This is what the GKN Driveline all-wheel-drive (AWD) Disconnect system for small to medium-sized vehiclesâit is a scalable architectureâlooks like:
The system is designed so that when a vehicle is in steady-state cruising the clutch system disengages the rear section of the driveline. As a result, rotational losses are minimized. This means that highway fuel economy can be improved by up to 4 percent.
Said another way: When you donât need all-wheel-drive capability, thereâs no reason to keep it engaged, as it doesnât enhance vehicle efficiency.
HOWEVER. . .when thereâs wheel slippage or there is driver input that calls for it, the system reengages within 300 milliseconds. Think the proverbial blink of an eye.
The system features an active torque biasing function that provides control of the distribution of torque between the front and rear wheels, optimizing traction, stability and performance.
According to GKN, the system can be integrated into platforms with different sizes and dynamic requirements with minor hardware and software changes.
The system was initially used on the Jeep Renegade and Fiat 500X, and is now being deployed on the 2017 Jeep Compass, all of which share the FCA âsmall-wide 4×4 architecture.â