Just bought a 2007 Manual FJ 4WD - Toyota FJ Cruiser Forum
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post #1 of 9 (permalink) Old 03-18-2017, 08:52 AM Thread Starter
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Just bought a 2007 Manual FJ 4WD

Good morning,

I am new to this website/forum. I recently bought a Used 2007 FJ Cruiser, Manual trans with 4wd. It is silver with about 80K miles, a very nice truck. (previous to this, I used to drive a 1991 Isuzu Trooper 4WD with manual trans).

I like my FJ, but I notice it has a different feel than my Isuzu. I came to find out by reading the owners manual (and from reading various posts on this forum) that the manual FJ's are always in All Wheel Drive. I probably wouldn't have bought it if I knew that beforehand. I much prefer the feel of rear wheel drive on highway driving. I don't like the feel of the front wheels being engaged when I am driving over bumps on the road, around corners, etc.

But I guess "it is what it is" now.

However, I do have a couple questions, for anyone that might have some information:

1) The other day I was out driving, and out of curiosity, I pushed in the "RR Diff Lock" button to see what it would do. (I know, I probably should have read the owners manual first, but I didn't). Anyway, a blinking red light came on in the dash. I don't know if it was my imagination, but it actually felt like the truck's front wheels were no longer engaged, almost like it was running in rear wheel drive only. Is that possible? When I read the owners manual it says the RR Diff Lock light, when blinking, means it is not working.

2) This is probably real expensive, but if I wanted to take my FJ to a mechanic and have them modify it to give me the option of being in 2WD or 4WD, would that even be possible? If so, does anyone have an idea how much it would cost? I live in the Atlanta, GA area.

Thanks much.
Jerry
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post #2 of 9 (permalink) Old 03-18-2017, 10:00 AM
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Re: Just bought a 2007 Manual FJ 4WD

Are you missing the smaller shifter? That's the drive selector. 2/4wd

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post #3 of 9 (permalink) Old 03-18-2017, 10:06 AM
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Re: Just bought a 2007 Manual FJ 4WD

Welcome from Philo, OH!
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post #4 of 9 (permalink) Old 03-18-2017, 11:20 AM
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Re: Just bought a 2007 Manual FJ 4WD

Welcome aboard!

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post #5 of 9 (permalink) Old 03-18-2017, 02:33 PM
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Re: Just bought a 2007 Manual FJ 4WD

The manual transmission is full-time 4wd. That "smaller" shifter is to shift from 4HH->4HL->4LL The only difference between 4HH and 4HL is the front and rear differentials are locked together in 4HL, so you should really only use it off pavement as it will stress your truck. The rear diff lock will lock the left and right rear wheels together. Again, do not use this on pavement or you will damage your truck. The MTs are rare and coveted by many. Consider yourself fortunate to find one with only 80K on it. My 07 has 125K on it.

You do pay a bit of an mpg price for the lack of 2wd, but I think you will come to love it down the road. And yes, you should really sit down and spend some time with your owners manual.
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post #6 of 9 (permalink) Old 03-18-2017, 04:35 PM
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Re: Just bought a 2007 Manual FJ 4WD

Welcome to the forum!

The MT FJ is a great ride.

What you are probably feeling is the difference in ride quality between your old Trooper and the FJ.
The RR Dif Lock will only work in 4L, nothing happened when you pushed the button.

The MPG difference is a sham. There are MT that get better mpg than AT and vice versa. Its all in how you drive.

The MT has 3 differentials:
1 in the front
1 in the rear
1 in the transfer case
The one in the transfer case is a Torsen T3 giving you a 70/30 split when in 4HH.

The center diff allows your front and rear drive shaft to spin at different speeds which prevent binding/axle hop in tight turns on hard surfaces.

Can it be converted to 2wd/4wd config? Short answer - Yes.

There is a thread somewhere in the annals of the forum where our members from the Mid-East show taking apart the transfer case and I *think.....think* the took apart the T3 removed a couple of gears which eliminated the full time 4wd. Careful though - I'm working from memory here. I do not believe that anyone here has done this mod.

Ill do some digging and see if I can find it,
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post #7 of 9 (permalink) Old 03-18-2017, 08:16 PM
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Re: Just bought a 2007 Manual FJ 4WD

BTW, the manual states that the RR Diff Lock only works when in LL, and below 5mph. It was probably blinking to tell you it was not locked.

Once it is locked the icon will come on solid. Once you shift out of LL it will unlock (though, the manual recommends you to turn off the switch too).

Note that the other switch, "A-TRAC" also only works when in LL (it is essentially crawl control, except you control the throttle). It will only work if the RR Diff is NOT locked.



As Linuxfreak stated, shifting from H to HL locks the center diff. Note that it also turns off the VSC (vehicle skid control).


Two more things, while in LL and with the RR Diff locked, that not only turns off A-TRAC it also turns off ABS. Not a concern since this mode is only available up to 5mph, it should only be used to extricate from a stuck mud hole or something like that.


If you think about it, it makes sense those things would be off when the Diffs are locked because A-TRAC, VSC and ABS all work by controlling the brakes, and uses each wheel turning on its own, which wouldn't be possible when diffs are locked.


The HL is available at all speeds, and can be shifted in/out without using the clutch or coming to a stop (because it only operates an electric switch). But since it locks the center diff should only be used in cases where the wheels are free to slip (ice/snow or dirt/sand), and be shut off when driving on dry pavement.

To shift into N or LL the vehicle should be completely stopped and make sure all wheels have stopped turning, depress the clutch, shift, and let the clutch up slowly.
N

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post #8 of 9 (permalink) Old 03-21-2017, 01:51 PM
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Re: Just bought a 2007 Manual FJ 4WD

Quote:
jerrysza previously said: View Post
I came to find out by reading the owners manual (and from reading various posts on this forum) that the manual FJ's are always in All Wheel Drive. I probably wouldn't have bought it if I knew that beforehand. I much prefer the feel of rear wheel drive on highway driving. I don't like the feel of the front wheels being engaged when I am driving over bumps on the road, around corners, etc.
Welcome and congratulations. Fulltime 4WD was the reason I bought mine 5.5 years ago. Don't worry about those situations you listed, there is not any kind of problems in any situations of the fulltime 4WD. Torsen center diff is great. Read and learn more about it, you will like it.

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post #9 of 9 (permalink) Old 03-21-2017, 05:10 PM
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Re: Just bought a 2007 Manual FJ 4WD

Quote:
jerrysza previously said: View Post
1) The other day I was out driving, and out of curiosity, I pushed in the "RR Diff Lock" button to see what it would do. (I know, I probably should have read the owners manual first, but I didn't). Anyway, a blinking red light came on in the dash. I don't know if it was my imagination, but it actually felt like the truck's front wheels were no longer engaged, almost like it was running in rear wheel drive only. Is that possible? When I read the owners manual it says the RR Diff Lock light, when blinking, means it is not working.
As others have explained, you have to be in 4L for the diff lock to engage. And be happy that it didn't, because having the differential locker engaged on pavement for more than a trivial amount of time would have destroyed your rear differential.

Based on this I suspect that this is your first 4x4, or at least the first one with a locker. You might check the regional sub-forum for Atlanta or see if there's a Facebook page for local FJ owners, and go on a few offroading runs with them to learn what your truck can do, and when it's advisable to try to use some of the features of your truck.

Quote:
jerrysza previously said: View Post
2) This is probably real expensive, but if I wanted to take my FJ to a mechanic and have them modify it to give me the option of being in 2WD or 4WD, would that even be possible? If so, does anyone have an idea how much it would cost? I live in the Atlanta, GA area.
It should be possible to swap in the differential from an automatic transmission FJ, but it's doubtful that anyone has ever done it. The people who buy the manual transmission FJ's typically prefer driving them to automatics, and/or buy the full-time AWD intentionally because they live in a snow state and don't want to have to engage the 2H -> 4H in bad weather.

It would probably be cheaper to sell the manual FJ and buying an automatic. Do you ever plan on offroading it? The automatic is easier to drive offroad. My FJ is an auto because I offroad it. When I want to enjoy driving a manual, I have a convertible in the garage for that. The FJ isn't a fast, fun car that really justifies having a stick.

Good luck! And welcome to the FJ world.

Join the Colorado FJ Cruisers Facebook page for Colorado mod days, trail runs and other organized events! Not from Colorado, but planning a trip here? Join up, we'd be happy to suggest some offroading locations for you or even coordinate a run with the locals!

Want to see what FOUR years (updated!) of offroading in Colorado looks like? Click Here

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