What is the Difference Between AWD & 4WD?

Tire Tracks in Dirt

If you’re in the market for a new vehicle, you may be wondering what the difference is between AWD and 4WD. While both drivetrains provide power to all four wheels, there are some key differences to consider. So what is the difference between AWD and 4WD, and which is the better option for you? Learn more with Sunset Kia of Auburn’s guide, and then check out all the Kia SUVs and crossovers with AWD or 4WD for sale at our dealership near Federal Way!



Is AWD the Same as 4WD?

Let’s take a closer look at AWD, or “all-wheel drive”. All-wheel drive is a drivetrain configuration that sends power created by the engine to both the front and rear axles, which is then distributed via differentials. AWD systems come in two types: full-time and part-time. Full-time AWD sends torque to the front and rear axles all the time, while part-time AWD monitors driving conditions and behavior to decide when to send torque only to the front axle. AWD is most commonly found in vehicles with unibody frames, such as SUVs and crossovers.

AWD or 4WD: What is 4WD?

Now, what about 4WD? As mentioned earlier, 4WD is a more traditional 4×4 drivetrain that can direct power to the front and rear axles as well as between the left and right wheels. This makes 4WD ideal for maximum off-road capability and is typically found in trucks and performance-based SUVs that are built to take you on the road less traveled.

Which is Better: AWD or 4WD?

Is AWD better than 4WD? The answer depends on your driving priorities and needs in Sumner. For most suburban drivers looking for extra traction in bad weather conditions, AWD is usually the better option. On the other hand, if you’re planning to do some serious off-roading or need onsite truck utility for a job, 4WD is likely to be a better choice for your Puyallup adventures.

Browse AWD & 4WD Vehicles at Sunset Kia of Auburn!

Now that you know the difference between AWD and 4WD, which will you choose for your daily drives? At Sunset Kia of Auburn, we have a diverse selection of new and pre-owned Kia vehicles, including a full lineup of Kia AWD vehicles. Contact us online or at (253) 891-6675 to set up a test drive in Auburn and see the power of each drivetrain for yourself! No matter what kind of capability you’re looking for, Sunset Kia of Auburn is here to help put you in the driver’s seat.


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