Drive shaft tube can made of aluminium alloy and steel but what is the main purpose of it does it serve as a connecting rod from engine power to the rear wheels? i am seeking for a formal answer on this.

  • Welcome to Motor Vehicle Maintenance & Repair! Are you just asking about the driveshaft? Or are you being specific about a torque tube. These are two different beasts. Apr 21, 2018 at 22:20
  • @Pᴀᴜʟsᴛᴇʀ2 im asking what purpose that drive shaft tubes serves; and when talking about its pupose maybe which material(metal) it suits for that purpose.
    – user37109
    Apr 21, 2018 at 22:23
  • And again, I'll ask, are you talking specifically about the drive shaft or about a torque tube? A drive shaft is made from tubular material, but it is not normally referred to as a "tube", but a shaft. Just trying to ensure we are talking about the same thing. Apr 21, 2018 at 22:27
  • tube plus yokes attached becomes drive shaft, isn't it. im referring to the single ordinary tube before yokes being welded onto. that tube comes from what material?(because the material will surely reveal its purpose). can i ask it that way or im not.
    – user37109
    Apr 21, 2018 at 22:32
  • Are you talking about the tube with an internal shaft that links a front mounted engine with a rear mounted gearbox?
    – Solar Mike
    Apr 21, 2018 at 22:48

1 Answer 1


The purpose of a drive shaft is to transmit power from the transmission (or transfer case) to the differential. This is their main and only purpose.

A drive shaft can be made from any material which can withstand the twisting force. The three most used materials are steel, aluminum, and carbon fiber. Carbon fiber is a more recent addition to the family and is usually used in high performance applications because it is a lot lighter than the other two materials. Drive shafts (which go from transmission to rear differential) are hollow to save weight. The are also broad (have a broad diameter) to be able to support the torque which is transmitted through them. Aluminum drive shafts will be broader than steel to transmit the same amount of torque. Carbon fiber is its own beast.

  • The size necessary is a combination of diameter and wall thickness : if space is limited then the D can be reduced with a larger wall thickness, or a larger D and thinner wall thickness. This always gives lots of calcs for engineering students.
    – Solar Mike
    Apr 22, 2018 at 6:05
  • @SolarMike - Well stated and exactly right. Apr 22, 2018 at 12:46

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