4WD's 'The Urban Menace'

Essay by ballard619High School, 11th gradeB-, March 2007

download word file, 4 pages 3.0

Four Wheel Drive vehicles appear to be ‘the car’ of the new millennium. They are undoubtedly everywhere, particularly in Central Business Districts (CBD) and suburbs. Young business people, teenagers, families and retirees are all trading in their family sedans to buy a larger vehicle in the form of a 4WD. These larger vehicles are taking over our suburban streets creating a variety of problems for the environment and city and suburban dwellers.

The term "4WD" means a four-wheel-drive car or truck type vehicle that is designed for at least a small degree of off-road use. Exactly what is a 4WD and what is an "AWD" or "softroader" is open to debate. Technically, a 4WD is a vehicle that has four wheels, all of which can be driven. That includes cars that are purely designed for bitumen, such as Audi and Subaru all-wheel-drives. You have may noticed 4WDs are not popular in some overseas cities such as Milan, Paris, Rome, London and Venice!!! This is because the streets of these cities are too narrow to accommodate these larger wider vehicles.

Even with that qualification, the term "4WD" covers a very large variety of vehicles, from the tiny Suzuki Jimny with its 1.3 litre engine, to the giant Ford F250 to "softroader" hybrids like the Forester and CR-V which are closer to plain road cars with slightly raised suspension, to "serious" 4WDs like the Defender and Patrol. And even the Jimny is a "serious" 4WD too, as a 4WD doesn't need to be big to be a capable off-road vehicle!4WDs are a menace on our urban roads and are definitely not safe. They have even been referred to as ‘vehicles of mass destruction’. They put at risk the people occupying them because these larger and heavier vehicles are more likely...