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four-wheel drive

noun, Automotive.
a drive system in which engine power is transmitted to all four wheels for improved traction.
a vehicle having such a system.
Abbreviation: 4WD.
Origin of four-wheel drive
First recorded in 1925-30
Related forms
four-wheel-drive, adjective Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018.
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Examples from the Web for four-wheel drive
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • They used Sam's panel truck, which had a four-wheel drive and mud tires.

    The Great Gray Plague Raymond F. Jones
  • He started the jeep, then shifted into his own four-wheel drive.

    The Golden Skull John Blaine
  • There were plenty of these; the jeep's engine, lately running on four-wheel drive, was quite hot.

    Police Operation H. Beam Piper
  • He quickly switched into four-wheel drive and swung the jeep in its own length.

    The Flaming Mountain Harold Leland Goodwin
  • The driver started it again, shifted to four-wheel drive, and tried to ram forward.

    The Leech Phillips Barbee
  • Rick held on tight as Zircon shifted into four-wheel drive and forged ahead.

    The Flaming Mountain Harold Leland Goodwin
  • There was little danger of the jeep bogging down, especially in four-wheel drive.

    The Flaming Mountain Harold Leland Goodwin
  • Scotty reached down and put the jeep into four-wheel drive, then turned left off the road.

    The Scarlet Lake Mystery Harold Leland Goodwin
British Dictionary definitions for four-wheel drive

four-wheel drive

a system used in motor vehicles in which all four wheels are connected to the source of power
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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