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Entries in Rear Wheel Drive (1)

Thursday
Feb282013

Rear Wheel Drive V8 Sedan

Have you noticed the North American infatuation with rear wheel drive V8 sedans. Have you noticed that its almost an exception today to have an RWD V8, while at one time there were multitudes on North American roads.

What is it about RWD cars that captures the imagination. When you think about it, its simple, the front wheels steer, the rear wheels power, and all four stop the car. Yes...rear wheel drive cars were made popular in geographic areas with wide spaces, that easily accommodated bigger than smaller cars, and implied covering longer than shorter distances.

Agreed back in the day it was probably easier to design and engineer a rear wheel drive layout, than a front wheel drive, even if a drive shaft running the lenght of the car is cumbersome.

Yes...the V8 is (was) a North American preference for decades.

In 2013 what is it about RWD that captures the imagination? 

We all know that you cannot pack serious power in a FWD configuration, the torque steer becomes annoying, the back of the car is constantly telegraphing that its a litle light. The AWD configuration which is very popular in Canada, is a constatnt reminder of something more useful, practical than fun. Agreed you can pack serious power in an AWD configuration. 

Should we mention that FWD was for years associated to an econo box, and AWD was a 4x4 pick up, should we had diesels in the mix to truly make it interesting.

Anyone seeking a fast car that could/can accomodate adults to this day gravitates to a RWD configuration with a V8, and if you need to go faster the V8 is bigger or you had turbos. 

Somethings never change...

From back in the day, the inline 6 cylinder sedan with an automatic transmission (3 speed at best) is comparable to our current FWD V6 sedan.

From back in the day the cars with V8's always had a special allure, a distinctive sound, captured the imagination.