Ferrari develops four-wheel drive system
Ferrari wants to improve the performance capability of their sport cars under all condition, so they developed a new four-wheel drive system, dubbed as "insertable 4x4". The system is developed based on the four-wheel drive system that was developed in Maranello last year.
The new system tries to remove the the disadvantages of a permanent four-wheel drive arrangement, particularly the loss of engine torque associated with it, by using a system that can be taken out of the equation as required.
"Currently, a sporty, high performance car presents rear wheel drive and is provided with a self-locking differential aiming at maximising motive torque transmitted by the rear wheels to the road surface in all conditions," say Ferrari. "Rear wheel drive with self-locking differential is a premium for sporty driving in either optimal grip conditions (dry road) or reasonable grip conditions (wet road); however, such a solution in combination with a high motive torque and large-sized tyres entails very difficult and potentially dangerous driving in poor grip conditions (flooded or icy road)."
"The use of permanent or insertable for wheel drive has been proposed in order to improve the driveability of a sports car in poor grip conditions. Whilst permanent four wheel drive considerably improves the behaviour of motor vehicles in poor grip conditions, it presents the drawback of increasing loss of torque in the transmission system and conferring to the car a behaviour in optimal grip conditions which is not always appreciated by drivers."
The new system has been tested and can be used for both usual mid-engine cars and front-engine cars with transaxle layout.