Edmunds Answers



  • karjunkie 08/16/08 5:55 pm PST

    I rented a standard HR last year on a ski trip to Colorado and it handled quite well as a front wheel car normally would. The brakes were not the best in slippery conditions however. If I were to consider a small domestic wagon for winter conditions, I would probably opt for a Pontiac Vibe. It handles and brakes better than the HHR and costs about the same. If snow and winter driving are the main concern, I would reccommend the Subaru Impreza wagon. It costs about the same and has 4 wheel drive. It is a far superior vehicle for wet and snow conditions and is much more fun to drive.

  • tony78 08/16/08 6:07 pm PST

    I agree with karjunkie about the 4 wheel drive advice.

    Pretty much its like this :

    Front wheel drive limited slip differential is better than rear wheel drive differential in the snow.

    Posi-traction or locking rear axle is better in the snow.

    All wheel drive or four wheel drive is the best in the snow.

    As for icy roads,,any vehicle will slide on ice.

  • dasko 08/17/08 5:03 am PST

    Carjunkie is right about the mediocre brakes in the base HHR. This is because it has drum brakes in the back. In my opinion no car with more than 110hp should have drum brakes. Furthermore if you plan to drive a drum brake equipped  car in the snow, be sure to get a good set of snow tires. I contend with Canadian winters annually and I was sure to buy a car with four wheel disc brakes for this particular reason.

    If you want an HHR with four wheel disc brakes, get the HHR SS. It looks better then the lower trim models, handles better and gets better fuel economy. This is the model to buy. Get a good set of snow tires and don't bother with a four-wheel drive car. 

  • cc732 09/08/08 11:37 am PST

    I live in Ontario,Canada, near Detroit, MI. We get lots of ice and snow, sleet and slush. In the last 25 years, the wife and I have owned 9 FWD Chevrolets, the first being an '80 Citation.
    I've had my '06 HHR LS for 2 winters now, and never have had a problem in the snow. I live in a town (15,000 pop.) on a major 4 lane road to a subdivision. I sometimes get in 3 to 6 inch piles of snow and such with just the stock Firestone Affinity tires with no problems.
    If you travel on secondary or back roads, Michelin Blizzaks have been recommended for this vehicle.


Top Safe Driving Winter Driving Experts View More

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1. MrShift@Edmunds 580
2. karjunkie 515
3. morin2 310
4. Stever@Edmunds 285
5. texases 280
6. zaken1 225
7. canddmeyer 140