All Wheel Drive in Reverse?

We’re thinking about buying a new all-wheel-drive small or medium size SUV. My son found out the hard way that a Honda Civic is all-wheel-drive only in forward, not reverse. Do any all-wheel-drive systems function in reverse? We’re looking at Honda, Acura, Subaru, Toyota, Lexus, VW, and Audi.

All-wheel-drive vehicles are all-wheel-drive in both directions. No exceptions.

Each of the manufacturers you listed makes front-wheel-drive, rear-wheel-drive and all-wheel-drive models. None of them change drive layouts just because you shift between forward to reverse.

With the exception of a station wagon in the 1980s, all Civics have been and still are front-wheel-drive only.

Just confirming what the previous post said. That’s definitely correct.

If your son needs proof, then put a thin coat of oil on your driveway under each wheel and have him slam the accelerator. Only the front wheels will spin.


All-wheel drive better doggone-well work in reverse, I can’t imagine a system that wouldn’t.

As for the Civic and testing for AWD, if you need The Ultimate Proof, there is the classic “put plastic McDonalds trays under the rear wheels and set the parking brake” test.