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Why Doesn't The Is220d Have A Snow Button?


javadude
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Anyone know why? I'd have thought that with all that torque it would need one more than the IS250.

Well in my experience, as an IS200SE owner who has driven it many times in snow, and from a test drive of an IS250 last year in snow, the snow button is a complete and utter waste of time! I got the impression it connects to a light and that's it. Both the old and new IS's, excellent as they are in almost every other way, are absolutely useless in snow. My advice - if there's snow or ice on the roads, leave the Lexus at home. Otherwise all you'll see are other drivers looking at you incredulously, wondering why you are struggling like mad to go anywhere, while they drive off easily in their front wheel drive cars :P

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Anyone know why? I'd have thought that with all that torque it would need one more than the IS250.

Well in my experience, as an IS200SE owner who has driven it many times in snow, and from a test drive of an IS250 last year in snow, the snow button is a complete and utter waste of time! I got the impression it connects to a light and that's it. Both the old and new IS's, excellent as they are in almost every other way, are absolutely useless in snow. My advice - if there's snow or ice on the roads, leave the Lexus at home. Otherwise all you'll see are other drivers looking at you incredulously, wondering why you are struggling like mad to go anywhere, while they drive off easily in their front wheel drive cars :P

As someone that drives in "real" snow for many months of the year I find it of great use, and have not had any real problems with the old sytle IS and that includes using standard width and narrow width tyres... ahha thats the key!!! may i ask what type of tyres you have on your car or the cars that you tested?

For info the snow button allows the wheels to spin and prevents the traction control from cutting in so much - it also lowers the rpm relative to pedal position

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Anyone know why? I'd have thought that with all that torque it would need one more than the IS250.

I don't know the 220D Sport, but doesn't it have a traditional manual gearbox? If so, I would not expect it to have a Snow Button.

In a manual gearbox there is a direct connection from the engine to the driven wheels whenever the clutch is engaged and it is up to the driver to choose the right gear and throttle opening to achieve the right level of torque at the driven wheels to cope with the conditions. The usual problems arise from choosing too low a gear when moving from rest or at low speed. The effect is to give more torque at the driven wheels than can be transmitted with low friction levels at the wheel/road interface.

In a auto box, there is (generally) no direct connection but some torque transfer device that transfers power in a variable fashion from the engine to the wheels. The "settings" on the gearbox e.g. "snow", "sport" etc alter the way in which the sensing devices on the torque transfer mechanism operate. They can be set to limit the torque transmitted and to modify the engine speed (revolutions) at which the gearbox changes up or down. The snow setting will normally cause changes up and down at lower speeds than usual, while the sports setting will cause changes up and down at higher speeds than usual.

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As someone that drives in "real" snow for many months of the year I find it of great use, and have not had any real problems with the old sytle IS and that includes using standard width and narrow width tyres... ahha thats the key!!! may i ask what type of tyres you have on your car or the cars that you tested?

For info the snow button allows the wheels to spin and prevents the traction control from cutting in so much - it also lowers the rpm relative to pedal position

Well, maybe I'm just a crap driver :lol: I originally had the Bridgestone Potenza's as fitted to the car, and last year replaced these with Avon ZZ3s. When there's snow lying on the roads here in Aberdeen (often with ice below), I've often got well stuck, and have experimented with careful use of higher gears and combining with snow button, but whatever I try the back wheels just spin like mad. The problem I'm talking about is trying to pull away from stationery on a snow covered or icy covered road - particularly when on a slight slope.

As I said, last year when my IS200 was in for it's service, I got a 250SE manual as a courtesy car, and it snowed that day and I found it every bit as bad! Even worse, I parked the 250 on my driveway, which has a slight incline down to the street. The car's handbrake was fully on and 2nd gear was engaged. Minutes after going into the house, the doorbell was rang by my alarmed neighbour who had watched the Lexus slide down the drive into the street, stopping just before a wall! The car had just drifted down the slope on top of the snow/ice. That's certainly never happened with my IS200. Bizarre :duh:

I'm still after a 250 though! Hoping to get one soon if I can get my IS200SE sold.

So where is it you stay that's got "real" snow for many months of the year?

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hahah im having a little poke so dont take anything too seriously...... nah mate its down to the IS being light in the back and also having fat tyres designed for nice tarmac. i live in switzerland and during the winter period spend most of it in the mountains..... not that there is too much this year :(

people are prob sick of hearing it but slap a set of 16" winter tyres on or even a set of 17" and your alright, its actually easier to drive in deep snow as youo will get traction but a thin layer or snow thats been compacted and its difficult as it norm forms a layer of ice

the car prob slid because in temp lower than 7C the rubber of normal tyres starts going hard and then looses friction.

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Even worse, I parked the 250 on my driveway, which has a slight incline down to the street. The car's handbrake was fully on and 2nd gear was engaged. Minutes after going into the house, the doorbell was rang by my alarmed neighbour who had watched the Lexus slide down the drive into the street, stopping just before a wall! The car had just drifted down the slope on top of the snow/ice. That's certainly never happened with my IS200. Bizarre :duh:

Whether an object slides down a slope depends only upon the angle of the slope and the coefficient of friction between the slope and the object. Since the slope was unaltered, it could only be that the coefficient of friction was less. That could mean a more slippery surface than before (most likely) and/or a different tyre rubber. Nothing to do with the car itself . . . . . :duh:

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I don't know the 220D Sport, but doesn't it have a traditional manual gearbox? If so, I would not expect it to have a Snow Button.

I've a manual IS250 and it has a snow button.

For info the snow button allows the wheels to spin and prevents the traction control from cutting in so much - it also lowers the rpm relative to pedal position

I'd assumed that it affected the traction control, but had thought that it would probably make the traction control more sentative, not less.

The traction control allows some wheel slippage normally (presumably for entertainment purposes). Surely in the snow you'd want it to allow less slippage, so you got maximum traction, and maximum acceleration. Allow more slippage is only going to allow the rear end to slide out of line, and make it more difficult to get moveing surely?

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I don't know the 220D Sport, but doesn't it have a traditional manual gearbox? If so, I would not expect it to have a Snow Button.

In a manual gearbox there is a direct connection from the engine to the driven wheels whenever the clutch is engaged and it is up to the driver to choose the right gear and throttle opening to achieve the right level of torque at the driven wheels to cope with the conditions. The usual problems arise from choosing too low a gear when moving from rest or at low speed. The effect is to give more torque at the driven wheels than can be transmitted with low friction levels at the wheel/road interface.

The manual IS200 has a snow button, isnt the throttle fly by wire?

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The manual IS200 has a snow button, isnt the throttle fly by wire?

Yep, the petrols have electronic throttle control and the diesel doesn't, so no Snow mode.

Snow mode just reduces the throttle sensitivity - I'm pretty certain it doesn't affect the TRC (on the old IS at least).

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Have to admit the Aristo surprised me today, handled much better than I was ever expecting in snow mode, didn't drive far but it did better than my IS ever did in the snow, think the extra weight helps though :)

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As people from Scotland would say, we've only got girlie snow here in England

I did the 180 yesterday and I found the limits of the car (which aren't too great!), but today the car was superb in the snow and ice. Up hill, down hill, any hill or bend...Ice, compacted snow, compacted snow on ice or slush...

It got stuck once this morning. I just rocked the car forward and backwards by applying no accelerator, and dipping and engaging the clutch gently whilst in 1st gear. I synchronised the rocking forward to a crescendo and then gently applied acceleration when I rocked forward by a foot or so under inertia and power slid my my way out...

I trick my dad taught me as he would only ever buy RWD cars (a string of Beemers). Doesn't always work (and can't be done in an auto), but had I not known that the car would have been abandoned there!!

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The manual IS200 has a snow button, isnt the throttle fly by wire?

Yep, the petrols have electronic throttle control and the diesel doesn't, so no Snow mode.

Snow mode just reduces the throttle sensitivity - I'm pretty certain it doesn't affect the TRC (on the old IS at least).

Thanks - I wasn't aware of that. Does it make a significant difference? I have driven several cars with variable auto gearbox settings and always found the "snow" setting useful - not only on snow, but when driving on slippery grass surfaces, mud etc.

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Does it make a significant difference? I have driven several cars with variable auto gearbox settings and always found the "snow" setting useful - not only on snow, but when driving on slippery grass surfaces, mud etc.

In a word, no.

It makes it slightly easier to control the throttle but that's all :lol:

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I must say these 'snow'button threads do amuse me.

What ever happened to just leaving more breaking distance, and adjusting the drive in accordance to the weather and conditions of the road ? :blink:

My IS300 is very lively ... with lots of power ...... i've not had it slide out on me once over this snow period ?

I tried it with the snow button on and off ........... with it on, it just annoys me, as you can't get a proper 'kick-down' .......... B)

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What ever happened to just leaving more breaking distance
If you brake early enough it might not be necessary for it to break . . . . . :P
I tried it with the snow button on and off ........... with it on, it just annoys me, as you can't get a proper 'kick-down' .......... B)

:D :D :D :D :D :D

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I drove like a grandad yesterday - real slow with lots of space in front of me, gentle on the brakes and on corners and had a very uneventful drive. I didn't miss the snow button as it didn't seem to make much difference on my old IS200.

Thanks for the answer lexicon :)

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