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I finally got the chance to take the Niro up to the snow, and I was hugely impressed.


At 5000' last weekend, it was blizzard conditions. Very low visibility, very heavy snow. 2 feet in one day. Perfect to test the Niro's snow abilities!


I drove about 20 miles in snow conditions up the mountain, and 20 miles back down the snow. 200 miles overall, that trip, but mostly rain until I got to higher elevations.


While carrying chains (Peerless #0154010 Autotrac), I did not use them on the way up the hill. Chain controls were in effect, but nobody around to enforce them, so I proceeded onwards without them.



Wow, is all I can say. The car did not break traction once, in 6" of snow on the road. I kept the speed under 30mph. The car drove like it was on rails. Even climbing up the pass, the tires never broke traction even a single time. Only my Audi S6 Quattro has been able to do that, until now. I did not regret leaving the chains off, the car drove wonderfully, and I got to my destination without issue.


On my way home, coming back down the hill, I decided not to chance it (but mostly, I wanted to try my new chains out). The peerless chains were spectacular! I thought the car drove well before? It was GLUED to the road with those chains one. There was zero chance I was going to break traction with those. I even aggressively accelerated, braked, and cornered, to test them out, and did not lose control whatsoever.


These were the snowiest conditions I would ever drive in with this car, and it performed amazingly. It drove as well as, perhaps even better than, my Audi w/ quattro and snow tires. Both with and without chains.



On the highway, I passed a Volvo sedan that had gone off the road, a Ford SUV that was stuck in a ditch, and a Hummer H2 that was also stuck. Drove right by them, and I'd be lying if I said I didn't smirk :)


Here's a picture of the car at the destination!



 

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impressive but you did say nothing about your tires...

as most of the times it is what really makes the difference I believe it is good to precise stock or snow?
You might have mentionned it on another thread but I can't find it
 

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On the highway, I passed a Volvo sedan that had gone off the road, a Ford SUV that was stuck in a ditch, and a Hummer H2 that was also stuck. Drove right by them, and I'd be lying if I said I didn't smirk :)
We see alot of these up north.!

The problerm with these trucks.. Well, actualy, the truck is not the problem, it's more the drivers ... They think that there in a tank and invincible... and at some point, BAM!!! there gone!!! :D

I call it a "code 18"... 18 inch between the seat and the steering.! 0:)
 

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Discussion Starter #4
impressive but you did say nothing about your tires...

as most of the times it is what really makes the difference I believe it is good to precise stock or snow?
You might have mentionned it on another thread but I can't find it

You're right, I did forget to mention that, and it's kind of important! Stock tires. Whatever the factory econo-tires are that came on the car!
 

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impressive but you did say nothing about your tires...

as most of the times it is what really makes the difference I believe it is good to precise stock or snow?
You might have mentionned it on another thread but I can't find it

Stock tires??? Whoa that's crazy. I was in snow of only 1" recently and got stuck twice with my stock tires, it sucked. Now I'm in the market for snow tires....I have the touring edition niro if that makes a difference? What are your thoughts?
 

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Stock tires??? Whoa that's crazy. I was in snow of only 1" recently and got stuck twice with my stock tires, it sucked. Now I'm in the market for snow tires....I have the touring edition niro if that makes a difference? What are your thoughts?
My thoughts are, if you got stuck twice in 1" of snow then you may want snow tires :D

My stock tires were great but also the snow was maybe especially sticky that weekend? Not sure. I also drove very conservatively, didn't push my luck with trying anything I wasn't sure the car could do.

I don't live in snow, so I'm good with my current setup for the occasional weekend trip to the snow. If I lived in snow, I might look into snow tires for the winter.
 

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Stock tires??? Whoa that's crazy. I was in snow of only 1" recently and got stuck twice with my stock tires, it sucked. Now I'm in the market for snow tires....I have the touring edition niro if that makes a difference? What are your thoughts?
Hi, personnaly, i would never drive in a winter area like Toronto with stock tires.! i'm from Qc and we even have a law that tells us to install winter tires from december first to the 15th of march.

If you are searching for snow tires and since you have the SX Touring edition, you can reduce to a 16 inch mag or steel wheels and some good less expensive tires.!
 

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Stock tires??? Whoa that's crazy. I was in snow of only 1" recently and got stuck twice with my stock tires, it sucked. Now I'm in the market for snow tires....I have the touring edition niro if that makes a difference? What are your thoughts?
Hi, personnaly, i would never drive in a winter area like Toronto with stock tires.! i'm from Qc and we even have a law that tells us to install winter tires from december first to the 15th of march.

If you are searching for snow tires and since you have the SX Touring edition, you can reduce to a 16 inch mag or steel wheels and some good less expensive tires.!

Thanks for the help and assistance! Much appreciated. So 16" will be fine?
 

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So 16" will be fine?
Oh yes, it will do.. 18 inch winter tires are soo expensive.. and on all other trims they are all on 16 inch wheel base. :)

You will be able to keep your nice 18 inch alloy wheels for the summer and not in the salt, calcium dirt of the winter time on the 401! ;)
 

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If you are driving and you purposely pass a sign that states winter tires or chains only beyond this point then that is a VERY poor decision. I’m sorry to be so blunt but testing tires on a mountain pass in the snow is not a good idea.

So if you are reading this and are thinking about trying it yourself, please don’t.
 

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Testing a car safely in extreme conditions is in fact a good idea to discover your car's capabilities and drive within those capabilities. A big factor is your own driving ability. Do you know what yours is? How did you learn without testing? I am planning (hoping) to do some testing in a large unplowed parking lot this winter. No mountain passes in Ohio though, but there are certainly some steep hills I can find for the same purpose.
 

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Discussion Starter #13
If you are driving and you purposely pass a sign that states winter tires or chains only beyond this point then that is a VERY poor decision. I’m sorry to be so blunt but testing tires on a mountain pass in the snow is not a good idea.

So if you are reading this and are thinking about trying it yourself, please don’t.

It was a road I'm intimately familiar with, and have driven it many times in the snow in other cars I've owned over the last 20 years. I didn't do anything even remotely unsafe, and I was infinitely safer than most of the trucks and SUVs that were driving there that day.


If traction became a concern, I would have immediately stopped and installed my chains. But traction proved to not be a concern whatsoever (through a combination of my conservative driving, the particular surface conditions at the time, and the car), so I skipped the chains.


I'm not recommending others try the same thing. Merely reporting on my own good experiences with the Niro in the snow.
 

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Hi, personnaly, i would never drive in a winter area like Toronto with stock tires.! i'm from Qc and we even have a law that tells us to install winter tires from december first to the 15th of march.

If you are searching for snow tires and since you have the SX Touring edition, you can reduce to a 16 inch mag or steel wheels and some good less expensive tires.!
Stock tires??? Whoa that's crazy. I was in snow of only 1" recently and got stuck twice with my stock tires, it sucked. Now I'm in the market for snow tires....I have the touring edition niro if that makes a difference? What are your thoughts?

I don't want to be critical, but I am just outside to Toronto and have driven through the same snow that you were and had zero problems with the stock tires. I have in the past bought snow tires for my car, but decided that I wasn't going to bother with the trade between the seasons anymore with this car. Rather I would give the stock tires there 3 years of good grip then trade them out for a set of Nokian WRG4's. You might look into just getting the Nokian tires as they are an eco All Weather that is better than an All-Season so you get the added grip that you might want but not need to change tires twice a year.
 
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