4×2 or 4×4: Which ‘Bakkie’ is just right for you?

Sep 2018

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The term ‘Bakkie’ is as uniquely South African as the Kruger National Park or Table Top Mountain. After all, the very term comes from the Afrikaans term ‘bak’ or container.
However, Bakkies come in two different varieties. I.e.4×4 and 4×2 and they both have their own respective pros and cons. However, they are similar in many respects such as the fact that they are essentially small trucks that are equipped with an open body and correspondingly lower sides. Due to this, they are ideal for the outback for a number of reasons. Such as transporting both large articles and people to different places with ease.  Let us take a closer look at both, so as to figure out which one would fit your requirements the most.
However, when it comes to determining the answer to the all-important question of 4×2 vs 4×4, it is important to understand that there really is no clear answer as such. This is because it essentially depends on your own primary purpose due to which you have decided to acquire a Bakkie. Let us check out a few key features of both these types:

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What Exactly is a 4×2 Bakkie?

A 4×2 Bakkie has four wheels (as expected of a car). However, the key differentiating feature is that only two of these wheels are actually driven by the powerful engine, located up front. The remaining two wheels basically just spin as a direct result of the motion of the vehicle. You can say that they are there, only for the ride.
The powered wheels can either be the two forward ones or in case it’s a rear wheel drive (RWD) vehicle then the drive train will be powering the rear wheels only. While the front ones will just be spinning along due to the motion of the rear ones. However, most Bakkies are equipped with front wheel drive trains because they are somewhat more stable than their RWD counterparts.

What Can You Possibly Get from a 4×4 Bakkie?

A 4×4 bakkie is a vehicle that comes equipped with a full-on four wheel drive capability. This means that the differentials are set in such a way that each and every one of the four wheels of the vehicle receives power from the drive train. Such a vehicle also features its own (4×4) signature ‘low range’ gears to ensure that the axle will spin at a markedly lower than normal RPM.

4×2 vs 4×4

When it comes to making a selection between these two types, it boils down to fuel economy. The sheer power required to spin all four wheels simultaneously makes for far higher fuel consumption. On the other hand, the traditional 4×2 concept means that fuel consumption is considerably lower in this category of vehicle.
Apart from that, they are also easier to maintain and cost less to buy as well. However, a 4×2 will be of minimal help if you head out into the bush and get stuck in the sand. 4×4 Bakkies, on the other hand, are brute machines that can handle any and all- terrain with equal aplomb.
Ultimately, what you decide to buy is of course entirely up to you and your own personal requirements for the job at hand.