Featured Electric cars could spell end of front-wheel drive, VW exec says

Discussion in 'Prius, Hybrid, EV and Alt-Fuel News' started by Tideland Prius, Dec 10, 2018.

  1. Tideland Prius

    Tideland Prius Moderator of the North
    Staff Member

    Joined:
    Oct 2, 2004
    38,557
    9,812
    40
    Location:
    Canada
    Vehicle:
    2018 Prius Prime
    Model:
    Technology
    Electric cars could spell end of front-wheel drive, VW exec says
     
  2. bisco

    bisco cookie crumbler

    Joined:
    May 11, 2005
    75,913
    31,720
    0
    Location:
    boston
    Vehicle:
    2012 Prius Plug-in
    Model:
    Plug-in Base
    huzzah!!!
     
  3. El Dobro

    El Dobro A Member

    Joined:
    Jul 12, 2011
    6,026
    2,529
    1
    Location:
    NJ
    Vehicle:
    2014 Chevy Volt
    Well, VW may be right. After all, they helped spell the end of diesel cars. :p
     
  4. Leadfoot J. McCoalroller

    Leadfoot J. McCoalroller Senior Member

    Joined:
    May 12, 2018
    1,172
    1,012
    1
    Location:
    Pennsylvania
    Vehicle:
    2018 Prius c
    Model:
    Two
    Horses pull, engines push.

    And apparently, electric motors do too.

    (somebody has to be old enough and VW-crazed enough to get this)
     
    audiodave likes this.
  5. Trollbait

    Trollbait It's a D&D thing

    Joined:
    Feb 7, 2006
    12,750
    5,236
    0
    Location:
    eastern Pennsylvania
    Vehicle:
    Other Non-Hybrid
    The announcement is more that AWD for BEVs is cheap.
     
    mrlebop, HPrimeAdvanced and fuzzy1 like this.
  6. VFerdman

    VFerdman Senior Member

    Joined:
    Jul 5, 2017
    753
    755
    3
    Location:
    Western Massachusetts
    Vehicle:
    2007 Prius
    Model:
    Three
    FWD was a cost cutting measure and was additionally advertised as "it's better in snow", but really it was better in snow than an average US RWD monstrosity of the 70's-80's (poor weight distribution and suspension). My 1993 RWD Volvo 940 was excellent in snow in New England. In BEVs RWD is a no brainer and I fail to see why Bolt and Asian BEVs make them FWD. AWD is also good and easy for BEVs. Anything, but a pure FWD car.
     
  7. padroo

    padroo Senior Member

    Joined:
    Jan 11, 2008
    2,557
    2,046
    12
    Location:
    Chesterton, Indiana Another third world country.
    Vehicle:
    2016 Prius
    Model:
    Four
    Some prototypes of electric cars were putting the motors right into the wheels so they could put them where they want, AWD should be a no brainer. Take it to the shop for a brake job and a new motor at the same time. How much room would that free up for auto design. Maybe there would be room for a spare tire!:)
     
  8. Trollbait

    Trollbait It's a D&D thing

    Joined:
    Feb 7, 2006
    12,750
    5,236
    0
    Location:
    eastern Pennsylvania
    Vehicle:
    Other Non-Hybrid
    The mounting of the engine for FWD is also better for efficiency than that used for front engined RWD.

    I still see plenty of RWD cars getting stuck in the snow today. FWD can get stuck too, but being able to direct the direction of thrust makes getting unstuck easier.

    The issue for hub motors is cost.
     
  9. Leadfoot J. McCoalroller

    Leadfoot J. McCoalroller Senior Member

    Joined:
    May 12, 2018
    1,172
    1,012
    1
    Location:
    Pennsylvania
    Vehicle:
    2018 Prius c
    Model:
    Two
    I'm speculating here, but I reckon it makes sense to use FWD parts and concepts when you're building 100k compliance cars vs. redesigning the whole works to support an all-electric future.
     
    frodoz737 and VFerdman like this.
  10. Trollbait

    Trollbait It's a D&D thing

    Joined:
    Feb 7, 2006
    12,750
    5,236
    0
    Location:
    eastern Pennsylvania
    Vehicle:
    Other Non-Hybrid
    You also risk poor sales by having the BEV looks deviate from normal, at first.
     
  11. Robert Holt

    Robert Holt Senior Member

    Joined:
    Aug 3, 2013
    1,156
    680
    0
    Vehicle:
    2012 Prius
    Model:
    Three
    My first FWD car was a 1959 SAAB 93B , so FWD autos date at least that far back. Despite having overall light weight (monocoque or unibody construction), the SAAB had the weight distributed forward over the front traction wheels was much easier to drive in the snow in Wisconsin compared to typical contemporary RWD American automobiles like my 1960 Chevrolet Impala. The American cars had a lot more power than the 3-cylinder SAAB, (having V-8 engines), but with the rear end being relatively light, that extra power would simply cause wheel spin and the rear end sliding out in the snow and ice. The SAAB , by contrast, kind of chewed its way through the snow with the front tires and was comparatively stable. When the SAAB did lose grip in a hard turn in the snow, it would understeer or “plow” rather than oversteer , but the understeer was easier to control than the oversteer because if you didn’t correct the oversteer immediately, it would often led to a spinout that would essentially result in loss of steering control. In the SAAB, letting off in the throttle would reduce the understeer and get the car back on the intended path. Just my experience.
     
  12. padroo

    padroo Senior Member

    Joined:
    Jan 11, 2008
    2,557
    2,046
    12
    Location:
    Chesterton, Indiana Another third world country.
    Vehicle:
    2016 Prius
    Model:
    Four
    Like anything else after R& D the cost will come down. At the moment there is no set standard.

     
    #12 padroo, Dec 12, 2018
    Last edited: Dec 12, 2018
    dbf likes this.
  13. El Dobro

    El Dobro A Member

    Joined:
    Jul 12, 2011
    6,026
    2,529
    1
    Location:
    NJ
    Vehicle:
    2014 Chevy Volt
    the 1930s Cord was FWD.
     
    Robert Holt likes this.
  14. The Electric Me

    The Electric Me Go Speed Go!

    Joined:
    May 22, 2009
    8,203
    4,604
    0
    Location:
    Undisclosed Location
    Vehicle:
    Other Non-Hybrid
    Model:
    N/A
    Assuming this was a trapped in time VW advertising slogan?

    Not quite old enough to remember it.
    However, do remember the 70's as a kid, and the transition from rear wheel drive vehicles to front wheel drive.
    Once they became accepted and the majority norm, there was almost a negative stigma to having an "antiquated" rear wheel drive vehicle. I remember the adults discussing all the great benefits of front wheel drive.

    Your comment caught my eye because I also remember my mother. She had a beloved 1967 Mustang. When the discussion of Front Wheel Drive vs. Rear Wheel Drive would manifest she defended rear wheel drive with very unscientific, unproven terms.
    Her contention was that as a little kid for herself, Pushing things around in her Radio Red Flyer wagon was easier than pulling things in her Radio Red Flyer wagon, and thus for her, that proved the superiority of rear wheel drive.

    It didn't matter whether this translated into ICE, transmissions and the reality of an operating vehicle, it was more just her way of defending her beloved ownership of her 1967 Mustang....which could of been powered by 100 gerbils on a spinning wheel, and she still would of chosen it over any front wheel drive vehicle.
     
    dbf likes this.
  15. Rmay635703

    Rmay635703 Senior Member

    Joined:
    Oct 16, 2016
    965
    609
    0
    Location:
    Somewhere in Wisconsin
    Vehicle:
    2013 Chevy Volt
    Model:
    N/A
    I figure they mean we will go back to RWD
     
  16. padroo

    padroo Senior Member

    Joined:
    Jan 11, 2008
    2,557
    2,046
    12
    Location:
    Chesterton, Indiana Another third world country.
    Vehicle:
    2016 Prius
    Model:
    Four
    Another big advantage of EV's is all the weight will tend to be in the belly of the car giving it a fairly even weight distribution front to back.
    Whether they make it front or rear wheel drive will not matter as much with an even weight distribution. Remember a front wheel drive car only gets good traction because the weight is over the wheels just like the VW beetles and the Chevrolet Corvair's were good in snow, steering is another subject. Personally I think you will see more AWD models.
     
    mrlebop and Trollbait like this.
  17. bisco

    bisco cookie crumbler

    Joined:
    May 11, 2005
    75,913
    31,720
    0
    Location:
    boston
    Vehicle:
    2012 Prius Plug-in
    Model:
    Plug-in Base
    there must be some difference between pulling the car and pushing it on slippery ground

    maybe we need rear steering
     
  18. fuzzy1

    fuzzy1 Senior Member

    Joined:
    Feb 26, 2009
    11,642
    5,346
    90
    Location:
    Western Washington
    Vehicle:
    2012 Prius
    Model:
    Three
    Yes. For getting moving, each alone is inferior to doing both at the same time.
     
    #18 fuzzy1, Dec 12, 2018
    Last edited: Dec 12, 2018
    Robert Holt and dbf like this.
  19. Usle

    Usle Member

    Joined:
    Sep 21, 2018
    241
    102
    0
    Location:
    Me
    Vehicle:
    2018 Prius Prime
    Model:
    Plug-in Advanced
    Obviously, the article is about the future of all wheel drive, to supplement or advance "just" front wheel drive.

    Rear wheel drive is outdated, unsafe, and unless you are a professional drift driver and love the small of burnt rubber, moot.

    But if the article is about....having four wheels accelerating is faster 0-60 then just two wheels....booo.
     
  20. frodoz737

    frodoz737 Top Wrench

    Joined:
    Aug 26, 2010
    3,820
    1,620
    33
    Location:
    Texas
    Vehicle:
    2015 Prius
    Model:
    Four
    Having previously been a VW owner twice, I don't care what they say or think. Right or wrong...they lost all credibility between poor product, high TCO and some of the most unscrupulous Dealerships out there.
     
Loading...