Why Do Most Trucks Come With Rear-Wheel Drive?

If you are familiar with the world of pickup trucks, you likely know that most of these vehicles come standard with rear-wheel drive. Typically, RWD is seen as more difficult to drive than front-wheel drive vehicles. But for trucks, if you don’t have four-wheel drive, RWD is almost essential. 

Why do trucks have RWD?

In terms of their drivetrains, most pickup trucks do come with standard RWD. For pickups, RWD is essential because when your bed is empty, FWD will make these vehicles less easy to drive. In some cases, it could even be less safe to have FWD. RWD helps with both hauling and towing as well because the driven wheels are closer to the load. 

Now, not everyone is used to driving RWD. But with modern automotive technology, it has become easier to do than RWD vehicles of the past. One difficult situation that can come from RWD is maintaining traction. When roads get rough with things like snow or ice, it can help to keep some weight in your pickup truck bed. That way, there is weight applied to the rear wheels. 

Do you need a truck with 4WD?

According to Edmunds, in some cases, 4WD might be ideal for those who want to buy a truck. With power going to all four wheels, you will be able to handle things like off-roading and inclement weather. A 4WD truck will typically cost more than a pickup  with RWD, but for the most part, it will probably be worth it.

As a full-size truck, the Ford F-150 does come standard with RWD.
Ford F-150 PowerBoost | Ford

Having 4WD can cut down on fuel economy, and it does make the drivetrain more complex. Although there are those trade-offs, 4WD will mean that you have a truck that is ready to go just about anywhere. 

Which trucks are FWD?

There are actually a couple of new trucks that come with front-wheel drive. Both the 2022 Hyundai Santa Cruz and 2022 Ford Maverick are FWD trucks. This is likely because these are compact pickups, so they do not need RWD in order to function well. 

A 2022 Hyundai Santa Cruz compact truck parked on a beach. DOes it have AWD?
2022 Hyundai Santa Cruz | Hyundai

Unlike other trucks, the Santa Cruz and Maverick offer all-wheel drive instead of a traditional 4WD system. And that is much like the 2022 Honda Ridgeline, which comes standard with AWD.

Which new pickups are worth buying?

Trucks are some of the most popular vehicles on the road, so a range of manufacturers offer them. Whether you want a compact pickup, a mid-size truck, or something larger, 2022 is a pretty solid year for trucks. 

The usual suspects include things like the Ford F-150, Toyota Tacoma, and Ram 1500. But, newcomers like the Ford Maverick have been proving themselves as popular. One of the larger problems with new trucks seems to be pricing. It is easy to pay well over $50,000 to get a new truck. And that means folks are likely looking to the used market to find a pickup. 

Despite this, plenty of folks do take out auto loans in order to purchase a new truck. Even if it means taking out a loan for five or more years.

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