Go Back   English Forum Switzerland > Help & tips > Transportation/driving  
Reply
 
Thread Tools Display Modes
  #1  
Old 01.09.2011, 10:44
Member
 
Join Date: Jun 2011
Location: Meilen
Posts: 139
Groaned at 0 Times in 0 Posts
Thanked 15 Times in 13 Posts
gc2011 has no particular reputation at present
Rear wheel drive in snow?

Hi all - sorry if this is a dumb question, just we're fcnig into our first ever real winter

Now I know you get winter tyres, but just wondering how bad an idea is rear wheel drive? We will be driving mainly on main roads. We're looking to buy an estate / tourer, and are worried about the impact of this in the winter.

Any advice on if this is a problem, or is it just in extreme conditions / remote roads?

Thanks
Graham
Reply With Quote
  #2  
Old 01.09.2011, 10:47
lost_inbroad's Avatar
Forum Legend
 
Join Date: Dec 2009
Location: Town or region
Posts: 11,491
Groaned at 655 Times in 417 Posts
Thanked 16,388 Times in 6,379 Posts
lost_inbroad has a reputation beyond reputelost_inbroad has a reputation beyond reputelost_inbroad has a reputation beyond reputelost_inbroad has a reputation beyond reputelost_inbroad has a reputation beyond reputelost_inbroad has a reputation beyond repute
Re: Rear wheel drive in snow?

Aparently, they're split opinions on winter tires. I for one don't think they're necessary...you should be good to go with some all-weather-all-season type of rubber. However, as this has been discussed before, I urge you to look into this thread.

Winter tyres - regulations and discussion
Reply With Quote
This user would like to thank lost_inbroad for this useful post:
The following 3 users groan at lost_inbroad for this post:
  #3  
Old 01.09.2011, 10:50
Upthehatters2008's Avatar
Forum Legend
 
Join Date: May 2010
Location: In the kitchen at parties.
Posts: 4,540
Groaned at 204 Times in 120 Posts
Thanked 6,078 Times in 2,378 Posts
Upthehatters2008 has a reputation beyond reputeUpthehatters2008 has a reputation beyond reputeUpthehatters2008 has a reputation beyond reputeUpthehatters2008 has a reputation beyond reputeUpthehatters2008 has a reputation beyond reputeUpthehatters2008 has a reputation beyond repute
Re: Rear wheel drive in snow?

Quote:
View Post
Hi all - sorry if this is a dumb question, just we're fcnig into our first ever real winter

Now I know you get winter tyres, but just wondering how bad an idea is rear wheel drive? We will be driving mainly on main roads. We're looking to buy an estate / tourer, and are worried about the impact of this in the winter.

Any advice on if this is a problem, or is it just in extreme conditions / remote roads?

Thanks
Graham
If you are really concerned , get an AWD drive vehicle.

As with any front or rear wheel drive car, it is as capable as the driver and you need to understand the difference between these two modes. A lot of new vehicles have some sort of traction control, or skid control, whilst these may go some way to prevent you getting into an out of control situation, they do little or nothing to bring the car back under control on snow. No amount of gadgetry will control a slide, which is the most likely hazzard you will face on snowy conditions.

Snow chains and snow tyres mitigate to a fair degree, but a good driver will take training and learn to avoid situations or handle them if they occur. Skid pan training is fun, treat yourself and go on a course.

If you are not confident in driving on these surface conditions, perhaps you should consider AWD / 4x4 or the train.
Reply With Quote
  #4  
Old 01.09.2011, 10:51
grumpygit's Avatar
Forum Veteran
 
Join Date: Feb 2011
Location: geneva
Posts: 1,476
Groaned at 29 Times in 16 Posts
Thanked 1,508 Times in 695 Posts
grumpygit has a reputation beyond reputegrumpygit has a reputation beyond reputegrumpygit has a reputation beyond reputegrumpygit has a reputation beyond reputegrumpygit has a reputation beyond reputegrumpygit has a reputation beyond repute
Re: Rear wheel drive in snow?

Quote:
View Post
Aparently, they're split opinions on winter tires. I for one don't think they're necessary...you should be good to go with some all-weather-all-season type of rubber. However, as this has been discussed before, I urge you to look into this thread.

Winter tyres - regulations and discussion
i dont think front or rear wheel drive is the main issue, rather the choice of tyres. As LiB says, its a personal choice. It also depends very much on where you live, the temperatures that can be normal in the winter months, and the" lie of the land "as they say
Reply With Quote
  #5  
Old 01.09.2011, 10:53
Guest
 
Posts: n/a
Re: Rear wheel drive in snow?

Depends very much on where you live. We live up in the mountains, and I'd never drive a rear wheel drive here- and I'd really not advise it. We always change to good winter tyres for the snow season.
Reply With Quote
This user would like to thank for this useful post:
  #6  
Old 01.09.2011, 11:04
BasP72's Avatar
Forum Veteran
 
Join Date: Mar 2008
Location: Adliswil (close to Zurich)
Posts: 1,932
Groaned at 89 Times in 43 Posts
Thanked 1,785 Times in 852 Posts
BasP72 has a reputation beyond reputeBasP72 has a reputation beyond reputeBasP72 has a reputation beyond reputeBasP72 has a reputation beyond reputeBasP72 has a reputation beyond repute
Re: Rear wheel drive in snow?

I've seen rear wheel drive cars being unable to cross a small ramp (bridge) that was no problem in the FWD I was driving. What was happening was that the RWD was spinning its rear wheels making the car rotate around its axes, the driver couldn't control the direction of (limited) traction with his steering so he was unable to control the car. On a FWD car when the front wheels are spinning you can still control the direction of (limited) traction.

No RWD car for me, ever !
Reply With Quote
  #7  
Old 01.09.2011, 11:06
Banned
 
Join Date: Jul 2011
Location: Vevey
Posts: 74
Groaned at 0 Times in 0 Posts
Thanked 18 Times in 12 Posts
Fawad has earned some respectFawad has earned some respect
Re: Rear wheel drive in snow?

Quote:
View Post
Hi all - sorry if this is a dumb question, just we're fcnig into our first ever real winter

Now I know you get winter tyres, but just wondering how bad an idea is rear wheel drive? We will be driving mainly on main roads. We're looking to buy an estate / tourer, and are worried about the impact of this in the winter.

Any advice on if this is a problem, or is it just in extreme conditions / remote roads?

Thanks
Graham
Driving a RWD car without winter tires in snow is definitely asking for trouble. A FWD can get away with All-Seasons but not a RWD. No electronic gadget will save you once you start spinning or skidding. Worst case scenario (Not recommended but I have done it though) is to put two snow tires in rear and All-Season tires in front. I have used Dunlop M3 tires always.
Reply With Quote
  #8  
Old 01.09.2011, 11:08
dodgyken's Avatar
Forum Legend
 
Join Date: Apr 2010
Location: Democratic Republic Kenistan
Posts: 10,653
Groaned at 279 Times in 230 Posts
Thanked 19,403 Times in 7,402 Posts
dodgyken has a reputation beyond reputedodgyken has a reputation beyond reputedodgyken has a reputation beyond reputedodgyken has a reputation beyond reputedodgyken has a reputation beyond reputedodgyken has a reputation beyond repute
Re: Rear wheel drive in snow?

Quote:
View Post
Aparently, they're split opinions on winter tires. I for one don't think they're necessary...you should be good to go with some all-weather-all-season type of rubber. However, as this has been discussed before, I urge you to look into this thread.

Winter tyres - regulations and discussion
I'm sorry LIB - but that is seriously bad advice. Winter tyres are the best way forward. EVO magazine demonstrated how effective they were last winter by testing a Jaguar XFR on a snow covered Beford track - the results were staggering.

Once the average temperature drops below 7c winter tyres are your best bet. All season tyres are a compromise - never really excelling in either season.

If you have never used winter tyres you'll be staggered by just how effective they are. My wife's uncle used his M5 throughout winter with no issues (on winter tyres) - including trips to snow covered ski resorts. In Arosa last year a Maserati was being driven around with winter tyres (no chains).
Reply With Quote
The following 6 users would like to thank dodgyken for this useful post:
  #9  
Old 01.09.2011, 11:09
grynch's Avatar
Forum Legend
 
Join Date: Nov 2006
Location: Geneva/Vaud
Posts: 4,945
Groaned at 50 Times in 46 Posts
Thanked 5,199 Times in 2,354 Posts
grynch has a reputation beyond reputegrynch has a reputation beyond reputegrynch has a reputation beyond reputegrynch has a reputation beyond reputegrynch has a reputation beyond reputegrynch has a reputation beyond repute
Re: Rear wheel drive in snow?

and so it begins... again.
Reply With Quote
The following 2 users would like to thank grynch for this useful post:
  #10  
Old 01.09.2011, 11:09
J_T's Avatar
J_T J_T is offline
Forum Veteran
 
Join Date: Jan 2008
Location: near Bern
Posts: 1,080
Groaned at 20 Times in 15 Posts
Thanked 1,175 Times in 523 Posts
J_T has a reputation beyond reputeJ_T has a reputation beyond reputeJ_T has a reputation beyond reputeJ_T has a reputation beyond reputeJ_T has a reputation beyond repute
Re: Rear wheel drive in snow?

Depends on which car with RWD, some are better than others, then comes which winter tyres, but above all comes the driver.

My BMW has a limited slip differential, electronic traction nanny, and of course, winter tires in winter. I've had no problem getting around from light to heavy winter conditions, but then again I grew up with the stuff.
Reply With Quote
  #11  
Old 01.09.2011, 11:11
Member
 
Join Date: Jun 2011
Location: Meilen
Posts: 139
Groaned at 0 Times in 0 Posts
Thanked 15 Times in 13 Posts
gc2011 has no particular reputation at present
Re: Rear wheel drive in snow?

Hi all - ok thanks for input. 1) we plan to get good winter tyres 2) we also have chains which we could use in extreme cases.

We live in Meilen, so not in the mountains. I think most of our driving will be on main roads. WE might be going ski'ing, but to resorts / areas not exploring high in the mountains on uncleared roads etc I doubt.

So would prefer of course AWD etc, but think at the budget we're looking, better to get a car that is good and can cope in the winter with good tyres, careful driving and maybe sometimes not get us where we want to. As opposed to buying something which is AWD and will help us in bad weather, but cause us lots of problems the rest of the year
Reply With Quote
  #12  
Old 01.09.2011, 11:14
Member
 
Join Date: Jun 2011
Location: Meilen
Posts: 139
Groaned at 0 Times in 0 Posts
Thanked 15 Times in 13 Posts
gc2011 has no particular reputation at present
Re: Rear wheel drive in snow?

So what I mean is - if the car we're buying looks good, and we put winter tyres on it and drive carefully we're probably ok 360 days a year! On the other really bad days, OR if we think where we're giong is going to cause us an issue we can work aruond it.

We dont have to drive for a living / to work, so is only recreational driving. Dont want to feel like we can't leave the house for 5 months a year, but sounds like this won't happen.

Thanks
Graham
Reply With Quote
  #13  
Old 01.09.2011, 11:16
lost_inbroad's Avatar
Forum Legend
 
Join Date: Dec 2009
Location: Town or region
Posts: 11,491
Groaned at 655 Times in 417 Posts
Thanked 16,388 Times in 6,379 Posts
lost_inbroad has a reputation beyond reputelost_inbroad has a reputation beyond reputelost_inbroad has a reputation beyond reputelost_inbroad has a reputation beyond reputelost_inbroad has a reputation beyond reputelost_inbroad has a reputation beyond repute
Re: Rear wheel drive in snow?

Quote:
View Post
Hi all - ok thanks for input. 1) we plan to get good winter tyres 2) we also have chains which we could use in extreme cases.

We live in Meilen, so not in the mountains. I think most of our driving will be on main roads. WE might be going ski'ing, but to resorts / areas not exploring high in the mountains on uncleared roads etc I doubt.

So would prefer of course AWD etc, but think at the budget we're looking, better to get a car that is good and can cope in the winter with good tyres, careful driving and maybe sometimes not get us where we want to. As opposed to buying something which is AWD and will help us in bad weather, but cause us lots of problems the rest of the year
You are clearly overestimating the weather conditions here. Just get some all-season tires and some chains in case you're heading up a snowy mountain. (paging dodgyken for input )
Reply With Quote
  #14  
Old 01.09.2011, 11:17
saint7uk's Avatar
Forum Veteran
 
Join Date: Mar 2011
Location: Samstagern
Posts: 989
Groaned at 9 Times in 9 Posts
Thanked 586 Times in 358 Posts
saint7uk has a reputation beyond reputesaint7uk has a reputation beyond reputesaint7uk has a reputation beyond reputesaint7uk has a reputation beyond repute
Re: Rear wheel drive in snow?

On standard roads with the right tyres in the whole should be no problem, however as far as accessing that untreated hilly driveway I'd really not advise it.

Using RWD on ice and snow even with specialist tryes takes some serious skill one needs to be able to feather the throttle; with the steering off a little to the side and an unbalance accelerator the back will tend to overtake the front. This may sound obvious and won't happen unless you have lead wellies on, but the truth is most people don't remain calm in such situations and with frustrations comes that spinning the wheels and more gas, more gas mentality... then the sideways crab. The situation gets amplified if the wheelbase is long and there is a lot of weight over the back in that when it goes it's far harder to get back in line.

A lot of cars have traction, ESP etc as stated and this is great in day to day situations but can be a hindrance in truly slippy stuff and needs switching off temporarily this coupled to an auto box with bad ratios is painful to say the least.

Lastly it depends on the car's chassis, how much torque and power one is trying to get down to the road. All RWD are not created equal, some cope quite well but some just won't work on snow slightly well at all. I have owned a couple of cars in the UK that with just a couple of mm of cover there was no way of getting out of the drive without doing the Snake Samba Shuffle and others that made no drama at all.
Reply With Quote
  #15  
Old 01.09.2011, 11:19
grynch's Avatar
Forum Legend
 
Join Date: Nov 2006
Location: Geneva/Vaud
Posts: 4,945
Groaned at 50 Times in 46 Posts
Thanked 5,199 Times in 2,354 Posts
grynch has a reputation beyond reputegrynch has a reputation beyond reputegrynch has a reputation beyond reputegrynch has a reputation beyond reputegrynch has a reputation beyond reputegrynch has a reputation beyond repute
Re: Rear wheel drive in snow?

I think you better get Grumpy Goose in here too.



( n.b.... as discussed and groaned at multiple times previously I've driven on "all season" for probably 30 years now... never had an incident.... ok, before I get groaned at for once again expressing my own personal opinion and relevant experiences my experience is in no means an indicator of future performance )


ok... *gone*
Reply With Quote
This user would like to thank grynch for this useful post:
This user groans at grynch for this post:
  #16  
Old 01.09.2011, 11:21
saint7uk's Avatar
Forum Veteran
 
Join Date: Mar 2011
Location: Samstagern
Posts: 989
Groaned at 9 Times in 9 Posts
Thanked 586 Times in 358 Posts
saint7uk has a reputation beyond reputesaint7uk has a reputation beyond reputesaint7uk has a reputation beyond reputesaint7uk has a reputation beyond repute
Re: Rear wheel drive in snow?

Just noticed:

What sort of cars are you looking at? Why would an AWD give you problems the rest of the year? There are several that would do the opposite

For the record I'm a RWD fan, but also AWD and find that a better all year solution in my particular case and need.
Reply With Quote
  #17  
Old 01.09.2011, 11:26
saint7uk's Avatar
Forum Veteran
 
Join Date: Mar 2011
Location: Samstagern
Posts: 989
Groaned at 9 Times in 9 Posts
Thanked 586 Times in 358 Posts
saint7uk has a reputation beyond reputesaint7uk has a reputation beyond reputesaint7uk has a reputation beyond reputesaint7uk has a reputation beyond repute
Re: Rear wheel drive in snow?

Quote:
View Post
If you have never used winter tyres you'll be staggered by just how effective they are. My wife's uncle used his M5 throughout winter with no issues (on winter tyres) - including trips to snow covered ski resorts.
Never tried one on winter boots, but this is exactly the car that I couldn't move in the snow on other rubber in the UK, the thing was LETHAL in the snow, fun but clenched most of the time if it ever started settling on the way home!!
Reply With Quote
  #18  
Old 01.09.2011, 11:34
dodgyken's Avatar
Forum Legend
 
Join Date: Apr 2010
Location: Democratic Republic Kenistan
Posts: 10,653
Groaned at 279 Times in 230 Posts
Thanked 19,403 Times in 7,402 Posts
dodgyken has a reputation beyond reputedodgyken has a reputation beyond reputedodgyken has a reputation beyond reputedodgyken has a reputation beyond reputedodgyken has a reputation beyond reputedodgyken has a reputation beyond repute
Re: Rear wheel drive in snow?

V10 M5 + winter tyres = no problem

HOWEVER that is assuming you are not going to drive around really heavily snowed in resorts - and understand how to drive in bad conditions.

Winter tyres are not a get out of jail free - they won't change the laws of physics.

If you really need to use your car 365/6 days of the year - then 4wd with winter tyres is the best bet. If you don't - and see winter tyres as a way of staying mobile and safe for 361 days a year then you'll be fine with RWD.

The most important bit is always the organic part of the equation. If the driver doesn't know how to drive in bad conditions - then even the best winter tyres and 4wd won't save you from an accident!
Reply With Quote
The following 2 users would like to thank dodgyken for this useful post:
  #19  
Old 01.09.2011, 11:44
saint7uk's Avatar
Forum Veteran
 
Join Date: Mar 2011
Location: Samstagern
Posts: 989
Groaned at 9 Times in 9 Posts
Thanked 586 Times in 358 Posts
saint7uk has a reputation beyond reputesaint7uk has a reputation beyond reputesaint7uk has a reputation beyond reputesaint7uk has a reputation beyond repute
Re: Rear wheel drive in snow?

Quote:
View Post
- then even the best winter tyres and 4wd won't save you from an accident!
True! But what of one's 4 leaf clover, rabbit's foot, rosary, Buddha, horseshoe wing mirror and lucky curling underpants?????
Reply With Quote
This user would like to thank saint7uk for this useful post:
  #20  
Old 01.09.2011, 11:48
Member
 
Join Date: Jun 2011
Location: Meilen
Posts: 139
Groaned at 0 Times in 0 Posts
Thanked 15 Times in 13 Posts
gc2011 has no particular reputation at present
Re: Rear wheel drive in snow?

Understand - thanks so much for pointers. What I'm hearing is... recreational driving with winter tyres 360 (ish!) days a year is ok, if we stay on main roads and drive with care. Thats enough for us for now. Will also get chains if we need, and when weather bad be careful about our route / plans.

More specific question - how does this affect the snow / ski resorts near Zurich? Liek are these main roads which are treated and ok to drive on most of the time with just a fwe bad days to leave, or would we always have an issue with these.

Again sorry for level of the questions - total newbie at this real winter thing. Know it's not siberia, but in Ireland we get small amount of snow and when we do country stops _
Reply With Quote
Reply




Currently Active Users Viewing This Thread: 1 (0 members and 1 guests)
 
Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Snow tyres Versus Snow chains and the Law ? Ticino. Tubbies-Mummy Daily life 34 12.11.2014 17:32
BMW 3 series touring combi (ie: rear wheel drive in the snow?) LaneyG General off-topic 25 14.02.2011 08:31
Do I need an all wheel drive vehicle? ground Transportation/driving 35 22.11.2009 21:59
Need to buy a left hand, 4 wheel drive car jackycmclean Transportation/driving 0 13.08.2009 14:03
Can I use (purely) solar to melt snow on my drive? Glendyn Housing in general 1 08.07.2009 11:44


All times are GMT +2. The time now is 19:48.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.4
Copyright ©2000 - 2022, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.
LinkBacks Enabled by vBSEO 3.1.0