4wheeldriveguide.com is developed and administered by Jade Cloete. I’ve been an outdoors, adventure, and 4WD enthusiast all my life. I was fortunate to grow up in a family that was fond of camping, overlanding, and, exploring the great outdoors so the 4WD and off-road lifestyle was always part of my DNA from the beginning. Some of our experiences and expeditions can be viewed on my 4WDG YouTube Channel. Also, make sure you check out our new 4WHELDRIVEGUIDE Instagram page for some sweet custom 4WDs. I accidentally deleted the original 4WDG IG account so i have to start from scratch.
Education and Career Background
I studied Electrical Engineering for 4 years and then Studied I.T for an additional 5 years. I have been working in the IT industry for the last 22 years which included Web Publishing, Database Administration, Business Process Modelling, and Unix scripting. I am a qualified SAP Data Warehouse and RDBMS Database Engineer and performed Technical Operations and DBA (Database Administration) Support at the highest level for many years at international companies like Sybase and SAP. Check out my LinkedIn profile here.
Because of my technical background and hands-on experience, I decided to develop this platform to knowledge-share and unpack technical 4WD-related issues simply and accurately to assist and educate other 4WD owners. My daily tasks include thorough research of 4WD guides, TSB (Technical Service Bulletins), manuals, and online forums, and even liaising with brand experts to understand the issues and possible solutions available.
With over 24 years of dedicated exploration and a passion for adventure, I have immersed myself in the thrilling world of 4-wheel driving and overlanding. Throughout my journey, I’ve cultivated an unwavering love for the untamed beauty of Africa and its wilderness.
Having owned and maintained at least seven distinct 4-wheel drives, I’ve ventured on countless expeditions across Southern Africa, navigating diverse terrains and landscapes that span from the rugged mountains to the vast deserts. These experiences have not only honed my driving skills but also equipped me with an in-depth understanding of off-road mechanics, vehicle capabilities, and the importance of preparation in the face of varying challenges.
My overland excursions have taken me through remote and challenging terrains, providing me with an unparalleled appreciation for the breathtaking landscapes and the rich cultural tapestry woven throughout Africa. I’ve trekked across unforgiving landscapes, encountered diverse wildlife, and forged connections with local communities, enriching my understanding of this incredible continent.
Through my expeditions, I’ve amassed a wealth of knowledge and expertise in 4WD systems, navigation, survival skills, and the essential elements that contribute to successful overland journeys. As an enthusiast, I am dedicated to sharing this wealth of experience, offering insights, advice, and guidance to fellow adventurers, whether they’re seasoned travelers or embarking on their maiden overland voyage.
At 4WDG, I strive to inspire, educate, and empower individuals to embark on their own unforgettable adventures, navigating the road less traveled and embracing the wonders that lie beyond the horizon.”
My Previous 4WDs
Over the years, I’ve owned a mixture of different brands of Four-wheel drive vehicles, and my hobby quickly developed into a passion for all things off-road.
Mitsubishi Pajero 3.5 V6 Blister Fender 4×4
Over the years I embarked on many multi-day overlanding expeditions and off-road trips. Each time we complete another off-road adventure I learn more about the mechanics and dynamics of 4WD vehicles. There’s always something breaking along the way.
Land Rover Defender 300 Tdi
My previous off-road vehicles ranged from a V6 Petrol Pajero to a Diesel Defender. I also owned an automatic Land Rover Discovery LR3, Double Cab D4D Toyota Hilux N70 4×4, VW Amarok 2.0 BiTdi 4Motion, and back to a Hilux N70 4×4. I will share everything I’ve learned over the years by owning, repairing, customizing, and servicing these vehicles. I have mates who own other brands such as Ford Rangers, Jeep Wranglers, and Land Cruisers and we share information regularly.
Land Rover Discovery 3 TDV6
Toyota Hilux 3.0 D4d
After the SUVs, I decided to move to the Ute segment for a bit. My first 4WD Ute/pickup/bakkie was a Toyota Hilux 3.0 D4d. It offered a good mix of loading space, practicality, off-road ability, and reliability.
VW Amarok 2.0 BiTdi 4Motion
I later owned a manual transmission VW Amarok 2.0 BiTdi with 4Motion. It is a truly special vehicle with proper off-road abilities and rear lockers. The Germans did an excellent job for their first 4WD Double Cab. The Amarok is spacious, comfortable, and as reliable as they come. The Amarok Manual comes equipped with a low-range transfer case and rear lockers. Also includes off-road ESP and off-road traction control. One of the first in its segment.
Hilux D4D 4×4 Double-Cab
I eventually sold the Amarok and went back to the Toyota Hilux. It was a slight backward step but felt like meeting an old friend after a few years or putting on your favourite jeans. It just works! After some custom jobs and weel upgrades etc. it was time to move to something more modern.
Toyota Hilux Revo 2.8 GD6 4×4
I just can’t seem to get enough of these Toyotas. This is my current 2.8 GD6 Hilux 4×4 Auto.
I hope you enjoy the stay as I share all my experience and knowledge about off-road related subjects and technical 4-wheel drive topics.
Check me out on the 4WDG YouTube channel for more cool 4WD-related content
I developed some helpful resources to make troubleshooting a bit easier when you are out in the bush.
Jeep Owners can download this free helpful troubleshooting guide to help with some common issues associated with Jeep Wranglers.
JEEP WRANGLER ULTIMATE DIAGNOSIS & REPAIR GUIDE
Ford 3.2 Oil Change Guide
I also put together a short little resource to assist Ford owners with a known “issue” related to their vehicle. This is a .pdf service guide for Ford Rangers 3.2 owners called the “Ford 3.2 Tdci Diesel Engine Oil Change Guide“ which you can download FREE.