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  • avatar lokki 06/12/09 1:51 pm PST

    Yes, in that you will have more chances (four instead of two) to get traction in slippery conditions. So, on slippery slopes or in icy conditions, you will have a better chance of getting your car moving. You won't get stuck as easily on country roads. There are also some advantages in controlling your car in situations where traction is bad, but remember this:

    AWD doesn't help you stop any better when traction is bad. When your brakes are on, AWD, FWD, and RWD are the same, since there's no power being applied to ANY wheel.

    Anti-lock braking helps here, but whether the ABS is on a car with AWD, FWD, or RWD makes no difference.

    A common danger for drivers of AWD cars driving for the first time in bad weather is their belief that they can move better in ice or snow than other cars. Well, they can. So, they tend to drive too fast because acceleration is easy. However, they soon find, much to their surprise, that turning and braking are no better than for other cars. They often learn this as they're sliding into those other cars.

    Hope this helps.

Answers

  • lokki 06/12/09 1:51 pm PST

    Yes, in that you will have more chances (four instead of two) to get traction in slippery conditions. So, on slippery slopes or in icy conditions, you will have a better chance of getting your car moving. You won't get stuck as easily on country roads. There are also some advantages in controlling your car in situations where traction is bad, but remember this:

    AWD doesn't help you stop any better when traction is bad. When your brakes are on, AWD, FWD, and RWD are the same, since there's no power being applied to ANY wheel.

    Anti-lock braking helps here, but whether the ABS is on a car with AWD, FWD, or RWD makes no difference.

    A common danger for drivers of AWD cars driving for the first time in bad weather is their belief that they can move better in ice or snow than other cars. Well, they can. So, they tend to drive too fast because acceleration is easy. However, they soon find, much to their surprise, that turning and braking are no better than for other cars. They often learn this as they're sliding into those other cars.

    Hope this helps.

  • karjunkie 06/12/09 4:15 pm PST

    The greatest improvement in snow and ice handling is to buy a set of dedicated snow tires to use in the winter. While AWD will help somewhat, you cannot depend on it getting you out of a problem if you do not follow safe driving techniques in those hazardous conditions. My own opinion is that any good 2WD vehicle with snow tires will offer the best safety improvement and eliminate the necessity of 4WD which has the drawbacks of more weight and less fuel efficiency over a 2WD vehicle. When I lived up north, I kept a set of snow tires mounted on steel rims so I could quickly change over ever winter season. Websites like Tire Rack have specials on combo packages of wheel/tires which are very reasonable. I favor Bridgestone Blizzaks, but there are many reasonably priced alternatives. Good luck on whatever you decide!

  • tony78 06/12/09 5:35 pm PST

    My belief is that if you have to drive in the snow be very careful and take it easy.

    If you have to drive on ice, its better to do it from the comfort of your easy chair next to a glowing fire with a hot cup of cocoa,,you know the kind with the little marshmallows.

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