What is the Difference Between Powertrain & Drivetrain?

drivetrain and powertrain Acura

How are drivetrain and powertrain different? In short, the drivetrain delivers power to the wheels. The powertrain is made up of the engine and the drivetrain.

Drivetrain or Powertrain

You might not know off the top of your head what the advantages are of contrasting a drivetrain vs. powertrain but when you recognize the differences between the two, it will certainly provide you the edge when automobile purchasing, checking out the auto mechanic, or when Alex Trebek asks you a Jeopardy question about vehicle parts that make cars move.

In short, powertrains and drivetrains basically do the exact same thing. They create kinetic energy to make your car ‘go’. Now, chances are that you’ve never really thought about exactly how essential these moving components are. They’re the unsung heroes that get you from point A to point B and they each operate in their own one-of-a-kind way.

What are the Drivetrain Components?

Oftentimes the terms ‘drivetrain’ and ‘powertrain’ are used interchangeably yet, contrary to popular belief, they are not the exact same. So what exactly is the distinction between powertrain components and drivetrain parts? The greatest distinction is the way power is created and distributed to the car.

A drivetrain is not actually a single part of your vehicle – it’s a team of drivetrain parts that work together with the engine to move the wheels and different parts of the car to propel it into motion. These components often include the transmission, differential, driveshaft, axles, CV joints, and the wheels.

Drivetrain: How Does it work?

This is the order of how power is produced and provided by a drivetrain:

  • The engine will generate power to power a flywheel
  • That flywheel works with the transmission to control the amount of power dispersed to various other elements of the drivetrain
  • The driveshaft spins to produce power to a differential
  • After that the differential supplies power from all those driveshaft parts and boom … your wheels are in motion

Powertain: What is in it?

If you understood the drivetrain basics, the powertrain basics should be a very easy idea to comprehend, because of the reality that there is only one specifying factor that sets them apart. That factor is the engine. In a powertrain, the engine belongs of the many moving elements. If you keep in mind from the paragraph above, the drivetrain works with the engine.

The powertrain encompasses every moving part that is vital to the car’s success. Its sole objective is transforming kinetic energy into propulsion movement. If one of these components fail your car may experience some uncommon rattling, or shaking.

What are the Differences Between Drivetrain and Powertrain? | Sterling McCall Acura

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