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Discussion Starter #1
Has anyone noticed when roads turn icy, and not the roads as much as when only bridges are icy, when the surface turns slippery, Mercedes 123's and 126's have a tendency to yaw, then straighten out when the pavement is dry, again?

Going down the road, straight as can be, come to a bridge, you're on the freeway going 65, and the car slews a bit, the back to the right thanks to road crown, but as soon as you're off the bridge, the car snaps back to going straight. No steering wheel adjustment need be made, either, it just happens. If this were a half-mile long bridge, you'd need to do something, of course, but on the short bridges, it's kinda in the background.

My wife's old 123 did this, and though it was odd-feeling, once you know it's coming, no big deal. It happened again this past Sunday, with my 126. It's not overpowering the rear tires, the tach doesn't budge. Could be the suspension's angles/adjustment, though. I know power wasn't an issue on the diesel 123...was a 240D with 200K on it...the thing could barely move out of its own way.
 

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I hit black ice, once in 1985 driving an '84 500SEC AMG with M&S tires, (saved it) and once in the '91 SEC (about a month ago at 25 mph lost it, but no wreck) but then, black ice is a beyotch in any car you can name.

I have taken to driving the old Subaru Outback - slowly - now in bad weather conditions, at least it is AWD, and gets you through the snow easily, if slowly.

A lot of people here and in the Lake Tahoe area buy the Outback, I think they must be the staff car around here, they are all over the place, and they make sense as they get through snow, are very easy on gas, VERY reliable, pretty long lasting, and the new ones are surprisingly luxurious, especially the LL Bean ones.

Driving in the snow is nobody's idea of a good time, at least not mine.
 

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i think all cars do that! kind of like coming from a restricted mode ( dry pavement ) to a free mode ( ice ) where the car finds its own straight line., & travels the path it was pointed in. car alienment, body alinment, tier preasur, shocks, lay of the road,ect.all play a role in your cars aditude. just remember do not overstear.
 

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:eek: I don't know that much about "yaws" and "tachs," but if you think your MBs can get unsteady on ice, you should try driving my wife's '05 Camry. That car will slide on almost anything except perfectly dry pavement (including just plain 'ol rain)! It can get downright scary at times. I'd rather hit the road in my E320 any day. Thank goodness we don't have much ice (and less snow) here in north Texas; the only people who seem to know how to drive on it are transplants from the midwest or east. :rolleyes:
Hemersam
Garland, Texas
 

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Are you lifting your foot off the throttle as you enter the icy conditions? That will shift the load on the tires from the rear to the front axle and sometimes allow the car to fishtail. Google "trailing throttle oversteer" for more info.

You can often settle this behavior down in an RWD car with left-foot braking -- applying a little brake with the left foot while maintaining throttle with the right. It takes a little practice, but it works.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Are you lifting your foot off the throttle as you enter the icy conditions? That will shift the load on the tires from the rear to the front axle and sometimes allow the car to fishtail. Google "trailing throttle oversteer" for more info.

You can often settle this behavior down in an RWD car with left-foot braking -- applying a little brake with the left foot while maintaining throttle with the right. It takes a little practice, but it works.
Nah, it's not trailing-throttle oversteer. I'm really pretty good with car control, and this is steady-state. It's the rear wheels sliding down the slight grade in the road, but I've had many a RWD vehicle, before.

Though not one which was independent rear suspension.... Ah, HA!

In thinking about it some more, and realizing I have noticed this only in MB vehicles, and older ones at that, I'm beginning to think it is related to the rear-end squat they develop over time.

Hemersam, I grew up in Dallas, and I had a couple of pickups, so I know all too well about lack of traction in what seems like, to most people, completely normal conditions. Hell, I've had merely dusty pavement kill rear tire traction on the '80 F-100 I was cursed to own for a time. With a 100 HP I-6 coupled to a manual three speed, that's saying something.

Cascade, funny you mention the Outback, as Subaru is the official state car of Colorado. They are freakin' EVERYWHERE. You see the occasional Eagle wagon, and even more rarely, a sedan, but otherwise, it's Subie-world. Oh, and old Grand Wagoneers with snow-plow attachements are common in the high-country, but Subies are ultra-common.

I kinda like snow, to be honest. Ice is a drag, and I hit black ice in the '95 Intrepid we had once...by the time I could have reacted, we were off it, but it was in a canyon we drove to commute, daily, and it'll get your attention in a hurry. Instant oversteer, which you can't do jack about.

You know you've been around ice enough that, when you see it, and see it's just a small patch, you tell your passenger to 'hold on', there is a quick slide, and then it's over.

While in CO, we had the '95 Intrepid, with both traction control and bitchin' snow tires (studless), and a '94 Jeep Grand Cherokee Ltd., V-8, full-time bona-fide 4-wheel drive, with BFG A-T's on it, and it was pretty much unstoppable.

Note I said, "pretty much".

I'm on my way home during a storm which produced four feet of snow, that's about 1.3 meters for the rest of the world, in 24 hours. No lie.

I'm following a ten-year-old Subie with no chains on it up the dirt road to the house we were renting at the time. No problem...I've got him on traction, tire size, flexible power, transfer case flexibility...I'm golden!

We get to a point everyone dreads, as there is a 130° turn, on a hill, which is followed by what has to be a 25% grade. It's tough to walk, when dry.

Homeboy in the Subie is about 100 feet ahead of me, makes the turn, and disappears. Cool! He can make it, I'm nearly home.

I make the turn, start up the hill, make it about 50 feet before I am presented with 2K RPM in 2nd gear while in low t-case range, and I'm slowly going backwards.

Hmmph! No WAY am I going to be out-performed by an old Subie. Nuh, uh, not gonna happen.

I backed up, got a straight running start out of someone's driveway...didn't make it as far the second time. I gave up, and started down the mountain, and immediately got stuck in deep snow, going through the tracks I'd made not 5 minutes earlier.

Did I mention it was snowing like a mofo?

After rocking it out, I took the long way around...took 3 hours to go about two miles, but I made it home.

The next day, there were easily 8 cars in this turn, all half-buried, and the Clear Creek sherrif was out putting tickets on them, just to add insult to injury.

Oh, and while we had a road grater for use as a snowplow, the county did, it was broken down on the road I wound up taking home. We were locked into the neighborhood for three days....
 
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