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Snow/Winter Driving

Discussion in 'Midwest/Great Lakes' started by bnsn, Apr 21, 2017.

  1. bnsn

    bnsn Member

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    I am curious about how the Model S handles the snow in the upper midwest. I am in Minnesota, and while winters don't seem to see as much snow as years past, there are still a couple of good snowfalls each winter.

    I am a Model 3 reservation holder, and I planned on going with the D version to get AWD. That said, I have been looking at used Model S's as the prices are looking pretty good for the RWD models. What those of you that have been driving them for the last couple of winters think? Are snow tires a must, or have you gotten by with all-season tires?

    Thanks!
     
  2. thefortunes

    thefortunes Member

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    Many threads already about this already (such as Dual motor vs. RWD in winter driving.), but here in Wisconsin I drive a Roadster and my wife drives a RWD Model S and I put winter tires on both.
     
  3. bnsn

    bnsn Member

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    Good point, I did a search and didn't see that one, but saw several others. Thanks for the feedback!
     
  4. EkBuZ

    EkBuZ Member

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    I have a buddy with an S85. He has 2 winters under his belt with the stock tires. Says he'll probably get winter tires next winter, but he said that a year ago too... From my take, it's just like every other car, you can drive it fine in snow if you can drive in snow. If you floor it, yes it will slide all over the place, don't do that, unless you like it. According to some random Canadian forum I ended up on with AWD vs snow tires (not Tesla specific) they all said snow tires are way more effective.

    FWIW, my Model 3 (day 1 reservation) will have whatever gets me the most tax credit, if AWD is too far out to risk it, I'm getting RWD. I've owned FWD cars with all season tires for the last 20 years and rarely wished I had anything more.
     
  5. RVC

    RVC Member

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    We've only had all-seasons on various FWD cars before. 25 years driving in winter climes (NY, IL, MI) so I do know a thing or two about driving in the snow. Put on snow tires on our S85 for its first winter in 2014, just because it was RWD. The noticeable difference in traction made me put snows on our Civic and Prius as well. Never going back to not having snow tires in the winter---for any car.
     
  6. scott2613

    scott2613 Member

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    We have a P85+, P85DL and P100DL. I would not recommend all season tires on the rear wheel drive Teslas. They are fine on the AWD models but with four good snow tires like Blizzacks they are amazing. All these cars have been driven everyday winter and summer a total of over 100K in southeastern Wisconsin so far.
     
  7. bnsn

    bnsn Member

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    Thanks for the replies! I haven't had a RWD vehicle since the '90s. My last several vehicles have been either AWD or 4x4, currently driving a Jeep Grand Cherokee, which is great in the snow.

    Again, I appreciate the feedback!
     
  8. jaguar36

    jaguar36 Active Member

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    Keep in mind that most RWD cars in the 90s had terrible weight balance, with all the weight in the nose. The Tesla has very good weight balance, which vastly improves traction in the snow on RWD. Also keep in mind that tire technology has improved tremendously in the last 20 years, with both all-seasons and snows performing way better in the snow than they used too.

    As long as the All-seasons have lots of tread left they work fine in the snow. You'll have to replace them earlier if you plan to use them in the snow than you would otherwise though, so for us at least it was better to just get dedicated snow tires.
     
  9. ElectricTundra

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    Past 3 winters w/ P85D and Michelin Primacy's. I expected to switch to winters + summers but wanted to give the all-weather a go. I figured worst case I'd use them for summer until they wore out. Lots of travel to Lutsen, WI, and other places in winter. Now on 3rd set of Primacy's and quite happy. Does better than my wife's GL350 w/ winters.
     
  10. Evbwcaer

    Evbwcaer Member

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    RWD 85 here in Minneapolis, 3 winters so far. I have Michelin X-ice 3's. No problems at all so far. My girlfriend drove it up to Brainerd in the middle of 2016-2017's worst snow/ice storm and made it fine.

    I will say that I anecdotally think the car was better the first two winters. I'm not sure if it's just my perception, but I do wonder if the tires are not as good as new (they still do fine) or if Tesla maybe changed the traction control parameters?

    The traction control is phenomenal in a Tesla as well.

    I'd gues you would be more than satisfied with real snow tires on an RWD S in MN.
     
  11. jaguar36

    jaguar36 Active Member

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    Probably just the tires wearing. My snow tires tend to last 3-4 years and the last year they are noticeably worse.
     
  12. thefortunes

    thefortunes Member

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    From Tire Rack:
    Snow platform indicators (the equivalent of "snow wear bars") are molded into the X-Ice Xi3's tread grooves to inform the driver when ice and snow traction will be reduced as the tire's tread reaches the point where the remaining tread depth becomes less effective in deep snow.
     

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