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Old 04-24-2017, 01:57 AM   #1
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Brand: Thor Motor Coach
Model: Vegas 25.2
State: Arkansas
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THOR #4986
Mountain Driving

We have a 2017 Vegas 25-2, w/6 speed tranny. We are headed to Colorado next week and have never driven a mh in the mountains. Will be towing a Chevy Equinox. My question is the gearing and or shifting. Is there a specific gear one should use when climbing and descending the mountain roads or just let the transmission do its thing? Thanks in advance and stay safe.
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Old 04-24-2017, 02:38 AM   #2
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Depends on the slope, I was raised in Colo and grew up driving them. First keep your speed down, you should be going down the same speed you would be going up. Going downhill, first shift into the tow/haul mode.

This will prevent the transmission from going into O/D.

I prefer to downshift to the appropriate gear to maintain the speed I want,

And make sure you are not riding the brakes, they will get hot fast. If you find yourself braking too much, shift to a lower gear.
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Old 04-24-2017, 02:59 AM   #3
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When in Tow/Haul mode and going downhill simply tapping the brake pedal will cause a downshift.
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Old 04-24-2017, 03:25 AM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JamieGeek View Post
When in Tow/Haul mode and going downhill simply tapping the brake pedal will cause a downshift.
Let your engine do as much of the braking as possible to keep from overheating the brakes!
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Old 04-24-2017, 04:01 AM   #5
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Appreciate the info. Do you know if this transmission can be shifted "on the fly"?
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Old 04-24-2017, 12:36 PM   #6
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Originally Posted by Jerry B.
Appreciate the info. Do you know if this transmission can be shifted "on the fly"?
You can pop it into and out of Tow/Haul mode all you want while driving (the button at the end of the shifter arm). You can even drop it down from D to 3,2,1 on the fly as well without issue (be careful going back to D..don't want to keep going to N ).
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Old 04-24-2017, 02:21 PM   #7
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My 2 cents ....

When needed, downshift early so that if you need more engine braking you'll still be able to downshift again. Waiting too long may make RPMs get too high, which then requires using brakes to slow down enough to engage next lower gear.
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Old 04-24-2017, 02:41 PM   #8
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my 6 speed downshifts with the brake with or without tow/haul engaged.
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Old 04-24-2017, 04:24 PM   #9
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Thanks Jamie/Chance truly appreciate the information. This is our first mh and still working to understand all the ins and outs. Safety being my primary concern. Thanks again and stay safe.
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Old 04-24-2017, 04:42 PM   #10
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Originally Posted by Jerry B. View Post
Thanks Jamie/Chance truly appreciate the information. This is our first mh and still working to understand all the ins and outs. Safety being my primary concern. Thanks again and stay safe.
Glad to help any way I can. I'm headed through Colorado up to Yellowstone next week, so I'm sure I'll get a chance to practice what I preach.


By the way, also keep in mind that the heavier the motorhome, the less effective engine braking will be, so it may require descending slower in a lower gear. It's no surprise the same V10 slows my van much more than when I travel same roads in a heavier Class C. And because brakes have to work harder too, I drive much slower with heavier rig -- safety is always at top of my list.
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Old 04-24-2017, 04:59 PM   #11
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You gotten good advise. We use Tow/Haul mode staying off the brakes as much as possible letting the engine do as much of the work as it will. When the speed begins to creep up, I just depress the brake pedal and help the engine hold back a bit. Then let off and let the engine continue to help. Heading up a slope is easier, find a speed that your coach will do run at without over revving (about 35-40 mph on a 7% slope) and then just let the coach run.

The best other advise is to make sure you have a brake system in you toad. Our first time driving on those steep mountain roads, we had an AutoBrake by Blue Ox. I refer to now as AutoJunk. Wasn't worth a flip. Had my brakes a little warm use the AutoJunk. Bought a Classic Brake Buddy - problem solved. I simply increase the sensitivity in the mountains. Toad brakes for itself as necessary.

Enjoy the drive - it should be beautiful
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