Originally Posted by Hannerhan
It's not the .2 inches as much as how the suspension is set up on a vehicle that doesn't have a solid rear axle. See this for a quick explanation: http://www.wittenburg.co.uk/offroading/Concepts/Suspension.html
And this might be mostly anecdotal, but my LR experience is that there tend to be more low points than I have on my 4Runner...hence more banging around on rocks.
Good point on the traction...I should have clarified. Weight is going to give you more traction when driving on level ground in the rain or snow for instance. It will give you less traction when you are trying to navigate up or down hills (off-roading) because the heavier the vehicle, the more it wants to move downhill when you are either trying to go uphill or to stop it from going downhill at a high rate of speed. So for off-roading purposes weight is the enemy.
I do not think you have the physics quite correct there. Yes, a heavier vehicle will have more inertia but the formula for usable traction does not change. Again, I'm not an expert here, but I've already pointed out your statements on traction are incorrect and I will point out momentum is certainly part of hill climbing and a heavier vehicle will have more forward momentum due to inertia than a lighter one. I'm really not an expert here, have not off roaded for several years, but your statements do not all jive with my (limited) knowledge base. You also said the 4Runner had an advantage due to a rear locker when the LR4 actually has one available out of the box too.
As to the solid axle I see what you're saying. However, how about empirical comparisons? Certainly there must be some direct comparisons of the 4Runner with the LR4? Has this been demonstrated to give the 4Runner and edge out of the box? My LR3 was pretty heavily armored with skid plates so I'm not even sure the differential was exposed. You are also not giving due to articulation which I'm willing to bet the LR4 excels in vs. the 4Runner.
Do you have any side by side comparisons showing the 4Runner is materially superior to the LR4? Just me but for "nice" and "off roading" mix I'm going to go with the LR4. The real world service experience, having owned both a Tundra and Rover previously, goes hands down to Rover so that alone would give the nod to the LR4 in my books.
This does not include the 4Runner but includes the LR3 and the Land Cruiser. Results are LR3 wins: http://www.trucktrend.com/roadtests/suv/163_0510_suv_4x4_challenge/viewall.html
2012 4Runner Trail Edition in second to last place here: http://www.fourwheeler.com/roadtests/129_1301_the_ultimate_factory_4x4_shootout/viewall.html
Sort of embarrassing IMO.
Have not found a direct comparison yet but here is a link where the put an LR4 against a Cherokee and LR4 wins then they put a Cherokee against a 4Runner Trail and the Cherokee wins: http://www.trucktrend.com/roadtests/suv/163_1012_jeep_toyota_land_rover_comparison/Edited by Piobaire - 7/1/13 at 7:41am