how does Benz perform on snow/ice with snow tires? - Page 2 - Mercedes-Benz Forum

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post #11 of 14 (permalink) Old 12-05-2006, 08:53 PM
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I don't know yet how MB performs in the snow on winter tires, because I just got winter tires today. However, I can tell you that MB on all seasons doesn't perform well even in just a couple of inches of snow. Yesterday it snowed while I was at the movies, and coming back home was a pain. It wasn't scary bad or anything, but ESP and ABS were coming on all the time, and the car was sliding a lot while cornering even with ESP on. I am sure I could have survived the winter on all seasons (Michelin Energy MXV4), but I don't want to put too much strain on ESP and ABS, and have them work like crazy throughout the winter, which tends to be fairly long in Canada.

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post #12 of 14 (permalink) Old 12-19-2009, 07:10 PM
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It's my first year in snow with a 09 E320 and a set of Blizzaks. I've lived in the Midwest all my life and the snow tires make all the difference in the world. Any car will slide around on black ice, hard packed snow, or freezing rain. I've been driving this setup 100+ miles RT through cornfields to get to work everyday and haven't had any problems except having to slow down and drive defensively. I lose a bit on my average mpg, but the changeover to good snow tires was worth every penny. Anyone I know who is still driving all seasons, even the 4matic owners, are whining about how their cars handle in the winter.

In short, listen to the advice of everyone who recommends snow tires for their MB. Find a set you're comfortable with and buy 'em. You won't regret the decision when your cruise by the SUV in the ditch.
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post #13 of 14 (permalink) Old 12-20-2009, 09:05 AM
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Wife and I grew up in the midwest driving RWD cars on snow and Ice so we are reasonably experienced snow and ice drivers.

On our 97 E420, I put a set of Blizzaks on, and frankly, it's a whole lot better on ice/snow than any of th RWD cars with studs I learned to drive on. IMHO, about 80% of driving on ice/snow is learning the skills, (not just car handling, but also "reading" the road for the signs of black ice etc.) the other 20% is the vehicle.

Growing up, there were no FWD cars around (in the U.S), RWD seldom had positraction, few folks had studded tires, "traction control" ment "I stayed out of the ditch", and roads weren't plowed or maintained anything like they are now. And the majority of folks were pretty good drivers on ice and snow out of necessity.

Last year when the ice storm hit Portland, wife passed many a FWD or AWD car that was stuck or spun out or couldn't get going with the Benz. (and more than one 4WD pointed the wrong direction in the ditch) The combination of the blizzaks, W(ife) Mode and ASR is pretty darn good. Brother had the E420 in spokane WA for 5 years, living in the hills outside he city and never got stuck or had any problems either with studded tires. Biggest concern with the Benz is the low ground clearance. anything more than a few inches of snow or any drifting snow and it risks getting high centered.

If anyone in your area offers winter driving or skid school classes, they are worth taking. In our area skid school is offered using FWD cars with outriggers so the instructor can instantly change the car between gross understeer and gross oversteer even on dry pavement. We have all taken the class and it was a humbling learning experience. Gave the class as a gift to our 3 kids in high school and they have thanked us several times for what they learned.


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Last edited by e-420; 12-20-2009 at 01:48 PM.
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post #14 of 14 (permalink) Old 12-20-2009, 09:57 AM
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Ditto to e-420. My father and I both had Porsche 911s (talk about dogs in the winter) years ago. Together we took a defensive driving class that included some time on a skid pad. We learned a few good lessons on how to control those cars, and I think I can still get myself out of precarious situations. Fortunately, I have a "winter beater" so the MB doesn't see any snow and ice.

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