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Old 08-27-2002, 12:06 AM   #1
MaxRex
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Join Date: Aug 2002
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Default Anyone survived driving stock RE92 in snow?

I am trying to decide whether I can use the stock RE92 tires, only 2000km so far, through an Ottawa winter. Yes, we do get real snow here!

I realized that winter tires are better (have them on my Maxima). But I am hoping to get one winter out of the stock tires while I figure out whether I want to get some 17" wheels for summer driving.

My previous experience with so "all-season" tires in the snow range from "pretty-close-to-snow-tires" to "suicidal-in-snow".

Thanks.
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Old 08-27-2002, 10:00 AM   #2
Robin2
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Yes you can get away but don't expect miracles.....

With AWD, you'll be able to go faster (accelerate faster than most cars) but braking or turning in snow is going to be hard.... With the RE92's, the ABS kicks in way to easy because you simply don't have any grip....

If you're going to drive only in Ottawa and never go in the country, then you can get by with the RE92s.... There's some Ottawa members who have done it.....

I personally don't recommend it..... but others my say it's ok.....

Robin
NCSC
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Old 08-27-2002, 10:27 AM   #3
warpdrive
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I did it, but I'm looking for real snow tires this time around.

The winter we had last year was pretty mild so it was not problem. With fresh tread, the RE92's are fine for city driving ( plowed roads). Like robin said, braking and turning are affected most, you just have to take it easy because AWD helps mask the lack of traction off the line. The RE92's are not suicidal but certainly you can do a lot better. They are just about "average" for all-season tires in snow conditions.

I already bought some nice alloys for summer with summer rubber and will use the stock wheels for the winters.

This year around, I'm not taking any chances, having real winter tires will allow me to drive my WRX the way it was meant to be enjoyed
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Old 08-27-2002, 11:53 AM   #4
Louis123
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Hi MaxRex,

I drove the WRX all last winter with the RE92s and as long as you drive defensively the RE92s are ok.

However, I did get stuck out in the freezing rain while on the River Parkway and I happned to hit an icy patch - the RE92s were really bad. It is very fortunate that I was only going approximately 40kph at the time because the WRX slid a long way before coming to a halt.

This year I am going back to winter tires.

- Louis
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Old 08-27-2002, 12:16 PM   #5
RallyOttawa
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If you think driving your WRX with alloys in the summer is fun... just wait until you drive it in the dead of winter with some quality snow tires! I have much more fun driving in the winter in my Impreza than in the summer... the AWD combined with some Toyo Garret HTs... really owns the road.

A few winters ago, I was driving my all-seasons on the queensway in a TERRIBLE snow storm (the kind we seem to get 5 times a year)... and I saw lights coming up in the unplowed fast lane near Bronson... man was that car moving!! Turns out it was a Hummer beaming through the snow without a care! I vowed that someday I would have that kind of confidence in my car.

This winter I bought my Impreza, and put on some serious snow tires... and that was me in the unplowed fast-lane smoking down the queensway in that storm!! It really comes down to how much safety you're looking for. I would never let my wife drive a car in the winter without good quality snow tires... it's just that much safer. Not to mention fun! And you'll never get stuck again. (unless you really screw something up!)

C
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Old 08-27-2002, 12:28 PM   #6
GooseMan
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the RE-92 are OK for winter. I went thru 1 winter with them and everything was OK. Just take it easy on them...dont think that just because you got AWD, youre driving some miracle rally car or something. You can get up and go a lot faster than most other cars, but stopping and turning will not be better. But if you just drive normally, you should be fine.

Once you step up to REAL winter tires, such as Nokian Hakkas , then you'll experince EVERYTHING an AWD Subie has to offer! These things are like tanks in the snow!!

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Old 08-27-2002, 12:33 PM   #7
RallyOttawa
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I forgot to mention another great winter safety item... If you ARE looking for that Miracle Rally Car feeling...

Take the Motorsport Club of Ottawa (www.mco.org) winter driving course! There you will learn techniques such as skid control, ice recovery, the (dis)advantages of ABS in the snow, and e-braking in the snow.

The single best thing you could do for your car this winter is to take this course. As always, your first mod should be to "fix the nut behind the wheel".

C.
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Old 08-27-2002, 01:47 PM   #8
GooseMan
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dude, whenever you get more info on that course, PLEASE, let us know! sounds like fun!
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Old 08-27-2002, 01:56 PM   #9
direwlf
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I had my RE-92s on for 2 winters and they were ok but nothing to write home about. No season tires is the best description for them honestly. If you are going to get snow tires eventually anyway, you might as well invest now.
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Old 08-27-2002, 02:55 PM   #10
Robin2
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Isn't it funny how were talking about winter already! and snow!

Only Subaru owners does that......

To give you an idea, my snow tires will be facing their 4th year.... Michelin Artic Alpin and I still have lots of tread left....

Robin
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Old 08-27-2002, 04:14 PM   #11
warpdrive
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Robin,

What do you think are better, the Arctic Alpin or the Nokians?

I was all set to the Michelins at Costco but I may consider the Nokians again.

I have the H-rated Pilot Alpins but there are too much of a road tire and not great snow tires.

But the regular Arctics are so well reviewed that I thought I wouldn't go wrong with those.

I'm now considering the Nokians because of the report on Nokian's own web site about how well they grip compared to the others after a couple of seasons, and this group buy.

I had the second gen Nokian Hakkapellita ("traditional snow tires"), and they were very good. Lasted quite a long time 4-5 seasons, but they were noisy and squirmy in the dry due to their snow tread blocks. Their lateral grip was not the best in the snow, and but they were very predictable which made driving on them very safe. They give a little at their limits but then hold their line (almost as if they grip better with a slip angle)

So now I'm in a dilemma about which to get.

Do you also have an idea how much the 205/55/R16's cost from Costco? Costco has incredible return policies. In fact, one friend, who's pretty stubborn, got Costco (after a bit of wrangling), to refund the WHOLE amount of a set of tires after they failed to reach 120,000km (treadwear guarantee). Try THAT at any other store.

I think I might end up letting price decide it between them and the Nokians because I think either tire will be fine.

Last edited by warpdrive; 08-27-2002 at 04:29 PM.
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Old 08-27-2002, 05:02 PM   #12
Robin2
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The Michelin Artic Alpins are pretty good overall...... In the dry, they are very very quiet.... and chuncks of rubber wont fly off if you take a corner too hard.....

In wet conditions, they whine a bit but nothing exceptional..... In snow they're pretty good too and in icy condition, they're decent..... It's pretty rare the ABS kicks in....

At the next meeting, I could one of my Artic Alpins to see 3 years of use out of them.....

For the Nokians, which one is the one with the nut shell treatment ...... If I lived in Quebec, I'd get these and have them studded...... or is it Q's that everyone studs them?

Robin
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Old 08-27-2002, 05:11 PM   #13
warpdrive
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The Toyos have the walnut shell compound but I don't know if Nokian uses them.

I pretty much decided on either the Alpins or Nokian Hakkas (price dependent). I'd rule out the Blizzak line just because I want something that is good for more than 2 seasons.
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Old 08-27-2002, 09:50 PM   #14
MaxRex
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Thanks for all your encouraging responses that I should "survive" as long as I am careful.

I do plan to get winter tires next winter and better performance tires down the road. I have Toyo winter tires and Dunlop SP9000s for my other car so I definitely agree with those who say that the right tire makes a huge difference.

I am already having a blast with my new Scoobie in the last month -- I will just add a little more fun a bit at a time :-)
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