How Does Acura’s SH-AWD System Work?

Question: How Does Acura’s SH-AWD System Work?


Acura’s Super Handling All-Wheel Drive (SH-AWD) system was created to handle as well on dry roads as it does during inclement weather, while also improving fuel economy.

This works by balancing power to the wheels with weight distribution, available traction, as well as other variables that come into play while driving. It allows the handling to be enhanced for an agile experience in optimal conditions, and assists in keep the driver in control in other driving conditions.

Using split-second analysis of wheel speed, steering angle, lateral G-force, and other metrics, the SH-AWD system distributes power as needed between the front and rear wheels. This gives it a technological advantage over traditional 4WD systems or always-on 50/50 AWD systems.

Here are a few examples of how Acura’s SH-AWD system works in certain driving situations:

  • When accelerating hard around a curve, the system may distribute 70% of the vehicle’s torque to the rear outside wheel to assist in getting through the curve safely due to the weight shift.
  • Cruising in a straight line, the SH-AWD system can send up to 90% of the vehicle’s available power to the front wheels, leading to a boost in fuel efficiency. This keeps even larger SUVs, such as the 2017 Acura MDX, extra efficient during highway driving.
  • During a hard acceleration, and depending on the conditions, the SH-AWD system can transfer up to 45% of the vehicle’s power to the rear wheels to help assist in traction. This is especially useful in situations where your vehicle may be stuck or it needs balanced power to all wheels to get regain traction.