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Old 11-30-2011, 01:07 PM
JimD1 JimD1 is offline
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Location: Lexington, SC
 
Join Date: Jun 2009
Posts: 870
Mein Auto: 128i convertible
I might get winter tires if I lived in Oslo. I've never been to Norway but I've been to Sweden but never in the winter. I have co-workers who live there and I hear stories. Lack of experience driving in these conditions should not be your reason for wanting winter tires. That makes me have more respect for your decision. I often see the same comment and wonder if it is somebody wanting to try and make up for their lack of ability to control oversteer wanting it to go away due to better tires. I do not see that as a good path to take. You need to learn to control your car during under and oversteer and if you still think you need snow tires, then by all means get them.

I drove for several decades in the portion of the U. S. that gets significant snow and I almost never used snow tires. Most of my vehicles were rear wheel drive. Traffic in the areas I've been moves so slow under these conditions I wouldn't have had much chance to use the extra capability the snow tires would provide. But they are safer and give you more margin so I think they are a good choice.

I chose that test because the difference between summer and snow tires was largest. I think it was tire rack that had a test in a 328i where the difference was smaller. I think it was the tires, I doubt it was the difference between front and rear wheel drive. I do not believe front versus rear makes much difference, the weight over the driving wheels - which tends to be greater for front - makes a difference. With equivalent weight distribution I think rear is fairly clearly better because the wheels that steer are not the same as the wheels that drive. At the limit, that can be dangerous. I almost went over a steep hillside due to my front wheel drive manual transmission car sliding from engine braking so much I could not steer. I had to put it in neutral and drag the back end with the handbrake. Anyway, the link is the test I've seen with the largest benefit for snow tires. There are tests which show less difference - but always the same order. Snow tires are best in snow, summer performance tires worst. All season in-between.

It is also significant to consider perforamnce in wet and dry conditions too. For me that is more frequent. Snow tires are not necessarily best wet and never dry even in the winter.

Jim
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