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Case for AWD

Old 12-11-2007, 12:39 PM
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Default Case for AWD

Okay, recently I've been thinking alot about AWD. I currently have been forced to deal with bad weather over and over again and I have been able to get through it because my car has FWD. Now, the problem that I have with RWD is that I remember back in the 80s when my parents had RWD cars and it took them an hour to get out of our 100 yard driveway because it has an ever so slight incline (looking at it though, you wouldn't be able to notice). I also remember how impossible it was to get around in it no matter what we did. I remember how wonderful it was when we got FWD and we were able to resolve an issue that previously took an hour down to a couple minuets at max.

Now, even though I plan on either having a FWD car or 4WD truck or SUV for my daily driver and keeping the Challenger for nice occasions, I also have to acknowledge that freak incidences happen and I might have to drive the Challenger that I will have in the snow and ice. When this happens, I really don't want to end up totaling my car because RWD does not work in the snow and ice. I know some of you will say "FWD and AWD/4WD turns good drivers into bad drivers," but I tend to disagree with this thought because it doesn't really address the problem or provide an actual solution just dismisses the problem, besides how can it make someone a worse driver when the car can't actually get anywhere in the first place.

I also think the Challenger has a case to get AWD for the sake of performance. The fastest accelerating of all the current SRT-8s is the only one that actually has an AWD system, which interestingly is the heaviest, the Grand Cherokee SRT-8. Now given, it does have a lower speed axle ratio, the AWD system is what really makes the difference. Some of the best performance cars in the world offer AWD (Lambos).

To conclude my thoughts on this suggestion, I think an AWD system should be offered optional on all the engine levels the AWD can handle. What are your thoughts?
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Old 12-11-2007, 02:45 PM
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Default RE: Case for AWD

I was just thinking about AWD today. When I was driving in the snow and slush all day. Then I saw a Charger with the AWD emblem on the left side of the trunk lid. I watched as he took off from the stoplight while I was still spinning my FWD wheels. I began to wonder if the Challenger will have that option with the RTS. I looked on the Dodge website the Charger RT has it for an option. I'm thinking about getting AWD on the Challenger if its available.
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Old 12-11-2007, 03:26 PM
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I was just thinking about AWD today. When I was driving in the snow and slush all day. Then I saw a Charger with the AWD emblem on the left side of the trunk lid. I watched as he took off from the stoplight while I was still spinning my FWD wheels. I began to wonder if the Challenger will have that option with the RTS. I looked on the Dodge website the Charger RT has it for an option. I'm thinking about getting AWD on the Challenger if its available.
That's why I suggested this. Originally they did not offer AWD on the Charger, but they quickly changed their minds and decided to offer it. I remember that the one major objection I had towards the Charger was that I wanted AWD because of the bad experiences I have had with RWD, when I heard they were going to offer AWD on the Charger, I was more open to it (this was before I knew about the Challenger). Now I would like them to give the Challenger the same treatment.
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Old 12-11-2007, 06:41 PM
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Default RE: Case for AWD

Many high performance road cars are getting it these days. Since this will be my fun car and not my daily driver, I will probably not drive it if the weather is bad.

300HP on wet pavement is bad enough, much less a 500HP machine.
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Old 12-12-2007, 01:37 AM
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Default RE: Case for AWD

True that Jeremiah! My daily car is front wheel drive and serves me well in snow/rain whatever. My Chally will come out when there's no salt on the roads and hopefully no rain in the air.

But....with that said, they should offer the SXTs' (what ever designation they use for it) Challengers with it, as these would be more inclined to be daily drivers and AWD is a practical power train option.

RLSH700, keep in mind the Beamers are RWD and they use there glorified ABS Traction Control (to maintain and possibly even ECS) to control slippage and handling in less than optimal conditions. Of course with this said, I've never really understood how apply breaks when you can't get traction enough to start the vehicle will help it over AWD, but I guess it's a faith thing.

Do the Charger SRT's come with ECS? If so, is it over-ridable?
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Old 12-12-2007, 04:35 AM
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Default RE: Case for AWD

The differential in your final drive wants to turn the wheel with the least resistance (unless you have some sort of Sure-Grip). So when you're sitting helplessly spinning one wheel, the brake on that wheel locks, forcing the one with more grip to spin. The idea being that this process will aternate from wheel to wheel until you claw you way out of whatever mess you've gotten yourself into.

I've had the front- vs. rear-wheel-drive discussion with my dad before and he says he drove for decades with rear wheel drive without any problems. (He also almost put bias ply tires back on his '65 442 when he restored it...)

What I've found in my short years of experience is what matters more than the wheels you're powering is the quality of your tires. My first car was a '65 Chrysler New Yorker, with a 413 and 2.73 Sure Grip rear. With a good set of all-season radials there wasn't much anywhere I couldn't go in snow.

When I got married I ended up driving my wife's Omni. When I couldn't take the handling of the 165-80 13s, I threw on a set of 15" Shelby wheels with Dunlop GT Qualifiers (the cheapest 205-50 15s I could get my grubby paws on). Those things were scary in the wet, and an absolute nightmare in snow.

So, the lesson -- do your research on your TIRES!
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Old 12-12-2007, 05:06 AM
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Default RE: Case for AWD

Speaking of tires and snow...anyone remember studded tires? Man, my mom, scarred the hell out of our street trying to get up it in her Ford Granada!
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Old 12-12-2007, 05:43 AM
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Default RE: Case for AWD

Yeah, had studded snows on my K-car two winters ago. Wasn't much anywhere I couldn't go. Boss wasn't too happy about me grinding the tarcoat off his driveway, though.

I drove a paper route in that car, too. My first weekend on the route I drove through 1/4 inch of ice on cable chains. Another time those chains got me through 8 inches of unplowed snow. Couldn't do 9 inches because it packed up under the car and lifted the wheels off the ground!
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Old 12-12-2007, 11:28 AM
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Default RE: Case for AWD

The thing is my parents used pretty much the same type of tires on both their FWD and RWD vehicles and we were able to get through the snow in FWD and would get nowhere with RWD. This is why I'm concerned about having RWD.

The thing is I'm not sure why people have an objection to the Challenger having AWD. AWD actually helps the performance and is being used on more performance cars for a good reason. With the fact that cars are getting more and more powerful, it is harder to control them when all the power is coming from just two simple tires. I see this as more than just a practical use standpoint, I also see it as an improvement for performance.

I don't plan on taking it out into the ice and snow, but where I live it can come unexpectantly. Some of you are fortunate enough that you won't be as likely to be caught off guard by bad weather because of where you live, but up here it can happen at anytime during the winter without warning.

I remember my aunt having a similar system as what BMW makes in her Mercedes SL500 and it was worthless. She had no control and no traction at all.
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Old 12-14-2007, 08:04 AM
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Default RE: Case for AWD

AWD is a great tool... I just don't want it on my Challenger. However, my wife and I are toying with getting an AWD Charger or Subura. Oh man, studded tires! 5th Street back in my hometown of ND is a wonderful sight after the first snow storm of the year!
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