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Thinking of buying a new 3...Strato Blue...but I'm wondering how it handles in the snow. Any comments?
 

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i'm in northern new jersey, and i picked up my car on thursday. basically, i haven't driven without snow on the ground yet, and i'm very happy with the performance. i feel it slipping at times where i expect most cars to slip, but its no worse than i need.

I read on these forums that the default 17's aren't very good in the snow, but I believe otherwise. If they're not good, they're definitely not bad either. Some people on these forums exaggerate about how bad they are.

also, i got the car without ABS, and this hasn't been an issue for me.
 

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slips like a banana on ice. The stock tires really suck. Nothing that some good rubber can't fix. Until you get used to it sliding around. My last car rocked in the snow, but this one is not as good.
 

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I have no complaints. I drove on snow and ice last night and didnt have a problem. As much crap as I hard about the RSA's, I expected no traction. On the contrary, I had no problem at all except a little spinning when I floored it. That wasn't too surprising. Overall I was very impressed, and really don't think they deserve to be slammed as bad as they are. Keep in mind it is a car, and you'll be fine. I even took some corners at speed to see what I was in for, and they bit in the snow fine. The ABS was nice for hard breaking too.

Craig
 

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Test driving that I did in snow left me with no worries. Snow tires will obviously be better, but I felt fine with the stock tires. Your comfort level will obviously depend on what you're used to from any other cars you have driven in winter as well as your own driving habits. If you're running dedicated snow tires during the winter months or you tend to drive hard regardless of the conditions then the stock all-seasons won't be particularly impressive. If you're running stock tires on your present vehicle and have a lot of snow experience then you probably won't be uncomfortable with the stock tires on the Mz3. A good general tip is that you take both the rants and the raves that you read on any bulletin boards with a grain of salt.
 

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Yeah as I've said many times now the stock tires aren't fantastic but I've never been worried when driving with them.
 

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Depends on how much snow you get and what you are used to. The dealer told me that I will need winters - I laughed and said I will get by with the stock rubber. It snowed the next day - the following day I bought winters - he was right IMO, this car (or should I say wheel/tire package) is not great in snow. The low profiles combined with the width do not make for a great comfort level in snow. I found that stopping was not an issue but starting from a dead stop was - much more so than other FWD cars I have owned or driven. As others have noted, depends on what you are used to and what you expect. Bottom line, it's not the car, it's the tires - you will find out soon enough and can swap to winters if needed.
 

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they're regular all-season tires.
compared to winter tires, they suck.
what else would you expect.
 

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In terms of winter confidence driving, I'm definately shaken in this car. I'm gradually getting used to it, but the adjustment from my parent's SUV, and then the underpowered, undertorqued, automatic Acura I used to drive is difficult.

The 3s will spin if you're not gentle. It won't like turns if its too slick. And the ABS will come on constantly (much more than it came on in my parent's SUV and acura in the same conditions). In fact, its better to hit the gas than plug the brake (most know this, I'm just starting to re-aquaint myself). I'm not looking for performance going into a snow storm. I hit the highways at 40mph, onramps at less than 20mph. The first time I took a snowy turn I didn't brake until I was turning (which was a mistake that caused me to skid). Then I attempted to recover by hitting the brakes with the wheels turned and I skidded even more with ABS engaging and only being half effective since the fronts were turned (God I'm a bad driver).

Personally I think that the car is very light, very torquey and high powered with medocre tires . Perhaps a tire change will help that (but moreso a driver's re-education course).
 

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So, with the general idea that snow tires would be useful for the Mz3, are there any dedicated snow tires out there you would recommend on the 17s or maybe even 16s?

How about tires for 17s/18s for excellent all-road performance?
 

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I heard good things about Michellin Pilot Sport A/S (though I don't know if they come in 205/17R45).
 

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ok, obviously all of you are used to either very good (new) cars, or very good snow tires.

My last car was a 93 MX6, with all season Drags (no tread left on the tires). Even when i borrowed a set of winters for a day the cars a$$ end slipped out more than a fat chick in tight clothing bending over to pick up her keys. I could do donuts without thinking (or the ebrake) and would generally take about 500 ft to stop from 50kmh.

Now, Im over exaggerating a little...but still. My MZ3 only has the 16" wheels with the Toyo Proxies, but it handles like a dream. Even in the slipperiest conditions, it responds to every little command. And when I want to have fun, the car will respond, but i have to MAKE her do it. One of the best winter rides ive ever driven. IMO.
 

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Slippery Driving Fix

I am not overly impressed with the winter handling so far of my M3 with the 17" Goodyears here in PA. I would like to make it though the winter without switching tires for only the next couple months.

I have found that if you have an AT with the sportshift package that if you start from a stop in 2nd that you can get off the line with limited slipping if any at all. Something to try anyway folks.

Maybe next winter I will go for a 16" rim/tire set up with complete studs on all 4 tires, should be able to climb trees then.

Can't wait for winter to end, at least I know I'm not exceeding any of the break in guidelines so far with the roads being so bad.
 

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Maybe its all in the TYPE of snow. I live in Vancouver and the snow I drove in was 2" and slushy. None of this nice packed stuff. I couldn't drive up a small hill because my wheels would just slip. Even starting in 2nd on that hill and nothing... My car just slipped and started sliding sideways towards the curb.

Got myself some better all-seasons (Falken 512's) and its a little better.
 

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Slush

Slushy snow and hill can be tough on the M3 or for any car without some agressive winter rubber. I wouldn't doubt it if someday we see an AWD version, I will be in line for that.
 

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DianaPrince said:
Thinking of buying a new 3...Strato Blue...but I'm wondering how it handles in the snow. Any comments?
The 3 handles decent in the snow...that is on flat surfaces. I live near the mountains and there's a lot of hillies where sometimes the vehicle has a hard time climbing. Nonetheless, I haven't had a problem climbing with the exception of spinning the wheels a few times. With all due respect, you should be fine in the snow handling department...as long as you take it easy. Driving slow and cautiously is the key factor, but if you're going to be one of the SUVs with 4WD...thinking that they're GOD ON WHEELS, then look to something else. More times than not I've seen a lot of those 4WD vehicles out of control and hitting another vehicle or object.

With that said, be cautious and drive slowly in the snow and you won't have a problem.

BTW...just saw a Strato Blue at the dealership today when I dropped off my car for service...and that color is BEAUTIFUL :p. That's a great color choice. Would definitely pick that over the Winning Blue Mica. The deep blue color gives it a very rich and classy look IMHO. The Strato blue did not have a metallic look to it. It appeared to be more of a midnight solid blue without the pearl or metallic effect. I actually like that color better than my Titanium Gray...but that color is cool too :D .

Spencer
 
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