having done my share of high speed chases doing both, may i offer the
- FWD is fine if tread on tires is 40% or better, when tread gets thin,
traction takes a real beating in trying to get control. especially when
water is on pavement.
- FWD is all or nothing, as a rule when it comes to traction. you can
only push the tires so far, and when they lose traction, it becomes
difficult to get it back in short order, as in where distance is
important. you can try cutting in the direction you want to go and
stand on it, but if the tire is sliding, you will still be going into
the slip angle.
- RWD is ok in a lost traction situation, but one has to realize that
you are "pushing" the vehicle around to a position of traction.
- RWD are can greater slip angles. tires are front is in one job
function only. and on rainy situations front tires can push water out
of way so when rear tires arrive, they have better contact with road
- RWD has advantages and disadvantages with posi-trac. in snow, i've
found they work fine. in ice, can be very tricky. open rear ends work
fine in icy situations where the car is moving and one wheel might be
slipping. doesn't affect the vehicle as much.
weight ratios play a big part regardless of FWD or RWD. cars such as
porsche 914 has 51/49 and handle great in the curves.
AWD is a different breed all together. and again, it depends if the
vehicle has a full time or part time set up.
tires play a super big role in the traction picture. not just the tread
design, but make up. a B rate traction can be like driving on a
buttered roadway, and some AA rated tires will squeeze the water out of
a heavy downpour to give you a very loud tire screech.
i'm sure i've left out many variables yet, but the bottom line is - if
you are driving in a situation where it is life or death, nothing beats
the knowledge of knowing how the vehicle you're driving will handle in
an emergency situation.
hope this helps.
knowledge is power - growing old is mandatory - growing wise is optional
"Many more men die with prostate cancer than of it. Growing old is
invariably fatal. Prostate cancer is only sometimes so."