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All-wheel drive and four-wheel drive are two terms that car buyers, salesmen, and everyone in between tend to use interchangeably. Although they may sound like the same thing, they have many key differences that could affect how you drive depending on where you live. Here’s a quick breakdown of each system so you can get on the road in the right car.






Of the two systems, four-wheel drive is older and is widely used in off-road vehicles that have all-terrain capabilities. As power hits the transfer case, it is split evenly among each wheel, ensuring they all turn at the same rate. Modern four-wheel drive systems are only on when you activate them. Typically, this system is more useful in snow, mud, and other terrain that requires more power to move forward. When four-wheel drive isn’t active, drivers can still enjoy the fuel efficiency and drivability of two-wheel drive.
If you plan on heading off-road or live in an area with heavy snowfall, a four-wheel drive system is the way to go. For drivers that live in an area that receives a moderate amount of snow, AWD is the system for you.

Mazda Technology: Predictive i-ACTIV All-Wheel Drive

Mazda has developed one of the most advanced all-wheel drive systems on the market. Called Predictive i-ACTIV AWD, this new technology has the ability to sense and respond to conditions on the road. With intelligent sensors and computers, this system can work in the blink of the eye, providing you with better handling and comfort. The i-ACTIV AWD system is unlike anything you’ve ever seen.​ 

How Does It Work?

This system comes with a series of sensors that track the road in front of you, engine activity, transmission operations, weather, wiper usage, temperatures, and more. In fact, i-ACTIV AWD tracks conditions 200 times per second with a total of 27 sensors. This information is fed to a central control module, which then adjusts torque and power transfer for optimum handling. Unlike normal all-wheel drive systems from other brands, the i-ACTIV system doesn’t wait until your wheels are slipping before it activates.

What Are the Advantages?

The i-ACTIV AWD system provides you with a seamless ride that is not only smooth, but also incredibly controlled. A lightweight system reduces vibration and noise, while a smart Power Takeoff system makes sure you get smooth transfers. This system will also provide you with drastically improved handling. Plus, with better grip and transfer of power you can get improved performance as well.

The i-ACTIV AWD system is just one more way Mazda vehicles are setting themselves apart. Mazda doesn’t settle—it always strives for the best. To see this technology in action, stop by Wantagh Mazda today.



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Phone: (866) 206-7312
Fax: (516) 785-0141
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