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      12-17-2020, 06:53 AM   #1
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Snow tires on a RWD performance car

It’s that time of year again, time to rekindle the second most polorizing topic (right behind manual vs DCT), snow/winter tires on RWD vs all-seasons on AWD. My region received about 10” of snow yesterday and last night. This morning at 5 am, I made the 5 mile trek into work. The commute which normally takes 10 min took 15, mainly due the fact that I was behind a tag team DOT plow truck couple, a good scenario for sure. Needless to say, my journey was not only uneventful but inspiring as well. My decision to invest a few hundred dollars on a winter tire/wheel setup once again (my previous ‘16 M2 was also equipped on Blizzaks) gave me the utmost confidence while driving on snow covered roads. I must give PA DOT their props for doing an excellent job at snow removal. My ground clearance is about 4” so any snow banks in intersections would’ve probably impeded my commute. I had all-season runflats on my ‘14 435i xDrive. Firsthand experience will tell you RWD with snows are more effective overall. My specs:

KW coilovers at highest setting
Perelli Sotozero mounted on cheapo Tirerack steel wheels
No LSD
~65/35 rear weight biased due to mid engine
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      12-17-2020, 07:06 AM   #2
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So just a few things, your RWD is also rear/mid engine which helps significantly in a similar fashion to FWD. I have had the pleasure (not really) to have lived for almost 60 years in Canada with about 45 years of driving experience. Winter tires are the way to go for a number of reasons that are pretty common knowledge. I have had AWD with all season when living in the city and I got buy with them 95% of the time, but frankly when there was heavy snow or ice they were shit, and they weren't the best in summer either. They are a compromise in every scenario. I know have a small SUV with good ground clearance, AWD and proper Winter tires. I have complete confidence in this set up, deep snow, slush, icy roads and they are pretty good on dry pavement. Regarding the cost, they are on the truck about 5 months of the year, so besides the initial outlay of cash you end up doubling the life of your summer tires. Happy winter driving, and it's snowing right now dammit.
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      12-17-2020, 07:17 AM   #3
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How does the front handle slushy conditions on the mid engine? Does it seem to plow a bit more vs more front weighted cars?

Winter tires may not help you accelerate faster but definitely help you handle and brake.

I've always been an advocate for winter tires if your area receives regular snow. I will never go without them now.
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      12-17-2020, 07:26 AM   #4
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As F1 teams know: always be on the right tire!

Is see too many people thinking that AWD is all they need because the marketing brochure said so when they were buying the car.

In snowy winter: Winter tires+AWD > Winter tires+RWD > AWD > RWD

BTW, that GT4!!! My next dream car, although I'd "settle" for a GTS, too!
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      12-17-2020, 07:38 AM   #5
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AWD is the single biggest piece f marketing fluff ever invented in the automotive world. It helps but it is not a miracle worker. It doesn't help you brake either which is the biggest safety issue in winter.

Nothing, but nothing works better in snow and ice than proper tyres.

I am not crazy about Pirelli TBH, I find for serous snow the Blizzacks are best and mixed conditions the Michlen XIce do a great job. I run XIce as our streets are ploughed and they are far less noisy and wear better than the Blizacks.

Last edited by Alfisti; 12-17-2020 at 07:48 AM..
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      12-17-2020, 07:46 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by eljay View Post

BTW, that GT4!!! My next dream car, although I'd "settle" for a GTS, too!
Thanks for the comment. It's not a GT4 though. I installed GT4 side scoops to allow more air into the engine. A poser move perhaps but these OEM scoops are much cheaper than the carbon fiber aftermarket scoops currently on the market. Besides, when all modifications are done, including new 3.8L powerplant, it'll be at 981 GT4 performance capabilities.
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      12-17-2020, 07:48 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Alfisti View Post

I am not crazy about Pirelli TBH, I find for serous snow the Blizzacks are best and mixed conditions the Michlen XIce do a great job. I run XIce as our streets are ploughed and they are far less noisy and were better than the Blizacks.
Michelin Blizzaks and Alpin aren't available in my size so I had to settle for the Perellis. They're still quite capable.
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      12-17-2020, 08:21 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Alfisti View Post
...Nothing, but nothing works better in snow and ice than proper tyres...
Let's not forget snow chains...
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      12-17-2020, 09:07 AM   #9
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LOL not allowed here
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      12-17-2020, 09:10 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 3798j View Post
Let's not forget snow chains...
Shouldn't they be on the rear wheels?
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      12-17-2020, 09:43 AM   #11
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I think chains are really only good for the mountain areas (BC, AB). Even then, only under certain conditions.

QC has a mandatory winter tire law for the winter months. I believe tourists can be ticketed if they don't have the snowflake on their tires as well.

Studded tires are more common in the northern latitudes. I haven't seen them used much south of Sudbury.
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      12-17-2020, 09:54 AM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Murf993 View Post
Shouldn't they be on the rear wheels?
Unless that's some unicorn 'Stang with fwd, then yes.
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      12-17-2020, 10:27 AM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Alfisti View Post
AWD is the single biggest piece f marketing fluff ever invented in the automotive world. It helps but it is not a miracle worker. It doesn't help you brake either which is the biggest safety issue in winter.

Nothing, but nothing works better in snow and ice than proper tyres.

I am not crazy about Pirelli TBH, I find for serous snow the Blizzacks are best and mixed conditions the Michlen XIce do a great job. I run XIce as our streets are ploughed and they are far less noisy and wear better than the Blizacks.
I agree that it's marketing fluff, primarily because most of the systems are ineffective in my experience - particularly the ones in in mainstream vehicles based on FWD platforms. My mom's 2019 Honda CRV-V sends zero power to the rear even when you turn traction control off and spin the fronts; my Acura RDX was the same way, being based off the same Haldex shit system. Previous GF's Volvo S60 was useless as well, and so is a friend's Q7; trying to get that Q7 to rotate into oversteer is completely futile.

My X5 is a whole 'nother matter, though. Easy to steer with the throttle on snow, but the front wheels are spinning too regardless of conditions and with no delay whatsoever. Vastly superior system.
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      12-17-2020, 10:29 AM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by freakystyly View Post
I think chains are really only good for the mountain areas (BC, AB). Even then, only under certain conditions.

QC has a mandatory winter tire law for the winter months. I believe tourists can be ticketed if they don't have the snowflake on their tires as well.

Studded tires are more common in the northern latitudes. I haven't seen them used much south of Sudbury.
Winter tires are mandatory in Finland. Purely coincidental that Nokian Tires, whose specialty is winter tires, is based there.
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      12-17-2020, 11:36 AM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Alfisti View Post
AWD is the single biggest piece f marketing fluff ever invented in the automotive world. It helps but it is not a miracle worker. It doesn't help you brake either which is the biggest safety issue in winter.

Nothing, but nothing works better in snow and ice than proper tyres.

I am not crazy about Pirelli TBH, I find for serous snow the Blizzacks are best and mixed conditions the Michlen XIce do a great job. I run XIce as our streets are ploughed and they are far less noisy and wear better than the Blizacks.
cant agree more here. The first time I drove my wife's non X E46 in 9" of snow on cheap General snows i was amazed.

I believe the AWD gains in "traction" in adverse conditions are minimal compared to the larger change that occurs in the average drivers head, overconfidence.
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      12-17-2020, 12:42 PM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by No Boost View Post
Unless that's some unicorn 'Stang with fwd, then yes.
Actually this is a safest solution for inept drivers. Canít go anywhere, but at least you can stop!
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      12-17-2020, 12:49 PM   #17
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awesome. i hope everyone that dumped their M3 for an X3M because of 'weather' sees this post. i just run michelin cross climates on my civic, seems to get the job done fine with a few inches of accumulation on the highway.
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      12-17-2020, 01:06 PM   #18
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Quote:
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awesome. i hope everyone that dumped their M3 for an X3M because of 'weather' sees this post. i just run michelin cross climates on my civic, seems to get the job done fine with a few inches of accumulation on the highway.
What you should do is equip the GT3 with winters and have someone record you doing snow donuts in a vacant parking lot for all to enjoy.
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      12-17-2020, 03:24 PM   #19
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All this talk about AWD and traction to get you going. No thought around once you get going, you also have to stop at some point. AWD will do squat if your tires can't produce enough friction/traction to haul your tank to a stop.
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      12-17-2020, 08:23 PM   #20
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The ultimate proof that winter tires make the biggest difference:

We winterized a Viper...640hp and 600lb/ft to the rear wheels with a stick shift in the snow. We were the first to do this. Everyone thought it was impossible.
Check out the slalom and donuts...all proof of complete car control.

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      12-17-2020, 08:50 PM   #21
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Kept my 11 year old Evo X with Blizzaks for moments like these, doesn't get any better than that in the snow.
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      12-17-2020, 10:32 PM   #22
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Quote:
Originally Posted by zx10guy View Post
All this talk about AWD and traction to get you going. No thought around once you get going, you also have to stop at some point. AWD will do squat if your tires can't produce enough friction/traction to haul your tank to a stop.
Yeah, it's kinda like flying a plane. Taking off is optional, but landing is mandatory.
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