Rollinhonda, don't get me wrong, I am of the opinion that our Ridgelines provide a much better (and safer) option than driving a conventional 4x4 on 4WD high, or even a modern RWD biased full-time 4WD system when driving in the wet or in the snow.FWD usually means more understeer without a bigger sway bar in the rear, etc. But then the dynamics of the truck overall will not fool you into thinking it is a sports car without a heavy dose of imagination.
I like how it handles with VTM-4. It is very stable and clings well to the road. The wide turning angle is the major limitation. I sliced a sidewall on a curb last year as a reminder.
Actually, Subaru's AWD systems have varied considerably over time and even between models. Most of the pre-2000 models were FWD-biased with up to 90% of the power going to the front wheels unless the system detected a need for more rear drive. The ATs were/are more sophisticated than the manual trannys which used simple viscous couplings between front and rear drive shafts that responded to any front wheel slippage. I haven't bothered to check details on the current systems with CVTs, but I would be surprised if there isn't still some degree of FWD-biased power delivery under normal driving conditions. This would be expected because the system essentially sends more power to the wheels with the most traction and that's usually the front wheels bearing the engine weight. I may just be using the term FWD-biased to mean something different than you....Subaru is even better in that all 4 wheels are always driven. It is not front wheel biased. All differentials are always engaged. There is never any transition.
Its mostly drivin habits,not paying attention to ones drivin, speed under the conditions or all the above. Last week we had a couple inches snow fall just before rush hour and within one mile their where 14 SUVs in the ditch. I would say drivin to fast for conditions. Just because one has AWD,FWD,RWD dont mean crap most of the times. Most people think they can drive the speed limit all the time but forget that the posted speed limit is for ideal conditions during the day.I just had a vivid display of the difference between AWD and FWD when it comes to small SUVs, as I drove around in Ottawa's first real snowstorm 2-3 weeks ago. The big difference happens on turns. The unpowered rear wheels inflict a lot of drag, especially where previous vehicles or a plow have left snow compacted. Many vehicles could not turn a corner in this case with FWD.
Of course, one might guess that people who would bother to buy an SUV, but save money by skipping AWD, would make a similar decision about winter tires; perhaps the FWD models that I saw in trouble also had all-season tires.
Good question. The only reason I'm familar with Subaru AWD is because I've owned 3 of them since 1988. But I really don't know anything about the Juke AWD and would be interested in hearing more. How does it work?OK DOB not to change the subject here kinda but what do you think of Nissans Juke AWD system and how it works, its very interesting.
Sorry, dont no how to take this as a good thing or bad. Doesnt matter to me cause I will never buy anything but a 4x4 or AWD vehicle anymore unless I move south. Just wonderin if its pathetic or great.Just wait for the "Ridgeline is no a real truck" crowd get a glimpse of a front wheel drive Ridgeline (3500 lb. tow rating) trying to pull a boat up a slick ramp. I'm sure YouTube will have plenty of examples.
I may agree with you on this I have said before that back in 02-03 had to make an emergency trip from Southern Maryland to Eastern Shore and back.I would suggest that, in most conditions, the correct tire will matter almost as much as AWD vs FWD.
I also think AWD is more important on a high CoG vehicle lie an SUV. A low-clearance FWD car, like my '02 Accord, with proper winter tires, seems more capable in snowy, icy conditions than most SUVs with AWD and all-season tires, as long as the snow doesn't get more than 5" deep.