Which car has the highest ground clearance with selectable all-wheel drive?

One with high clearance, front-wheel drive and push-button all-wheel drive.

Elizabeth, South Dakota

We aren’t sure that the Mitsubishi Lancer SE has the highest ground clearance at 5.5 inches, but we do know for sure that it has selectable all-wheel drive through a switch on the center console. The all-wheel-drive Lancer SE is new for 2012, and the console switch lets you choose front-wheel drive, an all-wheel-drive mode that sends power to all wheels as needed and all-wheel-drive Lock, which keeps the system engaged in a 50/50 power split front/rear.


The Lancer Ralliart has a permanently engaged all-wheel-drive system, though a console switch allows selecting operating modes for Tarmac, Gravel or Snow. Ground clearance is 5.8 inches on the Ralliart.

You asked about all-wheel-drive cars, but SUVs will give you greater ground clearance, and more will offer selectable all-wheel-drive or four-wheel-drive systems. Although the Toyota RAV4’s all-wheel-drive system engages automatically as needed, a dashboard switch allows keeping it engaged, and it has 7.5 inches of ground clearance. The Jeep Liberty has fully selectable four-wheel drive and 7.7 inches of clearance.

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Answered by Rick Popely on February 22, 2012 in What Car Should I Buy? | Permalink

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