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Discussion Starter #1
I made this for myself (to keep in my vehicle and for future reference) so that I can remember all this when I actually need to. If you have anything you want to add or correct please let me know. This is just based on all my Internet research and forum reading and owners manual reading.


2002 - 2010 Touareg Off Road Quick Reference Sheet

HILL DESCENT >
ESP Must be ON
Moving less than 12 MPH
Must switch to manual shift mode (tiptronic) and into first gear
No throttle input
Slope must be greater than 20 degrees or 20% slope
Can apply brakes just not throttle, vehicle engine compression brake only, so you may need to apply brakes. Vehicle doesn’t apply any brakes unless wheel spin is detected.
Applies the Torque Converter Clutch in first gear to direct connect engine to transmission for engine braking at slow speed.
Need to be aware of engine RPMs and use brakes to keep RPM's from getting to high
Works in High or Low (low gives 2.69 times additional engine braking power)
You can use low lock for possible better performance so the transfer case is not trying to shift torque when momentary wheel spin is detected. I think this might make the vehicle more stable. If all the vehicle torque is suddenly transferred to the the rear say when going down a steep hill because one of the front tires went over some small rocks that cause a little wheel spin... that quick transfer of power may cause the rear wheels to lose traction.
Brakes are not automatically activated due to possibility of overheating the brakes but again you can manually apply them when you need them.

HILL HOLD (ASCENT) >
Holds vehicle on a slope from a dead stop.
Vehicle must be stopped.
When Hill Hold is activated transmission is switched to 2nd gear where the vehicle cannot rollback because the internal gear of the dual planetary gear set would have to turn in reverse against the locking free wheel.
Release brake, vehicle will stay put on a slope.
Vehicle will move when throttle is applied and the engine torque becomes greater than the slopes descending force.
Works in High & Low.
Brakes are not activated.

TRANSFER CASE >
New Venture Gears NV235
Chain Driven
2.69 Low Range gear reduction
38:62 mechanical torque split but electronically adjusted using the clutch system redistributing 12% back to the front wheel make a final 50:50 torque split for normal driving
Torque bias can be changed electronically on the fly by the vehicles computer or the transfer cases own computer to send power to the axle with the most grip.
Low range lock mode, locks the differential at a 50:50 split so the vehicle cannot make front/rear torque bias corrections when it senses front/rear axle/wheel spin. It will send 50% of the power to each axle even if one axle is just spinning.

ESP >
Electronic Stabilization Program (used when vehicle is turning)
ESP functions at speeds above 25 MPH
Applies individual brakes when vehicle starts skidding in a turn to keep car going where you are steering it
Can apply inside brakes in high speed turns to enhance turning performance.
Can be deactivated High Range when you have a need for faster speed off-roading (ie: Sand, Mud, Thick Snow...but not ice) when wheel spin is necessary to move the vehicle.

ABS >
Used when vehicle is stopping to prevent tires from locking up
Overrides user brake input to pulsate brakes for enhanced stopping

EDL >
Electronic Differential Lock.
Applies brakes to individual wheels that lose traction and spin, operates at speeds less than 25 MPH.
Works in high and low range.
In low range/off-road mode EDL holds the spinning tire for an extra (small) period of time after the spin, before the vehicle will begin to release the brake.

TCS >
Traction Control System
De-activated when the ESP button is turned off
Reduces throttle input when any wheel spin is detected

LOW RANGE >
2.69 Gear Reduction
Changes computer settings for off road
Max speed 45 MPH
ESP doesn’t activate (if left on) until 30 MPH (instead of 25 MPH)
TCS doesn’t activate until 45 MPH (if ESP is left on) and since you can’t really go over 45 MPH in low this is probably a mute point.
EDL Holds spinning wheels for a short period of time after wheel spin has occured
Allows brakes to lock when braking hard to aid in off-road braking (locking the wheels/tires, builds a dirt wedge in front of the tires as they slide).
Low range should NOT be used on icy roads due to TCS being de-activated which will make it very easy for the wheels/tires to lose traction from engine acceleration especially with higher torque diesel engines.


LOW RANGE LOCK >
Locks the center differential front/rear wheel bias at 50:50 to allow for wheel spin
Used in sand, mud or snow when wheel spin is desirable to get you through
Remember you cannot go faster than 45 MPH because you are in low
In some cases it may be more desirable to use high with ESP off to allow for more vehicle speed but this would be rare and although this would disable TCS to allow for high speed wheel spin it will not however lock the transfer case torque bias at 50:50 so you’ll have to choose what would be better, LOW LOCK mode...lower speed with locked transfer case and EDL or HIGH mode...faster speed, no EDL and active tansfer case torque biasing.


When to use what mode:

HIGH w/ESP On - Normal Driving, Icy Roads

HIGH w/ESP Off - Sand, Snow, Mud

LOW - rock crawling or uneven terrain (where a wheel may lose contact with the ground)

LOW LOCK - Sand Hills or maybe towing in the sand where extra torque may be necessary with wheel spin
 

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ESP off when climbing loose climbs for it will kill momentum with applying brakes to spinning wheels. Yes, this does happen even in low range too.

ESP always defaults to on when you turn the car off and back on. Need to remember this if you are off road and stop the car on an incline and turn it off for whatever reason. Also ESP off if you want to play around in a snow covered parking lot. You can get some awesome four wheel drifts this way too! :)

I will say there have been very few situations I have ever used the center lock. When using it the turning radius is so much bigger due to the binding of the gears being locked. I used it once on a loose shale climb with switch backs. It made getting around those switchbacks so much harder.

Hill Decent works really well on the TDI. I use it when coming down canyon roads to save brakes and had an instance off road where we were coming down a fairly steep pitch. I was in low range, TIP in first and foot off the throttle and brake. It just crawled down the pitch slowly on it's own and all I did was steer. :)
 
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Discussion Starter #3
does that mean when ESP is off in High the EDL must also be deactivated?

It wasn't real clear in my researching but from your experience that must be the case?
 

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Nice writeup!

As far as diff locks, they are nice to use when actually off-road (fire routes and county dirt roads don't automatically count! Ha ha!)

Sure, you have the electronic diff lock ability, but that system requires a wheel to actually spin first, thus wearing on your tires more. With the center differential locked, the front and rear driveshafts will spin at the same speed. One can not spin faster than another.

What does that mean in real life? If you lift a front tire (and you will, as these things have absolutely NO articulation!), the lifted tire will not spin wildly as it loses traction. It will spin a little (since the opposite side tire probably isn't moving much) and then probably get clamped down by the front EDL action, but it won't burn much rubber. The same scenario will happen if you lift a rear tire and don't have the rear diff locked.

When you lock a differential, it sends power to BOTH axles (or driveshafts, in the case of the t-case) regardless of how much traction they do or do not have. In comparison, an open diff, sends ALL the power to the axle (or driveshaft) that has NO traction, leaving the tire in the air spinning uselessly.

The rear diff lock performs the same way and will prevent either of the rear tires from spinning if one of the rear tires loses traction. Since power is sent equally to both axles, the tire with traction will still put power to the ground and try to move you because the tire without traction can not spin any faster than the tire with traction.



What does all this really mean? Unless you have an absolute need to unlock them (on hard pavement or trying to make the hairpin turns on Black Bear Road, when you're in low range, you probably should turn them on if for nothing else than saving wear and tear on your tires.

If all this confuses you, don't worry. I once drove a Jeep that had open diffs on the front and rear axles as well as the transfer case. In that setup, due to all the open differentials, in theory, if you lifted just ONE tire on that Jeep, the tire in the air should just spin uselessly as the open differentials fed all the power to the tire with the least traction. It didn't happen. Instead, the Jeep drove off the obstacle just fine.
 

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does that mean when ESP is off in High the EDL must also be deactivated?

It wasn't real clear in my researching but from your experience that must be the case?
My experience is EDL doesn't perform as well with ESP on. ESP cuts throttle with wheel spin. EDL needs throttle to work (wheel spin is braked-transferring power) can't do this with ESP on very well because they fight each other.

EDL (ESP off) in L1 (manual mode) is VERY good for crawling out of slippery situations. If you can't make it in high go low, if that doesn't work L1.
 

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One other thing: Ice (freezing rain) plus ESP being OFF = disaster. The truck will essentially become a 4x4 with Detroit lockers in front and rear and you will never go where you want to...unless it is straight and down the road crown.

I briefly tried this yesterday, it was ridiculous. I very much appreciate ESP now more than ever. Like everything, it has its place.
 

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On ice or a sidehill (off camber), you want to turn off your lockers as much as you can. Otherwise, being locked up will cause you to slide left or right, and usually not in the direction you want to slide.

Also, any time you're going downhill on a slope steep enough that you want the electronic hill descent control, shift into low range and first gear via Tiptronic. The extra engine braking will keep you at a nice slow pace so the brakes don't have to do all the work. This will keep your brakes cool and prevent glazing the pads (bad) or boiling the brake fluid and losing brakes (very bad). Many off-roaders already know this, but for those who have never been 4 wheeling, it may be new information.
 

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Thanks Perry.

SSP 302 is Well worth the read if you have any questions about the drive line and 4wd settings, including ride heights and how the dampening system works.
 

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Thanks for the Info...
Just to add for Sand Dunes driving, ESP must be off and should be on 4Hi always, use 4Lo w central diff lock only when there's a wheel spin.
Hill Descent - it works with 1st gear.
 
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