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Discussion Starter #1
Today we took a ride with my 2006 Forester 2.0X manual 5 spd. I let here drive today. A snow storm had been running since yesterday. Probably 30cm of snow, difficult to measure since the snow has been blowed arround all over. Well, we tok off, it was a no brainer with winter tyres.
I told the missus we should go into the country where I grow up. So we did, Eventually we came onto a very high snow dune across the road. I told here to floor it but she didn't. So the car stuck in the snow. I took over the steering wheel, put the gearbox into low gear and tried shaking the car loose, tono avail. I could let the car sit at idle speed on first gear without problems. I got out of the car and noticed that the only wheel spinning was front left?!. I asked the missus to have a look at the rear wheels and notify me when they started turning. I haf to go up to high gear and first gear and alot of rpms to make the rear wheel slip. To me this feels like I bought a Volvo XC with it's crappy haldex system. And notice this was with all four wheels on powder snow, the car resting on top. I dug out the car with no problem later.
 

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Ze flying Russian
2007 STI
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2,008 Posts
I've been in exaclty the same situation with my 5MT MY00 Impreza, and all the 4 wheels were spinning. In the end I let the car sit on the snow to melt it down a bit and that solved the problem.
 

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Sydney Dinner Organiser
MY05 XT luxury
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1,694 Posts
It might drive all 4 wheels but the diffs arent locked and so its quite easy to spin various wheels. The most common is to do a diagonal front and rear.
 

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2010 FXT Limited 4EAT Sport Shift
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Kave3-
Different countries have different Subaru models/standard equipment. Here in US, the Forester X doesn't come with limited slip differential (lsd) in the rear or front, but you should have one front wheel driving and one rear wheel driving (as a worst case scenario). Others on this forum will be able to tell you what system exists with the 5 Speed Manual (5M).
When I was checking the specifications out at purchase time, I saw that the XT model (with turbo) came with lsd standard in the rear, and a fore and aft differential mechanism with the 4 Speed electronic/automatic transmission (4EAT) that proportions the f/r power at 50/50 when manually selected in first and second gears and works towards 80/20 once you've shifted into third and fourth gears.
This weekend, I had a chance to drive our FXT 2.5 in deep snow (dragging center body parts) and never spun a wheel, driving from dead stop, turning wheel hard to left and starting from a dead start, etc., at little more than an idle...it took NO real driving skill, it was almost uncanny. Temperature was between 0 and 15 for most of the weekend and the snow was cold enough to growl when driving through it, turning in it.
This was with 1 year old Hakapeliita 2 studded snow tires...
-Quick
 

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Premium Member
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Kave, since you have a manual, what you observed may be normal, since the MT has a viscous coupled limited slip diff (VLSD) in the center, and an open front diff.

The center VLSD takes a significant amount of speed difference between the front and rear drive shafts to heat up the silicone fluid and start providing Limited Slip. In the scenario where you notice a front tire spinning, and then you stop and try again, you may never get significant torque applied to the rear tires. In this case, it may be better to allow the front tires to spin a bit longer (it should just be a matter of a few seconds), and then at least one of the rear tires should kick in.

If you also have the rear VLSD, it has the same issues of requiring some time to built up heat in order to transfer torque side to side.

I would say do a search for the MANY discussions on this subject that have already occurred, but we have lost all those old posts on SF.com!
 

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Administrator
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Also, perhaps a little bit of brake pressure to grab the spinning wheel and transfer some power to other wheels may have helped. This is basically what "traction control" does.
 

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The convert formely known as Lexusfreak
2003 XS
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3,969 Posts
Not sure what type of AWD system Subaru offers in Sweeden......in Canada it's AWD......all the time!
 

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2004 XT AT
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Lexusfreak said:
Not sure what type of AWD system Subaru offers in Sweeden......in Canada it's AWD......all the time!
Don't believe the hype. Without axle differential locking devices of some kind, or the equivalent in brake-based traction control, the AWD system cannot drive all the wheels all the time.

-- Steve
 

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sahunt said:
Don't believe the hype. Without axle differential locking devices of some kind, or the equivalent in brake-based traction control, the AWD system cannot drive all the wheels all the time.

-- Steve
Exactly!

Even a Toyota pickup truck (agueably the most capable 4wd off the showroom floor) with part time 4 wheel drive, when engaged, it can easily spin just 2 wheels! Some of them have an optional selectable locking rear differential, which can then make 3 wheels spin.
 

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The convert formely known as Lexusfreak
2003 XS
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Alright, fair enough......how does one explain Subaru's advertising which goes out of it's way to tell the public that their systems are 'full time AWD'?
 
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MountainBiker said:
Exactly!

Even a Toyota pickup truck (agueably the most capable 4wd off the showroom floor) with part time 4 wheel drive, when engaged, it can easily spin just 2 wheels! Some of them have an optional selectable locking rear differential, which can then make 3 wheels spin.
I agree with everything except the Toyota being the most capable. I will stick with my Jeep. :p
 

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Lexusfreak said:
Alright, fair enough......how does one explain Subaru's advertising which goes out of it's way to tell the public that their systems are 'full time AWD'?
Cause it is full time, unlike the Honda CRV which is AWD on demand and 2WD the rest of the time.
 

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Lexusfreak said:
Alright, fair enough......how does one explain Subaru's advertising which goes out of it's way to tell the public that their systems are 'full time AWD'?
There is a thing called "marketing". 'Nuf said!
 

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DanB said:
I agree with everything except the Toyota being the most capable. I will stick with my Jeep. :p
That is why I said "arguably"! ;)
 

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Discussion Starter #16
MountainBiker said:
Kave, since you have a manual, what you observed may be normal, since the MT has a viscous coupled limited slip diff (VLSD) in the center, and an open front diff.

The center VLSD takes a significant amount of speed difference between the front and rear drive shafts to heat up the silicone fluid and start providing Limited Slip. In the scenario where you notice a front tire spinning, and then you stop and try again, you may never get significant torque applied to the rear tires. In this case, it may be better to allow the front tires to spin a bit longer (it should just be a matter of a few seconds), and then at least one of the rear tires should kick in.

If you also have the rear VLSD, it has the same issues of requiring some time to built up heat in order to transfer torque side to side.

I would say do a search for the MANY discussions on this subject that have already occurred, but we have lost all those old posts on SF.com!
Ok, this explains it then. Almost the same system as the Volvos then.
But I figured the oil would lock the diff after the front axle had been spinning for over a minute without the rear axle turning at all. But I guess I have to live with it. Probably the only 100% system is torsen, alas rally cars.
 

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The convert formely known as Lexusfreak
2003 XS
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3,969 Posts
MountainBiker said:
There is a thing called "marketing". 'Nuf said!
I am aware of so called 'marketing'......that did not answer the question however.......let me ask this.....let's say I need to take my Forester in for an emission test (smog test)......can I take it to any run of the mill type place with only 1 dynometer (for either the front or back wheels) or do I need to use a shop (perhaps the Subi dealer) with 2 dyno's?

That should at least help somewhat.....I've seen Rav4's & CRV's (both with the 'on demand' 4WD systems) for this same type of test....at my local mechanic (only 1 dyno) without a problem.......he says he has never (& won't) do a Subaru because of their AWD system.
 

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2004 Forester XT Premium 4EAT
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Lexusfreak said:
I am aware of so called 'marketing'......that did not answer the question however.......let me ask this.....let's say I need to take my Forester in for an emission test (smog test)......can I take it to any run of the mill type place with only 1 dynometer (for either the front or back wheels) or do I need to use a shop (perhaps the Subi dealer) with 2 dyno's?
If your laws are anything like California's, you should be exempt from dyno testing with an AWD car.
 

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2006 '06 FXT
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pleiad7 said:
If your laws are anything like California's, you should be exempt from dyno testing with an AWD car.
Also be careful with cars with traction control. I had a Ford Crown Vic try to jump the rollers because the rear wheels were turning and the fronts were not. It almost came off the rollers. They passed it with a static test - In Arizona.
 

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The convert formely known as Lexusfreak
2003 XS
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pleiad7 said:
If your laws are anything like California's, you should be exempt from dyno testing with an AWD car.
That's a darn good point pleiad! I will have to look into this more.....thanks for the tip! The only other possibility if this is not the case, is I am forced to take it to a Subi dealer with 2 dyno's.
 
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