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well its that time of year again.. when the snow falls to the ground.. the ice forms on the roads and standing outside means you're freezing your butt off...

I guess some of you put your 3/S's away in the winter, or you don't live in the snow belt region but for those of you do dare to go to those snowy places that even SUV's fear to trek, here are some of my recent experiences...

starting in weather thats colder than -25'C (about -10'F) the car starts easily, just a bit of whining coming from the belts but goes away rather quickly as it heats up.. no block heater either.. my car just sits outside overnight and she's ready to go in the morning.. its supposed to go below -30'C maybe even hit -40'C (without windchill) tonight so I'll see how she starts in the morning..

the rear wing and aero parts (I have a stealth RT-TT, so it has those ducts by the rear window) in the back are a pain to clean off.. snow just gets clogged in there.. rear wiper blade is a pain to clean around too.. I let the car sit for around 5 minutes.. it thaws pretty well..

Also be cautious of long term driving when you're kickup alot of snow behind you.. I was leaving a nice snow strom behind when driving about 40km on the highway.. When I got home the whole back bumper had a layer of snow on it effectively hiding my liscense plate, reverse lights and backup brake lights.. Also the snow was build up onto the trunk so my brake lights had a thing layer of snow on it.. be cautious of a lot of snow hiding your lights.. the rear wing brake light was fine.. so you have at least one light showing your braking.. don't have mud flaps yet.. but I imagine that you'll kick up less snow with them..

My town got about 6+inches of snow one evening.. I drove some friends home that night.. AWD handles great.. only gripe is the clearance of the car.. take it easy on some of the deep parts as you will end up packing the snow, as long as you take routes that other cars drive on its alright..the snow isn't very deep and the road is a bit packed.. roads less travelled on aren't bad either.. it just a matter of the depth of the snow.. I guess those with the active aero would want to disable it.. having it open up when you hit some deep snow would be bad..

I have a set of new blizzak MZ-01, they work really well. Putting speed around icy surface isn't a good thing to do.. the rear lets go but recovery is very easy.. just a quick counter turn and a little gas/brake and you're back in control.

My ABS system is not working, well it works but whine of the check the car does as you start driving doesn't occur.. but before the light comes on the system still works.. I have to get it checked but my brakes are fine.. so now I can lock up the car and put it into a slide. When just driving along and locking up the rear tends to swing right.. I was just driving straight, hit the brakes and the rear swings to the right.. done this a couple time and it seems to always go right.. I'll check my shocks and tires to see if I can determine a cause.. or it could be just a fluke.. or its just some sort of physics of the weight distribution of the car.. hmm I add weight to the car's left so maybe that's why it goes right.. less down force on the right ??

Spend the extra cash on your wiper fluid.. throw in the stuff good for -50"C or the rain-X stuff.. I used the rain-X enhanced washer fluids.. it seems to leave that little coat of rain-X on the windshield that really works.. hmm wonder if they'll make summer fluid with rain-X in it.. that way I won't have to keep reapplying the stuff everytime other week..

I haven't had my car long, got her at the end of summer, but getting a penetrating oil dip is a good idea as well as a yearly grease spray too.. there's some sort of tar substance (Ziebrate or something like that).. abit more long term stuff.. but I'll have to check on its application.. I don't like it cause it'll be a pain to work on the car with it.. at least with a grease spray you can wipe it off before you work on it..
 
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That's what I call a long post!

Last winter was the first time I had my car out in the snow and that'll also be the last time for that matter. I'm unfortunately without the AWD, but even with FWD, my SL slid around like no other car I've driven before. To adjust the center of mass to where it's physically best (the center of the car) so that I wouldn't fishtail as badly, I added a sandbag into the hatchback. This did help out quite a bit, but after all the other hassles of winter weather driving, I just decided to keep her in storage during the snow months.




[This message has been edited by 3000GT owner (edited December 31, 1999).]
 

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I drive my car since 1993 and it is ... my winter car. Here in Switzerland we have everything (including trees on the roads from the heavy weather storms we had over christmas... 12 people died) and the car handles very good. I'm using the Continental 235/45-17 on the stock wheels and they handle very good on all conditions. I once drove a Porsche Carrera 4 (also AWD) but our power distribution is much better and it feels more safer than the Porsche who's almost twice as expensive ! He had those tires on it as Continental made it for Porsche and the larger BMW and Mercedes. I can highly recommend them.

For the antifreeze, we got some new Citrus-fluid that doesn't smell too extreme when applying to the windshield. And also, don't forget to add some Methanol to the Water Injection (if you have it) as the normal water freezes in the pump and may cause damage to it.

Active Aero on my 3K rules. The water/snow is traveling like through a channel when the wing goes up. I had only about half an inch on the rear bumper, null problemo !

For driving in snow I'm always attending a driving school for fast cars here in the Alps. Some guys bought a second car after this event due to the fact that they saw how my AWD handeled. I tell you guys, the F355 is not recommended in winter, haha.
 
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Driving in the snow brings up an interesting question ...

For you guys that drive in heavy snow AND have lowering springs on your car --- do the lowered springs make driving in heavy snow worse, or it is about the same? I have bought RSR drop springs for my VR-4, but am considering waiting until the wintery snow storms are over before installing them.

I would think that the stock setup is better for snowy conditions since the car rides higher, but wanted to get some opinions ....
 
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3000GT Owner, what type of tires you had on for the winter driving??

I heard about the continental, they're supposed to be great snow tires.. how do they handle on ice ?? whats the speed rating on them? I think the provincial police here have a bunch of cruisers with continentals on them.. saw one up close with goodyear ultra grips..

if I had some more cash and wan't in a hurry to get some snow tires I might have gone with the yokohamma's.. can't remember the name but they have really small walnut bits in the rubber.. the idea is that walnuts are harder than ice so it acts like studs.. They should also have a longer tred life than my bridgestone blizzaks.

citrus-fluid sounds nice.. is it an orange colour ?? my rain-X stuff leaves the snow a little yellow, doesn't really cause a bad smell either..

My car is stock so I can only guess that lowered springs shouldn't cause too much a problem, though hitting deep snow will cause you some grief.. too deep and youll be stuck plowing the road.. that is if you aren't stuck in the snow..

Also my ABS light isn't coming on.. I wonder if some snow jammed a sensor.. I left the car warming up for 10+ minutes (mom was taking a while getting ready) so maybe it thawed something.. ABS works great, has a different brake pedal feedback than what i've felt from other cars.. can't put the car into a slide as easily.. and I wanted to do some winter rallying
 

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This is my first winter with my RT/TT. I must say that Nitto 550's are not the best winter tire. The car will let loose the rear end and there is no lateral traction going around corners. A 270 deg spin alerted me to this. Other than having to take the corners slow, I am amazed at how well the car does. I do not have a problem getting the car going and I love the ABS!!! The car stays straight and stops fast. However, the ABS does sound like gears grinding rocks. It's funny to see the look on peoples faces when they hear it. Definately the best sports car for Wyoming!
Jeremy
94 RT/TT
#327
 
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Alex Lee:

I used 'all-weather Yokohama tires for winter driving last year...I know, without a good set of snow tires for an SL, I'm asking for it, but since I'm at school during the winter months and don't NEED a car down there (Even though I miss my 3K like hell!)I just store it now til the spring. After I graduate, I'll get some good snow tires since I'll be needing my car in the cold months then.
 
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