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Old 09-12-2002, 03:50 PM   #1
cds
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Default why so much front overhang?

I'm thinking about getting a WRX but I don't understand why the engine is entirely in front of the front axle. I thought these cars were designed as AWD "from the ground up" but the front-heavy, front-overhang format seems like a FWD compromise. Why not an even front/rear weight distribution with the front wheel further forward? Thanks.
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Old 09-12-2002, 04:41 PM   #2
JGard
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01 Miata red

Default

because the front differential is in the transmission, which is behind the engine. That's why the engine is in front of the axle.

Most FWD cars, the engine is ON the axle, since they use a sideways engine and transaxle.

As for weight, yes, the car is set up to understeer, almost all cars are, it's a safety thing. Don't think for a second, though, that you can't get snap-oversteer on this car, because many people have done it (usually by mistake).

Plus, most of the weight is in the AWD system itself, which is low and centered.
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Old 09-12-2002, 04:53 PM   #3
cds
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Default but why not put the front axle nearer to the front?

Thanks for the reply but I still don't understand why the front axle isn't further forward, like on a BMW 3 Series. Can't they leave everything else the same and just put the front wheels all the way up front for better balance? It looks like the car is likely sold as a FWD car in countries where fuel is much more expensive and AWD is, therefore, undesireable.

Thanks again.
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Old 09-12-2002, 05:01 PM   #4
JGard
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if Subaru tried to move their front wheels all the way up like that, then they would have to redesign their whole AWD system.

The way it works now is that the transmission comes off the back of the engine. Right off the front of the transmission (near the engine), the front CV shafts come out and go to the wheels. Then out the back, the driveshaft goes to the rear differential.

So you see, they'd have to put a whole different transmission/front diff. assembly in the car in order to do what you want to do.

What they have now works very very well, why would they change it?
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Old 09-12-2002, 05:09 PM   #5
cds
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Default I see . . .

Got it -- the power would have to be redirected further forward somehow, instead of being used right where it comes out. Thanks.

I suppose the only reason to change it would be to get the more neutral handling of 50/50 weight distribution, instead of having almost 60% of the car's weight on the front tires. Now I see that it would not be a simple improvement to make. Thanks again.
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