Lexus LS Rear Wheel Drive System
stephenabelson Member Posts: 23
edited May 2014 in Lexus
i am thinking about getting either a 2000 ls400 or newer ls430 i live in manhattan. wondering how the rear wheel drive system works. i know it has stability control, and i think has a slid control thing as well. anyone live in a cold snowy place and know personally how the car behaves?
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We've had low temps in the 25 below range so the roads just don't get a chance to thaw one bit and the tires work fine. For instance, it was 15 below this morning and about 2 inches of fresh snow and I had no problems getting to a restaurant and church early today. I'll may switch to the Nokian tires when these wear out next year since I hear we've got snow and ice from October to May up here.
The various systems, like VSC and antilock brakes, work fine to assist me and I do run the transmission in SNOW mode to help in moving away from a stop.
Go for it, the LS is a great all-weather ride.
Like a 4WD/4X4 vehicle, FWD & F/AWD is virtually perfect for initially getting up and going in adverse roadbed conditions, but patently UNSAFE once underway with the diff'l remaining locked.
On an adverse roadbed it is best to have the rear wheels driving and reserve the fronts for directional control.
We know all about your winters, from Garrison Keillor's conscientious reporting. We admire you, but we don't envy you.
Best regards -- Renny
You are best off learning to feather the throttle yourself right up to the point of loss of traction.
I had a GS300 with Blizzak's before I got my LS and it did great in NW Illinois in all types of winter weather. Go for it.
Don't the rwd overly influence your decision, dry weather its the way to go over fwd for driving dynamics and again, do a search across all the different forums. Lots of conversations and whole forums devoted just to fwd vs. rwd vs. awd.
Since the engine/transaxle weigh is mostly carried by the front wheels FWD will almost always have better traction for getting you up and going, moving, initially on the slippery stuff.
But once you're moving the rules change just a bit. Any 4WD/4X4 owner will tell you that it is not wise to have the 4 wheel drive system engaged once you are in roadway or hwy cruise mode. Not only is there little or no need for "drive" to those front wheels that "drive" can quickly lead to loss of directional control.
An ideal drive system would be to engage the drive to all four wheels, or even biased toward the front, just as long as there are small or no lateral forces on those front wheels. Once you need to turn, or use the front wheels to correct the direction of the vehicle, it is unwise to have engine torque, leading or lagging (compression braking) coupled to them.
For what I consider an ideal AWD "compromise" study the Honda/Acura SH-AWD system.
I live in Cleveland where it is snow on top of ice on top of chuck holes.
I run the tires it came with, summer tires, push the "snow" button on occasion, and drive off. The LS handles better than my wife's Honda CR-V, but not as good as my 2003 ES 300. In any event, don't worry about it.
Abusive first owner, used as a taxi, or for towing..??
If the ATF actually is dark it might also smell burned in which case a flush would be appropriate.
Check it yourself, it should be pink and transparent.
Car pulls STRONG, transmission seems to be fine, shifting okay, etc. ATF okay.
Suspecious of trac system triggering briefly and haven't had a chance yet to run with it turned off. Will also try running with OD off.
There is only one U-joint in the drive/line, shaft, anyone had one fail in this manner..?
Looks as if the mechanic who replaced the timing belt missed putting the sensor cable back into the restraining clip.
If it ain't broke don't FIX it....
The nice aspect of all this is I inadvertently discovered a way to "fix" the traction control system. The major complaint I have had in the past is how long it takes to "unwind" the dethrottling aspects of the TC system and regain control of the engine RPM.
There are two screws that hold the (separate) TC throttle plate in place and I simply backed them out and removed the TC throttle plate. Now when/if teh TC activates the engine will no longer get dethrottled at all.