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Discussion Starter #1
New owner of 2015 S with x package. Trying to get my mind around using the 2wd, 4hi/lo switch during winter driving. I was driving my S in 4Hi on the freeway for about 5 miles at 75 mph which is over the recommended 62mph in the owners manual. No warning lights, but what could happen if I drive 70-75 mph in 4hi on a snow covered freeway?
 

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I believe that jacks up your drivetrain (or something like that) pretty bad. Not sure on the new fancy pants technology in 2nd gens but I don't take mine over 40 mph in 4wd.

Honestly, you do not need to be in 4wd if you can safely drive over 40 mph. You really don't need it if you can drive safely at 75 mph. If you can safely go that speed you have enough traction to not need 4wd.
 

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I'm totally in agreement with Thompson....

If you feel like you need to be in 4wd to travel safely in those conditions, there's no way you should be driving that fast to begin with.

Please don't let having a 4wd SUV give you a false sense of security for winter driving. It gives you some benefits, but you still need to be just as careful as that other guy in a Corolla.
 

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Well, I don't know how fast you CAN go, but I do know that the manual says nothing over 62 for the 2011. That said, I know it will do 70 in 4x4. Did it by accident yesterday. I don't normally drive the X, it's my wifes truck(I have a titan), and somehow it was in 4. Read, she turned it there and forgot about it. I drove about 15 miles on the interstate, indicator was covered. Didn't even know I was in 4. saw it as I parked and took it out and put it back in a couple of times and there appears to be no problems. that said, I wouldn't make it a habit and as the others have said, if you can go that fast, you don't NEED it.
 

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Well, I don't know how fast you CAN go, but I do know that the manual says nothing over 62 for the 2011. That said, I know it will do 70 in 4x4. Did it by accident yesterday. I don't normally drive the X, it's my wifes truck(I have a titan), and somehow it was in 4. Read, she turned it there and forgot about it. I drove about 15 miles on the interstate, indicator was covered. Didn't even know I was in 4. saw it as I parked and took it out and put it back in a couple of times and there appears to be no problems. that said, I wouldn't make it a habit and as the others have said, if you can go that fast, you don't NEED it.
Good Point. I know I am asking some newbie questions, but I am having a hard time getting my mind around the driveline workings of the Xterra S. I had a Toyota 4Runner that I lost in a garage fire, which I replaced with the Xterra. Before that I had a Mountaineer. The Mountaineer was AWD and you couldn't take it in or out of AWD so nothing to think about there. My 4Runner was a 2006 Sport Edition and had a rotary switch on the dash like the Xterra. I would use 2WD in the summer, but when winter came I would switch it to 4WD and drive and never take it off until the streets dried up in Spring. I never experience any tire scrub with my 4Runner when turning/parking on dry pavement and never had any problems driving in 4WD at freeway speeds. As a result, I didn't even think about how I was using it with the exception of fuel efficiency. So there must be something different between the driveline in a 2006 4Runner and the 2015 Xterra that restricts one from using 4WD in certain conditions. If you could put this in perspective for me it would be greatly appreciated.
 

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The X has a very straightforward 4wd system. It's part-time only, which means that you shouldn't use it on dry pavement, should probably think twice about using it in the rain, and as mentioned, don't go over 63/4/5 in 4hi.

If you use 4wd it on dry pavement, you're going to experience a very nasty feeling when you turn. You'll feel your driveline bunching up, giving you a "hopping" feeling.

And needless to say, don't engage the 4lo or the locker on dry pavement.

I agree with others here: if anyone really needs to be in 4wd, then they shouldn't be driving at 75mph.

Your 4Runner, and many AWD cars, all have more sophisticated systems that are capable of running 24/7. In this case, "sophisticated" doesn't necessarily mean more capable. But they do give you more latitude in deciding to keep it engaged or not.
 

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We get some crazy snowfall here and driving through some mountain passes and national parks I would drive my 02 Xterra in 4wd High at around 110km/h. I get what you guys are saying but there are circumstances where 4wd is just a necessity regardless of speed. (passing a slow moving truck while going up a hill with abit of snow in 2wd is not ideal) I try not to do it often and take it out of 4wd when I feel comfortable enough but never had any issues with 4wd and highway speeds aside from increased fuel consumption. Having said that, I only use it when I absolutely need to.
 

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I was reading owners manual last night, and I thought there were specific speeds at which one could switch from 2Wd to 4HI and back again when driving straight. The 4LO switching is very specific, you stop, put your foot on the brake and shift to Neutral then rotate the switch to 4LO and I believe they given a maximum speed of like 20 mph in 4LO. And if you want to switch out of 4LO you go through the same process, stopping the vehicle, foot on brake, shift to neutral and switch to 4HI or 2WD. Do I have to follow the same procedure when switching from 2WD to 4HI and back again or can I do it on the fly as long as I am below a certain speed? Your timely reply is greatly appreciated. Thank you.
 

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I was reading owners manual last night, and I thought there were specific speeds at which one could switch from 2Wd to 4HI and back again when driving straight. The 4LO switching is very specific, you stop, put your foot on the brake and shift to Neutral then rotate the switch to 4LO and I believe they given a maximum speed of like 20 mph in 4LO. And if you want to switch out of 4LO you go through the same process, stopping the vehicle, foot on brake, shift to neutral and switch to 4HI or 2WD. Do I have to follow the same procedure when switching from 2WD to 4HI and back again or can I do it on the fly as long as I am below a certain speed? Your timely reply is greatly appreciated. Thank you.
Thats only for 4LO. You can switch from 2wd to 4HI anywhere from 0mph to whatever you designated speed is. I keep my 1st gen under 25 mph when switching from 2wd to 4HI, but you can probably switch at a higher speed with a 2nd gen.
 

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Coming from a first gen (02 3.3 SE 4x4), I definitely agree that it's not clear how fast you can/should be going when switching between 2wd/4hi on the fly with the second gens (12 Pro4x). I know my 02 had a sticker on the visor saying never switch it on the fly above 25mph and sometimes even below 25 it would make a slight grinding noise when changing (even when in neutral). A salesman told me you can change it on the fly while doing 65mph but I don't necessarily trust that. I'll probably try to stop before changing it unless I absolutely have to change it on the fly (obviously slowing down to do so safely). Best bet is probably just use good judgement and try to avoid anything that might stress the drivetrain.
 

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Yea what Thompson said. When switching from 2 to 4HI I usually try for anything under 35km/h (20mph). 2002 SE SC. Goes in real smooth under 35km/h and it says it on the sun panel to always be under a certain speed. Not sure with the 2nd Gen's since they have an electronic 4wd switch?
 

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My 2012 doesn't list any speed on the sun visor for changing between 2wd and 4hi on the fly.
 

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For fun lets says it's 40 mph. You don't need 4wd, HI or LO, if you can safely travel faster than that. I only use 4HI in the snow to prevent getting stuck, usually around 20-30 MAYBE 40 mph tops. 4LO I only use when rock crawling, going through deep snow, sand, mud etc. And I'm going under 20 mph then.
 
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