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    Thread: Hooning an Alltrack in the snow: Traction control settings?

    1. Member volksportguy72's Avatar
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      02-12-2019 10:24 AM #1
      I'm trying to figure out the best way to screw around in the snow and ice. So far, ESC off and Offroad mode has been my best result, but it's still pretty restrictive. I recently discovered ESC Sport buried in the settings menu, and briefly played with that with good results. Any input and experiences would be appreciated.

      Edit: I initially typed "ASR" but meant "ESC".
      Last edited by volksportguy72; 02-12-2019 at 11:03 AM.

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      02-12-2019 10:56 AM #2
      Hold the traction control button until it says "ESC Sport" in the MFD. Put tranny in sport mode if you have DSG.

      Give it plenty of gas and enjoy getting sideways in corners.

    4. Member volksportguy72's Avatar
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      02-12-2019 11:05 AM #3
      Thanks for the response. I read somewhere that a long push on the ESC button will get me ESC Sport, rather than going through the Settings on the screen. Confirm?

    5. 02-12-2019 11:30 AM #4
      Quote Originally Posted by volksportguy72 View Post
      Thanks for the response. I read somewhere that a long push on the ESC button will get me ESC Sport, rather than going through the Settings on the screen. Confirm?


      Can confirm on an 18 sportwagen 4mo.

      I still wonder how it distributes power when sliding around in ESC sport. Not as predictable as my old Subaru Legacy, since that was a full time mechanical diff.

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      02-12-2019 11:43 AM #5
      It may be different for the Alltrack, but on my GSW the factory setting is as follows; pushing the button deactivates ASR but keeps full ESC assistance. Now when holding the button down, the car enters “ESC Sport” which is still ASR deactivated but with partial/reduced ESC assistance. To deactivate completely (or as much as possible) both ASR and ESC, coding needs to be done through VCDS/OBD11. With certain coding done, pushing the button can go directly to “ESC Sport,” and holding it down goes to “ESC Off,” which should be ASR and ESC completely off. I personally noticed a big difference between “ESC Sport” and “ESC Off” - the car is far more willing to play and getting sideways in the snow is much easier.
      2018 VW Golf Sportwagen Comfortline (SE) 4Motion DSG

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      02-12-2019 11:54 AM #6
      You can also buy VCDS or OBD11 and deactivate everything.

    8. 02-12-2019 12:10 PM #7
      This can also be done in Carista, and I believe you can also mess with BIAS. Haven't tried it yet however.

    9. 02-12-2019 12:49 PM #8
      I might be comparing apples and oranges, but I feel my 2015 WRX is miles ahead as far as traction is concerned. It feels so much more predictable than my 18 Alltrack (AT).
      I guess that's what you get when you rely on the computer to control traction. The WRX is more mechanical with a 50/50 power distribution. A true symmetrical AWD!
      I maxed out the XDS setting via OBD Eleven and it's much better than it was. But I'll admit...the WRX is seeing a lot more snow time than the wagon at the moment.

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      02-12-2019 01:30 PM #9
      Quote Originally Posted by drawblood View Post
      I might be comparing apples and oranges, but I feel my 2015 WRX is miles ahead as far as traction is concerned. It feels so much more predictable than my 18 Alltrack (AT).
      I guess that's what you get when you rely on the computer to control traction. The WRX is more mechanical with a 50/50 power distribution. A true symmetrical AWD!
      I maxed out the XDS setting via OBD Eleven and it's much better than it was. But I'll admit...the WRX is seeing a lot more snow time than the wagon at the moment.
      No offense but...no ****. Of course a full time, 50/50 constant split AWD vehicle is going to be more predictable than a part time, up to 50/50 split AWD vehicle. What sets Subaru apart is exactly that full-time AWD system; it's pretty much unparalleled.

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      02-12-2019 01:33 PM #10
      I'm planning on getting a OBD11 to do some coding in the spring, I can't be bothered to arse around with it while it's still cold out. I'd love to try the ESC Off as I find ESC Sport frustrating. It'll allow the car to go a bit sideways, but you can't hold it because it starts reigning you in and speed picks up fast. It's enough that my daughter gives me a hard time, but I want MOAR SIDEWAYS!

      ASR off is useless to me, I'd like to able to cycle between everything on, ESC Sport and ESC Off via the button, is that possible with OBDII?

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      02-12-2019 01:35 PM #11
      Quote Originally Posted by KrisA View Post
      I'm planning on getting a OBD11 to do some coding in the spring, I can't be bothered to arse around with it while it's still cold out. I'd love to try the ESC Off as I find ESC Sport frustrating. It'll allow the car to go a bit sideways, but you can't hold it because it starts reigning you in and speed picks up fast. It's enough that my daughter gives me a hard time, but I want MOAR SIDEWAYS!

      ASR off is useless to me, I'd like to able to cycle between everything on, ESC Sport and ESC Off via the button, is that possible with OBDII?
      Yes, you can set it up in multiple ways including how you mentionned. This is how I setup mine.. one push is sport, push and hold is completely off (which I did not have at all before).

    13. Member AWDWAGON's Avatar
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      02-12-2019 02:04 PM #12
      Did the ESC sport/ESC off tweak a couple of weeks ago with OBD11. Car is way more willing to play now.

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    14. Senior Member syntrix's Avatar
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      02-12-2019 02:48 PM #13
      Quote Originally Posted by volksportguy72 View Post
      I'm trying to figure out the best way to screw around in the snow and ice. So far, ESC off and Offroad mode has been my best result, but it's still pretty restrictive. I recently discovered ESC Sport buried in the settings menu, and briefly played with that with good results. Any input and experiences would be appreciated.

      Edit: I initially typed "ASR" but meant "ESC".
      Do what I did to my old AT. Set haldex to more rear bias, add xds, and of course hold that ESC button down for a bit. Mine was hoonin' in the snow last year like a champ.

      But be careful, you'll hit some crubs and fents and maybe a bursh.
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      02-12-2019 04:18 PM #14
      Do the "increased traction" tweak to the 4Motion system with coding - paired to TCS off and ESC off. It can drift so well and hold a drift - just like a Subaru or Audi drifting now.

      There are 3 4Motion tweaks and this is how I understand it:

      Reduced Noise: FWD only with little to no engagement of rear axle - only in serious slipping situations. Turns the proactive haldex into more of a reactive haldex system.

      Normal: Normal proactive haldex operation - disengages on highway

      Increased Traction: makes the AWD system 50/50 all the time - haldex always engaged fully.

      Now this is only how I understand it in my experiences with my test driving of the systems. If I am wrong please correct me. Some people say increased traction only engages the rear axle sooner but I dont find that to be the case. It seems to be always engaged even when cruising on the highway - you can hear it and feel it. Car feels more like a permanent torsen AWD car with this tweak.

      Since it probably causes more wear on the haldex clutch I'm only turning this feature on when snow storms get here, I'm going offroading, or snow donuts lol. Not to mention the MPGs tanked after doing this tweak - since the car is now sending power to all 4 wheels even on the highway. But definitely worth it in snow driving.

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    16. Senior Member syntrix's Avatar
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      02-12-2019 05:31 PM #15
      Quote Originally Posted by D3Audi View Post

      Increased Traction: makes the AWD system 50/50 all the time - haldex always engaged fully.
      More like 60/40, but not sure if anyone has tested. It's certainly not 50/50.
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      02-12-2019 05:33 PM #16
      Quote Originally Posted by syntrix View Post
      More like 60/40, but not sure if anyone has tested. It's certainly not 50/50.
      You might be right. But it certainly feels 50/50 on the butt dyno compared to stock lol.. I wonder how it can be tested?

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    18. Senior Member syntrix's Avatar
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      02-12-2019 05:37 PM #17
      Quote Originally Posted by D3Audi View Post
      You might be right. But it certainly feels 50/50 on the butt dyno compared to stock lol.. I wonder how it can be tested?

      Sent from my SM-G965U using Tapatalk
      Well, either way it changes it from 90/10, that's a fact I'll agree on

      Also not sure on the wear statement you mentioned. BMW uses 40/60 with similar wet clutches that ARE DESIGNED FOR THIS PURPOSE, I know, I hoon one daily


      I also asked if the 90/10 split on VW's was just because of the viscous nature of the haldex clutches and fluid? Almost seems right where you get FWD and a little drag until it's engaged.
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    19. 02-12-2019 05:52 PM #18
      With the Haldex kicking in sooner, DSG in manual mode and that linear throttle thing, it makes it much more fun to drive even with the ESC on. You can add lots of throttle in a turn and hear the Haldex unit working, thus the rear starts to sort of come around. if the Haldex goes to 100%, you have 50/50 no matter what anyone says because you'd have to violate the laws of physics.

    20. Senior Member syntrix's Avatar
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      02-12-2019 06:18 PM #19
      Quote Originally Posted by jjvincent View Post
      With the Haldex kicking in sooner, DSG in manual mode and that linear throttle thing, it makes it much more fun to drive even with the ESC on. You can add lots of throttle in a turn and hear the Haldex unit working, thus the rear starts to sort of come around. if the Haldex goes to 100%, you have 50/50 no matter what anyone says because you'd have to violate the laws of physics.
      Right, haldex is limited where it can only send 50% to the rear, max. If needed, it will come around a little better, but it's still going to be FWD biased. Compared to normal FWD mode, you will notice a difference, but it's not close to RWD biased. Fun cars for sure.

      Other systems like I mentioned can do 100% F/R, but they are completely different.
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    21. Member volksportguy72's Avatar
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      02-13-2019 07:11 AM #20
      Quote Originally Posted by jodokall View Post
      Hold the traction control button until it says "ESC Sport" in the MFD. Put tranny in sport mode if you have DSG.

      Give it plenty of gas and enjoy getting sideways in corners.
      This was the winner. We got 10" yesterday, and I had a blast tossing her around. Thanks for all the responses!

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      02-13-2019 08:23 AM #21
      The 4Motion can transfer 100% to the rear. The 5th gen Haldex clutch can take up to around 250 lb/ft of torque (see Motormouth's videos on YouTube, he got this info from VW Canada's internal docs). The front bevel box is basically an open diff, transmitting torque to the front and rear axles equally, it does no torque distribution, it's up to the Haldex to "accept" the torque. Since the Haldex coupling can accept up to 250 lb/ft from the prop shaft, theoretically the rear can take up to 100% of the available torque (in specific circumstances, such as the front axle being on ice, the rear axle on dry pavement, Haldex fully locked, and the XDS and TC braking the fronts).

      The Golf R is a different story, since it has 280 lb/ft of torque.

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      02-13-2019 08:41 AM #22
      Also, even if you enable the "ESC Off" option, some people have reported that the nannies take over if you spin the tires too much. Make sure you disable the "Starting vibration reduction" as well. Those 2 changes will give you more control of the vehicle.

      I made both these changes (along with the linear throttle mod, and the XDS and Haldex traction both left on normal mode) on both my MK7 R and my wife's MK7.5 GSW 4Motion and tried them both on a snow and ice covered track, and they were awesome. No intrusive nannies, no blinking lights on the dash, very predictable handling, all 4 tires were happily spinning and would power oversteer easily.

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      02-13-2019 08:43 AM #23
      Quote Originally Posted by syntrix View Post
      Well, either way it changes it from 90/10, that's a fact I'll agree on

      Also not sure on the wear statement you mentioned. BMW uses 40/60 with similar wet clutches that ARE DESIGNED FOR THIS PURPOSE, I know, I hoon one daily


      I also asked if the 90/10 split on VW's was just because of the viscous nature of the haldex clutches and fluid? Almost seems right where you get FWD and a little drag until it's engaged.
      Wear is my main concern with this tweak. I'm trying to figure out exactly what is happening when increased traction is on. Is there any way for the haldex clutch to fully engage and lock or is it just that the clutch is fully clamped down.

      In normal mode the clutch is constantly engaging and disengaging which obviously causes wear - in the increased traction mode it's not engaging and disengaging all the time. It's fully engaged.

      So in theory the increased traction tweak might have less wear than normal mode? Hopefully someone with knowledge about this can chime in.



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      02-13-2019 08:52 AM #24
      Quote Originally Posted by Ferrari View Post
      The 4Motion can transfer 100% to the rear. The 5th gen Haldex clutch can take up to around 250 lb/ft of torque (see Motormouth's videos on YouTube, he got this info from VW Canada's internal docs). The front bevel box is basically an open diff, transmitting torque to the front and rear axles equally, it does no torque distribution, it's up to the Haldex to "accept" the torque. Since the Haldex coupling can accept up to 250 lb/ft from the prop shaft, theoretically the rear can take up to 100% of the available torque (in specific circumstances, such as the front axle being on ice, the rear axle on dry pavement, Haldex fully locked, and the XDS and TC braking the fronts).

      The Golf R is a different story, since it has 280 lb/ft of torque.
      Yeah that smells real fishy.

      You contratdicted yourself in your own statement, "front bevel is an open diff, yet will send torque to the front and rear equally". I dunno how 100% can be transferred without having the ABS lock the front wheels (open diff will send power to least resistance, not equally), what's the point of having the font wheels locked?
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      02-13-2019 08:56 AM #25
      Quote Originally Posted by D3Audi View Post
      Wear is my main concern with this tweak. I'm trying to figure out exactly what is happening when increased traction is on. Is there any way for the haldex clutch to fully engage and lock or is it just that the clutch is fully clamped down.

      In normal mode the clutch is constantly engaging and disengaging which obviously causes wear - in the increased traction mode it's not engaging and disengaging all the time. It's fully engaged.

      So in theory the increased traction tweak might have less wear than normal mode? Hopefully someone with knowledge about this can chime in.



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      I'd be more concerned about the electro pump and holding that clutch pack 100% firm all the time IE producing max pressure all the time. I believe stock coding the pump is variable and only holds enough pressure for the demand requested I think this was engineered to lengthen the life of the pump.
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