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Take a Close Look at the Toyota Previa's Fascinating Accessory Driveshaft

David Tracy May 12, 2019. 23 comments

Typically, a car’s driveshaft is what allows torque transfer between an engine and wheels that are a fair distance away. But in the lovable, supercharged, mid-engine, rear-wheel drive Toyota Previa minivan, there exists a front driveshaft that does things a bit differently.

While bouncing around on YouTube, I came across a video by Hoovies Garage, and in it, the host, Tyler, points out the most fascinating accessory drive mechanism I’ve ever seen:

It’s called the SADS, which stands for Separated Accessory Drive Shaft, Supplemental Accessory Drive System , or Supplemental Auxiliary Drive Shaft, depending upon whom you ask. In any case, this captivating spinning cylinder spans from the mid-mounted engine to the front of the van, powering various underhood accessories like the alternator, cooling fan, A/C compressor, power steering pump, and even the supercharger. Here’s how it’s set up:

Normally, engine accessories are powered by either chains driven by a sprocket on the motor’s crankshaft, or by belts driven by the engine’s crankshaft pulley. But that’s not the case with the Previa. It’s a van that never ceases to amaze me with its weirdness.

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