5 Reasons You Need a 4x4

Jul. 14, 2016 By Tim Healey
Why do you need a 4x4? There are a lot of good reasons.

Although trucks and SUVs are popular, they aren’t always purchased because they’re available with four- or all-wheel drive (indeed, some folks purchase the two-wheel drive versions, where available). Many are purchased because the driver likes the additional cargo and passenger space, or the rugged looks, or the image projected by SUV ownership. Others even mock truck and SUV buyers for buying four-wheel drive vehicles they don’t “need.” But there are some very good reasons why you might actually need a 4x4 or AWD vehicle.

Because: Fun!

Going Off-Road – For Fun
Ok, yeah, most of us never need to go off-road to get from point A to point B. Most of us live our lives in urban or suburban areas and never need to leave the pavement, save for maybe the occasional traverse across a gravel driveway or grassy area – and even then, there’s no need for 4WD. But even if you live in a densely packed city, there are likely some sort of off-road trails that are open to the public (and to 4X4 owners) within an hour’s drive or so of town, and playing in the woods or mountains can be a nice way to get away from the grind of the city and reconnect with nature.

Whether playing in the snow or looking to get to the snow, a 4x4 will certainly aid in the cause.

Access to Winter Sports
If you live and/or vacation in a place where it snows in the winter, you might need a four-wheel or all-wheel drive vehicle to get to your vacation home or ski lodge of choice. Sure, this only applies to a certain segment of the population, but for those of you who love to ski/snowboard/sip on drinks in a ski lodge, you might not be able to do so without an off-road capable vehicle. Heck, you might not even be able to get to the towns near the ski slopes in the winter, especially in more mountainous areas of the country.

It can be very easy to get stuck, and in turn, very hard to get unstuck.

So You Don’t Get Stuck
It’s not just about winter sports or cool ski towns located in the mountains. Even in the spring, summer, and fall, in almost all parts of the country, you may need four-wheel drive or AWD to avoid getting stuck when going hunting, hiking, camping, canoeing, or engaging in any other outdoor activity that takes you way off the beaten path. Even a dirt road that could normally be traversed with two-wheel drive can become a problem if a sudden rainstorm turns it to mud. This goes even for low-key activities – sometimes concerts are held at arenas with outdoor parking areas that are all grass, and an unexpected rainstorm can cause lots of problems for vehicles lacking 4WD or AWD.

We touched on it in the intro, but one reason to buy a 4X4 is space for passengers and cargo. Sure, there are crossovers out there with 2WD that offer plenty of space, and even a few wagons out there, but the extra space of these vehicles often goes hand in hand with 4WD or AWD – there are even some crossovers, trucks, and SUVs that are only available with all-wheel or four-wheel drive.

You know, for when you need to move your Corvette off the lawn.

This is similar to the previous item – you can of course find vehicles on the market that are capable of towing that don’t have four-wheel drive. Again, though, four-wheel and all-wheel drive usually do go hand in hand with vehicles that can tow – especially for those who plan on towing heavy loads, and doing so often. If you tow frequently, be it a boat, horse trailer, race car, or something else, there’s a good chance you’ll need to pick a truck or SUV that offers four-wheel drive.

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