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Auto Limited Slip Diff - what is it?

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Old 03-02-2011, 05:20 PM   #1
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Auto Limited Slip Diff - what is it?

Hi,

I bought a 2010 Toyota Tacoma 4x4 with an "Auto Limited Slip Diff". I thought I was buying a truck with a limited slip differential. The local Toyota dealer says "oh, that's not a limited slip differential, its a braking system in the axle, and it ISN'T MADE TO WORK IN 4WD!!!"

It certainly doesn't work like a limited slip differential - if I am four wheeling and get diagonal wheels off the ground - I'm stuck!

I really feel like I got bait and switched by the manufacturer.

Anybody else have comments or complaints on this?

cheers!
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Old 03-02-2011, 05:21 PM   #2
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You have to push the button to activate it. It uses the brakes to slow down the wheel that has no traction so the power goes to the wheel with traction. When in 4wd TRAC acts like ALSD on all 4 wheels(no button pressing needed for that). But as with all limited slip devices it is limited at how much power it can transfer. I has worked really well for me though. I got stuck in some snow in 2wd and for some reason the truck would not go into 4wd. I activated ALSD and I drove out.
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Old 03-02-2011, 05:39 PM   #4
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Old 03-02-2011, 05:42 PM   #5
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Old 03-02-2011, 07:15 PM   #6
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It is way better than a real LSD believe me, I use it a whole lot up here.
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Old 03-10-2011, 02:11 PM   #7
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HMM - A lot of you seem to like the system. I am probably not using it right. If I get diagonal tyres off the ground I am stuck - so in this thread where it says "Trac works like ALSD on all 4 wheels" I dont think so.. Previous vehicles with LSD would deliver power to the wheel on the ground.

I would like it to work in 4 hi at least, 4 lo also would be better
Is there any reason one wouldnt always push the LSD button evry time they use 4WD?
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Old 03-10-2011, 02:22 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Silver Seeker View Post
HMM - A lot of you seem to like the system. I am probably not using it right. If I get diagonal tyres off the ground I am stuck - so in this thread where it says "Trac works like ALSD on all 4 wheels" I dont think so.. Previous vehicles with LSD would deliver power to the wheel on the ground.

I would like it to work in 4 hi at least, 4 lo also would be better
Is there any reason one wouldnt always push the LSD button evry time they use 4WD?
Trac does work like ALSD when in 4wd because it doesn't regulate throttle but it does brake the wheel with no traction but it isn't as agressive as ALSD. As with all mechanical LSD and electronic LSD system there are limits.
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Old 03-10-2011, 03:31 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Silver Seeker View Post
Hi,

I bought a 2010 Toyota Tacoma 4x4 with an "Auto Limited Slip Diff". I thought I was buying a truck with a limited slip differential. The local Toyota dealer says "oh, that's not a limited slip differential, its a braking system in the axle, and it ISN'T MADE TO WORK IN 4WD!!!"

It certainly doesn't work like a limited slip differential - if I am four wheeling and get diagonal wheels off the ground - I'm stuck!

I really feel like I got bait and switched by the manufacturer.

Anybody else have comments or complaints on this?

cheers!
1) All 2009+ Tacomas have 'TRAC' in 2WD (limited slip traction control using brakes and engine output regulation) and 'AUTO LSD' in 2WD (TRAC without engine output regulation).

2) All 2009+ Tacomas have 'TRAC' in 4WD-High... however, in 4WD there is no engine output regulation... the same as AUTO LSD is, in 2WD.

3) The TRAC can be turned off in 2WD or 4WD if you want open differentials.

4) 2009+ Tacomas 4WD LOW RANGE is open differentials only, unless you have the OFF ROAD TRD.

5) Off Road TRD 4WD Tacomas have A-TRAC and/ or a Locking Rear Differential both available in Low Range.

Here is how to use the VSC OFF SWITCH to use the TRAC system:



Here are the buttons, dials and lights associated with the traction controls in an Off Road 4WD Tacoma:

The lights are different... So, I just took some photos so we all can see. Let's go through the levels of traction activation and see what it all looks like:



Normal dial position for paved roads or where traction assistance of 4WD (four wheel drive) is not needed.



The lower switch, next to mirror controls (car with skid lines below) is the VSC OFF switch. This also activates AUTO LSD when in 2WD with a quick push. Auto LSD is traction control without the engine output regulated.



This is what comes on with AUTO LSD active. The VSC OFF light goes out above 30 mph.



If you stop the truck and hold down the VSC OFF switch for 3+ seconds, VSC and TRAC both turn off for open differential(s) in H2 or H4.



Go into H4 (4WD High Range) from 0-60 mph if you need more traction because of poor conditions or off highway needs.



This is the 4WD High Range indicator light... two differentials and 4 tires. TRAC in H4 has no engine regulation, the same as AUTO LSD in H2.



For more torque to power through deep snow or mud or to climb up or down steep grades, stop truck, put tranny into N (Neutral, not Park), and rotate dial to L4.



Low Range 4WD indicator light. VSC goes off in L4 and both differentails are open.



If your 4WD Tacoma is an '09 + Off Road TRD, you have 'Active Traction Control' (A-TRAC) that provides the 'brake-locking' of any non-traction (spinning) tires front or rear for tractor like crawling/ climbing. Gives traction control while in low range. Push this switch just once when in L4 and A-TRAC will activate when-ever needed to keep moving while in L4.



A-TRAC activated light.

REAR LOCKER:



As Toyota states, use only as a last resort and turn off when out of trouble.



While in L4 (for 4WD Tacomas), press the RR DIFF LOCK switch. (I engaged it twice today while stopped)



The Rear Differential Lock indicator is the x'ed rear differential image. If it doesn't engage, or if it is pressed while in H4 or H2 (for 4WD Tacomas) it will BLINK! Remember, when locked there is no differential action to allow the tires to rotate at different speeds, as needed when turning.
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Old 03-10-2011, 05:53 PM   #11
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Normal everyday driving... open differentials or TRAC in 2WD will get you moving.

AUTO LSD is primarily a tool for 2WD Tacomas to have a stronger limited slip. Those of us with 4x4s, just rotate the dial into H4 and we are gold.

If you are 2WD only, or just want to play in 2WD only... then when you push the button and turn on AUTO LSD you will have more power at take offs... more of a posi-traction experience...
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Old 03-10-2011, 06:37 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by whippersnapper02 View Post
Trac does work like ALSD when in 4wd because it doesn't regulate throttle but it does brake the wheel with no traction but it isn't as agressive as ALSD. As with all mechanical LSD and electronic LSD system there are limits.
Wait so what is the difference between having the A-TRAC (TRD Off-Road) vs just TRAC (for Non-TRD)??
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Old 03-10-2011, 06:41 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by myname150 View Post
Wait so what is the difference between having the A-TRAC (TRD Off-Road) vs just TRAC (for Non-TRD)??
ATRAC uses a hydraulic brake booster(4wd TRD offroad models only) and more aggressive programming to control wheel spin with the brakes. TRAC is just traction control that regulates throttle and uses the brakes to control wheel spin. In 4wd it does not regulate throttle.
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Old 03-10-2011, 06:47 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by whippersnapper02 View Post
ATRAC uses a hydraulic brake booster(4wd TRD offroad models only) and more aggressive programming to control wheel spin with the brakes. TRAC is just traction control that regulates throttle and uses the brakes to control wheel spin. In 4wd it does not regulate throttle.
So a Non-TRD 4x4 model just pretty much has a "cheaper" A-TRAC system?
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Old 03-10-2011, 10:34 PM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by myname150 View Post
So a Non-TRD 4x4 model just pretty much has a "cheaper" A-TRAC system?
I hope those who complain about all my A-TRAC info posts will see that there will always be new folks or those who have not read old posts that explain it well....

Now, for myname 150:

Not 'cheaper' but just more like limited slip... where as A-TRAC is more like lockers in what they do and when you use them.

1) All Tacomas have 'TRAC' in H2 (limited slip with enginge regulation) and 'AUTO LSD' in H2 (limited slip without engine regulation).

2) All 4WD Tacomas have 'TRAC' in H4 for a limited slip (but is without engine regulation, same as 'AUTO LSD').

3) All 4WD Tacomas have no TRAC in L4 for open differentials only.

4) Only 4WD Off Road Tacomas have a hydraulic brake booster for stronger 'TRAC' (limited slip in H2 and H4) and for the A-TRAC.

5) Only 4WD Off Road Tacomas have A-TRAC in L4 for locker-like limited slip traction control.

6) Only Off Road Tacomas (2WD or 4WD) have a locking rear differential.

Please read my link to A-TRAC info. below for more details.
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Old 03-10-2011, 10:39 PM   #16
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Should point out also, that TRAC on 09+ can be used in 4LO if you do the yellow wire mod.
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Old 03-10-2011, 10:45 PM   #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by myname150 View Post
So a Non-TRD 4x4 model just pretty much has a "cheaper" A-TRAC system?
Nope. It is less aggressive and lacks the hydraulic brake booster needed for quick wheel lock up.
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Old 03-10-2011, 10:49 PM   #18
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Best Set up

I usually stay in 4H in sand, buts lets say I have to go up a steep sand hill. What is my best set up?
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Old 03-10-2011, 10:51 PM   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GeoTaco1 View Post
I usually stay in 4H in sand, buts lets say I have to go up a steep sand hill. What is my best set up?
I say high. Low will break the tires loose very easily on sand.
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Old 03-10-2011, 10:56 PM   #20
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OK,

I assume 4H will minimize tire digging into the sand, unlike 4L. But I can't lock the differential in 4H if I get stuck.

Hopefully I can go in R to get un-stuck, then I can try 4L and lock the diffs?
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