View Full Version : W=Winter Mode. That much I know. The rest?

12-11-2001, 03:34 AM
When we first got our car the guys at the dealership said not to use the W transmission mode on our Cross Country. It's fine to use on any other Volvo, but not the XC.

I don't understand exactly what it does so my questions to you are:

1. Anyone get the same advice?
2. What does it do? http://xc70.com/iB_html/non-cgi/emoticons/wink.gif
3. Why shouldn't we use it on the XC?
4. If you have used it on your XC, does it make a difference in winter conditions?

Just curious.. thats all. http://xc70.com/iB_html/non-cgi/emoticons/smile.gif

12-11-2001, 12:24 PM

I didn't get the same advice. What I know is that it keeps the transmission out of 1st gear. From a stop, you will start in second. You can try in normal weather too, you'll see the revs go up to around 2k before you start moving (if I remember right).

I think the purpose is to try and keep you from spinning out on slick roads when leaving the line. I think the AWD (and TCS) diminishes the need for it. I remember using it last winter, but feeling like I really didn't need it. Although, I wasn't in snow and ice as much as you and Art -- nor will I be (darn it!).


12-11-2001, 12:41 PM
</span><table border="0" align="center" width="95%" cellpadding="3" cellspacing="1"><tr><td>Quote </td></tr><tr><td id="QUOTE">Quote: from saabstory on 1:24 pm on Dec. 11, 2001
What I know is that it keeps the transmission out of 1st gear. From a stop, you will start in second.
--Adam[/QUOTE]<span id='postcolor'>

Adam, my salesman told me it starts the tranny in 3rd gear. &nbsp;Go figure. &nbsp;I WOULD like to know which it is, though. &nbsp;All this does is cut a lot of the torque to the wheels. &nbsp;That is what keeps the tires from spinning - the low amount of torque power. &nbsp;I can't see why that would be detrimental to the awd system. *shrug*

Maybe someone can lend more info on this (?)

12-11-2001, 04:35 PM
I find it intriguing to hear similar responses concerning the 'W' mode. My sales rep also suggested to me that the I probably would'nt have much use for it because of the XC's excellent traction but that it does kick the tranny in 3rd gear to keep the wheels from spinning. I must admit that, like Adam, I have'nt found the need to use it.

12-11-2001, 07:08 PM
Oops! I meant 3rd instead of 2nd. (in the spirit of Potter mania...) Stupid Dobby! Bad Dobby!


12-12-2001, 04:46 PM
I did use the W mode on icy roads in Austria last winter when on a skiing holiday. The slope was very steep indeed, but with W mode, without snow tires or chains drove up the slope without slipping. Great feature. No one here in Europe told me not to use W mode.


12-15-2001, 09:39 PM
I seem to remember being told all the same info by my dealer, but also that the winter mode will disingage itself either at a certain RPM or speed, I don't remeber which.


08-07-2002, 04:23 PM
From what i understand the W (yes for winter) mode works somewhat like this...

It does put the car in the equivalent of the 3rd gear (btw, it only works in automatic, not geatronic), like you would do starting on slippery conditions with a manual (stardard). So, like GenXcer said, it cuts on the torque to help get better traction.
It also stops the car from backing up when you release the brake, eliminating the little moment where you normally loose the little traction that you might have.
Finally, it also allows the car to process the information it receives from the tires and slow down a wheel that would start spinning for exemple.
The car will rev up to 2000 rpm at lest before you will feel it moving.

It&#39;s used would mostly be in winter on a slippery inclinded driveway for exemple where having tried everything, you just can&#39;t get up. You stop the car, press the W and gently step on the gas. You will fell like the car is being pulled slowly by a wire... and up you&#39;ll go.

I only have tried it on a paved hill (just got it a week ago and its summer here &nbsp;http://xc70.com/iB_html/non-cgi/emoticons/smile.gif ) and you can feel it even like that.

That&#39;s all i know about it, and i can&#39;t garantee that its all the truth, but its the gist of it at least http://xc70.com/iB_html/non-cgi/emoticons/confused.gif

Happy, safe and up hill driving

08-07-2002, 09:23 PM
Hi All,

Just out of interest I tried using the winter mode this morning in stop/start traffic. It actually really smoothed out the stop/start effect and got rid of that annoying bump that happens when you are going very slowly and then accelerate a little (i.e. when the gearbox puts itself in neutral to save petrol even when you are sowly).

I am not sure if doing this on a regular basis would be a good idea though. Any thoughts?


08-08-2002, 06:21 AM
Well if i am not mistaken, why there are no bumps is because there are no actual gear change as the car starts in 3rd gear.
The whole W system can really be appreciated if you start on a good incline. You`ll really feel the &quot;cable pulling&quot; feeling.

As for using it all the time... dunno. If its the equivalent of a standard starting in 3rd gear, i would say that perhaps with time it is going to be a little hard on the engine and gears.
But then again, i would think that the Volvo engineers would of thought of that.

Happy, safe and wintery driving

08-08-2002, 08:36 AM
Hi all,
I was clearly told that W was an attempt to provide the same kind of control a driver might use in slippery conditions with a manual transmission. &nbsp;We only used W mode once last year- it allowed us to pull out of traffic from a complete stop on a very steep, snowy section on the road up to cypress with three cars in front of us sliding backwards towards us. &nbsp;It was snowing heavily with very little visibility and the snow was the horrible wet slimy stuff. &nbsp;We had no slipping and accelerated slowly but surely out and around and went skiing.

08-08-2002, 01:55 PM
my sales rep mentioned to use it for slippery conditions, like when it&#39;s raining. to help us remember he associated W with water.