4×4 Allgrip: definition, features, and operating principle

4×4 Allgrip: definition, features, and operating principle

4×4 Allgrip is an intelligent four-wheel drive system equipped on Suzuki cars. It first appeared on the Vitara model in 1988. The system controls the engine, drivetrain, and ESP. It makes it possible to choose the optimal driving mode for any road and weather conditions. It also improves fuel efficiency and reduces harmful environmental emissions.

Types of 4×4 Allgrip and how they work

Auto (full-time): This is used on the Swift and Ignis models. A multi-plate hydraulic clutch with silicone oil is used to distribute the torque instead of a centre differential. The lubricant heats and expands if there is a difference in wheel speed on the different axles. Additional torque is then supplied to the rear axle in order to prevent the front axle from slipping.

Select (on-demand): This is featured on the Vitara and SX4 models. The 4×4 Allgrip system uses data about the condition of the road surface, throttle position, and steering angle. This allows power to be distributed to the rear axle even before the front axle starts to slip. It has 4 driving modes:

  • The Auto mode offers efficient fuel consumption. By default, the car is front-wheel drive. However, if the car detects that the front wheels are slipping, all-wheel drive is automatically engaged.
  • The Sport mode improves maneuverability, distributing the torque to the rear axle if necessary. Moreover, the engine responds more quickly when the accelerator pedal is pressed.
  • The Snow mode ensures safe driving and stable roadholding on slippery and snow-covered roads. Based on the steering wheel angle and accelerator pedal position, it distributes power to all four wheels.
  • The Lock mode improves the vehicle’s off-road capability. It splits the engine torque equally between both axles.

The desired 4×4 Allgrip mode can be selected using a switch mounted on the centre console.

Pro (Part-time): This is designed for driving on rough terrain. It is installed on the Jimny SUVs. Between the propeller shafts, a transfer case is mounted. In difficult road conditions it provides a low gear ratio and in normal conditions a high gear ratio. When necessary, the axles can be rigidly coupled and the torque is split equally.


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