snow tires (usually studded) on the rear wheels and removing them in the spring was an annual ritual.

Putting snow tires on one axle only is more dangerous than driving without them.

That's only true if the vehicle in question has either AWD or 4WD. I was specifically referring to 2WD vehicles.

I stated this in another thread but I'll state it here again. Don't people fully read posts anymore?

Again, let me remind you that RWD has been around a lot longer than FWD, AWD and likely 4WD; the the above reference snow tires placed on the drivetrain wheels is based on DECADES of experience (including my own).
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falstaff
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RE: Why Affordable RWD Cars Never Stay Long.

Wed Dec 14, 2011 3:19 pm

Quoting KiwiRob (Reply 19):
I'm sure a prestige RWD car is far more complex than something cheap nasty with FWD.


Not really. It is usually all about space. There are a lot of FWD cheap cars that have some of the tightest engine compartments I've ever seen. I would much rather remove a transmission on a high end RWD drive car than most anything FWD.

Quoting KiwiRob (Reply 19):
Must be different drivers in the US, because when ever I see a car off the road, usually 3-4 times a week when it's snowing it's mostly an older model without all the electronic driver aids which new cars have today


I see all kinds of cars off the road, usually more modern ones. People think that because they have all kinds of fancy features that help in bad weather driving that they can still drive fast, which is usually never the case. Back when I worked for Ford doing warranty claim analysis there would be an uptick in 4x4 related problems, particularly on SUVs, from an area of the country that had heavy snow, especially if the area wasn't used to getting heavy snow. People would claim 4x4 and ABS weren't working correctly in a snow/ice storm. Most of the time technicians found no trouble, the complaints were usually from people that expected too much from their cars and weren't familiar with snow/ice driving.

When the weather is bad I drive my 2 wheel drive Ford F100, with no power steering, no power brakes, no nothing! and I make it wherever I need to go. I have never got any of my RWD cars stuck in the snow. It is all about being smart and knowing how to drive.
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WildcatYXU
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RE: Why Affordable RWD Cars Never Stay Long.

Wed Dec 14, 2011 3:29 pm

Quoting PHLBOS (Reply 24):
That's only true if the vehicle in question has either AWD or 4WD. I was specifically referring to 2WD vehicles.

Actually, It's especially dangerous on certain 2WD vehicles. FWD with winter tyres on the front axle is very bad. RWD vehicles with winter tyres in the back are acceptable.


Now to answer the OP's question what would it take to drop the Camry for a Charger; I don't know. But I know why I don't drive a Charger: it doesn't have enough pedals. As soon as Chrysler (substitute with any domestic brand) offers a vehicle I can afford (roughly in the Charger SXT price range) and it the meets my quite minimalistic requirements, I'll buy it.
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ALTF4
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RE: Why Affordable RWD Cars Never Stay Long.

Wed Dec 14, 2011 3:32 pm

Wow, lots of people talking about "people who learn to drive today" and "stupid people who haven't...", etc. Please excuse me while I go execute myself for being young and not rich enough to learn to drive all different kinds of cars out there.

/s

Sure, there is definitely the aspect of not driving in something you cannot handle or in conditions you cannot handle - especially when you can easily kill somebody. I think some of the responses here are a little over the top, though. Feel free to ignore me, though, since I drive a little old grandma's car ('99 camry, FWD of course). Thank god it doesn't snow much where I live, otherwise I suppose I shouldn't even bother trying to drive.

Carry on...
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PHLBOS
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RE: Why Affordable RWD Cars Never Stay Long.

Wed Dec 14, 2011 5:04 pm

Quoting WildcatYXU (Reply 26):
Actually, It's especially dangerous on certain 2WD vehicles.

Out of curiousity, which 2WD vehicles would that apply to? This is the first I've heard of such.

Quoting WildcatYXU (Reply 26):
FWD with winter tyres on the front axle is very bad.

Again, this is the first I've heard of of such.

Quoting WildcatYXU (Reply 26):
RWD vehicles with winter tyres in the back are acceptable.

Which was the primary example I was referring to AND have had the most experience with (along with generations of other drivers).

Please remember that life and driving in snow DID exist before the widespread use or availability of 4WD, AWD and even FWD... and guess what? We all managed and survived.

Quoting ALTF4 (Reply 27):
Please excuse me while I go execute myself for being young and not rich enough to learn to drive all different kinds of cars out there.

Who said anything about being rich to drive several different types of cars? Sometimes, it depends on how many cars your household/family has. Among RWD models, one can find many used 2WD trucks, vans, SUVs, Crown Vics, Grand Marquis, Town Cars, Mustangs, Camaros, Firebirds, etc. on the market; even more so if one's willing to looking into older (greater than 10 years) models.

Quoting ALTF4 (Reply 27):
I drive a little old grandma's car ('99 camry, FWD of course). Thank god it doesn't snow much where I live, otherwise I suppose I shouldn't even bother trying to drive.

Please, you're over-dramatizing. Unless you planning to take your car off-roading or driving through deep, unplowed streets; your FWD Camry should be fine. Just pay attention regarding what tires you use or buy as replacements and also don't drive like an idiot (not that you would).

Once upon a time, many car companies were touting FWD as means of getting through snow better than RWD; though the real reason for it was due to weight reduction (to better meet CAFE standards) and better interior space utilization (to compensate for the downsizing that took place during that time). Fast-forward to today, and the similar advertising approach is being applied towards AWD.

Worth noting: a RWD vehicle equipped with a limited-slip differential (think My Cousin Vinny here) can level the foul weather playing field... at least vs. FWD.

See YouTube clip below (particularly after 1:40):
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8D4DkwWfM-U&feature=related

While AWD, even on a FWD-based vehicle, may make sense in areas where there's a LOT of snow on average. For other areas that usually get less snow (on average); AWD, IMHO, is a big waste of money in terms purchase cost (AWDs typically cost more than their 2WD counterparts), maintenance (AWD means more and/or complicated components to maintain/fix) and fuel economy (that extra weight reduces fuel consumption).

Upshoot: AWD on a FWD-based vehicle is extremely over-rated IMHO.
"TransEastern! You'll feel like you've never left the ground because we treat you like dirt!" SNL Parady ad circa 1981
 
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WildcatYXU
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RE: Why Affordable RWD Cars Never Stay Long.

Wed Dec 14, 2011 5:25 pm

Quoting PHLBOS (Reply 28):
Out of curiousity, which 2WD vehicles would that apply to? This is the first I've heard of such

FWD vehicles are 2WD, aren't they?

Quoting PHLBOS (Reply 28):
Again, this is the first I've heard of of such.

That's surprising. Having winter tyres only on FWD vehicle's the front axle can change understeering into oversteering in the worst possible moment. A test is decribed here:

http://www.tirerack.com/winter/tech/techpage.jsp?techid=164

Quoting PHLBOS (Reply 28):
Please remember that life and driving in snow DID exist before the widespread use or availability of 4WD, AWD and even FWD... and guess what? We all managed and survived.

You are telling me?            

Just out of curiousity, what's your mileage driving crap like Skodas and Ladas from the seventies in winter conditions?
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PHLBOS
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RE: Why Affordable RWD Cars Never Stay Long.

Wed Dec 14, 2011 6:16 pm

Quoting WildcatYXU (Reply 29):
Just out of curiousity, what's your mileage driving crap like Skodas and Ladas from the seventies in winter conditions?

              
I believe that you have me confused w/someone else; which surprises me given that you've been an A.net member since 2006. My past and present vehicles (that I've occasionally talked about in past threads) are all RWD and are of the Ford, Mercury and/or Chevy varieties and all but one were/are full-sizes. And, yes, I did place snow tires on the rear during the winter months on most of them. Did that mean that I could drive like one would go off-roading in a 4WD truck? No, but those tires helped cut through snow better.

I don't believe that Skodas and Ladas were even sold in the U.S. At least not in Massachusetts. My first experience with winter driving was in 1982 w/a 1969 Ford LTD.

Quoting WildcatYXU (Reply 29):
FWD vehicles are 2WD, aren't they?

Fair enough, you should have stated FWD as the 'certain' 2WD vehicles from the get-go. Just saying...

Quoting WildcatYXU (Reply 29):
Having winter tyres only on FWD vehicle's the front axle can change understeering into oversteering in the worst possible moment. A test is decribed here:

http://www.tirerack.com/winter/tech/...d=164

Thanks for the info. My main reason for not knowing that likely stems from the fact that I personally have NEVER owned a FWD vehicle in my life. Any FWD vehicle that my family members have owned or (or own now) never bothered with using snow tires. Whether the reason(s) for not doing so were because of that info. or due to FWDs usually handling better in the snow than most RWDs is anyone's guess. I never asked them. I can ask them next week when I'm up there for my annual Christmastime visit.
"TransEastern! You'll feel like you've never left the ground because we treat you like dirt!" SNL Parady ad circa 1981
 
Kiwirob
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RE: Why Affordable RWD Cars Never Stay Long.

Wed Dec 14, 2011 8:24 pm

Quoting klaus (Reply 22):

Hm. The regular R8 has 4WD. But I guess it's possible to somehow unhook the front wheels. But what for?

The R( LMS is built for GT3 racing where AWD isn't allowed.

Quoting 747400sp (Reply 20):

The A8 in the Transporter was RWD. I know it was an Audi A8 body put on a RWD plat form for the movie.

I doubt it, they probably just removed the drive to the front wheels. It was fairly common for people to do this with the R32 Skyline.

Quoting BMI727 (Reply 23):

If you're an idiot the only way to stay safe is to stay home.

Then you're talking about the vast majority of drivers on the roads today.

Quoting WildcatYXU (Reply 26):
FWD with winter tyres on the front axle is very bad.

Which only makes any sense if you ad the following "if you don't have winter tyres on the rear wheels". Only a fool would do that.

Quoting PHLBOS (Reply 28):
Worth noting: a RWD vehicle equipped with a limited-slip differential (think My Cousin Vinny here) can level the foul weather playing field... at least vs. FWD.

If you don't have enough weight over those wheels an LSD isn't going to help much.

Quoting PHLBOS (Reply 24):
Again, let me remind you that RWD has been around a lot longer than FWD

Not really true, the first front wheel drive car was built in 1893 by Graff & Stift, not much later than Benz in 1885.
 
MarSciGuy
Posts: 456
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RE: Why Affordable RWD Cars Never Stay Long.

Wed Dec 14, 2011 8:51 pm

Quoting klaus (Reply 22):
Quoting MarSciGuy (Reply 18):
A former coworker of mine bought a Chrysler (300?) RWD car for the luxe appeal it had - then tried to drive over the Newport - Pell bridge (RI) in the winter after an inch or two of snow had fallen and couldn't make it up the on-ramp, let alone the bridge itself...

If it had been RWD with the same (probably summer) tires, he would likely not just not have made it either, but also might have gone into the ditch.

I haven't talked to him in years as I left the job (and became a teacher  ) but it would not surprise me to have found out that he did not have snow tires... it is very weird here in RI, but snow tires practically have to be special ordered! As for going into the ditch, that would be preferable to suicide-by-car that would happen if he had made it up the slight grade of the on-ramp and onto the suspension bridge over Narragansett Bay...

Quoting BMI727 (Reply 23):
Quoting MarSciGuy (Reply 18):
You should tell him that summer tires are for summer. And maybe he shouldn't get a rental spec 300.

Trying to talk him into logical/practical applications of his money instead of luxurious (or faux-luxurious) applications always seemed about as effective as talking to a concrete wall...
"There weren't a ton of gnats there where a ton of gnats and their families as well!"
 
PHLBOS
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RE: Why Affordable RWD Cars Never Stay Long.

Wed Dec 14, 2011 9:20 pm

Quoting KiwiRob (Reply 31):
Quoting PHLBOS (Reply 24):
Again, let me remind you that RWD has been around a lot longer than FWD

Not really true, the first front wheel drive car was built in 1893 by Graff & Stift, not much later than Benz in 1885.

Okay, I will rephrase my earlier quote. See below with clarification underlined and shown in bold:

RWD has been around AND sold among the masses a lot longer than FWD

BTW, ONLY one of that 1893 Graff & Stift model was ever made; hardly a mass-produced vehicle.

Most very early-produced FWD vehicles either only had 3 wheels (2 in the front, one in back) and/or weren't intended to be sold to consumers. They were basically experimental vehicles of the time. It wasn't until the early 1930s that FWD vehicles (w/4 wheels) started being produced for consumers.
"TransEastern! You'll feel like you've never left the ground because we treat you like dirt!" SNL Parady ad circa 1981
 
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falstaff
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RE: Why Affordable RWD Cars Never Stay Long.

Wed Dec 14, 2011 9:24 pm

Quoting WildcatYXU (Reply 29):
FWD vehicles are 2WD, aren't they?

Usually....

But something like a Ford Escape can be AWD, but it is basically a FWD car. Ford's technical hotline puts the Escape in the FWD car group.

Quoting WildcatYXU (Reply 29):

Just out of curiousity, what's your mileage driving crap like Skodas and Ladas from the seventies in winter conditions?

I saw a guy drive a Trabant in the snow once. It didn't want to go at first, but it went up a snow covered street just fine. I, on the other hand, was walking with some difficulty in the snow.

Quoting PHLBOS (Reply 30):
I don't believe that Skodas and Ladas were even sold in the U.S. At least not in Massachusetts

They were not, but the Lada was sold in Canada, there was a dealership in Windsor, Ontario. I don't know how many they ever sold. Maybe it was a front to get Soviet agents (posing as car salesmen) close to the US border. I have been told that Trabants were also sold in Canada. I can't imagine how well a two stroke air cooled turd would do up there. I guess your hard core commies probably drove them.

Quoting PHLBOS (Reply 28):
Worth noting: a RWD vehicle equipped with a limited-slip differential (think My Cousin Vinny here) can level the foul weather playing field... at least vs. FWD.

My 08 Lincoln Town Car is pretty good in the snow. The traction and stability control do a great job. I try to slide it around a turn in the snow and it will correct every time. I shut that system off and it is donut city!
My mug slaketh over on Falstaff N503
 
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Francoflier
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RE: Why Affordable RWD Cars Never Stay Long.

Wed Dec 14, 2011 10:08 pm

Quoting srqmuc (Reply 14):
Audi unfortunately only offers FWD and AWD, no RWD at all!
Quoting klaus (Reply 16):
I'm not aware of any RWD AUDI model.

Yeah sorry, late night post. Don't know where I got a RWD Audi from... Wishful thinking I suppose.

Quoting KiwiRob (Reply 19):
That would all depend on thecar, I'm sure a prestige RWD car is far more complex than something cheap nasty with FWD.

Not really, the basic architecture is far more simple and accessible. Of course newer cars (both FWD and RWD) tend to be mechanically cluttered these days but I'd still rather do a clutch on a BMW than on most FWD compact cars.

In a FWD, you have to almost undo the entire front end drivegear, undo some engine mounts and temporarily support the engine just to get the box out.
You even have to get engine mounts off just to do a timing belt on some models...

Quoting falstaff (Reply 25):
Not really. It is usually all about space. There are a lot of FWD cheap cars that have some of the tightest engine compartments I've ever seen. I would much rather remove a transmission on a high end RWD drive car than most anything FWD.

  
I'll do my own airline. With Blackjack. And hookers. In fact, forget the airline.
 
MrChips
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RE: Why Affordable RWD Cars Never Stay Long.

Wed Dec 14, 2011 11:05 pm

Quoting KiwiRob (Reply 19):
Your's must had glue on it's tyres, I had trouble getting our e91 up the street to the main road in deep snow, whereas the V70 we replaced it with never had a problem.

I would chalk it up to the winter tires more than anything, honestly. With my 330, I decided to try out Michelin Pilot Alpins instead of the Michelin X-Ice I used on my E46 M3 and the RFT Blizzaks on my E82 135i. The Blizzak and X-Ice tires are both very aggressive winter tires and were an absolute necessity on the M3, what with its need for wide, 17" rubber (17" wheels can fit on a standard M3, as opposed to the stock, staggered-fit 18s for which there are only a handful of very expensive winter tires available), but less so for the 135, I found. I figured I would give the Pilot Alpins a try, as they trade some snow traction for much better dry pavement behaviour. So far, I haven't found myself wanting for more traction on snow, but I have noticed they are much quieter and more stable on dry, clear pavement.
Time...to un-pimp...ze auto!
 
photopilot
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RE: Why Affordable RWD Cars Never Stay Long.

Thu Dec 15, 2011 12:54 am

Quoting BMI727 (Reply 6):
In a front wheel drive car, if you begin to skid through a turn all you can do is brake and hope to regain grip before you run out of road. In a rear wheel drive car, I just tap the gas, the rear end rotates right around the corner and I'm on my way.

Let's start off by saying that I drove RWD for many years and also used to Rally a RWD car. That said, I loved to do what you say and "steer" the car around a corner with a tap of the gas pedal to get the back end to come around. IMHO, anybody who doesn't have the skill to do this (and control it) is in serious need of remedial driving lessons.

Now however, I'm driving a FWD car (still with a 5-sp however) and when that dreaded front-wheel plow occurs (understeer) my answer is a quick tug on the hand-brake to get the back end rotating around and that works pretty darn good as well.

As to tires, it's snows on all 4 corners but they are narrower and taller than the summer wheel/tires.
 
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WildcatYXU
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RE: Why Affordable RWD Cars Never Stay Long.

Thu Dec 15, 2011 3:46 am

Quoting PHLBOS (Reply 30):
I believe that you have me confused w/someone else; which surprises me given that you've been an A.net member since 2006.

Actually no, I didn't confuse you with anyone. I just wanted to tell you that there were much worse vehicles to drive than RWD Chevys, Fords and Mercurys. And yet, we all (OK, the wast majority of us) survived.

Quoting KiwiRob (Reply 31):
Which only makes any sense if you ad the following "if you don't have winter tyres on the rear wheels".

Well, we were discussing winter tyres on one axle, so it was somewhat self explanatory. But you're right, I should have added "only". And guess what, I've seen several fools who had winter tyres on the front axle only. One was even proud of it!

Quoting PHLBOS (Reply 30):
I personally have NEVER owned a FWD vehicle in my life.

Lucky you!

Quoting falstaff (Reply 34):
I saw a guy drive a Trabant in the snow once. It didn't want to go at first, but it went up a snow covered street just fine.

Well, the Trabant is FWD, so it doesn't fall into the category of old eastern RWD cars. That said, the Skoda was good in the snow, as long as you watched the over-steering (think Corvair).
As far as the Trabant is concerned, I never drove one. I drove, however, another east-German contraption - the Wartburg. That was FWD too, body on frame and was quite a bit larger than the Trabant. And it wasn't made of Duroplast.
310, 319, 320, 321, 321N, 332, 333, 343, 345, 346, 732, 735, 73G, 738, 744, 752, 762, 763, 77L, 77W, 788, AT4, AT7, BEH, CR2, CRA, CR9, DH1, DH3, DH4, E45, E75, E90, E95, F28, F50, F100, MD82, Saab 340, YAK40
 
Klaus
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RE: Why Affordable RWD Cars Never Stay Long.

Thu Dec 15, 2011 11:53 am

Quoting KiwiRob (Reply 31):
The R( LMS is built for GT3 racing where AWD isn't allowed.

Ah, okay. That explains it.  
 
Quoting MarSciGuy (Reply 32):
I haven't talked to him in years as I left the job (and became a teacher &nbsp  but it would not surprise me to have found out that he did not have snow tires... it is very weird here in RI, but snow tires practically have to be special ordered! As for going into the ditch, that would be preferable to suicide-by-car that would happen if he had made it up the slight grade of the on-ramp and onto the suspension bridge over Narragansett Bay...

Yeah, quite plausibly. 
 
PHLBOS
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RE: Why Affordable RWD Cars Never Stay Long.

Thu Dec 15, 2011 1:25 pm

Quoting WildcatYXU (Reply 38):
I just wanted to tell you that there were much worse vehicles to drive than RWD Chevys, Fords and Mercurys.

I never stated that there weren't.
"TransEastern! You'll feel like you've never left the ground because we treat you like dirt!" SNL Parady ad circa 1981
 
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falstaff
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RE: Why Affordable RWD Cars Never Stay Long.

Thu Dec 15, 2011 2:18 pm

Quoting WildcatYXU (Reply 38):
And it wasn't made of Duroplast.


At least you didn't have to worry about it rusting away.... In wonder what kind of chemicals were used to make Duroplast. I would love to have a Trabant. They are one of the saddest cars ever. I have been to Halle, Germany several times and there still quite a few of them around. I was tempted to buy one in 2008, but when I looked into shipping that put me out of the market. Earlier this year I was reading the newspaper from Halle and saw three Trabants for sale, in the classified section, they were cheap!
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WildcatYXU
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RE: Why Affordable RWD Cars Never Stay Long.

Thu Dec 15, 2011 2:50 pm

Quoting falstaff (Reply 41):
In wonder what kind of chemicals were used to make Duroplast.

I don't know. Wiki doesn't say too much either

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Duroplast

But I've heard the stories of farm animals eating the Trabant too.
BTW, did you know that the last generation of the Trabant was equipped with a 1.1 litre fourbanger from VW Polo?
Similarly, the last generation of the Warburg was equipped with a 1.3 litre Golf engine. Both were a bit difficult to drive since the brake power didn't really match the engine power.
310, 319, 320, 321, 321N, 332, 333, 343, 345, 346, 732, 735, 73G, 738, 744, 752, 762, 763, 77L, 77W, 788, AT4, AT7, BEH, CR2, CRA, CR9, DH1, DH3, DH4, E45, E75, E90, E95, F28, F50, F100, MD82, Saab 340, YAK40
 
Arrow
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RE: Why Affordable RWD Cars Never Stay Long.

Fri Dec 16, 2011 5:20 pm

Quoting Superfly (Reply 15):
You should see I-80 between Sacramento & Reno when there is a snowstorm. Most of the vehicles in the ditches are newer SUVs and AWD vehicles. Most of the SUVs are crossovers or luxury brand models.
I never had any problems in my old Town Car.

There are a couple of reasons for that, and they have nothing to do with the cars/SUVs themselves.

1. Driver incompetence. There are a lot of fools out there who think 4WD or AWD makes them immune from the laws of physics. 4WD/AWD is great for getting you moving, useless for helping you stop. When it snows around here, the cars in the ditches are usually SUVs driven by fools. Can't blame the SUV for that.

2. Tires. A 4WD/AWD with summer/all season tires on a snowy road will perform more poorly than a 2WD car with winter tires. I've seen this dozens of times. My best example was a ski trip I took with my Suzuki Sidekick up a steep, snow covered logging road. There were about 10 4WD vehicles trying to get up the hill; my Sidekick and a FWD Subaru (yes, they used to make them) were the only vehicles to make it. We both had snow tires, none of the others did.

I don't have a problem with people refusing to install winter tires as long as they leave their cars in the garage in the winter and take the bus.
Never let the facts get in the way of a good story.
 
Superfly
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RE: Why Affordable RWD Cars Never Stay Long.

Fri Dec 16, 2011 9:15 pm

Quoting Arrow (Reply 43):

You're correct on both comments.
It's just interesting that those in rear-drive cars particularly the older ones seem to know what they're doing in these circumstances.
Bring back the Concorde
 
Arrow
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RE: Why Affordable RWD Cars Never Stay Long.

Fri Dec 16, 2011 10:16 pm

Quoting Superfly (Reply 44):
It's just interesting that those in rear-drive cars particularly the older ones seem to know what they're doing in these circumstances.

I guess old farts like me learned to drive on honkin' big 60s style sedans, which all had rear wheel drive and weighed a lot. And you're right -- there's a technique for getting out of a skid in an RWD that doesn't apply so much with FWD -- which is what most cars are these days. Had to pump the brakes back in those days too -- none of this ABS sh*t. That's hard to unlearn.

Interesting physics on traction with FWD vs. RWD. Years ago I couldn't get up a very snowy hill in my FWD Cavalier -- until I turned it around and backed up. FWD is supposed to be better in snow, but traction on a steep hill is actually better with an RWD.
Never let the facts get in the way of a good story.
 
Kiwirob
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RE: Why Affordable RWD Cars Never Stay Long.

Fri Dec 16, 2011 10:47 pm

Quoting Arrow (Reply 45):
FWD is supposed to be better in snow, but traction on a steep hill is actually better with an RWD.

Only in your dreams.
 
N1120A
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RE: Why Affordable RWD Cars Never Stay Long.

Sat Dec 17, 2011 11:58 am

I had a RWD car for 9 years. I have a FWD car now. My current car (a MINI Cooper S) is the only FWD car I would ever own. My RWD car absolutely sucked in rain and snow. I haven't done snow in my MINI yet, but it handles rain incredibly well (which is important for the rare times it does rain here)

Quoting 747400sp (Thread starter):
What would it take, for somebody to drop their Camry and go buy a Charger?

It would take 40 years of long-term reliability for American cars.

Quoting BMI727 (Reply 6):
AWD is best in the snow, but failing that I much prefer RWD as it gives me control over both ends of the car.

Hard to control the out of control.

Quoting MrChips (Reply 10):
Mind you, a good set of winter tires goes a long way to helping with that.

Yeah, you really cannot leave that out.

Quoting KiwiRob (Reply 19):
That would all depend on thecar, I'm sure a prestige RWD car is far more complex than something cheap nasty with FWD.

Honestly, its easier to work on a BMW in some respects than a Toyota.

Quoting PHLBOS (Reply 28):
Worth noting: a RWD vehicle equipped with a limited-slip differential (think My Cousin Vinny here) can level the foul weather playing field... at least vs. FWD.

Not really.

Quoting KiwiRob (Reply 46):
Quoting Arrow (Reply 45):
FWD is supposed to be better in snow, but traction on a steep hill is actually better with an RWD.

Only in your dreams.

Pretty much. Especially if the RWD car is relatively light and has any power. Spin, spin, spin go the wheels.
Mangeons les French fries, mais surtout pratiquons avec fierte le French kiss
 
L410Turbolet
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RE: Why Affordable RWD Cars Never Stay Long.

Sat Dec 17, 2011 3:29 pm

Quoting PHLBOS (Reply 24):
Again, let me remind you that RWD has been around a lot longer than FWD, AWD and likely 4WD; the the above reference snow tires placed on the drivetrain wheels is based on DECADES of experience (including my own).

Which doesn't change anything about the fact that it's still a considerably less safe option than driving on all four winter tyres. Why buy just 2? It does not make any sense safety- or $$$-wise.
You are driving one set of tyres at a time anyway.
 
BMI727
Posts: 11300
Joined: Mon Feb 02, 2009 9:29 pm

RE: Why Affordable RWD Cars Never Stay Long.

Sat Dec 17, 2011 11:02 pm

Quoting N1120A (Reply 47):
Hard to control the out of control.

It's very much under control.

Quoting KiwiRob (Reply 46):
Only in your dreams.

FWD likely has more weight over the drive wheels initially, but as the car accelerates the weight shifts to the rear wheels, which is not a really good situation. RWD gets more traction as you accelerate, and is probably better than FWD if you happen to have some stuff in the trunk or people in the back seat.

Quoting Arrow (Reply 45):
Interesting physics on traction with FWD vs. RWD. Years ago I couldn't get up a very snowy hill in my FWD Cavalier -- until I turned it around and backed up.

That probably has to do with the gearing in reverse.
Why do Aerospace Engineering students have to turn things in on time?

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