Ground clearance Don't forget to allow for ground clearance beneath the chassis, axles and under the front and rear bumpers. Note that the axle differentials are situated BELOW the chassis and are positioned slightly to the right of the center of the vehicle. Note also that there are other parts of the vehicle which may come into contact with the ground - take care not to ground the vehicle.
Ground clearance is particularly important at the bottom of steep slopes, or where wheel ruts are unusually deep and where sudden changes in the slope of the ground are experienced.
DO NOT hold the steering wheel with your thumbs inside the rim - a sudden ‘Kick’ of the wheel as the vehicle negotiates a rut or boulder could seriously injure them. ALWAYS grip the wheel on the outside of the rim (as shown) when traversing uneven ground.
Survey the ground before driving Before negotiating difficult terrain, it is wise to carry out a preliminary survey on foot. This will minimize the risk of your vehicle getting into difficulty through a previously unnoticed hazard.
On soft ground, the axle differentials will clear their own path in all but the most difficult conditions. However, on frozen, rocky or hard ground, hard contact between the differentials and the ground will generally result in the vehicle coming to a sudden stop.
ALWAYS attempt to avoid obstacles that may foul the chassis or axle differentials.
Self-levelling suspension On vehicles equipped with self-levelling suspension, the rear suspension can be raised to increase departure angles and ground clearance at the rear of the vehicle (see ‘SELF-LEVELLING SUSPENSION*’, page 142).
For additional information, see ‘DIMENSIONS’, page 244.