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Old 11th January 2011, 21:27   #16
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Default Re: Automatic car on Snow

This is just my speculation:
AT has a torque converter which gives a strong push from stand still, which may trigger wheel-spin on loose traction conditions. On the other hand, manual allows the driver to drop the clutch at higher revs (then idle rpm) which also can make the wheels to spin (if someone is not careful)

For uphill driving, AT is most suitable if the driver is not very skilled (as hill-starting or crawling on an uphill are a breeze)

Best would be to get an AWD like Subaru Impreza

Last edited by Guna : 11th January 2011 at 21:29.
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Old 11th January 2011, 22:27   #17
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Default Re: Automatic car on Snow

Most AWD or 4x4s come with AT. They provide the torque to the wheel that needs it, when stuck in mud/snow. Some have a switch on the dash to turn on 4x4 mode. With such a car, plus snow tires you would be good to go.

I have a FWD Saab 93 with snow tires, and AT. Does fine with mild snow on Ski trips. Its mandatory on some mountain roads to carry chains when it has snowed. In the US the transportation department has warning levels. Ok with 4x4, Ok with snow tires, and 4x4, OK only with chains on all vehicles.
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Old 11th January 2011, 22:29   #18
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Default Re: Automatic car on Snow

make its FWD+ABS+all season/snow tires and ESP if available. A/T will be a bonus and hassle free but will not aid or hurt in any way.
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Old 12th January 2011, 00:04   #19
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Default Re: Automatic car on Snow

I am driving a regular Ford Taurus which is A/T and it serves me well on such tracks.
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Old 12th January 2011, 00:18   #20
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Default Re: Automatic car on Snow

Makes no difference whether you drive MT or AT. I did almost all of my snow driving in AT.

Quote:
Originally Posted by rahulch View Post
on roads with snow (upto a few feet or more) or ice.
I am rather confused about this line. What do you mean few feet or more of snow? In a car, you can drive at the most in 4 inches of snow, if driven very carefully. At 6 inches, you are asking for trouble. The tire won't cut the snow till the tarmac, you won't be on solid ground anymore. That means no traction either.

If you are talking about few feet of snow, you better be driving a snow removal truck.
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Old 12th January 2011, 05:44   #21
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ajay0612 View Post
Well. I too wants guidance keeping in mind the terrain which one usually encounter on hilly driving. On the net most of the snow-driving-tips hold true when driving on level roads.
- How is it difficult to drive on snowy/ slushy roads when going uphill? And how is it different going downhill?
- Does it ACTUALLY matter MUCH whether one is driving a front wheel drive car (almost all Indian cars south of Rs. 20L) or rear wheel drive one (e.g. Xylo, Scorpio, etc.)?
Real world experience sharing will help a lot.
Yes driving a FWD is much easier in the snow. firstly more weight upfront provides better traction but more importantly you don't spin your tail out when you lose traction like in a RWD (its a lot of fun in a empty parking lot though!). When I lived in Alaska I would keep a couple of sacks of sand in the back of my truck for extra traction when driving without the 4wd. Also sand comes in handy to improve traction if you get bogged down in snow.

Quote:
Originally Posted by swiftnfurious View Post
I guess the first thumb rule is to deflate the tyres to couple of points below the optimum level [Yes, deflate means reduce tyre pressure, so it has to be below the normal level ] This will help in improved traction. Also I guess snow chains and all are for heavy snow roads and not required for normal snow driving. And 4x4 can help you in traction, but can be of real use once you move into snow which is inches thick.
I know deflating works for sand... but also snow? deflating the tires may work well for deep snow by increasing the contact patch, but i have never heard of it for normal road driving on snow. In fact most snow tires i have seen are narrower as compared to the regular tires (to avoid distributing the weight over a large area) . More experienced gurus could shed some light on this.

Note from the Team-BHP Support: Please use the "Multi Quote" option for quoting Multiple posts, instead of creating back-to-back posts.

Last edited by Amartya : 12th January 2011 at 06:42. Reason: Back to back posts within 20 mins.
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Old 12th January 2011, 06:48   #22
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Default Re: Driving on Snow - Whats the Secret?

Quote:
Originally Posted by mile201 View Post
In fact most snow tires i have seen are narrower as compared to the regular tires (to avoid distributing the weight over a large area) .
Never seen those. Infact I have seen wider with deep treads and like one of those BF Goodrich ones on offroading vehicles.
Hows Dallas by the way. Heard the weather is suprisingly cold down south ?
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Old 12th January 2011, 07:30   #23
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Default Re: Driving on Snow - Whats the Secret?

Quote:
Originally Posted by prince_pervez View Post
Never seen those. Infact I have seen wider with deep treads and like one of those BF Goodrich ones on offroading vehicles.
Hows Dallas by the way. Heard the weather is suprisingly cold down south ?
down south in ATL, its quite bad. offices have been closed. ice on roads. Freezing rain etc.
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Old 12th January 2011, 08:02   #24
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Default Re: Automatic car on Snow

Quote:
Originally Posted by Samurai View Post
Makes no difference whether you drive MT or AT. I did almost all of my snow driving in AT.

I am rather confused about this line. What do you mean few feet or more of snow? In a car, you can drive at the most in 4 inches of snow, if driven very carefully. At 6 inches, you are asking for trouble. The tire won't cut the snow till the tarmac, you won't be on solid ground anymore. That means no traction either.

If you are talking about few feet of snow, you better be driving a snow removal truck.
In places like Mine , Keewenaw peninsula, Michigan (which gets like 150-200 inches of snow in a season) People drive on packed ice--- The roads never gets cleared till the tarmac.

http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedi...hermometer.jpg

What is done in our paces is good snow tires, the favorite tires were Bridgestone Blizzak, Michelin X ice, Firestone winterfore and Nokian hakkapellitas. They used to make driving on ice packed roads much easier.

And it is normal there to get 12 inches of snow and still have class etc.
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Old 12th January 2011, 08:05   #25
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Default Re: Driving on Snow - Whats the Secret?

@Dr Abhi, most of the driving techniques have been covered in the above post.

Driving on snow is still ok but what you should really be careful about is driving over ICE. Once snowfalls stops and if the temp drops below freezing you get ice. This ice that gets formed are really slippery both for the car and for human ( read black ice ) so taking sharp turns, sudden acceleration and sudden breaks should be avoided.

It is also a good practice to maintain good distance between vehicles. Also if possible try avoiding taking the car out unless its really that urgent.

Check out this video to get a feel of things going bad on ice.


Last edited by jango : 12th January 2011 at 08:11.
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Old 12th January 2011, 08:42   #26
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Default Re: Driving on Snow - Whats the Secret?

Quote:
Originally Posted by 14000rpm View Post
down south in ATL, its quite bad. offices have been closed. ice on roads. Freezing rain etc.
Crap! I am sure they wouldn't have expected it.

This is what they put on the roads, pavements:
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Old 12th January 2011, 14:53   #27
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Default Re: Driving on Snow - Whats the Secret?

Quote:
Originally Posted by prince_pervez View Post
Never seen those. Infact I have seen wider with deep treads and like one of those BF Goodrich ones on offroading vehicles.
Hows Dallas by the way. Heard the weather is suprisingly cold down south ?
Yeah I have seen those too (mud+snow) but i was talking about specific winter only tires like Bridgestone Blizzak etc. I saw them (narrow with deep tread) on many trucks up north in winters and they say it is so that it can cut through the snow and slush and get better traction on the road. Dallas is COLD! unusually so like many other places! Hope it warms up soon..the snow reminds me i need to get a fresh set of tires!
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Old 12th January 2011, 15:53   #28
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Default Re: Driving on Snow - Whats the Secret?

In India, you will rarely find powdery snow. Its mostly ice in areas still motorable.
When the clouds disappear, its mostly black ice on the roads in Himachal.
Here no 4WD TCS etc., will help.
The trick is to drive slow on the seemingly wide road. Once you hit a black ice pack, you lose all traction.
This is more dangerous, because patches of black ice appear out of nowhere, and in the night you cannot make out tarmac from black ice.

Now coming to driving on a white road, here a 4WD will help esp on hairpins. A 2WD car may not even climb up without chains, but with a 4WD, you can actually tow a stranded 2WD.
Like this


Now speaking of snow driving, this is my favorite kind, about 1-2 inches of powdery snow offering fantastic grip(relatively speaking)



So when you head out to the snowy mountains, remember, its very different from driving in the west. There you have salted streets, with regular snow plouging. In the Himalayas its very different.
These points will help you survive
1. Make sure your vehicles AC and heater are working, otherwise everything will fog up. AC is a must for defogging
2. Make sure your tires have deep groves. It makes all the difference between climbing a slope and not climbing a slope
3. Never apply brakes in a skid. Always use the steering to get out of the skid. FWD cars have it better here, with RWD you will have more problems. If your car has 4WD, switch to 4WD if surface is slippery, will give you greater control
4. Carry supplies. In HP etc., if it snows so much that a road is blocked, it will not be cleared until the snow stops. Rarely do the bulldozers come out while its still snowing
5. To get out of hotel parking lots, use the car rubber mats. Many times the parking lots have a lot more snow than the road, and the only trouble spot is to actually get out of the lot.
6. Last but not the least, after starting on a cold snowy morning, let your vehicle idle for 5-10 minutes. It will thaw out your engine oil, as well as the radiator fluid if its partially frozen.
7. Put some alcohol in your windshield washer fluid. Medical spirit is the best, you can get it from chemist stores.
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Old 12th January 2011, 20:26   #29
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Also try to pick a low riding car rather than a tall boy.

We got about 9 inches since yesterday and I've been enjoying driving Makinnen style. Low CG cars are easier to bring back to control once you lose it.
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Old 12th January 2011, 20:56   #30
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Default Re: Driving on Snow - Whats the Secret?

You driving your M3 in the Snow???
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