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Toyota 4WD systems explained



  • russlarussla Posts: 74
    You have to decide on your priorities & planned use of the rig.

    for me..

    I'd rather have a part time rig than one with 2wd, but it rains a lot where I live, and I would be comfortable switching it in and out of part time. If I owned a boat, I'd want a part time rig too, if I went in the hills to camp, I'd want a part time rig over 2wd. Part time adds a lot more go traction. That opens up, or improves access to the things I would do with such a rig. your requirements may vary.

    I don't feel the concerns about part time you bring up are a significant safety or manuverablity issues, especially because when it's slippery, everyone's disadvantaged, but people with 4wd have better ablility to move forward. The systems aren't as fragile or unsafe as painted in your thread.

    Good luck with your decision

    PS, don't worry about top speed.
    In low range you're supposed to be going slow.
    in hi range, it will go faster than you should be going. (how's that for specifics)he he
  • nedzelnedzel Posts: 787
    There is absolutely no way I would get a 2WD pickup. I live where it snows. Pickups are heavy in front and light in back and therefore have poor traction if 2WD. If it snows where you live, I'd get 4WD, even if it is part-time 4WD.

    If conditions are bad enough that you have engaged part-time 4WD, then you don't want to be going 50 mph.
  • wwestwwest Posts: 10,706
    If you're going ~50MPH or more it can get a little hairy in a big hurry with all four wheels driving. Same can be true, but much worse, for FWD vehicles.

    At speed, cruising, on "dicy" roadbeds, it is definitely best to have only the rear wheels driving and the front wheels' "contact patch" dedicated solely to maintaining directional control.
  • lorryfanlorryfan Posts: 76
    I have a question:

    Am in the market to purcahse a new 4Runner, and I currently live in Arizona. In the next couple of the years, I will relocate the family to either VA or CT dependening on where my job takes me.

    Now, since it hardly snows in AZ, and I will be doing zero off-roading whilst in the desert, I would probaly never get a 4WD (whether it's part-time of full-time) . With the possibility of re-locating to the north east where it snows very often, am not sure if the 4Runner 2WD would be adequate for most driving conditions (i.e. snow, ice, sleet, rain etc...)

    All I want is to make sure my wife can drop off the kids at school during those snowy days and pick 'em up in the would be family vehicle.

    Can someone on this forum share more light on this question/scenario? I don't care about all the fancy marketing names and the power.....and maybe the glory of having a 4X4. Just a vehicle that is roomy enough for 4 and can take us from point A to point B - the 4Runner fits our budget nicely.

    Many thanks and I look forward to your responses.
  • wwestwwest Posts: 10,706
    what form of roadbed adversity your might encounter from one winter day to the next, or from one road mile to the next for that matter. But probably the worse condition your wife may have to content with is an ICE or packed snow covered downhill roadbed with a not just a few tight turns.

    Absent something to "bite" into the slippery and "hardened" roadbed surface, studded tires or snowchains, your wife should simply keep the kids home by a nice warm fire on those days.

    Back in the days when one or the other of us had to shuttle the kids to and from school each day I most often relied on a Ford E150 van which always wore summer tires but with snowchains installed when the roads were dicey.

    Some will tell you to get the multi-mode drive 4runner, 2WD, AWD/4WD, and 4X4 modes, and equip it with the best winter tires, not all-season, you can find. I have owned two Jeeps, an 85 and a 92, both with 2WD, 4WD and 4X4 modes. even with good winter tires I NEVER found it satisfactory to get up and going, and keep going to my final destination, in ANY drive mode absent the use of snowchains, in many cases all 4 snowchains.

    Many times it wasn't really the actual roadbed conditions that led me to the use of snowchains, but the many idiots out there trying to get somewhere with NO special traction capability at all.

    So I learned, that if in the end snowchains are the only answer anyway, I might as well run nice quiet and comfortable summer tires and then install the snowchains when greater traction was/is needed.

    So my current SUV, a MY2001 AWD RX300 has 1.5" wheel spacers all around, was upgraded to 17X8 wheel and tires, and in the wintertime I always have 2 sets of snowchains on board and at the ready. The RX300 as shipped has too little clearance between the rear tire and the strut to accept rear tire chains.
  • tcpoobtcpoob Posts: 30
    you and your wife will need the 4wd in Northeast where it snows and gets icy.
    i just switched from fwd sedan to 4wd 4runner v6 in Boston area, the diff is
    obvious in winter.
  • lorryfanlorryfan Posts: 76
    Thanks for your insight - wwest & tcpoob

    I was always leaning towards a 4WD, and you have made it easier since you guys have experienced the driving conditions live and colored....I appreciate the info.

  • nedzelnedzel Posts: 787
    I live near Boston. You can get by with 2WD and snows. But I put snows on my 4WD 4Runner. I'd get 4WD. 2WD 4Runner seems pointless to me.
  • 2toyotas2toyotas Posts: 104
    Just curious, what brand of snow tires did you put on? I put on Bridgestone Blizzaks, and the truck performed incredible. The main difference being in stopping.
  • nedzelnedzel Posts: 787
    I've got Nokian Hakkepelittas (sp?). Braking and turning in the snow improved dramatically over the OEM Dunlops -- the original tires were downright scary in the snow.

    My main complaint about the Nokians is that they are very noisy.
  • frankvhfrankvh Posts: 1
    I've read a whole bunch of (very informative) postings in this forum - thank you all - but I have one thing I still don't understand.

    In Toyota Canada's literature for the 2005 4Runners, they state that the (full-time 4WD) V8 runner has a 2-speed transfer case and a centre differential lock. They do *not* list these 2 features for the (part-time 4WD) V6 runner. I'm more interested in the V6 runner due to better fuel economy. Any idea why Toyota wouldn't list the V6's as having the 2-speed transfer case & locking centre diff? Do they indeed really not have them?
  • tcpoobtcpoob Posts: 30
    i've got the 2005 v6 4runner sr5 4wd. and it should have the same
    config of xfer case etc you're interested in. yes it does have 2 spd xfer
    case - it's got to have it as it's a low range. and yes it has torsen locking
    center diff. hope this helps.
  • jr35jr35 Posts: 2
    I've lived in the Northeast all my life, CT, Boston, upstate NY. I've had 4wd, rear, front and a Subaru. You could get by with any car if you have patience. They do plow up there. When I lived there I skied a few times a month and whitewater kayaked 9 months out of the year. All of this included driving in rain, snow, and ice often.
    The rear wheel drive is no good. I've done it though. 3 feet, 90 Mustang with sandbags in the trunk.
    Front wheel with traction control on a 94 Volvo. Still okay, but skid around a bunch.
    4wd Jeep GC, was really helpful most of the time, but most conditions are mixed. You rarely have all snow or all ice. Most of the time it's snow under one side of your car, ice, water or dry pavement under the other. So 4wd engaged is not always good and when it's off you're stuck with 2wd rear with no weight over the back tires.
    My best car up there was a Subaru. It was always helpful in mixed conditions, handled like a sports car on dry pavement. I could go places we couldn't get the four wheel drive cars into. I assume the differential was the reason.
    I can honestly say that the Subaru saved me multiple times. I cannot say that about any other system I have had. Audi also has a great system.

    So, in the Northeast any car can work and they do. But there's a reason it's the Subaru capital of the US.

    But I need a bed so that's why I'm buying a truck. If I didn't have to and I was only driving the kids around and daily chores, I'd be buying a Sub. Better mpg, safety and comfort.

    I hope that wasn't too long.
  • wwestwwest Posts: 10,706
    multiple times....

    You're still here, so obviously the other vehicles performed much better than the subaru, you just never had cause to notice as you did in the subaru. Where you pushing the Subby too hard because you had AWD??

    Just what was it that happened, apparently repeatedly, in the Subaru that never happened in the other vehicles?
  • kwiktoykwiktoy Posts: 1
    Plan to order 2 wheel access tacoma with vsc/trac. Heard it might not be available. Is this true. Also, does any of the cd players play mp3?
  • jnm1jnm1 Posts: 7
    Thanks for taking the time to answer our questions. You will have to forgive people like me who don't know any better as far as my question is concerned. I bought a 05 SR5 2WD Tundra and might be moving to Neb with there any way I can keep this truck and upgrade to 4WD without trading it in for the other model...or would that be my better option given a choice? Appriciate the help! Jen :confuse:
  • stickguystickguy Posts: 14,152
    It would cost way more to upgrade your truck (it's theoretically possible, but not anything ligical). If you really think you need 4WD, bite the bullet and trade it in.

    2013 Acura RDX (wife's), 2007 Volvo S40 (when daughter lets me see it), 2000 Acura TL (formerly son's, now mine again), and new Jetta SE (son's first new car on his own dime!)

  • nedzelnedzel Posts: 787
    The cheapest way to get 4WD would be to trade it in.
  • eaglegeagleg Posts: 87
    Buy Bridgestone Blizzak snow tires.I've driven a Chevy C1500 for 13 years and my wife drives a Mustang with them in Wisconsin and we've never had any problems in the winter.Great alternative for winter driving.
  • I have a 2000 Tundra 2WD with 40K on the Goodyears. I have had no weather related issues at all with this truck here in Buffalo, NY.
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