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aside from the obvious, what are some of the pros and cons of each? I’m deciding if I should move up to 4WD on my next Tundra. Thanks!
 

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How often would you really need it? For me the decision was easy. The only off road driving I do is on the beach. The sand here is usually only slightly softer than the road. No 4X4 for me.

If you tow a boat or have gotten your 2wd truck stuck several times I would go for it. If not just extra expense.
 

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Less Maintenance with 2WD. I bet most truck owners never really use 4WD.
 

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I live in a winter weather state, snow, ice, etc... I need 4x4, could I get by without it, sure. I had before, but have not owned a 2wd vehicle since 2003. I did have a Jetta for a short stint, but it was a highway vehicle, and I still had a 4x4 truck to use. I have had to take it home, and get the truck during the ownership as it was getting stuck.

I also have a weather dependent job, if we got a foot of snow I HAVE to go to work. Not optional.
 

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I live in Southwest Iowa and our vehicles are 4WD/AWD.

I live on a rural acreage. My driveway entrance is on a numbered US highway with a 55 mph speed limit. My driveway is also a hard right turn (about 135 degrees or so) and is an immediate uphill climb that rises about 12 feet over the first 100 feet of driveway. So, it's a hard right turn with a steep climb at slow speed, sometimes dragging my utility trailer. Take that turn too fast, and I'll be over the edge into Farmer Jason's bean field. When it snows, and this year has been snowier than the average year, 4WD is essential to get up to the house from the highway.

I also use 4WD to provide greater directional control when traveling a snow-covered highway.

During the warm weather months, occasionally I have to drag my utility trailer to various parts of the property. If the ground is moist, 4WD comes in handy for easing that trailer into position with spinning drive wheels into the ground.

There's not much gas mileage penalty these days with modern 4WD systems.

True, more moving parts means greater chance for mechanical failure.

I lived in town when I bought my first 4WD, a gently used 2000 Tundra TRD Access Cab. I wasn't looking for 4WD at that time, but after I used it in the snow to get up to my house on a hilly subdivision street, I became hooked on the feature. Now that I live 10 miles out of town and drive 30 miles one way to work every day, the ability to get around in almost all weather makes 4WD essential for my situation. My wife also drives daily about the same amount; her AWD Honda CR-V is great.
 

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aside from the obvious, what are some of the pros and cons of each? I’m deciding if I should move up to 4WD on my next Tundra. Thanks!
2WD PROS:
Less money up front
Potentially lower maintenance costs

4WD PROS:
Can provide traction where 2wd will not, which is both convenience and safety
Higher resale value
You can go more places that others can't

The decision on whether or not to have 4wd really comes down to how you perceive it as a safety or fun issue. If you are ever in snowy or sandy conditions, then having 4wd is an important safety feature. Just like having all the horsies that come with a 5.7 is...
 

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I need 4WD at the boat ramp and I need it to back up my steep driveway as all the weigh is on the front wheels and not the rear drive wheels. On bad roads it allows me to go slower and if when crossing a flooded area I hit a hole or rock there is a much greater chance of avoiding damage to the truck. Going slower is easier on the vehicle and easier on the passengers and on any cargo in the bed.

A sedan is fine with front wheel drive where the weight of the engine is over the drive wheels. A pickup is the exact opposite with little weight over the drive wheels at the rear.

A true 4WD vehicle also has a transfer case that provides a 2.75 gear reduction so that the engine rpms in low range 3rd is roughly that of 1st gear in normal or high range. I can have the engine in its peak power band while going much slower.

I get better handling on snow covered roads with 4WD when all four wheels are pulling the vehicle. Much tougher to deal with a rear wheel drive truck with a light rear end when traction is limited.

The other thing to appreciate is that with a 2WD vehicle when one wheel breaks traction for any reason you have a no wheel drive vehicle as one wheel spins and the other has no power going to it. I have rescued many a 2WD vehicle whose driver had pulled off the pavement and promptly gotten stuck in the soft ground on the shoulder.
 

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After driving RWD & FWD cars for over 20 years in all sorts of conditions I purchased my first 4x4 (a T100) in 1999, and picked up my 2002 4X4 Tundra in 2003. In 20 years of driving a 4X4 Toyota truck, I have honestly needed to power the front wheels just a handful of times and some of those instances could have been avoided had I chosen a different approach. One thing is for sure, 4X4 can get you deeper into the shit than 2X4.
 

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I live in the Northeast and have owned 2 different 4 wheel drive trucks in the last 15 years. My 04 Dakota for 5, my 09 Crewmax for 10. I guess some people will tell you the up front cost is one con. I can't argue with that, it adds to the price of the truck and it makes no sense to pay for something you're guaranteed never to use.

Others will tell you there's added maintenance, which is not something I've ever seen as a big deal. Having a transfer case and a front diff probably added at most a few hundred bucks in 5 years to the maintenance cost of my Dakota for fluid changes and the same for my Tundra. Extra fluid changes cost me a negligible amount over the entire time I own the vehicle in exchange for the convenience of the added traction. I guess there's always a risk that those costs will go up if it breaks after the warranty is up. But lots of stuff on a truck can break and cost you money.

The wife is essential personnel and also has to get to work most days no matter the weather.

I will always only buy 4x4s.
 

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My first 4WD vehicles were three Willys (1952, 1954, 1957) and they did require more maintenance. The first year that Toyota sold a 4WD truck in the US I bought one and later got two more and with all these vehicles I needed to periodically re-grease the front wheel bearings. I was delighted when I got my first fully automatic 4WD where the front bearings did not need to be serviced. My heavy duty diesel pickup is another story and I grease the front end fittings every 3,000 miles to keep everything together.

Despite heavy use with more than a million miles of driving with 4WD vehicles I have never needed to have the 4WD components serviced, other than greasing the front wheel bearings with the older solid front axle trucks. Of course I don't abuse my vehicles by putting on oversize tires or going at speed on bad roads or across creeks - in large part because I do not want to have to hike back out and then try to find a tow truck willing to go several hours drive up some dirt road.

In the old days a 4WD truck had a stiffer ride, especially with their solid front axles, but with IFS the ride of 1500 class pickups is as good as most family sedans and mini vans. There is a reason why so many people have bought the Subaru AWD vehicles over the years. For most people AWD is good enough and the low range of a 4WD vehicle is not needed and in reality few people would know how to use it properly. I would bet that 99% of the people driving 4WD trucks and SUV's have never put them into low range.
 

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The upfront costs vs being stuck, or towed balance out.

Maintenance isn't much unless you do anything stupid causing repair.

Front diff and T-case fluid, which one poster here has said you never have to change, so no maintenance, lol.
 

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I have used the 4x4 exactly six times last year, and in two instances, it was incredibly useful in pulling vehicles stranded during storms. I am glad I have 4x4 on my Tundra.

Sent from my SM-G930V using Tapatalk
 

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When you are a long way from home and towing a trailer on a muddy dirt road like I was this past fall you will really thank your self for getting a 4wheel drive instead of a 2wheel drive. When you need it you really need it. There are times I cannot get up my driveway in MN without 4wheel drive.
 

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All BS aside. All money aside. All maintenance concerns aside. I'd rather have 4 wheel drive and only use it 1 day out of 365 all day long. That's a personal preference and nothing more. Probably a good idea to use your geographical location and its weather conditions to aid in your decision making process.
 

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I Agree... Location and Use is Everything... I live in Middle GA and bought a New 2003 Limited Stepside w/4WD... During 5-Years of Ownership, I Never Engaged the 4WD... To Be Honest, I Forgot It Was There... It Didn't Dawn On Me That I Never Turned 4WD On Until The Night I Traded It In For A New 2008 CM Limited 2WD... To This Day, I have No Idea What An Engaged 4WD Vehicle Drives or Feels Like... So All You 4x4 Owners Can Feel Fully Justified Adding My Name To The 4x4 Tundra "Hall of Shame!" :oops:
 

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Living in Eastern Pennsylvania we get varying amounts of snow. Depending on the area, some roads are plowed/salted well and others are not touched AT ALL. In the last month I have used my 4WD 5-6 times for most if not all the entire trip to/from work. In some cases the snowfall was not all that deep but the roads were packed down snow/ice. On a few trips I used S-Mode quite often to go down some rather large snow/ice covered hills I had to use.

During the Spring/Summer/Fall I have used my 4WD any number of times at car show trailer parking areas. Wet grass and even the slightest grade makes 4WD a MUST when towing a loaded, enclosed car trailer.

Like others have said 2WD or 4WD comes down to one's needs and location.
 

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Like some have said, where you live or what you do is critical. I live in NW Minnesota. Use the 4wd often for about 6 months of the year. Having a rwd truck is much different than a fwd vehicle. I use 4x4 just to get going at intersections. Having said that, the wife has a Sienna that does remarkably well in the snow. She just can't plow with it :)
 

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People keep commenting about less maintenance with 2 wheel drive but what does that mean? Nowadays the only real maintenance is greasing driveshafts (depending on model vehicle) and checking the u joints. Theres not much more maintenance than a 2 wheel drive vehicle. I've had trucks my entire life and I've had 4x4 on all of them. I watched a buddy of mine with a 2 wheel drive truck get stuck in a dirt parking lot at a concert, same lot a bunch of cars and other vehicles were parked in, he just managed to get the soft spot and because it was 2 wheel drive he couldnt get out. Much rather have 4x4 and not need it than not have it and need it. Idk why they even make 2 wheel drive trucks to be honest. Maintenance is literally turning 4x4 on like once every few months and checking to make sure the u joints aren't loose. Seems easy to me
 
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