Pontiac Torrent Drivetrain question?


david d

I have a 2008 Pontiac torrent. Ok first of all i looked everywhere on the web and on the truck and i cannot determine what the heck kind i have. I bought it off a used car dealership. No manual either came with it. so i want to know how to determine whether it's AWD or FWD. and what does L and I mean on the shifter ?


New member
You could type in the VIN into Carfax.com and it will give you the basics for free.

Generally if it's AWD it says so on the right rear hatch. Another way to tell is look under the rear of the vehicle and see if it has a driveshaft from the trans to the rear. If so it is AWD. Another way to tell is if you have a traction control switch on the dash. The AWD do not have one but the FWD does.

L= Low Gear ~ This mode locks the transmission in first gear only. It will not accelerate through any gear range. It maximizes the low end torque of the engine. Usually used to start off if you are pulling something heavy and very slowly like pulling a boat/trailer out of the water.

I = Intermediate Gear ~ This mode limits the transmission to the first two gears, or more commonly locks the transmission in second gear. This can be used to drive in adverse conditions such as snow and ice, as well as climbing or going down hills in the winter time. Also it can be used to aid in engine braking like down a steep grade or hill.


Staff member
Some examples of when to use L4 would be when first starting from a full stop while towing, starting up a steep incline, any other situation where pulling power is more important than vehicle speed.