Performance vs. Utility: What’s the Difference & How to Choose

April 30th, 2018 by

2018 fiat 500x offroading
Performance vs. utility – what does it really matter? Quite a lot, as it turns out, especially when you are trying to decide if your next new vehicle should be chasing the redline or able to load up for a weekend camping trip. Take these points into consideration as you learn more:

  • Horsepower vs. torque
  • All-wheel/four-wheel drive vs. fuel efficiency
  • On-road vs. off-road performance
  • Passenger comfort vs. cargo space

If you’re unsure whether to prioritize performance or utility in your new vehicle, whether to go with a FIAT 128 Spider Abarth or the 500X, consider the following points.

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Horsepower vs. Torque

It’s not a hard and fast rule, but you’ll generally find performance-focused vehicles emphasizing horsepower and utility-focused vehicles emphasizing torque.

Here’s the difference:

All-Wheel/Four-Wheel Drive vs. Fuel Efficiency

Manufacturers are making their models increasingly efficient, and more are adopting all-wheel drive, but you can still focus on one ahead of the other:

  • All-Wheel/Four-Wheel Drive: These drivetrains deliver dependable traction across rougher terrain or through tougher weather conditions. You’ll also be able to tow more.
  • Fuel Efficiency: Delivering power to all four wheels means burning more fuel. If you’re not going to be covering challenging terrain or weather, focus on two-wheel drive for strong performance and more generous mpg ratings.

On-Road vs. Off-Road

Where will you be driving? It’s going to affect plenty.

  • On-Road: Mostly sticking to cities and highways? A performance-focused vehicle is going to see you enjoying an agile drive.
  • Off-Road: You’ll need different suspension to cope with the demands, plus a host of further additions. Being off-road-capable is the domain of utility vehicles.

Passenger Comfort vs. Cargo Space

Finally, measure up your desire for comfort against your need for cargo space:

  • Passenger Comfort: Some sport models are rather spartan, but most performance vehicles provide luxury fittings and materials.
  • Cargo Space: A vehicle with sights set on utility should provide a cavernous cargo area, usually one that can be extended easily into the passenger compartment.

From Performance to Utility: Find What You’re Seeking at Bettenhausen CDJR

Whether you need to talk financing, arrange a test drive, or simply find out more about performance vs. utility, the team here at Bettenhausen CDJR is always eager to be of assistance – contact us today in Tinley Park for any further help.

Learn More with Bettenhausen CDJR

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