Any where between 1 hour - 30 years. It's not a given. It has happened to some folks, but some have no problems with it. Some say it's the tires and some say it's the way you drive or what your dive in.
Any indication that the aftermarket has something in the works?
Thanks for the replies. I knew better than to start combing the forums before I pulled the trigger... I'd still be driving my '94 Montero if I had.
Honestly, I can't say enough about this vehicle. I'm not pumped about these anemic diffs they've sold us but I still say it's one hell of a rig. I had the impression that it was a little more trail friendly "out of the box," but what can you do. I'll hold off the rage until mine grenade.
My buddy and I both wheel our Xs all the time, and both of us are approaching 50K--out of warranty. No diff problems yet, but since people have been having problems, we've been careful. We take it easy in the slow stuff where the driveline binds as you approach full steering lock. And we're mindful of coming down on a rock or some other tractive surface with a wheel spinning. And if we're really stuck, we winch or tow instead of going nuts trying to drive out.
Not to say that the diffs that have blown all went under these circumstances, but these are the danger zones, it's a weak link, and we've been taking it into account. That said, the day my diff goes I'll be angry, but not in the least surprised. Doing what I do, it's only a matter of time. But for me, wheeling the X is a requirement.