Is HD package so useful in snow?

BJ42 to LR4

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Hey! Bonjour from Quebec Canada!
I read many about LR4 in the snow and still have a question.

Well, I decided to go for an LR4. Now hesitating between two Landmark 2016, both 70K miles… one with locking diff, and the other one without. The one with the HD package has a coolant leak on inspection. The « non-HD » is pristine, had perfect maintenance. Tough choice!

My needs are mostly winter driving, in typical Canadian icy snowy slushy conditions. I totally agree that good winter tires make a huge difference. But was wondering about THE famous and debated HD pack question… in winter.

So, for you folks drivin’ in the snow: Do you have a rear locking differential and if so, do you use it at all, in icy snowy conditions?

And if you don’t have rear locking diff, do you sometimes get stuck in the snow?


Thanks in advance for your help!
 

jlach993

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I have the “poor mans” LR4 2011 HSE without the electronic locking diff. I’ve never had trouble with anything i’ve ever thrown at it. I live in NYC and we do get decent snow around here.
 

16FujiDisco

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I can’t give much advice since I’m in the south and our winters are mild in comparison, but I would say that the cost to add a locker and change the transfer case to a twin speed would be a lot less than fixing a coolant leak. HD package was the main option for me in my search…even if I never use it
 

ktm525

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If you don't plan to rock crawl the non HD version will be fine. I have a 2010 non HD (2 speed transfer but no locking rear diff). When it snows lots I sometimes try to high center the rig and get it stuck. It won't get stuck. Quite amazing really. Buy some good snow tires for it and it is a tank. The biggest drawback it has in the winter is weight as it can't hide the weight when braking in truly nasty stuff.
 

mm3846

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You can't "choose" to lock the rear diff (the factory one). And if you did, you really don't want to keep it locked all the time anyway when driving on the road in the snow.

Snow tires > rear locker 100% of the time.
 

ryanjl

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They will ALL have coolant leaks eventually if you don't do the proper preventative maintenance.

I'm guessing the one with the leak is probably one of the coolant crossover pipes, the thermostat housing, or the water pump, and I'd probably have all those replaced even on the non-leaking one right after I bought it to set a baseline of when those were last done.

Since I'd swap those out right away on either, I'd go with the HD one 10 times out of 10. See if you can negotiate having that job done or lower the price because of the leak.
 

ktm525

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I would do the HD as well just to get the 2 speed transfer case.
 

TrinidadLR4

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For 2014+ models, the HD package is much more important as it has 1)a 2sp xfer case 2)a rear locker and 3) a full size spare. Without the HD, you get a center Torsen, which is probably enough for snow but you then have a heavy AWD tall wagon.

For 10-13 models, you get a 2sp xfer case by default. HD just means rear locker + full spare. I have a 13HD and it's nice to have but not an absolute necessity. For the later models, the HD package is a must have(IMO).
 
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John Robison

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I don't think the center and rear diff locks make a difference when driving in snow on the road. They will make a difference in off-road driving, but few later model Rovers are used that way. I had that option in our previous supercharged Range Rover, and not in its replacement and there is no difference in on-road handling in snow or other bad weather.
 

zgpablo

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I live in a Colorado ski resort and have a 2016 non-HD version. I have the Hakkapeliitta studs and this thing is a tank and way better than my wife's Allroad with Blizzaks.

If I were shopping and there were comparable HD/Non-HD versions, I would go for the HD just because, but I would not be using it for snow, I'd be using it to go rescue my adventure bike off some pass I couldn't get over. It's a rock crawling feature, not an everyday driving (even in snow) feature.
 

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