For Porsche enthusiasts, there has always been a question which sparks controversy: Is a rear-wheel or an all-wheel drive Porsche better? Purists like the rear-wheel feel, which they claim delivers the true Porsche driving experience; all-wheel drive lovers point to the superior performance of the AWD and the fact that it has been a staple of the Porsche lineup as far back as 1984. Whatever your preference, you’ll be driving an exquisite machine.
If you are of the AWD persuasion, come down to Porsche Woodland Hills for an all-wheel drive Porsche sports car, luxury sedan or SUV. An all-wheel-drive system is now available on the Panamera, Cayenne, 911 Carrera 4, and the 911 Turbo.
A Quick History of Porsche’s AWD Systems
The first mass-produced Porsche car with all-wheel drive was the Porsche 959, produced from 1986 to 1993. The system took readings from numerous sensors, like the force sensor, the accelerator pedal position, turbo pressure while accelerating, and speed, allowing the computer to change the normal torque split ratio of 40 front/60 back on the fly, instead sending up to 80% to the rear wheels.
The initial all-wheel drive system implemented for the 911 Carrera 4 Type 964 (1988-1993) was a continuously running AWD system with 31/69% torque distribution front to rear with three differential systems. These used computer-controlled hydraulic clutches (Porsche Dynamische Allrad Steuerung or PDAS for short) to help distribute power to the four wheels.
The all-wheel drive systems installed on the next Carrera 4 (Type 993), produced from 1994 to 1997, was automatic, with a mechanical limited slip at the rear and viscous coupling in the center.
Modern day AWD systems on Porsches like the Cayenne are continuous all-wheel drive systems with a torque split of 38/82% under normal conditions and a multi-plate clutch lockable center differential.
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