Many people own at least one 4-Wheel Drive vehicle. But for me personally, I like to drive a 4WD vehicle in the winter. It gives me the assurance that I will get to my destination safely.
Here are some history facts about 4WD:
1911-1920–The Four Wheel Drive Auto Co (FWD) began selling 4×4 vehicles. There was a huge increase in the amount of four wheel drive vehicles being manufactured for war purposes.
1941-1950–In this decade, 4x4s really took off with 2,700 early Jeeps being built. So, Ford and Willy’s-Overland built 700,000 General Purpose vehicles specifically for WWII.
In 1948 the first Land Rover was released. Because Ford created the first of their F-Series vehicles. We enjoy these models today.
1961-1970— The Range Rover was released in1970 as the world’s first luxury 4×4. This changed peoples’ viewpoints on 4WD vehicles. More people began using them as their everyday domestic vehicles.
1971-1980— Subaru brought out the L-series, a four wheel drive passenger car. This included the first Subaru Forester; a series that became one of the best 4x4s available. Because AMC gave us their Eagle, it helped the manufacturer receive the large increase in sales they needed to stay in business.
1991-2000– 4x4s became the car to have for many families and off-road adventurers. Better handling, suspension and power of their 4WD systems were seen by many manufactures.
Many luxury SUVs were available. Several different types of models were available, from station wagons to light trucks. So a much wider audience started purchasing these.
In 1996 Subaru began experimenting with the traditional all-wheel drive layout. As a result owners had greater control of their vehicles in different road conditions and allowed for much greater pulling capabilities.
2001-2010–Subaru continued to develop their unique AWD system. The focus of many manufacturers was to create a more fuel efficient vehicle. SUV sales continued to soar as people began seeing them as a safe family car.
2011-Present– SUVs continue to be popular for many people… from young adults, to families with children to to older adults with grandchildren. In fact, some manufacturers are going away from car models and taking an almost-solo route with ATVs. Sport utility vehicles outsold sedans 2:1 in 2019 and this shift shows little sign of stopping.
Consumers love 4WD vehicles! Their popularity is driven by changing lifestyles, usefulness and technology. ATV and car models each have unique dynamics to attract consumers. So both styles of vehicles will continue to be available. Yeah!