4WD full size pickup

I don't want to make decisions while driving nights on 6-hour long, iffy mountain roads whether to switch a truck from 2WD to 4WD. An auto salesman told me that running it permanently in 4WD damages the vehicle. Is there any full size pickup truck that runs permanently in 4WD without damage to the truck?

Thanks in advance!

Any time you are using 4WD you are wearing those components more than if you were using 2WD, I wouldn't worry too much about damaging them though. The first generation Dodge Ramcharger was full time 4WD by design. If you are going to use 4WD all the time just make sure you are using the same size tires all around especially when driving on dry pavement. The transfer case on the older 4WD trucks aren't made to compensate for different rotation speeds and will definately damage it having different size tires on the front and rear. I don't know your mechanical abilities, but a transfer case is not that difficult to replace and some of the front hubs aren't that hard.

Thanks 112059. I am afraid I don't understand automobiles well, to answer your question.

Basically I want the cheapest vehicle that can

  1. tow a Ford Expedition packed with household belongings mounted on flat-bed trailer
  2. The vehicle makes decisions while driving nights on 6-hour long, iffy mountain roads whether to switch a truck from 2WD to 4WD, and I don't have to make such decisions.
  3. Four adults and a child should be able to sit comfortably in that truck or vehicle on long journeys.
    Any suggestions on the cheapest vehicle for this task?

Sorry I can't help you further. My experience with AWD does not include the size you would need to haul that size load and I have no experience with auto-4WD, my truck is from the 90's and not auto-4WD.

peterquinn, I don't have any experience with large full-time 4WD vehicles, either-- but wondering....

The Expedition seems available as an on=demand AWD with a towing package, and seems well-respected in that role. If your Expedition isn't that version, maybe trade for one that is, and haul a standard trailer instead of a flat-bed trailer carrying the Expedition? I'm guessing you're already comfortable with the Expedition for your standard needs, and losing the flatbed would eliminate a set of complications.

For true off-road needs, I imagine full-time 4WD is better. My experience with on-demand AWD on paved roads has been pretty positive, though.

Thanks KentE. I don't have an Expedition but just gave an example of what I wanted to tow.