The ability to inspire driver confidence in getting traction when and where needed, regardless of road conditions, is a powerful one. So it's no wonder that the notion of a car with permanent four-wheel drive was a revolutionary concept and set a new benchmark for driver safety and performance.
Yet this is what quattro technology brought to the idea of the four-wheel drive. Drivers could now tackle snow covered mountain passes, rain-slicked highways and gravel-strewn rural roads with ease while still enjoying a level of performance unachievable by two-wheel drive cars on smooth dry roads.
This simple, yet powerful idea of sending power to all wheels was made most apparent when introduced to the World Rally Championship where the startling acceleration and remarkable traction achieved by quattro technology was eventually deemed an "unfair advantage" and banned from road racing altogether after repeatedly dominating the field.
How it works
The basis for quattro technology is permanent power being applied to all four wheels distributed between the front and rear axles. By sending power to each axle, there is a much lower power requirement and very well balanced handling, which means better traction during acceleration and greater safety thanks to exceptional road holding.
This is especially true in conditions where two-wheel-drive vehicles would lose grip. If the wheels of one axle lose grip and threaten to spin, the drive torque in a quattro system, is redirected in the central differential to the other axle. This occurs automatically and continuously, creating greater lateral stability and improved traction.
Permanent all-wheel drive technology like quattro is essentially a proactive mechanical system with a self-locking center differential and continuously variable torque distribution, so it instantly responds to wheel speed differences and dynamically adjusts power to the wheels with the best traction.
When supported by advanced electronic control systems it can offer numerous benefits over other all-wheel drive systems bringing sports car-like performance and handling with uncompromised all-wheel drive traction.
Since quattro technology was first introduced in 1980 at the Geneva Motor Show in Switzerland it has not only established itself in motor sports, but in cars that are used on roads daily. It provides high levels of safety, dynamism and improved traction on all kinds of surfaces and all-round better performance.
It is under extreme conditions and in unexpected situations that the need for quattro technology became apparent and important. When other systems would suffer from understeer or oversteer, an all-wheel-drive system stays smooth and balanced. Even if a driver decelerates in a bend which they have taken too fast, the system has the ability to independently stabilize itself and can easily be brought back into line.
It's for these reasons that quattro technology not only raises the benchmark in high-performance engineering but its permanent four-wheel drive solution is fast becoming an industry standard.