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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I'm going to buy a new V50, sport supension. Pretty sure. My biggest concern is: Am I REALLY going to miss not having/not getting AWD? <IMG NAME="icon" SRC="http://www.vwvortex.com/vwbb/confused.gif" BORDER="0"> I had a '98 Sube Outback, currently a 2000 GT wagon, both from new. In all those years, I wonder how often/how much AWD added signifcant value to real world driving. Is Volvo's AWD worth the penalties of extra weight, increased cargo floor height, increased ride height, lower fuel mileage, mechanical complexity, and higher purchase price?<br> I note that you can't get Volvo's 'body kit' on a FWD car with sport suspension. Is that because it sits too low...might be a bit likely to be tearing off plastic parts along the way? I'm wanting to do Heico's 'kit' anyway but perhaps the 'too low'(FWD) logic might apply here also?
 

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If you had AWD before, you might miss it a little. I have FWD and have no complaints.<p>By the way, I have a FWD with the sports supsension and Volvo sport body kit. No problems here.
 

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Re: (jclaib)

I would not trade my awd in for anything. If you search the boards you will see quite a few fwd owners saying they wished they went for the awd, conversely you will have a hard time finding someone saying they wish they had opted fro the fwd over the awd.<p>The awd does sit a little higer but a set of springs will solve that easily, and the fwd is not low in stock form. not even close.
 

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Re: Quandry! Will I regret FWD only?? (mingo)

<br>I, for one, am not missing AWD but, then again, I live in an area where the rain's not too bad and it doesn't snow. The only regret is in not getting the dynamic sport suspension option.
 
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Re: Quandry! Will I regret FWD only?? (mingo)

I have a FWD w/Sport Suspension b/c I live in California where our idea of bad weather is rain. However, if you have snow for a season it is worth having for safety's sake. If snow is not an obstacle spend the money on other options (like Premium Audio or DSTC, my personal post-purchase regrets). My two cents...
 

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Re: Quandry! Will I regret FWD only?? (mingo)

I live in CA where there's no snow, just occasional rain, so I dont really need AWD. As long as you get rid of the crappy stock michelin all season 17" tires and get some better ones, you'll be fine in bad weather. The only complaint I have with the front drive is some torque steer when taking off fast on bad roads, but then again, Volvo's AWD is virtually 100% front drive until the wheels start to break loose, so the AWD might not totally cure the torque steer issue. also,stock S40 FWD's, even with the sport suspension, do not sit low at all, too high in the rear for me, and are available with the body kit.
 

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Re: Quandry! Will I regret FWD only?? (vlv4life)

I did spend the extra money to Premium Audio and have not regretted that. I live in Colorado and have had absolutely no problems with driving in snow with just FWD.<p>To my opinion, really good winter tires would add more to safety than AWD. AWD does not help you to stop and if you think about the potentially dangerous situations that you could end up driving on slippery roads, the most common is that someone else has lost it and you have to stop or slow down fast to avoid collision. The other common situation is that the intersection you are driving into has turned into a skating rink and you have very little grip. AWD definitely helps if you have had an opportunity to learn how to use it to save the situation if you make the mistake to drive too fast to an icy corner. <p>If you live in mountainous area or your house is on top af a steep hill, then get the AWD... <IMG NAME="icon" SRC="http://www.vwvortex.com/vwbb/wink.gif" BORDER="0">
 

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Re: Quandry! Will I regret FWD only?? (FinnSpeed)

<TABLE WIDTH="90%" CELLSPACING=0 CELLPADDING=0 ALIGN=CENTER><TR><TD><i>Quote, originally posted by <b>FinnSpeed</b> »</i></TD></TR><TR><TD CLASS="quote">To my opinion, really good winter tires would add more to safety than AWD. </TD></TR></TABLE><p>I'm sorry, but that's just silly. You should be saying to get a really good set of winter tires AND an S40/V40 with AWD.
 

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Re: Quandry! Will I regret FWD only?? (nicho1as)

if u got a place with a lot of snow etc, get AWD.<br>if yo ugoing to mod and make big power, get AWD.<p>otherwise, i dont think AWD makes all that much diff in normaly day to day conditions.. its also a misconception that AWD automatically = more grip. AWD cars have pretty much similar skid pan results to FWD or RWD cars.
 

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Re: Quandry! Will I regret FWD only?? (s40turbo585)

<TABLE WIDTH="90%" CELLSPACING=0 CELLPADDING=0 ALIGN=CENTER><TR><TD><i>Quote, originally posted by <b>s40turbo585</b> »</i></TD></TR><TR><TD CLASS="quote">Volvo's AWD is virtually 100% front drive until the wheels start to break loose, so the AWD might not totally cure the torque steer issue.</TD></TR></TABLE><p>It's not true that AWD only engages on wheel slip. Wheel slip certainly engages it, but it also engages under heavy acceleration, in corners, etc.<p>Second, I can say that an AWD V50 T5 is nearly free of torque steer. I can put my car in second on a straight road, <I>take my hands off the wheel </I>and <I>floor it</I>. The only time I can induce torque steer is if I very sharply snap off the throttle at high engine rpm, such as a hard downshift. This however is something of inverse-torque steer.<p>My advice, if you want the ultimate control experience, get the AWD. But you won't be unhappy with FWD either.<p>Tom.
 

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Re: Quandry! Will I regret FWD only?? (tmtalpey)

<TABLE WIDTH="90%" CELLSPACING=0 CELLPADDING=0 ALIGN=CENTER><TR><TD><i>Quote, originally posted by <b>tmtalpey</b> »</i></TD></TR><TR><TD CLASS="quote"><p>It's not true that AWD only engages on wheel slip. Wheel slip certainly engages it, but it also engages under heavy acceleration, in corners, etc.<p>Second, I can say that an AWD V50 T5 is nearly free of torque steer. I can put my car in second on a straight road, <I>take my hands off the wheel </I>and <I>floor it</I>. The only time I can induce torque steer is if I very sharply snap off the throttle at high engine rpm, such as a hard downshift. This however is something of inverse-torque steer.<p>My advice, if you want the ultimate control experience, get the AWD. But you won't be unhappy with FWD either.<p>Tom.</TD></TR></TABLE><p>Is there any way to know how much power is routed to the back wheels? 10%, 50%, 90%? Thanks!<br>
 

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Re: Quandry! Will I regret FWD only?? (mingo)

I have AWD Geartronic and spent a lengthy period in a T5 FWD Geartronic with Sports Suspension and I remember posting here that I was shocked at the difference in handling even in dry conditions. The handling on the AWD is completely different - I found the FWD to be nose heavy into corners and generally much poorer handling in the twisties.<p>I would never consider an FWD after that experience but that's just mine opinion.<p>UKMatt
 

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Re: Quandry! Will I regret FWD only?? (Seven)

Not by mere mortals. But the Haldex clutch can go from zero to fully-on, which is to say with perfect grip, torque can vary from 100-0 to 50-50. If one end starts to slip, then torque distributuon can in theory go past 50-50, to 0-100 if one end breaks completely free. But that's a special case.<p>Basically, because there is no center differential, the fronts always are connected to the engine and are therefore eligible to receive its torque. The Haldex engages the rears.<p>In other words, if you're looking for rear-bias, you won't find it in this system. There have been many, many threads on this, here and in the R forum, especially.<p>Tom.
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
Re: Quandry! Will I regret FWD only?? (ukmatt)

I find it interesting that UKMatt's observation is that the AWD car HANDLED better and seemed less nose heavy than a FWD car. That's pretty much tha same thing that the Volvo salesman expressed that HE had noticed but who's to pay much attention to WHAT a car salesman says. ~OK so now how about fuel mileage? Is AWD gonna extract the typical 10% penalty?<br> * mingo *
 

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Re: Quandry! Will I regret FWD only?? (tmtalpey)

not really sure if you'll find your answer here. seems to me everyone who got awd did it because he or she felt it was necessary and those of us who got the fwd felt it wasn't necessary. I test drove an s40 awd GT. and decided on a V50 T5 fwd 6-spd. I liked the less weight, less price, and that it sits a tad lower than the awd, plus it costing less probably influenced my decision. I'm glad I got the fwd, as are many but I'm sure anyone for any reason who got the awd will say they are glad for thier decision as well. do you drive on upgrades on snow ice etc? ask yourself all these questions .
 

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Re: (Seven)

no not that I know of , but seems like a nice test . Heard of a few people do this to dyno their awd cars on a non awd dyno.
 

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Re: (Seven)

A) Yep, I've done this. It does pretty much what you think it will do - spins the fronts more easily, and understeers under power. Driven right though, you can get a bit more out of FWD than AWD in certain situations.<p>B) No need to pull the fuse (#54 in the passenger-side fusebox btw). All you need to do is lift the handbrake one notch, while rolling. If you lift it while stationary, the handbrake warning will just go bingbingbing and you'll still have AWD.<p>Have fun!<p>Tom.
 

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Re: Quandry! Will I regret FWD only?? (V50_T5)

<TABLE WIDTH="90%" CELLSPACING=0 CELLPADDING=0 ALIGN=CENTER><TR><TD><i>Quote, originally posted by <b>V50_T5</b> »</i></TD></TR><TR><TD CLASS="quote">not really sure if you'll find your answer here. seems to me everyone who got awd did it because he or she felt it was necessary and those of us who got the fwd felt it wasn't necessary. I test drove an s40 awd GT. and decided on a V50 T5 fwd 6-spd. I liked the less weight, less price, and that it sits a tad lower than the awd, plus it costing less probably influenced my decision. I'm glad I got the fwd, as are many but I'm sure anyone for any reason who got the awd will say they are glad for thier decision as well. do you drive on upgrades on snow ice etc? ask yourself all these questions . </TD></TR></TABLE><p>Of course you're absolutely correct that this is a subjective issue and that those who have already made their choice are most likely going to recommend that choice.<p>I included my feedback only because it was counter intuitive to me - in perfectly dry conditions I still saw a huge advantage in the AWD option in perfect conditions...<p>UKMatt
 

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Re: Quandry! Will I regret FWD only?? (FinnSpeed)

<TABLE WIDTH="90%" CELLSPACING=0 CELLPADDING=0 ALIGN=CENTER><TR><TD><i>Quote, originally posted by <b>FinnSpeed</b> »</i></TD></TR><TR><TD CLASS="quote">I did spend the extra money to Premium Audio and have not regretted that. I live in Colorado and have had absolutely no problems with driving in snow with just FWD.<p>To my opinion, really good winter tires would add more to safety than AWD. AWD does not help you to stop and if you think about the potentially dangerous situations that you could end up driving on slippery roads, the most common is that someone else has lost it and you have to stop or slow down fast to avoid collision. The other common situation is that the intersection you are driving into has turned into a skating rink and you have very little grip. AWD definitely helps if you have had an opportunity to learn how to use it to save the situation if you make the mistake to drive too fast to an icy corner. <p>If you live in mountainous area or your house is on top af a steep hill, then get the AWD... <IMG NAME="icon" SRC="http://www.vwvortex.com/vwbb/wink.gif" BORDER="0"> </TD></TR></TABLE><p>This is my first AWD car and have owned/driven many FWD cars over the years. I will tell you there is NO comparison to the traction and security that AWD adds on just the standard all-season tires over FWD!!! <IMG NAME="icon" SRC="http://www.vwvortex.com/vwbb/eek.gif" BORDER="0"> <br>Not even close. This is just in wet weather, I can imagine how much of a difference snow makes.<br>The only negative is the added frictional losses to power in the drivetrain but I still manage to pull 24mpg mixed city/hwy and 30 hwy.<p>So yeah, I totally disagree. There is no way a pair of good wet traction tires on a FWD vehicle will make it equal to an AWD car with just all seasons in wet weather.<br>
 
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