What is a Drivetrain?

By Mister Transmission

A drivetrain may be the least understood part of a vehicle. This is due to several factors, including the fact that the term “drivetrain” is often used interchangeably with powertrain and driveline.

The drivetrain includes the transmission, the driveshaft, the axles, and the wheels. Simply put, it works in conjunction with the engine to move the wheels. The drivetrain system is an essential component of a vehicle and the transmission is an integral part of the drivetrain.

The Drivetrain and the Transmission

The drivetrain and the transmission are actually two very different concepts. The main function of the transmission is similar to the chain on a bicycle: it keeps the engine turning in time with the wheels, regardless of what gear the vehicle is in. The drivetrain represents everything that is behind the transmission involved in propelling the vehicle. The main function of the drivetrain is basically to convey power from the vehicle’s engine, through the transmission to the drive wheels on the vehicle to control the amount of torque. “Torque” is turning or twisting force.

Parts of a Drivetrain

The drivetrain is comprised of a collection of components in a vehicle that transfer power from the transmission to the wheels/ drive it forward. These components include the driveshaft, CV joints, the differential, the axle shafts and the U-joints.

  • A driveshaft is a long tube of steel that is linked to a car’s transmission at one end and the wheels at the other. It transfers the mechanical power from the transmission to the other components of the vehicle.
  • A U-joint, or universal joint, is a flexible pivot point that transmits power allowing for varying angles of the driveshaft.
  • CV joints, or constant-velocity joints, are part of the driveshaft. These joints are designed to be able to bend in any direction while continuing to turn the drive wheels at a constant velocity.
  • The differential is where the power makes its last stop before spinning the wheels (see ‘How Differentials Work’).
  • Axle shafts are a single rotating shaft, on either side of the differential, which delivers power from the final drive assembly to the drive wheels.

Driveline, Drivetrain, Powertrain

Technicians sometimes refer to driveline, drivetrain and powertrain interchangeably when referring to the drivetrain system of an automobile. This can cause confusion, but in essence, all of these terms describe the same system within the vehicle.

The powertrain in a vehicle is composed of everything that makes the vehicle move. This includes everything from the engine to the transmission to all the parts that allow the power from the engine to get to the wheels. A vehicle’s driveline consists of all of the powertrain’s components except for the engine.

The drivetrain is the part of a motorized vehicle which connects the engine and transmission to the wheel axles.

The driveline includes everything in the chain from the engine to the drive wheels, but the drivetrain consists of everything after the transmission — all driveshafts, axles, joints, differentials and wheels.

Mister Transmission technicians are all certified drivetrain and transmission specialists who service drivetrain and transmission issues in all modern vehicles.

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Customer Reviews
Chris and the technician that...
Hussien Tarhini
Chris and the technician that work there are great guys to deal with. Honesty is their title. Very informative and explains the sue with the vehicle ..highly recomanded.
Date: November 30, 2022
Website: Google
This place, the owner, the...
Elizabeth Patterson
This place, the owner, the everyone.. All of them absolutely amazing! From the free diagnostic to the surprisingly painless cost of fixing my car.. They are a wonderful, incredibly skilled, and most of all a caring crew. Go there for sure to get anything done for your car. I can't say enough nice things about them. They're so good that I am switching from my mechanic of more than five years and taking my car here for all of its service from now on. When you go here too, you sure as heck won't be let down or disappointed.
Date: November 30, 2022
Website: Google
Staff and owner are great...
Hayward Rideout
Staff and owner are great Good service ..quick and courteous .we will return
Date: November 29, 2022
Website: Google
Zaffar is one of the...
Kishore Naidu
Zaffar is one of the best person I have ever met. Very polite, helpful and first to offer the services. Anytime it’s a to go place for your car.
Date: November 29, 2022
Website: Google
Eric is very helpful and...
Owen Smith
Eric is very helpful and knowledgeable. Great team.
Date: November 28, 2022
Website: Google
They took care of me...
Dean Drimmie
They took care of me promptly and at a very reasonable price. Friendly staff, great service
Date: November 28, 2022
Website: Google
They have amazing service and...
Dave Gravel
They have amazing service and was there to help diagnose my problem
Date: November 27, 2022
Website: Google
Great place to grow
Automotive Technician
I was a tech at Mr T for about 2 years and really enjoyed my time there. I learned a lot about the auto industry in a shop that was calm, clean and organized. Pros Mon-Fri 8-5
Date: November 26, 2022
Website: indeed
Honest professional service. Took my...
M C
Honest professional service. Took my van for second opinion after being told it'll need a rebuild of transmission, the diagnosis; the fluid was low and needed topping up. Thank you Mr. Transmission for saving me $$ and your honesty.
Date: November 26, 2022
Website: Google
Good day! i just wanted...
Ken Barone
Good day! i just wanted to reply to the review by Lorenzo. I think its best to shed some light on the repair to Lorenzo's Cadillac V series car. the car was in for repair, and yes, had issue's with the transmission .and when the car left. the parts for his Cadillac are on nation wide back order. since last march of 2021. i also tried to find a used transmission, ordered one and but was not the same. besides our shop is very busy, it took time to search for parts ,and waiting for the used transmission to arrive. after exhausting every avenue. i had to called and explained to the customer. he said he is fed up with this car. im going to just sell it!and get rid of the car. Maybe just take it the way it is and tow back to my house then sell it the way it is? i said i think it would be better if i reassemble the transmission and then install back into the car. i said no extra cost to assemble the transmission only to remove and reinstallation. Lorenzo said that the shifter cover was already like that when it came in. My goodwill offer on labour still stands with no hard feelings. and if for some reason parts become available i would still be happy to help. feel free to reach out to me anytime. Ken
Date: November 26, 2022
Website: Google
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