Parts Catalog Accessories Catalog How To Articles Tech Forums
Call Pelican Parts at 888-280-7799
Shopping Cart Cart | Project List | Order Status | Help

Go Back   PeachParts Mercedes ShopForum > Technical Information and Support > Tech Help

Closed Thread
LinkBack Thread Tools Display Modes
Old 07-12-1999, 10:48 AM
chris h
Posts: n/a
just wondering which is better front wheel drive or rear wheel drive?
and why???
Old 07-12-1999, 06:48 PM
Posts: n/a
The debate of FWD Vs RWD is basically moot for this site because Mercedes sells no FWD cars in the U.S. Mercedes only recently produces a FWD car, the A-Class. The A-Class is a Mini-Car built for a niche market overseas where gas prices are high, parking limited and the streets are narrow. RWD may be better because it has fewer negatives. FWD is only superior in snow. If you need superior snow traction you are limited to the Mercedes M-Class SUV and the E320 4-Matic. You find more FWD cars because most affordable/in-expensive cars are FWD. I used to own and love Volvo cars until they stopped making RWD. High performance cars and ultra luxo-cruisers are usually RWD.

The following make no FWD cars: Mercedes (except A-Class), BWM, Porsche, Jaguar, Lamborghini, Ferrari, Aston-Martin, Bentley, Rolls-Royce, Maybach, TVR, Lotus etc. Honorable mention to Corvette, Camaro, Mustang, Viper, Prowler, Lexus LS, GS and upcoming IS, Infiniti Q45, Lincoln LS etc. If your ultimate dream car is on this list you have answered your own question! Take care Chris H.
Old 07-12-1999, 07:48 PM
Registered User
Join Date: Jul 1999
Location: San Diego, CA USA
Posts: 38
Would you rather push the cart up the hill or pull it? :^)

FWD is superior in snow because the engine's weight is distributed over the drive wheels, correct?
Old 07-13-1999, 12:21 AM
R.Swearingen CLK
Posts: n/a
FYI: Cadillac is retooling to go back to RWD. They have given up trying to control torque-steer.
Old 07-15-1999, 09:13 PM
Jason Alexander
Posts: n/a
It's not so much a question of which is mechanically better but more a question of which suits your driving habits and what feels better to your driving senses.

ASE Master Technician, Lead Technician for Deutsch American Inc. Over 6 years of Import Service-specializing in German Automobiles.
Old 07-15-1999, 09:49 PM
Join Date: Mar 1999
Location: Tucker, Ga USA
Posts: 12,153
Sometimes you feel like a nut, sometimes you don't!
Old 07-16-1999, 01:09 AM
Posts: n/a
Isn't it the case that it depends on the size and function of the vehicle? Typically it seems that smaller cars are FWD, larger RWD. Handling, parking and snow etc aside, other things need to be considered like tyre wear, power efficiency (isn't it the case that the longer and more involved the drive line, the greater the power loss?), turning circle radius, and no doubt many others...

Furthermore some car companies have left the decision to their propsective market: I understand the Lexus GS 400/300 came out FWD but was later changed to RWD for a more conservative pitch which improved sales considerably. In the light of this tendency simply listing the car companies that don't use FWD might not answer our question...

Hmmm... doesn't answer the question... Is there a correct answer?

Regards to C Ho and Co.

David Rayment.

Old 07-16-1999, 07:46 PM
akry's Avatar
W140 Maniac
Join Date: May 1999
Location: Burnaby, BC, Canada
Posts: 960
To David,

Actually, Lexus GS-Series is RWD since the first generation GS300. They were designed to be RWD from day one....

FWD or RWD, is really just a personal tastes. Some likes FWD because of its stableness during turns, and some like RWD(like me) for its sportness, and RWD gives the driver more control over a car. In FWD, under-steering is also harder to correct(if you find yourself heavy-understeered in a FWD, you are in big trouble)...

[This message has been edited by akry (edited 07-19-1999).]
Old 07-19-1999, 12:38 PM
E55 KEV's Avatar
Join Date: Jul 1999
Location: Washington D.C.
Posts: 571
Nobody likes or opts for FWD, their cars just happen to come with it! Was there ever a consumer demand for FWD? Did the buying public demand FWD? I think FWD was just pushed onto the buying public by the manufactors! FWD must be more economical for the car companies to build. Historicallly, FWD is usually associated with economy cars. Your pocketbook dictates which you will have.
Old 07-19-1999, 05:07 PM
Registered User
Join Date: Apr 1999
Location: Cincinnati, OH, USofA
Posts: 138
FWD came into being, full force with the introduction of the much touted GM-X car. Citation, etc. Motor Trend car of the Year.
(Like the Vega and Neon, etc. great choices huh?)

Main purpose was cost savings; i.e. Easier to build from a drivetrain perspective, easier to install on the assembly line, less moving parts.

While I like RWD, my Camry's have served me well. It does work great in the snow.

The statement concerning the GS Lexus line is incorrect. The GS Line has the same drivetrain as the Supra, Inline 6 with a Transmission to Driveshaft to Rear End.

GS 400 now has a V-8 in same configuration.

The ES 250/300 models have FWD and is based on the same chassis as the Camry.

All excellent cars. Trouble is, I kept finding rice everywhere though.


Old 07-19-1999, 05:46 PM
Registered User
Join Date: Mar 1999
Location: Atlanta, Georgia, USA
Posts: 1,342
Though there are many exceptions, I have found that many RWD cars have something of a "soul" or "personality". Many of the FWD Neon, Civic, Camry, etc ad nauseam all are appliances for the most part. A Lexus ES being a "nicer" toaster-oven than a economy FWD car, but a toaster none-the-less. If you notice, people who buy RWD cars generally are more car people. Those who buy primarily FWD cars are non-car people. Or for people/families that own both, the FWD is the car which all abuse/neglect is heaped and the RWD is the garage queen.
Yes, there are some cars that are quite capable that have FWD. But the simple physics of a vehicle being dependent on only 2 wheels for turning AND accelerating vs one that spreads the load just puts FWD at too much of a disadvantage.

Just my the end it comes down to what MB DOC said earlier. "Sometimes you feel like a nut, sometimes you don't."

Old 07-19-1999, 05:48 PM
Michael's Avatar
Join Date: Jul 1999
Location: CT, USA
Posts: 2,699
I think a BIG reason for FWD is its inherent superiority in terms of predictability, and superior foul-weather traction. In probably 99% of the applications, FWD is in a car with the motor in the front. That same car probably also has more weight up front, hence more weight on the drive wheels=better traction. Also, what happens when you break traction in a FWD car? The answer is...not much, a little push/understeer, that's it. In RWD, if you get enough slippage then you might just swap ends. Bad for business...which is another reason why most cars, FWD or RWD, have a dialed-in tendency to understeer. It's considerably more idiot-proof.

For the record, 2 RWD's in this household; I'd rather have to buy snow tires than foresake all the benefits of RWD (Fun-to-drive)!

Old 07-19-1999, 09:01 PM
akry's Avatar
W140 Maniac
Join Date: May 1999
Location: Burnaby, BC, Canada
Posts: 960

Well, about FWD in conering, yes, it will give you under-steer. But what if you have heavy under-steer?? In RWD, you simply play with the throttle to bring the tail around, to correct under-steer or to control over-steer. But in FWD, you can't just step on the brake(even more under-steer)or accelerate.
Closed Thread


Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is On
Trackbacks are On
Pingbacks are On
Refbacks are On

Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Article: Front vs Rear Wheel Drive haasman Performance Paddock 30 09-06-2004 09:59 PM
Rear Wheel / Drive Rumble R Leo Diesel Discussion 3 02-05-2004 08:35 AM
Front wheel drive clunking yal Off-Topic Discussion 3 11-04-2003 06:30 PM
Do all Mercedes cars have rear wheel drive? ericnguyen Tech Help 5 03-17-2003 05:14 PM
rear wheel bearing 190 Jovan Tech Help 1 05-21-1999 10:00 PM

All times are GMT -4. The time now is 04:39 PM.

Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.7
Copyright ©2000 - 2018, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.
Search Engine Optimization by vBSEO 3.6.0
Copyright 2018 Pelican Parts LLC - Posts may be archived for display on the Peach Parts or Pelican Parts Website -    DMCA Registered Agent Contact Page