How are MB 300D's, SD's and SDL's in the snow? - Mercedes-Benz Forum

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post #1 of 3 (permalink) Old 11-27-2002, 10:58 AM Thread Starter
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How are MB 300D's, SD's and SDL's in the snow?

I am looking to buy a commuter car and have wanted a Benz for a while. My one concern is driving in winter. I need something that is better than my 2wd 3/4ton diesel truck (which is just ghastly) in the snow. I have been looking at mid 80's 300d's, sd's, and sdl's. I am guessing the 300d would be the best choice with a shorter wheelbase and likely better weight distribution....? I am used to driving rear-wheel drive in crappy conditions but I want something better than a 2wd truck. I take it a good set of snow tires are worth it? Thanks, RT
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post #2 of 3 (permalink) Old 12-07-2002, 02:32 PM
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I don't know how a diesel would be, but a 380SE's pretty good with studded snow tires (and...

I don't know how a diesel would be, but a 380SE's pretty good with studded snow tires (and ABS!) in the snow. Big, heavy car with long throttle travel (easy to modulate in sticky conditions).

I've heard that low-rpm torque in a diesel may hinder snow travel.

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post #3 of 3 (permalink) Old 12-09-2002, 06:52 AM
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Vehicle: 80 280SL, 85 300SD, 87 300TD, 90 300TE 4Matic, 90 300D 2.5 Turbo, 92 300D 2.5 Turbo, 92 300TE 4Mat
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I've got a 1985 300SD which I've just driven in the snow for the first time. Here are the...

I've got a 1985 300SD which I've just driven in the snow for the first time. Here are the conditions: First, I consider myself to be a pretty good driver in the snow, yet I was apprehensive about driving this car in the snow. Second, I just installed Goodyear Aquatred 3 tires all around. Third, I was driving in about 5-6 inches of snow. Fourth, I have antilock brakes (which were first available in 1985 on the 300SD). Fifth, I used to also drive a 2WD pickup.

The car did great! Very little loss of grip - except when I tried to break it loose. I would consider having the antilock brakes a must if you've got that option. Having new tires was also very helpful.

For comparative purposes with respect to my former 2WD pickup. It was a death trap in the snow with the original Firestone tires - no traction at all! It improved with replacement of the tire to B.F. Goodrich All-Terain T/A Radials. Finally, adding about 300 pounds of sandbags to the back made fro great traction. Bottom line lesson, rear wheel drive will work just fine if you've got good tires and enough weight. I now carry a kids snow shovel and some trash bags in the trunk - If I need more weight I'll just add snow to the trash bags and remove as soon as done.

Good luck!

80 280SL
85 300SD
87 300TD 2Matic
90 300TE 4Matic
90 300D 2.5 Turbo 2Matic
92 300D 2.5 Turbo 2Matic
92 300TE 4Matic
01 Saab 9-5 Wagon FrontWheelDriveMatic

91 300E 4Matic; 96 Dodge Grand Caravan; 76 450SL; 77 350SLC; 87 VW Cabriolet; 87 VW Golf GL; 88 Ford Ranger; 80 VW Rabbit; 80 Dodge Ramcharger Snow Commander; 75 Simca; 67 VW Beetle; 59 Bultaco; 57 VW Beetle; Honda CX500; Kawasaki 250; Honda CB50
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