I drive a 2015 Subaru Legacy 2.5i Premium. The electronic stability control for the vehicle is called Vehicle Dynamics Control (VDC), and its warning light is supposed to flash during activation of the skid suppression function or traction control function. All the related indicator lights seem to be functioning normally, but I did not see the light flash during a slight skid I had going around an on-ramp, even though I regained control readily. Later I purposefully skidded a bit in an empty parking lot, but didn't get it to turn on. I suppose that means the system hadn't activated in either case. So, how bad a skid, or what type of skid, does it take to activate a typical vehicle's ESC?

2 Answers 2


From what you describe the stability control should have kicked in.

Check the VDC/ESC light is on when the igntion is first turned on. That tells you the system is operation.

If you suspect a problem then take it the dealer. Sounds like you should be under warranty still.


If this is traction control then it may not have kicked in until there was sufficient rotational difference between the wheels - the system does not detedt a slight “churp” of one wheel fractionally spinning on pullaway.

Traction control is not the same as yaw control - so if the car slid sideways a small amount but the wheels correctly rotated relative to each other then the traction light would not illuminate. Not all vehicles have a yaw sensing system but most with abs do have traction control now.

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