Over the years we’ve seen cars developing at an astonishing rate. From the days where a car simply got your from A to B, we’re now at a stage where we have keyless entry, satellite navigation, cruise control, heated seats and gadgets galore.
Some cars are so advanced that they may never actually be sold or even make it into production, with manufacturers releasing “concept cars” at exhibitions while others have evolved so much that they only cling to a few of their original roots.
Four-wheel drive vehicles were originally designed for the military, helping them to deal with the harsh terrains throughout the Second World War. Back then vehicles were needed to cope with everything that the war through at them, while the evolution process has brought us to a point where they are everyday road-going vehicles made by the likes of Range Rover and Chrysler, and people are able to get a Chrysler Jeep service without the need of a soldier!
The 4×4 made its way into the mainstream motoring market because the manufacturers who had worked on them, and taken an interest in them, had spotted that there was a gap in the market that could be filled by these huge machines. It started to become a popular vehicle among farmers who would use them to get around their land, negotiating the undulating fields and paddocks without causing the extensive damage that would have occurred with their “family” cars.
The evolution process didn’t stop at the farm yard, however, as manufacturers took the feedback from the military and agricultural industry, and turned their 4×4 vehicles into everyday road-going cars. The developers took the off-road four-wheel drive systems and combined them with the comfort of their luxury family saloons to make a form of “hybrid” in many respects, combining all of the benefits of off-road vehicles with those destined for the tarmac.
The rugged nature of the vehicles has allowed motorists to take on challenges that wouldn’t have been possible in the early days of motoring. Snow-covered roads would be impassible, farmers would be using tractors or walking around their fields.
Today, 4x4s are seen as much more than just rugged, all-terrain vehicles. They’re seen as stylish vehicles that are great in the dry, great in the wet and have passers by looking on in awe.