How bad would a 2WD pickup be in the snow?

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Re: How bad would a 2WD pickup be in the snow?

Postby IMBoring25 » Tue Mar 14, 2017 2:27 pm

Ranger offered a wide range of configurations for its entire run. It is a smaller truck than the newer offerings, which is very significant if fuel economy is a major driver for you. If you're looking used I would give it a serious consideration.

If mileage is really a major consideration, don't just say you want a four. Research rated and actual customer millage numbers for your candidates. The old truly compact pickups will do better.

On plowed roads outside of the mountains with a competent driver, genuine need for 4WD should be almost non-existent. It helps primarily launching on soft ground and on uphill slick surfaces. Remember, unless you get a full-time system like Cow's, it can be damaged using it on dry or wet pavement. The only times I've used mine on the roads have been to use it, not because I've needed to.

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Re: How bad would a 2WD pickup be in the snow?

Postby Teamwork » Tue Mar 14, 2017 3:02 pm

What is the main purpose of manufacturers still offering 2WD / 4 cyl / manual transmission "compact" pick ups? Is there really a market up take for these because I would think the RWD / 4 Cyl aspect would kill a lot of aspirations here.

The modern day compact pick ups don't seem so compact anymore from what I remembered in the 90's/late 00's.

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Re: How bad would a 2WD pickup be in the snow?

Postby watkins » Tue Mar 14, 2017 3:10 pm

RWD/4cyl trucks are fleet vehicles, mostly. Autozone used to buy tons of Rangers in that configuration as delivery vehicles for the commercial customers, for example.
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Re: How bad would a 2WD pickup be in the snow?

Postby Rope-Pusher » Tue Mar 14, 2017 3:14 pm

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I use my shift-on-the-fly 4WD when pulling out onto wet, snowy or icy roads and then shift back into 2WD if I don't need to be in 4WD while cruising. I'll also use it to get a jump off the line at a traffic signal, sometimes even when the road is dry. Those white pavement markings that signify the crosswalk lane or the stop-behind line are typically have a lower coefficient of friction that the pavement.
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Re: How bad would a 2WD pickup be in the snow?

Postby IMBoring25 » Tue Mar 14, 2017 3:28 pm

Allowing configurations carries cost...Development, certifications for emissions, fuel economy, and other regulatory burdens, logistical footprint for manufacturing and spare parts, to name a few. If most of the demand is for the lightest and least-powerful configuration, they can also use lighter-duty (lighter and cheaper, remember fuel economy regulations) components by disallowing other configurations.

You're also artificially constraining things by saying you want a four. I'm sure some of the manufacturers have concluded a naturally aspirated four carrying the weight of a 4WD midsize truck will not reflect well on their reputation as an automaker.

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Re: How bad would a 2WD pickup be in the snow?

Postby AHTOXA » Thu Mar 16, 2017 9:21 pm

bk7794 wrote:Just a bummer, how often would you really use 4WD. The 2-7 times it snows during the year? It's like the people that drive the Subarus for the AWD. You only use it maybe a few times out of the entire year. ~1-300 miles out of the avg 12k per year.



Outside of my offroad rigs, I'm the guy who owned an AWD Forester and now a 4x4 F150 with a rear diff locker. In Texas. :lol: Granted, I've used both the 4x4 and the locker, but that's rare, of course, and I didn't have to have them. I wanted them.

OP - buy whatever you like. I will tell you that a truck with 4x4 is more fun, more practical and less frustrating (in snow or when traction is scarce) than a 4x2 truck. Downside is that they are more expensive to buy than their 4x2 counterparts, however they are also easier to sell and hold their value better overall. No one ever bought a 4x4 truck and later thought "shit, I wish I bought a 4x2".
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Re: How bad would a 2WD pickup be in the snow?

Postby bk7794 » Thu Mar 16, 2017 9:38 pm

The only issue nowadays is that there's no real option for a 4WD pickup with a manual. Even the Tacoma is quite scarce.

My drive home from work is through hilly terrain. Not only that but I've gotten stuck in snow storms with my SO, friends and family. I'd hate to put them in a dangerous situation for cheapness sake. I know that 4wd is just a "Crutch" but still. Could be the difference between a fender bender and a close call. Correct me if I'm wrong though.

I didn't know the 3.7 was used in the Dakota. I'm sure the frame is made of the thinnest steel they could find...just like the Ranger, Tacoma and every other compact pickup.

I also wanted to add. The v6 trucks get pretty horrific fuel economy. Like 16 City 21 Hwy bad. Might as well get a fullsize diesel. 4 Cylinder at least you can get something above 25. Atleast have a prayer.
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Re: How bad would a 2WD pickup be in the snow?

Postby IMBoring25 » Fri Mar 17, 2017 1:18 am

The only fender-bender driving more wheels is likely to save you from is one where you are stuck and get hit by someone else. 4WD/AWD primarily helps you get moving and maintain speed climbing hills or on soft surfaces. There's little or no benefit for turning or stopping and it takes a tremendous degree of self-control while in 4WD to not drive too fast for the limits of the available traction. Real snow tires, on the other hand, benefit all phases of operation.

"Hilly terrain" covers a wide range of arrangements...How steep the hills, straight or curved road, slickness of ice, deepness of snow. With practice, a locking diff, and snow tires, it's pretty likely you could reliably make it with 2WD, but not guaranteed.

25 is a tall order with 4WD or anything that's bigger than a classically-sized compact. They just push a lot of air and the 4WD systems are heavy and siphon a lot of power for a smaller truck. If the hills are steep, it will close the gap between the I4s and the V6s because the I4 will be working that much harder.

Diesels have their own costs...larger-capacity oil changes and routine fuel filter changes. On the newer ones, DEF and DPF, which also mean they don't have the MPG advantage they used to either.

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Re: How bad would a 2WD pickup be in the snow?

Postby Rope-Pusher » Fri Mar 17, 2017 4:20 am

bk7794 wrote:I didn't know the 3.7 was used in the Dakota. I'm sure the frame is made of the thinnest steel they could find...just like the Ranger, Tacoma and every other compact pickup.

The Dakota was classified as a mid-size pick-m-up truck. It could be equipped to tow 7,200 lbs. It was always resized to be larger than the compacts, even as they grew larger with each new generation.

That was kinda the problem. The cost and fuel mileage of the Dakota weren't all that much better than that of the fool-sighs Ram. People bpought them because they were a little smaller than the fool-sighs trucks, but not really because they were less expensive to purchase or operate. The last-generation Dakota really harkens to the size of the full-sized pick-m-ups of the 1970s. The fool-sighs pick-m-ups of today are grew-some in comparrison.

Sumpin like 3/4 of pick-m-ups are soled with sum sorta extended cab and 4WD. There are real bargains to be had in base-model pick-m-ups. Their sticker prices are kept as low as possible in order to lure you in and then they charge dearly for Hammies, 4WD, Crew-cabs, hair suspensions, dissels, etc.
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Re: How bad would a 2WD pickup be in the snow?

Postby watkins » Fri Mar 17, 2017 7:46 am

I'm pretty sure the Dakota is the one less-large truck without frame issues. Mind you, the older rivet frame full size Rams liked to snap in half.
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Re: How bad would a 2WD pickup be in the snow?

Postby Rope-Pusher » Fri Mar 17, 2017 2:24 pm

watkins wrote:I'm pretty sure the Dakota is the one less-large truck without frame issues. Mind you, the older rivet frame full size Rams liked to snap in half.


I thought that saying "I want a Pick-m-Up Truck, and make it snappy!" was a good thing to say. I sit corrected.
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Re: How bad would a 2WD pickup be in the snow?

Postby bk7794 » Fri Mar 17, 2017 10:34 pm

So Basically what I'm hearing is that the consensus is 4WD will not help in the snow.

Go with Chains/weight/snowtires. For something like that and the mileage, I think I'd rather start out cheap. Maybe I'll find a cheap diesel pickup. 7.3/Cummins. I don't mind basic/intermediate maintenance. Even more complicated stuff I'm not against. I just don't want to open up the engine and do head studs. Or pay through the nose for emissions BS.


It'll be sad if 1 year from now and I'm still DDing my civic.
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Re: How bad would a 2WD pickup be in the snow?

Postby potownrob » Sat Mar 18, 2017 12:45 am

bk7794 wrote:So Basically what I'm hearing is that the consensus is 4WD will not help in the snow.
where'd you get that from?? :?


It'll be sad if 1 year from now and I'm still DDing my civic.
yes, very sad :lol: :twisted: 8)
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Re: How bad would a 2WD pickup be in the snow?

Postby IMBoring25 » Sat Mar 18, 2017 12:53 am

Oh, it helps. It just primarily helps with:

* Getting stuck
* Having to be very careful about maintaining momentum when going up hills
* Having to choose a route based on how steep the hills are
* Having to roll uphill stop signs

and such things. It's primarily a nice to have. The things that help with a fear of loss of control are driving lessons, then proper snow tires, then weight.

My experience has been there's really not such a thing as a cheap truck (at least not one that's worth having), and that goes even more so for diesels. I was thinking 7.3 for a long time but long-term parts availability on something that I'd be buying that old made me nervous. After 18 months in a truck totaled by an uninsured red-light runner, weighing how scared I was of the 6.0 and 6.4, I wound up surprising myself by violating my ban on FCA products with an '08 Cummins.

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Re: How bad would a 2WD pickup be in the snow?

Postby Rope-Pusher » Sat Mar 18, 2017 8:21 am

IMBoring25 wrote: After 18 months in a truck totaled by an uninsured red-light runner, weighing how scared I was of the 6.0 and 6.4, I wound up surprising myself by violating my ban on FCA products with an '08 Cummins.

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It must have been tough living in that wrecked truck for 18 months, but after that time you had saved enough money, by not having to pay rent, that you could afford to buy the Ram? Maybe it was worth going through the hardship then.
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