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NINETY EIGHT REGENCY

VIDEO: BMW Teaches us a Lesson about Winter and Summer Tires

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VIDEO: BMW Teaches us a Lesson about Winter and Summer Tires

TUESDAY, DECEMBER 07, 2010

When we shared with you a list with winter driving tips in our previous post -see here- we stressed the importance of using winter tires. The reason? Summer tires will lose most of their elasticity at 7 degrees Celsius (44.6 F) and it only gets worse as temperatures drop further. Grip will be almost non-existent and having four-wheel drive doesn’t help either. If you still have doubts, follow the break to check out a video from BMW showing the new X3 with summer tires rendered useless in the snowy Austrian Alps.

By Csaba Daradics

link:

http://carscoop.blogspot.com/2010/12/bmws-winter-vs-summer-tires-video.html

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Great post.

How many times, how many dozens of times have I made this point on C&G.

And there are several FWD-lovers on this site and millions on US roads who would rather buy

a FWD car so they can keep their "all season" tires on their lame-a$$ FWD cars only to

compromise stopping ability & emergency maneuvering.

Please chime in all you FWD lovers about the evils of RWD in the winter.

My wife's Mercedes got 4 winter tires installed the last week of October.

She's a girl and she gets around fine with RWD Mercedes, BMWs and Buicks

but many "men" are too scared to drive a RWD car even though they claim to

be enthusiasts. Once again, long live RWD and the people who drive em!!!

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And now that very same company is going to be selling A FWD car. Too funny.

Good video, but no matter which wheels do the driving its the tires which make the difference. Also, those vehicles being tested were AWD models, not RWD models.

68 I recall you almost bought a Cavalier convertible. How funny would that have been.

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RWD's pretty lame. It makes people think that other individuals who drive FWD vehicles for basic transportation are somehow mediocre or less-than men, when in reality, they're more concerned about just getting to Point B without any stop sign burn-outs or Nurburgring jaunts.

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RWD's pretty lame. It makes people think that other individuals who drive FWD vehicles for basic transportation are somehow mediocre or less-than men, when in reality, they're more concerned about just getting to Point B without any stop sign burn-outs or Nurburgring jaunts.

Yep... more concerned with just driving 5 under in the limit in the left lane while eating Burger King and tweeting getting from point A to point B.

Sorry, but people who treat their car as an appliance tend to make for poor drivers, when its "just" a Point A to Point B.

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Just because a car isn't OMFGRWDBBQQROFLZ doesn't mean its less of a car or the owner is less of an enthusiast.

However, if you don't go bad mouthing other people about which wheels drive the cars they own it does make you less of an jerk.

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Just to note... FWD and all-season tires are not a good mix for the snow in my CRX. It's downright terrifying at times. I feel as if I have no grip if there's even the slightest bit of snow on the road. I will need some snow tires before too long. My VW's were decent in the snow with just all-seasons, the same tires, in fact... Then again, I did slide into a snow-plow truck so that may have voided my statement. :P

The Cutlass wasn't terrible in the snow... I actually had alot of fun in the snow if I could keep my momentum on hills.

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The Prizm has BridgeStone Insignias up front, very good all season tires. Lots of grip in the snow. The Grand Marquis has a couple of snow tires on the back and all seasons on the front. It works well, no complaints. I don't see what all the fuss is about when it comes to RWD and snow. It's all about the tires and using your brain. The Intrepid actually has a full set of Michelin Pilot Alpine tires, which is ironic considering that it rarely sees winter duty.

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Yes.... I almost bought a Cavalier Z24 ragtop because I was looking for a good beater car / flip.

It ran, drove, the top went up & down and the price was $500.

That being said I've owned over three dozen RWD cars and have driven through snow, ice,

sleet and anything else New England weather has thrown at me. I once drove my 377

horsepower '68 Camaro through a BLIZZARD from Marlboro to Lowell, didn't get stuck once

but I witnessed several SUVs and 4x4 pickups who were stuck in snowbanks & off the side of

the road because of their hubris.

The kicker? My Camaro's rear wheels that day were 30 year old bias ply drag tires mounted

on a set of slightly rusty Cragar S/S rims. Proving once again that skill is 90% of the equation.

I'm the type of "enthusiast" that surpasses triple digits (in MPH) about as many times a month

as most people go to a carwash.... but that particular day I did not surpass 25mph, even on

Interstate 495 where a few bold SUVs were trying to match the road's 65mph speed limit.

I was driving on a road which had been plowed about a dozen times and while about 8 of the

10" of snow were gone the last two inches were packed into a crusty, slippery ice rink.

Not that I have not gotten myself in over my head. Like any jackass I've gone too far and

gotten a car stuck in the snow.... I can think of several times I drove a RWD car with $h!ty

all-season tires and or minimal tread and it resulted in a near accident or I got stuck in some

ditch... usually because I combined the unsafe tires with excessive speed.

Two instances come to mind, one involving a '79 Cadillac and the other with my '83 Firebird.

SAmadei also makes a great point.... for instance: driving your AWD Crossover SUV through

an ice storm while texting about it: probably a bad idea.

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The kicker? My Camaro's rear wheels that day were 30 year old bias ply drag tires mounted

on a set of slightly rusty Cragar S/S rims. Proving once again that skill is 90% of the equation.

That's nothing to brag about...you could have killed yourself or someone else speeding around on old tires.

I'm the type of "enthusiast" that surpasses triple digits (in MPH) about as many times a month

as most people go to a carwash....

I'm surprised you still have a license.

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That's nothing to brag about...you could have killed yourself or someone else speeding around on old tires.

I'm surprised you still have a license.

The tires were perfectly fine.... for burnouts and drag racing.

I just did not believe that we really were going to have a blizzard

so early in the season and coming off a "Indian Summer"

(this was 2003) Re-read my post, My point is that on THAT day

faced with that situation I got through it by taking it easy.

I was working at the Mall at Hannoush Jewlers at the time, I

got out of work and walked out to the parking lot to see about

a foot or so of snow on the ground, and on the Camaro.

I very seriously considered calling a tow truck and getting the

Camaro towed home, but I decided that this was a challenge

and if I was very cautious I could get through it by exercising

extreme caution and absolute minimal throttle.

It is still one of my proudest accomplishments and it forever

sealed my belief that in the end RWD is superior. After all, if

you drive a muscle car with a stripped out interior, no heater

and no radio or any such other nonsense through a state of

emergency epic snow storm then driving a big heavy

Cadillac with winter tires through the same should be a walk

in the park.

And by extension, now years later when I'm driving either of

my two Mercedes cars through nasty snow or ice I have the

sort of restraint & confidence that gets the job done.

P.S. Yes I have lost my license a few times.... usually for

a blatant disregard for speed limit signs, or for doing a

smoke show while leaving a gas station.... all while a

police officer hiding behind a Hotel Sign observed.

As far as the driving 130 on public roads, I usually only do

that while I'm the only one on the road when I'm going to

work at 3:15 am or whatever.

Not that it is any justification for aggressive driving BUT

I've NEVER driven while intoxicated, and never will, period.

And I can honestly say I've done most of my stupid stunts

in situations where the conditions were somewhat ideal.

Then again that one time I gave DodgeFan a death-ride in

the 500SEC was not exactly anything a responsible adult

would do... there was some light traffic on Rt.3 at the time

and I'm surprised I did not get a nasty speeding ticket.

Still I wanted to show him what all four windows down

felt like at 100+mph... ;)

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It is still one of my proudest accomplishments and it forever

sealed my belief that in the end RWD is superior.

It wasn't the RWD that made the difference. To draw that conclusion is delusional. Had that exact car been FWD or AWD, you would have still made it. The vehicle weight, ABS, tire traction, and your skill was sufficient to handle the conditions, that is all.

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Then again that one time I gave DodgeFan a death-ride in

the 500SEC was not exactly anything a responsible adult

would do... there was some light traffic on Rt.3 at the time

and I'm surprised I did not get a nasty speeding ticket.

Still I wanted to show him what all four windows down

felt like at 100+mph... ;)

Light traffic my ass. I remember that well. I was paying less attention to the windows being down and more to how we didn't clip the semi.

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Sorry, but people who treat their car as an appliance tend to make for poor drivers, when its "just" a Point A to Point B.

That argument can be made for any car. Ask 68 about how well his Datsun fared when a distracted BMW driver ran a red light and right into him.

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Or the three car crash a block away from me that involved two BMW X5's, and a Lexus LS400. Obviously RWD drivers totally know what they're doing.

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In the debate about FWD v. RWD, everyone seems to forget that all cars have all-wheel-stop.

Sure, brakes all around, but different weight bias and engine braking characteristics.

When FWD engine brake suddenly in the ice, the rear of the car wants to become the front.

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Just to note... FWD and all-season tires are not a good mix for the snow in my CRX. It's downright terrifying at times. I feel as if I have no grip if there's even the slightest bit of snow on the road. I will need some snow tires before too long. My VW's were decent in the snow with just all-seasons, the same tires, in fact... Then again, I did slide into a snow-plow truck so that may have voided my statement. :P

The Cutlass wasn't terrible in the snow... I actually had alot of fun in the snow if I could keep my momentum on hills.

CRX is barely a ton. there is no weight to hold down the car.

We got rid of my 99 Prizm because it was so light. Snows wouldn't have helped much on that car either.

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IN SNOW

all season tires

AWD > FWD > RWD

snow tires

AWD still > FWD still > RWD

If you live in a non snow clime then the steering feel of RWD is probably worth it. Go for it then.

forgive the masses of population that have no desire to switch out their tires each spring and winter or pay the cost of doing so.

I did that for 5 years with my TBird, that and trunk ballast, storing tires and wheels in the garage. etc. all of that.

not worth it. you can hop in an AWD vehicle and get around as good, better with snow + AWD. FWD + all season gets you around fine too. Not worth the penis extender of RWD only......there are other things to life than pretending to be part of the race car drivers group.

AWD will likely be standard in 80% of vehicles sold here by 2020 anyways, RWD will only exist in performance and expensive vehicles.

Edited by regfootball
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Sure, brakes all around, but different weight bias and engine braking characteristics.

When FWD engine brake suddenly in the ice, the rear of the car wants to become the front.

That depends more on the balance of the car. Yes it's easier to get a RWD car balanced, but it's not impossible to do the same in a FWD car.

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IN SNOW

all season tires

AWD > FWD > RWD

snow tires

AWD still > FWD still > RWD

If you live in a non snow clime then the steering feel of RWD is probably worth it. Go for it then.

forgive the masses of population that have no desire to switch out their tires each spring and winter or pay the cost of doing so.

I did that for 5 years with my TBird, that and trunk ballast, storing tires and wheels in the garage. etc. all of that.

not worth it. you can hop in an AWD vehicle and get around as good, better with snow + AWD. FWD + all season gets you around fine too. Not worth the penis extender of RWD only......there are other things to life than pretending to be part of the race car drivers group.

AWD will likely be standard in 80% of vehicles sold here by 2020 anyways, RWD will only exist in performance and expensive vehicles.

I disagree with you on snow tires. If a RWD car has 50/50 balance, there is no advantage RWD v. FWD in snow with snow tires. 4 winters in the CTS proved that one to me.

Ultimately, if you're only going to be powering two wheels, the next best thing is getting as close to perfect weight balance as possible.

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I disagree with you on snow tires. If a RWD car has 50/50 balance, there is no advantage RWD v. FWD in snow with snow tires. 4 winters in the CTS proved that one to me.

Ultimately, if you're only going to be powering two wheels, the next best thing is getting as close to perfect weight balance as possible.

which gets back to the point, if you do not have snow tires (an item most people do not want to deal with) then any advantage of RWD in snow climes (a great deal of the selling area of the country) is not valid and in fact is a liability to year round use (read: 60 or 72 payments, would sure like the ability to use the vehicle all year).

Also, the CTS is a pig, and puts a half a ton down on each tire. If I had that much weight sitting on my face, I don't think I could even break a wheelspin with that much much pork on my, despite how slippery it is.

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Mine was a 2004... not as piggish

If you're willing to part with $35k for a car that means you want a specific car... you're not stretching your budget to get there. Another $450-$600 isn't going to kill you.

I had one set of snow tires in the 4 years I had the car.

If you're buying something like a Miata.... it's likely a second car anyway.

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IN SNOW

all season tires

AWD > FWD > RWD

snow tires

AWD still > FWD still > RWD

Sorry, FWD does not trump RWD in the snow... in fact, I feel FWD can be downright unsafe in the snow. FWD's weight over the drive wheels only helps get you moving... does nothing to help you steer or stop. It develops a false sense of security and causes people to drive too close to the edge... and all one has to do it jump off the gas abruptly while avoiding something in a turn and the car will spin right around, with little ability to steer into the slide.

I don't argue AWD v. anything... I'm not convinced of its superiority in anything but complexity, weight and cost. However, I believe it also causes overconfidence in the snow.

That depends more on the balance of the car. Yes it's easier to get a RWD car balanced, but it's not impossible to do the same in a FWD car.

You can't balance are car enough to stop the physics of tendency of the engine braking front wheels wanting to spin a car in the snow. Traction control systems (to my knowledge) only decrease power output to avoid losing traction. I know of no system that prevents sudden engine braking in icy conditions.

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Sorry, FWD does not trump RWD in the snow... in fact, I feel FWD can be downright unsafe in the snow. FWD's weight over the drive wheels only helps get you moving... does nothing to help you steer or stop. It develops a false sense of security and causes people to drive too close to the edge... and all one has to do it jump off the gas abruptly while avoiding something in a turn and the car will spin right around, with little ability to steer into the slide.

I don't argue AWD v. anything... I'm not convinced of its superiority in anything but complexity, weight and cost. However, I believe it also causes overconfidence in the snow.

You can't balance are car enough to stop the physics of tendency of the engine braking front wheels wanting to spin a car in the snow. Traction control systems (to my knowledge) only decrease power output to avoid losing traction. I know of no system that prevents sudden engine braking in icy conditions.

I've never had engine braking send my FWD car spinning around in the snow... and even so, correct steering input can avoid a complete spin-out. I'm not sure what you're smoking. Perhaps in a completely unbalanced and horribly engineered car such an event could occur... Though that's not at the fault of the layout itself. The only time I've ever had the rear end unexpectedly break loose, was in my Cobalt upon hard braking. Get on the brakes a little more than intended, and suddenly the rear end would whip out. Never became an issue beyond learning how to steer into it. Even in the winter it wasn't an issue and especially not with engine-braking. That, however, is an example of poor engineering.

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