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Is there that big on difference between the FWD and the AWD? With the traction control, ABS and the weight of the Acadia, can you really feel the difference? The salesman told me that there is almost no difference at all. Of course he would have given up the secret location of Usama Bin Ladin if I would have signed the bottom line yestarday. Thanks for any input Gman
 

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I can't say for sure, but having driven front wheel drive cars for the past 15 years, I can say that I feel a difference driving my AWD Acadia. I live on a fairly big hill with a slope approx 350 ft long. For fun the other night, I decided to go up to the house through the yard instead of the driveway. There was about 5 inches of snow then and it had no problem at all getting up it.

The next morning, there was about 5 inches of snow layered with another 2-3 of ice. I needed to get to work and had to gun it pretty good to get over the big hill in my neighborhood. It made it and never stopped, but it took some effort. My old car as well as my wife's chevy van would have never made it out.

I'd spring for the awd if you can spare it.
 

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There's no question that an AWD vehicle has better traction and bad weather performance when compared to a FWD vehicle. The Acadia has a fairly sophisticated drivetrain that can vary the amount of power sent to the front and rear wheels as needed. Under normal conditions, for example, 90% of the power goes to the front wheels and 10% to the rear. But it can send as much as 100% of the power to the rear wheels if the fronts slip. What you give up for AWD is a bit of fuel economy, a slightly harsher ride and $2000. The real question is if you need the AWD system in your climate enough to make those compromises. We didn't where we live, but I'm glad the Acadia gave us (the everyone else) the choice!
 

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admin said:
The Acadia has a fairly sophisticated drivetrain that can vary the amount of power sent to the front and rear wheels as needed. Under normal conditions, for example, 90% of the power goes to the front wheels and 10% to the rear. But it can send as much as 100% of the power to the rear wheels if the fronts slip.
Do you know this to be a fact? I had heard that only 40% of the power can be directed to the rears (or maybe it was 60%), but not 100%. But I have also heard your version of the story too.

Just curious.
 

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Re: FWD vs AWD

We have the AWD with StabiliTrak and Traction Control feature on our other (non GM) vehicle and we swear by it, and we really do notice the difference. We live in the North East, and except for this year's exceptionally low snow totals (but the difference in rain is noteable too), we felt AWD was essential, even though we sacrifice a bit of ride, mpg's (and cash) for the feature. If we lived somewhere warm and dry, it might not be an option we felt we had to have on the vehicle.
 

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zman said:
Do you know this to be a fact? I had heard that only 40% of the power can be directed to the rears (or maybe it was 60%), but not 100%. But I have also heard your version of the story too.
No, not necessarily. I don't work for GM, I was just quotign what I had read several times. This article in USA today mentions it -
http://www.usatoday.com/money/autos/reviews/healey/2006-12-21-acadia_x.htm
AWD system normally sends 10% of power to the rear wheels, 40% under hard acceleration, up to 100% if the front wheels have no traction; uses sensors to anticipate when to send power to rears, instead of waiting for fronts to slip.
 

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I got a chance to test the FWD and the AWD.

Just my luck up here in Wisconsin, there was an inch of snow, just enough to make it slick, and the FWD performed very well in the snow. I was VERY inmpressed. Living up nort I'd never driven a FWD vehicle that had handled that well in the snow. Corners were no issues and launches from stop and go lights were just like dry pavement was under my tires. UNREAL what the StabiliTrak system can do.

I popped for the AWD for two reasons:

1. The dealer had a White colored FWD and a Red Jewel Tintcoat to choose from.
2. I HATE WHITE!!!

Sorry to any white lovers out there!

Also, living in wis. I was giving up a 4x4 truck to get the Acadia, so I wanted a vehicle that would be totally capabile in any conditions.

You just have to decide if the $2000 extra for the AWD is necessary for your situation.

Jon
 

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I a large vehicle like the Acadia, AWD will have two benefits:

1. Better traction on slippery surfaces, especially uphill; I'd still get winter tires to much better stopping if you drive in snow and ice often

2. You can get on the gas in turns without spinning a wheel or inducing torque steer

If you're a fairly sedate driver, #2 won't matter.
 

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Does anyone know any of the specifics on the AWD setup? Does it vary the power sent to each wheel electronically (i.e. using wheel speed sensors to tell which wheels are slipping) or is it purely mechanical (i.e. special differentials). Is the StabiliTrack engaged 24/7 or can you turn it off? What exactly does StabiliTrack do that the normal AWD system doesn't do?

Thanks, and sorry for all the questons!
 
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