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Videos That Explain 4 Common Auto Technologies Clearly: AWD, 4WD, ABS and Airbag

Don't think for a second that you're behind the times. Most drivers don't know what all-wheel drive really is. The same goes for countless other auto technologies. We don't know how they work and we often don't even know how they benefit us. You might want to know what you're paying for when you purchase or lease your next vehicle, though. Therefore, we've found some videos that clearly explain the usefulness of four common auto technologies, for all of you visual learners out there. You'll also get an idea of how they work and any disadvantages they have.

All-Wheel Drive

Video 1: Our Friends at Consumer Reports Talk About the Benefits and Downfalls of AWD


  • AWD helps you get going faster but doesn't help you stop faster.
  • Some AWD systems handle better than others but AWD usually doesn't significantly improve handling (in snow), compared to front-wheel and rear-wheel drive vehicles.
  • Winter tires are a very good idea if you live in a snowy or icy area.

Video 2: Subaru Explain Why AWD Improves Handling


  • AWD improves traction.
  • Traction improves cornering.

Keep in mind that there are different types of AWD and some are better than others. See this video for more information.

Anti-Lock Brakes

Allegro Racing Explains the Benefit of Anti-lock Brakes


  • ABS means "anti-lock braking system" but can also be a mnemonic device for remembering "allows breaking and steering."
  • ABS improves braking effectiveness and allows steering while braking.


Mazda Australia Explains How Airbags Keep You Safe


  • The locations of front, side and curtain airbags are shown.
  • The airbag control module monitors the vehicle's rate of deceleration and deploys airbags when the rate is too high.
  • Seatbelts play a role during accidents, too.

Four-Wheel Drive

Morrie's Automotive Group Explains the Difference Between AWD (All-wheel Drive) and 4WD (Four-wheel Drive)


  • 4WD must be activated, whereas AWD is always on.
  • 4WD is best for true off-road conditions, where there is no road to speak of. It's not for use on concrete, in most cases.
  • 4WD is useful for towing.

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