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JoeyD 01-15-2009 10:31 AM

Hello from sunny North Carolina -- 370Z Traction control vs VDC issue
I just bought a 370Z last friday. I've spent the last few days browsing the forums and figured it was time to introduce myself and give a few early impressions.

I'm a long time car guy. I've owned a 350Z, IS300 Turbo, a fully built MazdaSpeed6, and driven thousands of miles in a C6 and C6 Z06. So it's safe to say I know my way around cars.

My early impressions of the 370Z are all good with one exception...the "Sport Package". Who in there right mind builds a sports car without the ability to dissable traction control? Without the sport package I am stuck with TC always on. Lame.

That being said it really is my fault. I should have done a little more research. But at the time my Speed6 was about to go and I needed a new car asap. Unltimately, had I known I probably would of still bought the car. In my area the 370s are selling very quickly and quite hard to come by.

Now the upswing is the TC in the 370 is nothing like the 350. In the new car it is somewhat progressive and only a minor inconvience. In the 350 it was something that quite honestly could of gotten you killed.

First impressions of the handling and interior are all 9.5 out of 10. The auto (this is my first auto sports car) is a pleasure. I was leary at first because of the lumpy unpredictable shifts. However, after about 200 miles the system and I figured each other out and it's been great ever since. On my morning commute having an auto is great and being able to padle shift when the situation calls for it is a wonderful compromise. It's like playing forza haha. Overall my only regret is not having the TCS off switch like the sport package. I am holding out hopes of a tuner figuring out a bypass sometime down the road but for now wider tires seems the easiest fix.

mspeasl 01-15-2009 10:43 AM


There should be a button on the lower left side of the steering column. There was on the 370 that I test drove last week.

Good luck and enjoy your new ride.......

semtex 01-15-2009 11:34 AM

The button you want is labeled 'VDC Off'. VDC = Vehicle Dynamic Control. VDC includes TC and goes a step further by adding electronic stability control.

Edit: Sorry, I just re-read your post. I thought you were complaining that there's no way to turn off TC with the Sport Pkg. But after re-reading, it looks you bought a 370 w/o the Sport Pkg, and that's why there's no button to turn off TC. That does indeed suck. I wonder if there's a specific fuse for TC that you could just pop out. Just an idea.

JoeyD 01-15-2009 12:03 PM

I thought about the fuse thing too. From what I have read about TC systems pulling a fuse will disable other systems as well. Not to mention Nissan doesn't publish a fuse diagram in the owners manual.

AK370Z 01-15-2009 12:27 PM

Hey Joey, welcome to the forums. First let me congratulate you on the 370Z. I am glad that you're enjoying your car.

wow, I didn't knew about TC not having a button to turn off in base model. This is going to be a big issue later down the road because many drivers would like to turn it off before going to track or autoxing. I am going to ask some people and see if they can give me good answer on how to turn it off or is it even possible to turn off in base model.

Oh btw, feel free to post your price of the 370Z here

We are glad to have you here on the forums.

AK370Z 01-15-2009 01:24 PM

Hey Joey, I have contacted proper authority and WILL have an answer for you soon. Hang on tight :tup:

JoeyD 01-15-2009 02:14 PM

Thanks! To be honest I think for the time being I am pretty much stuck. GT Motorsports is going to run in to the same problem developing a turbo kit on a car without the sport package as well. Best case scenarion is availability of a switch or harness from Nissan to do a retrofit. However, I'm not holding my breath. I would love to be wrong on this one.

CMP27 01-15-2009 04:32 PM

All 370Zs come with VDC. VDC is not part of a package like on the 350Z. There is a button on the dash to the left of the steering wheel to turn off the VDC. The sport package includes the 19" wheels and tires, big brakes, rev matching, limited slip diff and the aero kit.

semtex 01-15-2009 05:36 PM

Joey, if CMP27 is right, then you should have a 'VDC Off' button like in my original reply. It'll be on the left, right next to the gauge cluster. Take a look and let us know if it's there.

JoeyD 01-15-2009 07:49 PM

He isn't right. I know where the VDC button is. The VDC has nothing to do with the traction control. VDC= Vehicle Dynamic Control. Traction control, just as in the 350Z, is a independent system. The only way to disable it comes as part of the sports package. All the literature I have read backs me up. The VDC and TC are different systems.

JoeyD 01-15-2009 08:09 PM

So I just went and tested it out again just to make sure it wasn't my imagination. With VDC OFF the TCS light still comes on and the nanny still robs some power. However, it does seem that with VDC off a bit more wheel spin is permitted.

shumby 01-15-2009 08:56 PM

^^^^ you are correct same on the G.

AK370Z 01-15-2009 10:37 PM

Ok Joey, here's your answer:


Originally Posted by Nissan 370Z Technology Communications Manager
All 370Zs have VDC (traction control is part of the vehicle dynamic control system) and there is a switch on the lower portion of the dash to the left of the steering wheel to disable it. Please let me know if you have other questions.

Here's the switch he is talking about (this picturea was taken from a base 370Z with NO OPTIONS)

So, if you DO NOT have this button, you need to go back to your dealership ASAP because you car wasn't put together right. And if you DO have the button, then turning it off should turn off any(all) systems as Nissan Technology Manager suggested. There isn't any other buttons. I hope this answers your question.

semtex 01-15-2009 10:50 PM

My understanding is that VDC encompasses TC. In other words, VDC is like TC and then some. You won't find a Nissan with separate VDC Off and TCS Off buttons -- it's one or the other. If you have VDC, you automatically have TC, but the reverse isn't true. i.e., it is possible to have TC only and no VDC, but not the other way around -- which makes sense as VDC is electronic stability control. For the record, Joey, I own the car too. I own a Touring model, and I do have the Sport Pkg, and can tell you that there is no separate TCS Off button -- just the VDC Off button. So your assertion that you can turn off TCS if you have the Sport Pkg isn't quite on the mark. Also, I referred back to the manual from my 350Z and found the following statement in the VDC section: "If the vehicle is operated with the VDC system turned off, all VDC system functions and TCS functions will be turned off." This goes to what I'm saying about VDC including TCS. Now, the interesting thing is that this verbiage is not present in the 370's manual. And that actually makes sense if all 370s come with VDC and none of them come with TCS only (my 350 came with TCS only). There's no need to differentiate between the two systems in the 370 as all 370s come with just the one. But the manual does also have this verbiage: "The ABLS system and ABS will still operate with the VDC system off." And prior to this sentence, it explains that ABLS brakes the spinning wheel when there's wheel slip.

SO . . . the net of this is that you're both right and wrong. You're wrong when you say that there's no button to turn off traction control in your car. Yes there is -- it's the VDC Off button. And as I previously stated, I have the Sport Pkg, and there's no separate TCS Off switch. The VDC Off button is it -- it's all we get regardless of trim line. But at the same time, you're right about there being no way to truly turn off traction control, because the manual comes right out and tells us that even with VDC off, the ABLS system still operates! And I agree with you -- that's really annoying! What's the point of having the VDC Off button if you can't ever truly turn the nanny off? But if it makes you feel any better, having the Sport Pkg doesn't change this. So you're not missing out on anything.

JoeyD 01-16-2009 09:24 AM

Nothing like waking up in the morning and eating a big piece of humble pie.

I do in fact have the VDC button. I always knew it was there. My confusion came from two places; one a magazine article that stated the systems to disable the TC were only in the sport package and 2the always knowledgable dealer.

I tried it out last night but just in my driveway (because I didn't want to be on public roads wink wink) and without VDC the TC light still comes on. I didn't push the issue because burning out in your driveway is dumb. This morning on the way to work I did two runs out in the middle of nowhere. One with one without VDC. While the TC light does still come on with the VDC OFF light on it is NOT ENGAGED. I left two 20 foot long streaks of rubber on Ft. Bragg this morning.

Sorry for my confusion/pig headed ness. Thanks for all the replys and I'm glad I was wrong on this one.

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