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Discussion Starter #1
Does VDC work with 4wd Low? I finally took my Armada off-roading, and while going up a steep incline with a diagonal rut across it, got stuck because two wheels didn't have much traction (one front, one rear). It was my understanding that the VDC would put power to the other two wheels, but the wheels in the air were just spinning. After a couple of tries, I backed down the hill and started to turn around. At that point, I noticed the VDC Off light was illuminated. Is this normal?

BTW, the stock Conti tires have absolutely no traction on loose dirt. Very disappointed. However, other than that, the truck did pretty good off road. When I got stuck, I had one front wheel about 18" off the ground, and the opposing rear wheel barely touching. Maybe I am expecting too much from the electronics.

Keith
 

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Interesting -- I'm a little disappointed to hear this as well -- I would have thought that you should have had power transferred to the other wheels as well. In fact, in 4low...I thought you were locked....?????
 

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Vdc

My ARmada is a 2WD and a have been driving in snow and ice for the last couple weeks. I thought the rear diff was a limited slip, but I think it's not at all. I noticed that I can easily spin one of the rear tires and I think all VDC does is apply the brake on that wheel and direct power to the other side.
In the snow with chains, I had to pull 4wd's out with no chains. But had 4wd and snow tires. the 4wd with chains were unstoppable.

anyway, I think the Armada has totally open diff's both front and rear. And depends on VDC to use the brakes to redistribute power.

If anyone knows this better, please explain to us.

Thanks
 

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Discussion Starter #4
That's what the VDC is supposed to do, which is why I was surprised to end up spinning one front and one rear wheel. I didn't notice the VDC OFF light was on until I had backed down from where I got stuck, then didn't want to go back up and try again.

4WD owners -- does your VDC turn off in 4WD Low?

Keith
 

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No VDC in 4 low

Honestly guys, If you did get stuck badly how well do you think the VDC would work? The VDC cuts the whole engine after enough slip is detected. Now with the open diffs.... and lets say the front end is sunk and the back has ok traction. It wont let you spin the tires with any authority without shutting the engine down. This would pretty much make 4 low worthless in any tires spinning situation. VDC shuts itself off in 4 low.
 

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Gotta look in the manual, but...

4Lo should lock the diffs.

Since VDC applies braking to control wheel slip, it follows that VDC would shut off in 4Lo.

In that case, you could balance the truck on its back and all four should still turn in an attempt to get traction some how.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
I don't think 4Lo locks the differentials. It only locks the front wheels to the rear wheels. The Armada has open differentials. Thus, one wheel on each axle will spin if there is no traction. I was hoping the VDC would take care of that, and give it true 4WD, as is done on many other newer SUVs with 4WD and advanced traction control systems.

My Durango had a limited slip rear-end. I never got stuck in that car because of traction, only lack of ground clearance.

Keith
 

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As was stated, the idea of VDC is to act as an LSD in the front and rear by braking the slipping wheel. I bet in 4-low VDC is shut off so that your engine doesn't cut out if you are spinning all 4 wheels. There may be a malfunction of your system and that's why when you had it in 4-low you were spinning a wheel. I'd get to an icy road or somewhere you can test it and see what's up with it.

-mike
 

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Ok did some research....

VDC (Vehicle Dynamic Control) - Cuts engine power and applies brakes based on wheel spin, yaw, weight shift, etc. Turns off in 4-wd Low.

4-wheel Limited Slip-(ABLS) - Separate system, from VDC, this SHOULD be working in all levels (2wd, Auto, 4-hi, 4-low)

2wd- puts 100% power to the rear
Auto- aprox 20/80 split and will vary up to 50/50 depending on slippage, weight transfer and driving style
4-hi- 50/50 power split front to rear,not for use on dry pavement
4-low- 50/50 power split, lower gear ratio to multiply torque for towing out of slipper boat ramps, offroad up hills, etc.

Hope this helps.

-mike
 

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Not sure if they put the LSD on the 2WD but my 4WD has LSD front and rear.
 

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Discussion Starter #11
92TripleBlack said:
Not sure if they put the LSD on the 2WD but my 4WD has LSD front and rear.
If LSD stands for Limited Slip Differential, I don't think that is true.

As far as finding an icy road and trying it out, I live in Southern California! What's an icy road????? LOL
 

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Discussion Starter #14
Armadaof1 said:
Big fat VDC button on the center console next to the tow button.
I don't want it to turn off in 4WD LOW, if it disables the traction control.

Anybody else done any off roading where 4WD LOW is required (rock crawling, big ruts, steep grades, etc.), and gotten stuck because of wheel spin, and the lack of a limited slip rear?

Keith
 

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http://www.nissanusa.com/vehicles/ModelAttributes/0,,120207|31005|,00.html
Says we have 4 wheel limited slip ABLS. Not sure what the AB is in ABLS but LS is limited slip. Could be applied brake instead of mechanical. :confused:

I live in Orlando and wouldn't buy without 4x4. Without it, its just a van. No such thing as an SUV without 4x4. And I use it. EX: Off road, beach, slippery boat launch, Mud, Ski Trips. Heck, it snows in Orlando every 5 years average. :D
 

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Discussion Starter #16
92TripleBlack said:
http://www.nissanusa.com/vehicles/ModelAttributes/0,,120207|31005|,00.html
Says we have 4 wheel limited slip ABLS. Not sure what the AB is in ABLS but LS is limited slip. Could be applied brake instead of mechanical. :confused:
You are right, the Armada has LS (Limited Slip), but we do not have LSD (Limited Slip Differential). The truck uses electronics and the brake system to provide Limited Slip, by braking the wheel with no traction, thus putting power to the wheel with traction.

Now, back to my original question. Is this supposed to work in 4WD Low? Can somebody else with a 4WD put it into Low, and see if the "VDC Off" light illuminates? Better yet, can somebody go off-road, and see if the traction control system works in 4WD Low?

Thanks,

Keith
 

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Vdc

The VDC is NOT going to run in 4 low. This is the way Nissan set it up. We all have open carriers for differentials unless you have the e-locker for the rear. The VDC works fabulous in the ice and snow. You can literally floor it on ice and it wont spin or get out of control....it just starts accellerating as fast as it can without slipping. Its really great for sending the betterhalf out in ugly weather...never have to worry anymore.
 

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Discussion Starter #19
JMC said:
The VDC is NOT going to run in 4 low. This is the way Nissan set it up. We all have open carriers for differentials unless you have the e-locker for the rear. The VDC works fabulous in the ice and snow. You can literally floor it on ice and it wont spin or get out of control....it just starts accellerating as fast as it can without slipping. Its really great for sending the betterhalf out in ugly weather...never have to worry anymore.
Why would Nissan set it up this way? Traction control would be a great benefit while off-roading. I recently attended a Land Rover driving event where they took us off-roading in a brand new Range Rover. The electronics made it so that we could literally go anywhere. Traction control, hill-descent control, it was simply amazing. I know we don't have Land Rover type capabilities, but a 4WD vehicle without a limited slip rear-end or some form of electronic traction control will get stuck very easy.

Keith
 

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King of the HILL

VDC light is off in lo range, but the ABLS(Active Brake Limited-Slip) traction control still works. I towed a #6200 (empty) trailer up a VERY steep loose gravel/muddy hill in Lo Range that last year required my old 2wd(locking rear end) pickup being pulled by another 4wd truck(Dodge/cummins) with all 6 wheels spinning in much dryer conditions. There is no room at the bottom to get a run at the hill. In fact the picture you see next to my nickname was taken at the top of the hill (Whew!) the day the Armada did it. My son watched the whole thing, and he saw all four wheels spinning or none at all. The tires are the only weak link. There seems to be little if any choice in 18" tires.
 
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