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Major Geek
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636 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
I suspect more than a few folks here are like me, in that you like to push a vehicle to its very limits.. especially in poor weather.. that you enjoy how it feels when a car is juuuuuust about to let go (under controlled conditions). If you practice enough times you'll know when, in poor conditions, things are still well under control or when things are about to get hinky.

I had the opportunity to test the VDC twice over the weekend. Got to drive in the back woods of NJ to get to Princeton. It was high 40's to low 50's and drizzly rain. There are numerous curvy roads through the woods. One in particular has a beautiful S-turn in it. Well, on the first trip out I hit the turn and didn't even activate the VDC. Must've been following someone driving slowly. On the way back, I hit the downhill curve, hard right transitions quickly to hard left, no real straightaway to speak of. It was a thing of beauty. Any of my past cars would have let go and I would've been in the trees. Not here. I gassed hard during the transition from right to left, felt the front slide half an inch or less (exaggerating, I know). The VDC took over, and smoothed out the turn to utter perfection.

The second trip, however, was a totally different story. On the way out, I had an opening and was able to take it at higher speed. Uphill right hand turn. Holy cow the front let go and slid over a foot to the left. VDC never kicked in at all. Leveled out for a sharp left turn and the front slid again, maybe half a foot to the right. Just enough to brush some foliage with the passenger mirror ;) And on the return trip, more of the same. Sharp right, slid about 9 inches to the left, gas into the downhill transition to the left and slid another 9+ inches to the right towards the trees.

No VDC, no SLIP light in either direction on that second trip. Don't get me wrong, I still executed the turns, but it wasn't in even in the same ballpark as the previous day's execution. But it was definitely "death grip" worthy if I had a passenger. Its a little nerve wracking because I want to have a clear picture of how the car feels at the edge of the envelope. Like a stall warning before the actual stall for pilots. I want to know what makes the VDC activate, what it really feels like, and how the car needs or doesn't need my input to recover. So far, in very greasy, light misty conditions, the same curve has given me two completely different experiences. Too bad its over half an hour away. It would look pretty silly if I just drove up there and kept executing this S-curve in the rain over and over..

or would it??? :2:
 

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NO-MO-SNOW
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891 Posts
Do what I did: Find that high school parking lot that you first learned to drive in and drive the way you wished your dad would have taught you. I had a great experience with the VDC last winter and can't wait to make his acquaintance again...I've never been able to get the VDC light to pop up in anything but the snow, however I'm trying to get one more winter out of the crappy stock tires so I tend to take it easy on the pavement. :eek:

Next time, get someone to take some pics! We need some action shots of the MO! I asked for it last year, and there was dismal turn out...now that everyone has broken in their MO and isn't afraid of causing anymore rattles maybe we can see more this year!

You definitely made me want to 'decrease my commute' home tonight though!
 
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