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Model S in the snow ?

Discussion in 'New England' started by masam, Feb 23, 2016.

  1. masam

    masam Member

    Joined:
    Feb 18, 2016
    Messages:
    72
    Location:
    MA
    I don't have a Telsa (yet) and have never driven a all-wheel drive car in the snow either. So, I was wondering what it's like driving the MS in the snow here in Massachusetts. How concerned should we be about getting stuck in the snow if there's several inches of snow like we had a couple of weeks ago ? (Wondering because we already had our car get stuck in the driveway... user error, of course :)). Similarly, (esp. for those who have been able to sign up for the "Meet the Model X" event in MA), does anyone know how high the MX sits (as compared with say a Lexus or Acura SUV) ?

    I'd welcome any opinions on winter driving. Thank you !
     
  2. Robert.Boston

    Robert.Boston Model S VIN P01536

    Joined:
    Oct 7, 2011
    Messages:
    7,842
    Location:
    Portland, Maine, USA
    Long answer: browse this thread.
    Short answer: Model S is great in the snow, but proper snow tires are highly recommended. The Nokian Happ'a R2 are the board's favorite studless winter tires.
     
  3. ForeverFree

    ForeverFree Member

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    Jul 9, 2015
    Messages:
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    Location:
    Sherman Oaks, CA
    Took our new 85D up to Mammoth one week after getting it last May and were rewarded with a surprise Memorial Day weekend snowfall. Even on the stock Michelin Primacy all-seasons, the car was stable and sure-footed up and down inclines in six inches of fresh ... at the same time that pick-ups which looked far more the part were fish-tailing and struggling.

    That said, having driven a P85 loaner, which wagged its tail under acceleration even on dry pavement, I'd be less confident with a RWD Model S.
     
  4. sbanks

    sbanks Member

    Joined:
    Jun 16, 2014
    Messages:
    56
    Location:
    Swampscott, MA
    I have a MS85 (non D) which handles just fine in the snow; I would say about the same as my Accord (my last car). I do not have snow tires, just the stock Michelin Pilots.

    The one exception is the regenerative braking; when it's slick out and you let off the accelerator the back wheel will break loose; the traction control does not work when the back wheels loose traction. As such, when it's slick out I set the regen on low.
     
  5. tga

    tga Active Member

    Joined:
    Apr 8, 2014
    Messages:
    2,196
    Location:
    New Hampshire
    What are you currently driving? Do you have snow tires or all-seasons? Or worse, performance summer-only tires? How worn are the current tires?

    All season tires are inherently a compromise between summer and winter needs, and leave a lot to be desired in bad winter weather. Even moderately worn all-seasons are worthless in snow (you need lots of tread depth to bite into the snow).

    Much of how good or bad a car behaves in winter weather is due to the tires. In a snowstorm, I'd rather have a RWD Mustang on Hakka R2's than a P85 on Michelin PS2's.

    Having said that, the traction control on the S is astounding. There is little rotating mass in the motor (vs an ICE's big flywheel, crankshaft, pistons, and rods), so it can cut power almost instantly when it detects slip. The ICE will continue to spin down for a bit, even if power is cut. Some other tricks work well in both types of drivetrain (applying the brakes on the slipping wheel to limit spin, etc)
     
  6. masam

    masam Member

    Joined:
    Feb 18, 2016
    Messages:
    72
    Location:
    MA
    I currently drive a Golf that has all season tires with less than 10k miles. I agree that a set of good winter tires will be much better. That said, we are looking into getting a Tesla but having a bit of a hard time deciding between the S and the X. I'm leaning towards the S because it's available fairly soon, as opposed to the X which might not be delivered until the end of the year. At the same time, the space (7 seats) and increased ground clearance (not sure if I'm correct about this) of the X makes it very appealing.

    Appreciate all the input. Thanks !
     

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