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Old 07-07-2019   #1
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Ducato Hill Descent Control System

Hi

In September I will be taking my motorhome over the Alps twice. It weighs 5t when fully loaded and has the 2017 2.3litre 177PS engine. I got it in April having traded up from a 2012 model.


Normally I use engine braking and careful/judicious use of the brakes to avoid them overheating however this newer model has the HDC system but it says in the Fiat blurb that it uses the brakes "autonomously" when in use.

Has anyone any experience of using the HDC system in very hilly areas? If so, how did your brakes feel/smell after a long use of it?

Thanks

Graham
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Old 08-07-2019   #2
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Re: Ducato Hill Descent Control System

Suggest you revert to using the gears and engine braking. You are in control rather than some computer and your brakes will thank you.
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Old 08-07-2019   #3
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Re: Ducato Hill Descent Control System

Thanks

That is where I am at tbh but I was after any kind of first hand experience if possible...

Graham
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Old 08-07-2019   #4
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Re: Ducato Hill Descent Control System

HDC also only operates at speeds below 25kmh (15mph) and the brake lamps are continuously illuminated whilst it is engaged.


Not only could it make for a very long and laboriously slow descent in an Alpine or similar mountainous environment, but the speed restriction suggest to me that it is also not intended for use on public roads except in very severe conditions.


I would also rely on manual use of gears and brakes, allowing the brakes periods of rest between applications to moderate the temperature.
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Old 11-07-2019   #5
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Re: Ducato Hill Descent Control System

Hi Gorlech,
I live in Australia and drive a 2016 3 litre diesel Ducato (Knaus Motorhome). Last year I drove through the Snowy Mountains (which are by no means comparable to the Alps) however even with judicious brake usage and the Comfortmatic change down system, I had very hot brakes and brake dust on the wheels after a long descent. I have since used the HDC and it works just fine. I have only used it over short distances and not on highways or freeways as it holds the vehicle at 25 kmh, far too slow for other traffic. Ideal though for steep tracks or driveways.
Hope this helps, regards Richard
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Old 20-07-2019   #6
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Re: Ducato Hill Descent Control System

An old and true saying is 'brakes are cheaper than gearboxes'. But in the Alps you will have to make intelligent use of both. Above all do not be rushed by following traffic. If they want to plunge over the edge, let them.
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Old 20-07-2019   #7
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Re: Ducato Hill Descent Control System

I would not pick you as my wing man joke ! Im thinking top gun
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