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Re: Center Differentials

Eliot Lim  writes:
> this is pretty interesting.  the latest carrera 4 now has AWD that is
> barely more sophisticated than those found on the vanagon syncro,
> various ford and chevy minivans, the lamborghini diablo VT..
> in short, it is a part time, automatically engaging 4wd system.  the press
> has almost been silent in pointing this out.  porsche, during the days of
> the 959 and original carrera 4 have been strongly opposed to using any
> form of viscous coupling (as is audi till this day) because "they cannot
> be controlled" and they hamper ABS operation. 
> i have always considered the use of a viscous coupling to be a less
> elegant implementation 
> there are also a few understeer inducing doo-dads thrown in when the
> accelerometers detect a situation where the tail is about to swing..
> this is the only thing it has over the generic VC auto engaging 4wd
> implementation.

Hi Eliot,

I think you miss the point.  Porsche had an elaborate, computer-controlled,
all mechanical AWD on the original C-4, in which it was all but impossible
in induce oversteer. Porsche replaced it with the new system for two
reasons. The new system is half the weight of the old one, and the new
system allows more driver controll (it allows the driver to induce

Many folks who *don't* own 911s find the prospect of its propensity to
"hang the tail" out in the breeze, something to be feared.

911 pilots, OTOH, generally *love* oversteer, and consider the
significantly higher level of driver's expertise required to master the
challange of taming the 911, a significant part of its charm.  BMW may
claims it produces "the Ultimate drivING machine,"  911 owners know who
produces the ultimate *DriveR's* machine.  And, FWIW, who would argue that,
in a pure sports car like the 911, a much lighter and simpler system is
*Less* elegant...?

OK, I'll go quietly now...


Bart Chambers
'77 Feline Varmint Felix, Gray Tabby
'86 Carrera Cabriolet, Guards Red
'87 Syncro (Stealth Quattro)