Go Back   Club Lexus Forums > General Forums > Car Chat
Sign in using an external account
Register Forgot Password?

Motor Trend 4/06: Snowdogs - H3 vs. Liberty vs. Xterra vs. FJ Cruiser

Reply
 
 
 
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread Display Modes
Old 02-28-06, 04:35 PM   #1
GFerg
Speaks French in Russian
Trader Score: (0)
 
GFerg's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2002
Location: What is G?
Posts: 12,105
Send a message via AIM to GFerg
Default Motor Trend 4/06: Snowdogs - H3 vs. Liberty vs. Xterra vs. FJ Cruiser

4. "The Runt" - Jeep Liberty Renegade - $27,550

"In the snow, the Liberty did a commendable job holding its own, its skinny Goodyears akin to warm pizza wheels in ice cream. But in Hungry Valley, the Liberty didn't fare so well. With 6.4 inches of ground clearance, the Jeep was the only vehicle to continuously pound rocks with its underside...Attempting to climb a steep, undulating hill in 4Low, the Liberty could only attempt, not conquer, the feat, thanks in part to the lack of a locking rear differential and second-worst Ramp Travel Index. Through the dry riverbed, the Jeep felt the frailest and the jitteriest, its structure and suspension creaking and rattling over the washboard, its steering column transmitting every moan."

3. "The Beast" - Hummer H3 - $37,920

"Although the Hummer didn't rise above the others in the snow - its heft and 285mm-wide Bridgestones made it the elephant of the pack - it did excel in Hungry Valley, where its utralow 4.03:1 reduction ratio, 33-inch tires, and rear locker flattened hills and squished boulders without a drop of sweat. Coming in at $29,500 to start - more than the as-tested costs of the others - and $37,920 with options...the H3 was the priciest. Carrying that kind of premium, the Hummer's off-road prowess becomes expected, almost overlooked, while its on-road incompetence turns infamous."

2. "The Athlete" - Nissan Xterra OR-V6 - $29,325

"In the soft and slushy stuff, the Xterra shined, effortlessly mowing BFGoodrich tracks through the deepest snow. In fact, after our romp in Mammoth Lakes' winter wonderland, the Xterra was deemed the odds-on favorite to take home the trophy. A few hours into our visit at Hungry Valley proved more challenging for this impressive contender, however. Saddled with the lowest Ramp Travel Index (RTI), the Xterra was unable to overcome our test hill, even with its 'Rugged Trail' tires and the rear differential locked. It was mostly this off-road deficiency that kept our 2006 Sport/Utility of the Year from nudging the first-place finisher."

1. "The All-Rounder" - Toyota FJ Cruiser - $29,360

"The FJ made easy work of the snow, its Active Traction Control (A-TRAC) system living up to its promise of minimizing wheelspin and functioning like a limited-slip differential. A-TRAC also proved its merits in Hungry Valley, where, complemented by 32-inch tires and the second-widest track, it assisted the FJ up and over the hill test, and through the sand with sans any drama."





HOW THEY (TRAIL) RATE...



4. Jeep Liberty Renegade

"Our 'Trail Rated' Liberty had a not-too-shabby 450 RTI result, but the smallest tires of the group (225/75R16) with the least aggressive tread. Gearing is adequate, but the clumsy slot-machine 4WD lever puts up a fight when going into and out of 4Low."

3. Nissan Xterra OR-V6

"The Xterra scored a 384 RTI (lowest of the four), but did offer a big tire (265/75R16) and an electronic locking rear differential (some called it the 'Save Me!' button). The 4.0-liter V-6 is powerful and responsive, making the Nissan a favorite in the high-speed sand washes."

2. Toyota FJ Cruiser

"The Toyota FJ's suspension uses coil springs in front and back and scored a solid 491 RTI. The "A-TRAC" traction-control calculates the right amount of traction needed in high and low range. And, although it's loud and vibrates like crazy when engaged, several testers appreciated the A-TRAC's feedback. In addition, the FJ offers a push-button rear locker (which disconnects traction control), and runs the dry-wash trails like a Baja pre-runner."

1. Hummer H3

"With the most compliant suspension, the H3 scored a 520 RTI and has a transfer-case low-range gear almost two times lower than do the others. In addition, the Hummer had the biggest, most aggressive tires (285/75R16) and a smart traction-control system that works in combination with a rear locker. If there's a weakness, not surprisingly, it's the anemic I-5 that had trouble pushing our 2.5 ton H3 through the desert sand washes."
This ad is not displayed to registered members.
Register your free account today and become a member on Club Lexus!
__________________
1995 ES300 (sold)
1997 Nissan Maxima SE 5-speed Black

VP of TLN (#23)
GFerg is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-28-06, 04:40 PM   #2
tetra7
Lead Lap
Trader Score: (0)
 
Join Date: May 2003
Location: Texas
Posts: 773
Default

Nice...now just need to bide my time as they work out the first generation kinks!
tetra7 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-28-06, 04:50 PM   #3
LexFather
Guest
Trader Score: ()
 
Posts: n/a
Default

So as of late
First LS 430
third GS 430
2nd IS 350
First Avalon
First FJ Cruiser
First Scion Xb

In recent comparions. What a great showing!
  Reply With Quote
Old 02-28-06, 06:53 PM   #4
wolverine
Lexus Champion
Trader Score: (9)
 
wolverine's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2003
Location: California
Posts: 2,209
Default

man i cant wait to test drive the FJ when it comes out
wolverine is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-28-06, 06:53 PM
 
 
 
 
Reply

Tags
2002, cruiser, fj, h3, hummer, index, motor, nissan, ramp, rti, sc, snow, travel, trend, xterra

Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off

Forum Jump

All times are GMT -7. The time now is 01:36 PM.

Join ClubLexus
Advertising


Copyright © 2000-2008 Internet Brands, Inc. All Rights Reserved
Privacy Policy | Disclaimer | Terms of Use | JOBS


Get all contact info