SOT: Which car to use in snow?



They do actually get a lot of snow in parts of Italy. It's called the Alps.
--
bert

Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

And you get lots and lots of snow in parts of the UK.
--
*If you can read this, thank a teecher

Dave Plowman snipped-for-privacy@davenoise.co.uk London SW
  Click to see the full signature.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
On 12/01/2018 10:43, Dave Plowman (News) wrote:

But rarely south of Manchester, apart from Brecon and Dartmoor.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
wrote:

Because they have lots of snow etc in the alps and flog their cars to the countrys in those areas.

Because they had no chance of flogging their small 4x4s to a country that already had landrovers and the later variants.

No surprises there.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
On Thu, 11 Jan 2018 16:00:51 +0000 (GMT), "Dave Plowman (News)"

Because it snows a lot in Northern Italy
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
On 11/01/18 10:50, Another John wrote:

Front wheel drive helps.
I do use a 4x4 and find it far better but equally I've seen people in 4x4s get into trouble, even ones which are reknowned as being 'good' 4x4s.
We had a Panda some years back and it was actually quite good in the snow. We live on a road which can be a 'pain' when it snows and our drive slopes to add to the joy. I also had a rear wheel drive MX5, that could be 'lively' if you got caught out in the snow- I didn't normally take it out by choice in such weather.
We have a large motorhome- front wheel drive- and have been caught out in the snow in that. The weight (3.5Ton) makes that 'interesting' but, provided you take care, things are OK.
Years ago, I was in a Tank when it slid on ice, that wasn't something I expected. It was scary. (I wasn't driving!)
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

I've seen a number of 4x4s in trouble because the drivers have got a false sense of security , they may get going a lot easier in slippery conditions but don't brake that much better than other cars.
AWD won't help if you have skidded into a Kerb so hard the vehicle has ended up on its side. Seen that a couple of times.
G.Harman
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
snipped-for-privacy@yahoo.co.uk writes

I've seen a number of 4x4s in trouble because the drivers hadn't a f****** clue how to drive them.

--
bert

Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
On 11/01/2018 12:30, Brian Reay wrote:

Some people do it for fun ...

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=P5aWAW2hea4

SteveW
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

even Land rovers get stuck in a small amout of snow with a DH behind the wheel http://imgbox.com/AMJEgeTD
-
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
On Thursday, January 11, 2018 at 10:50:31 AM UTC, Another John wrote:

Yet yerself a set of chains if you are worried and drive up/down with ease.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
On 11/01/2018 10:50, Another John wrote:

Definitely the Panda. Its narrow wheels will cut through the snow.
Mike
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

I've learned something today. I'd always thought that wider tyres with greater contact area would be better.
When driving through deep snow with wheel ruts from previous cars, beware of the car grounding on the pile of snow between the tracks. I had this happen to. I'd got up a short steep hill that the farmers keep fairly clear for milk tanker etc, but a few hundred yards further on, on the level, the snow was deeper than it looked - and I bet that the only vehciles that had been through were Land Rovers with high ground clearance.
Luckily I had a spade and was able to dig out the snow enough that the car could be driven/pushed off its mound of snow. After that I checked any snow that looked deeper than a couple inches from the virgin snow to the bottom of the rut.
If people should not stand on the mats that you shove under the wheels, how do you stop them shooting backwards (friction between mat and snow is much less than between tyre and mat) as soon as you apply any power. I've had this happen even when I let the clutch in very gently.
Stopping in snow/ice is very hit-and-miss. Assume that the car will take *many* times longer to stop than normal. I've forgotten, what are the circumstances where ABS is a hindrance than a help? Is it ice / compacted snow or deep powdery snow?
We bought a 4x4 a few years ago in anticipation of winters like we'd had for the last few years, and so far it hasn't snowed at all. Mind you, on a short slimy muddy incline up to a driveway of the house where we're staying at the moment, the 4x4 got up without any problem (and just the barest hint of sliding sideways a couple of inches) whereas my FWD car had great difficulty after we'd done it a couple of times. Even the locals say that the rain (and therefore the mud everywhere) is exceptional. We're having flagstones put down to give better grip in snow and mud - and to prevent big unsightly ruts.
Different tyres make a lot of difference to traction in snow. On that same drive a few years ago (in snow) my Pug 306 with cheap budget tyres got up far more easily than my wife's old Honda Civic with expensive tyres that do much better in rain. That's for normal. not winter, tyres. Not sure whether it was the weight distribution (both FWD cars going uphill) or the different tyres that made the difference.
"FWD cars are better in snow than RWD" - but not going uphill where more of the weight will be on the back wheels. In other situations, I can imagine that having traction in the direction of travel rather than at an angle to it (when an RWD car turns a corner) will be better.
I remember reading that in extreme conditions, as long as the road is clear, it's better to turn the wheel broadside when stopping in an emergency in deep snow to build up more of a "wall" of snow to help you stop - but beware of the car suddenly shooting off where you've steered once the front wheels do start to grip again.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

Think it depends on the type of snow. How close it is to melting.
In the Artic, a wide wheel with a special tread may well be best.
Best car I ever drove in heavy snow was a pre-war Austin 7. Large wheels with skinny tyres, good ground clearance, and not enough power to spin them easily.
--
*Could it be that "I do " is the longest sentence? *

Dave Plowman snipped-for-privacy@davenoise.co.uk London SW
  Click to see the full signature.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
On Thu, 11 Jan 2018 15:56:34 +0000 (GMT)

My dad had an Austin 8 and drove from London to Cornwall in the "big freeze" of 1963 without getting seriously stuck. :-) But as I think I've written before, my favourite snow car was my Mk2 Escort.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
wrote:

I took my mate out for a spin in the snow down some quiet twisties in my MM Van and was generally getting about ok, all be it with the back end wandering about a bit (all pretty slowly of course). ;-)
When we got back mate decided we would try the same in his Mexico and on the first bend we went straight ahead, up the kerb and very close to a wall. ;-(
We decided narrow tyres and low power were best on snow covered roads. ;-)
The kitcar (MkII Escort based and looks like an old Suzuki Jimny) with it's fairly narrow M+S tyres, lower ratio diff and shorter wheelbase was also surprisingly good 'off road', especially mild mud and snow.
In one instance we (4 up) drove up a muddy track, onto a ploughed field and parked next to an old Landrover, because we didn't want to walk from the carpark where all the road cars and other 4x4's were parked?
Someone asked if it was a 4x4 and were surprised to hear is was basically just a RWD Ford Escort. ;-)
Similar in the snow. I was driving the kitcar about in the snow and whilst it was obviously slippery, everone else seemed to be going *very* slowly and struggling on the slightest of inclines. I drove up and down the fresh snow on the fairly steep ramp to a multi-story car park with little fuss?
Then I came back and went out in the Sierra Estate (with it's std tyres) and suddenly realised why! I could hardly make it up the camber of the road. ;-(
It was because of this sort of thing (especially mud) that I suggested daughter fit 'All season - M+S' tyres on her van. Most tyres will work ok when the going is easy. ;-)
Cheers, T i m
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

Biggest single factor is tyre tread.
--
bert

Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

Depends on the depth of the snow - and tread pattern is more important. For many years Land rover kept narrow tyres on their workhorses on the basis that they would dig down into mud or snow and hit firm ground. Eventually they capitulated and went from 7-50s to 235 x85s. But eventually the best tyre is the right one for the conditions you are experiencing. Everything else is a compromise.

To be avoided - the snow when compressed melts then turns to ice. Virgin snow is better.

That can happen at any time - Have been stuck in a LR up on the Pennine moors a few times.

Shovel and bag of salt/sand.

Generally true. Bag of sand in the back of a RWD does help.

I had a LR with front and rear axle diff locks. Weight transfer on a *steep* incline rendered the front one virtually useless.

Sounds a bit iffy :-)
--
bert

Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
On 11/01/2018 10:50, Another John wrote:

Forgive the slight thread creep, but a few people are talking about using winter tyres in the summer. Winter tyres generally have lower speed ratings than summer tyres. It appears to be acceptable to use them in the winter but if I had tyres in the summer that had a lower speed rating than specified by the car manufacturer I would be concerned that an insurer could use this as wriggle room and also that the car might fail the MOT test. Just a thought ...
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

The one with the studded tyres and the smoothest most competent driver. No need for a shovel just get in it and drive...except the bastards won't let you use studded tyres in the UK.
Failing that: Soft snow use the one with wider tyres Compacted snow / ice use the one with the narrower tyres Deep snow go for the one with highest ground clearance Front wheel drive will always be better than rear wheel drive Four wheel drives can be shit in snow Ground a diff housing in snow and a four wheel drive turns into a shed stuck in the middle of the road. A car with properly weighted steering, low caster angle and no power steering will be easier to control A manual gearbox driven well will be better than an automatic, there is little need for 1st gear. Apply the throttle like it is made of glass or 'welded' together by British Leyland at 4:59pm on a Friday
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

HomeOwnersHub.com is a website for homeowners and building and maintenance pros. It is not affiliated with any of the manufacturers or service providers discussed here. All logos and trade names are the property of their respective owners.