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There were no issues in normal/light snow conditions as long as acceleration is gradual. Sudden acceleration over slick surfaces (light snow, ice, or even wet paint) will lead to the traction control system cutting power. I found this cut to be a bit excessive.
I had personal issues with the stability control. If the car started to slide I would try to compensate, but so would the computer in the car. In really deep snow I found it better for me to turn off the system.
Drives: 2013 Kia Rio 5 SX UVO, 2012 Cadillac Escalade Ultra Luxury
I agree that the traction control is excessive.... i've had it in other vehicles and wasn't so obtrusive. The first time it turned on for me I thought the car died... and then I got used to how much it really did it...
Drives: '12 Kia Rio LX. '11 Toyota Tacoma, '07 Honda S2000, '11 Husaberg FS570, KTM 990 Adventure
i agree with MD. it is "ok". with stock tires, it sucks, but with snow tires it does "ok".
the abs is very intrusive, and the traction control is beyond intrusive. turning it off is part of my car starting routine now.
the car is heavily biased toward understeer, and it is worse in inclement weather. i have found the ebrake to be my friend here... i commute 45 miles each way, and 20 of those miles are country backroads. in the nearly year of ownership, have encountered some decent storms so far. it is very quiet, and it is sometimes tough to judge what is going on at the contact patch. the car doesn't give much confidence that i won't end up in a ditch.
mine is currently stock, save for type R badges. with any luck, this year i will play with suspension/alignment settings in an attempt to make the car more communicative.
I run winter tires in Canadian winters and mine (2012) is just fine. It does pack snow into the wheel wells like crazy though, enough that I'm constantly cleaning it out to avoid distorting the wheel wells when turning.
ESC/TC (electronic stability control/traction control) is not really good at low speeds. However, give it a try at higher speeds - say more than 50 km/h.
Of course do it on a closed track, or at least wide open road with no traffic (middle of the night).
I thought same with Rondo. ESC would kick in too often. Well, it comes with traction. Read=tires. Poor traction, ESC will detect even smallest slide. Of course it will not prevent from accident if you make a few sudden turns of slippery road. I tried - there is a limit to this system
So, my suggestion - sure, ask how it drives in snow, but the best is to try yourself. My perception of handling is different. I like cars with no systems controlling traction, but this is me.
However, one day I really enjoyed (well, I was rather happy) having ABS with EBD and ESC. One day I was driving on black ice - simply, rain started freezing while I was on a highway. When I hit brakes because I could feel on the steering wheel something was wrong, ABS and ESC were working for me. I could focus on steering only. And other cars...
It took me more than 400m to slow down from 65 km/h to 10 km/h... would it be better without them? Hard to say - the distance could have been shorter, but I would struggle to keep it straight.
Now living/working here in Edmonton has opened my eyes to real winter driving conditions (as opposed to the wet winters of Victoria).
So I purchased a set General Articmax for my Rio5 - which apparently are one of the best snow tires you can get. I have to say, I've been totally impressed. The Rio handles deep snow, light snow, freezing rain, ice... literally everything without much drama. Compared to the all-seasons, it's like night and day.
However, I do also agree with what others here are saying about the ESC system. I've been at slippery intersections and found myself wondering why I am not moving (and now in the way of oncoming traffic ) But the solution is to just turn it off at low speed (say, around town), and put it back on when you hit the highway. Works like a charm.
Although all the safety systems are great, I think good winter tires make the biggest difference in the end.
Yes. I used to have studless snow & ice tires for the Crown Vic ( a canadian car btw ) and it made all the difference too compared even to brand new A/S radials.
I don't have the capacity for two sets for the Rio5 so I had to go with new Goodyear Comfortred Touring all-seasons since they had the highest rating for light snow.
Well we got 3" yesterday and just in going around curves and doing a Scandinavian flick, the ESC would kick in and limit my fun to just a mildly noticible wiggle in the rear. I can see where the ESC will help in 90% of the snow and icy curves but still its not a guarantee against the upper 10% of icy idiocy that'll get you killed.
I just took my car out in the snow and it seemed like the traction control is very harsh when I accelerated to fast it completely stopped the wheels from moving but overall i haven't really tested it out i do plan to put some weight in the truck to see if that will help the overall handling
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