Mother Nature, the ultimate AWD cash cow.
It’s been a long and nasty winter in the US with record low temperatures and record high snowfalls. By this point everyone has pretty much had enough. Mother Nature, we surrender. You win. Because of the frigid and snowy weather, sales of all-wheel-drive vehicles have increased by 79 percent since 2009. A Kelly Blue Book analyst stated that "this past winter will have only inspired people to be aware of whether they have or don’t have all-wheel drive."
Subaru and Jeep in particular have both taken full advantage of the polar vortex by heavily promoting the AWD capabilities of their respective model lineups. Even Ford has reported greater sales of AWD-equipped models like the Escape and Explorer. There’s also been increased interest amongst Fusion buyers to add the AWD option. In the past, AWD sedans and crossovers didn’t sell as well because of their higher prices and lower fuel economies, two issues that have been significantly improved as of late.