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Old 04-04-2014, 01:32 PM   #1
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Jeep Liberty or Dodge Nitro as a TOAD

My wife and I find ourselves in need of replacing her car and thought this would be a perfect opportunity to purchase a vehicle capable of being towed four down.

We currently own a 2002 Liberty Limited that we will be keeping, however it's a 2WD and can't be towed without modifications.

We/she likes the size of the second generation Liberty, but has taken a shine to the Dodge Nitro. I understand the Nitro is just a Liberty with different sheetmetal.

During my research, I've seen that the newer 4WD Liberty can be towed four down. Does this also apply to the Nitro?

Thanks for any thoughts...
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Old 04-04-2014, 01:52 PM   #2
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I'm partial to Liberty (of course). Ours (FWD) can be towed 4-down, xfr case in N, shifter in P. I don't believe the Nitro had a N even on FWD. Without that, you can't tow 4 down.

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Old 04-04-2014, 02:08 PM   #3
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Don't know about the Nitro, but our Liberty has been a good toad. We'll need to find it a new home soon, our Grand Cherokee is being built today.
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Old 04-04-2014, 10:17 PM   #4
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Dodge Nitro never appeared on any list of toads I've seen. I was disappointed because I saw a pre-production unit months before its release (at a race track) and was given the impression by the Dodge employee who was driving it that it would be towable.

Now, as to the Liberty the FMCA towing guide has NOT shown the FWD (2wd) model as being towable. I looked at several years from 2002 to 2010 and in all cases it is very clear - 4WD is required. I have to say I'm surprised to hear that the FWD model had a transfer case with N.

I just downloaded the 2010 Liberty Manual and can see no reference to a FWD model. Here is what the manual states on towing:

Quote:
RECREATIONAL TOWING (BEHIND
MOTORHOME, ETC.)
Towing Two-Wheel Drive Models
Recreational towing is allowed ONLY if the driveshaft
is removed. Towing with the rear wheels on the ground
while the driveshaft is connected can result in severe
transmission damage.
Towing Four-Wheel Drive Models
The transfer case must be shifted into NEUTRAL and the
transmission must be placed in PARK for recreational
towing. The NEUTRAL selection button is located at the
top of the transfer case switch. Shifts into and out of
transfer case NEUTRAL can take place with the selector
switch in any mode position.
This seems to indicate that the 2WD model is REAR WHEEL DRIVE not FWD.

With respect to the new Cherokee, the FWD models are NOT towable flat. Also the 4wd Active Drive I units are also not towable flat since they do not have a Neutral position.
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Old 04-04-2014, 10:54 PM   #5
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I think Lori meant FWD as Four Wheel Drive, not Front Wheel Drive. Yes, 4WD is the common usage, just to keep them distinct. As you say, the 2WD version of the Liberty is actually RWD.
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Old 04-05-2014, 01:26 PM   #6
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I checked with the dealer as well as the Dingy Guides: Liberty 4WD - YES, Nitro (ALL) - NO, no transfer case in the Nitro. All 4 WD Liberty's are flat towable.
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Old 04-05-2014, 02:04 PM   #7
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What Medico said, Nitros ARE NOT towable. Just before they were released for sale Dodge had said that they were going to be able to be towed. Then upon release they back tracked and said the Nitro will not be towable and we are NOT going to build one that is. Sure disappointed a lot of people. My wife and I were going to get one to tow behind our Bounder.

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Old 04-05-2014, 02:27 PM   #8
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We towed our 2007 Jeep Liberty - 4 wheel drive - thousands of miles. It towed well and always ran well. Pay attention to the towing instructions since the column/steering wheel locks unless the key is in the correct position!
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Old 04-05-2014, 02:30 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gbburgess View Post
We towed our 2007 Jeep Liberty - 4 wheel drive - thousands of miles. It towed well and always ran well. Pay attention to the towing instructions since the column/steering wheel locks unless the key is in the correct position!
I think '07 was the last year of the steering wheel lock.
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Old 04-05-2014, 08:08 PM   #10
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I believe from 2008 and up they have no steering wheel locks. My 2012 does not.
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