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Old 12-26-2015, 12:16 AM   #1
jollykreiger
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Default Impreza Terrible Understeer

So I have had my '96 Impreza L for exactly a year on the 31st and am wondering if the understeer is normal on ice or snow.

I have had a 5.0l Mustang, '79 2wd full size ford, '80 bronco, '84 bronco II, '85 s-10 blazer (4wd), '96 awd aerostar, '97 awd explorer and my personal favorite on winter pavement '91 Nissan sentra 1.6.

All of those cars I have had through a minimum of 2 winters and some up to 8 winters.

I have had the mustang plowing snow drifts as high as the hood and high centered the sentra in a foot of snow.

Some had terrible over-steer, wich I find fun, some didnt want to stop, and others had under-steer that I could always manage.

But the impreza.. has absolutely terrible under-steer, I turn the wheel and immediately nothing happens. At this point I would rather have it fish-tail out of control, because then I can at least point and shoot in a direction rather than waiting for a guy who lost control to slam into me.

I am on a second set of tires. These ones are even halfway aggressive M/S tires for the mountain roads. I case you were wondering.

Is there anything I can do to counteract this or is that just how they are, on pavement it handles great, I dont know if its this way when I push it to the limit there but it more than satisfys my need on pavement.

Any input, I do want to go with FOZZY struts, would that help?
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Old 12-26-2015, 12:42 AM   #2
MrTris
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I think a driver mod would help, more than anything else.
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Old 12-26-2015, 08:19 AM   #3
Obviously Tyler
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Maybe look into stiffer struts/springs and a thicker rear sway bar.

And maybe check your steering components if you think the problem lies there.
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Old 12-26-2015, 11:17 PM   #4
drpoop
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MrTris View Post
I think a driver mod would help, more than anything else.
Yeah, not like rubber on ice is intended to have perfect grip. Go the right speed for the conditions. If you can't drive safely in the conditions (say you need to go on the freeway and your car isn't safe over 10mph) then don't.
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Old 12-28-2015, 12:34 AM   #5
jollykreiger
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SO, I have 2 for that just how the car is. MrTris and drpoop.. Correct?

I never said I am loosing control, I understand what this car can and cannot do, this month alone I have diven 3,000 miles, mostly on snow and ice. I have yet to feel once that I was gonna crash because I am driving slowly. I have done 30 on the interstate and 10 in a fog in the middle of nowhere on a straight road. Slowing down to almost a full stop to even try and turn.

If I sounded like I was on a rant.. I may have been, im just trying to say that it wasn't so I can race around everywhere, but more so I have the ability to avoid other drivers who dont seem to slow down when they need to... (twice Ive put a truck in the ditch to avoid people sliding through stop signs)

The problem is this impreza wont even attempt to turn when every other car I have ever had will at least try and turn.

The question at hand was is this normal for this car and is there anything I can do about it.

I will have to get a bigger rear say bar then. Is it more about holding the stiffness in the rear or can I remove the front one. It wouldnt be the first car Ive had with no front sway bar, just a lot body roll and slowing down in the corners.
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Old 12-28-2015, 03:16 AM   #6
Kottosen
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Larger rear swaybar, slightly smaller front swaybar should help..but i would try a larger rear first
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Old 12-28-2015, 03:29 AM   #7
Dasguzman
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Going to full blown winter tires or winter tires with studs helps a lot. Just my .02
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Old 12-28-2015, 03:43 AM   #8
Kottosen
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The suspension and swaybar stuff is only if you are starting to get grip and lose it during the turn but if you cant even start to turn its the tires
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Old 12-28-2015, 08:02 AM   #9
jollykreiger
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Kottosen, that makes more sense.

Looks like I'll have to get a set of studded tires.

You know exactly the weather Ive been driving in.

I have family in Waterville. Ive driven up there 3 times this year, somehow never actually making it into Wenatchee.
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Old 12-28-2015, 03:40 PM   #10
Kottosen
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jollykreiger View Post
Kottosen, that makes more sense.

Looks like I'll have to get a set of studded tires.

You know exactly the weather Ive been driving in.

I have family in Waterville. Ive driven up there 3 times this year, somehow never actually making it into Wenatchee.

Yeah this is the most snow we have gotten in years...my studded snow tires arent having any problems though
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Old 12-28-2015, 05:24 PM   #11
jollykreiger
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When I was living there I broke down and bought a set for my sentra. So I know exactly what you mean.

Its just frustrating that even without the studds the sentra handled snow and ice better than my impreza

It sure takes off faster and better and stops about the same, but I can care less if I cant even turn the thing.
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Old 05-24-2016, 03:47 PM   #12
Frivolous
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Default Hmm

If this is still active...

Maybe a cv Axle up front isn't working? I've never had this issue and have a 95 impreza l
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Old 05-24-2016, 03:50 PM   #13
Annihilator817
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An AWD car handles fundamentally like a FWD car.

That means that hitting the gas in a low traction turn causes the rear to gain traction and the front to lose traction .

Your RWD mustang was the polar opposite.

I second the need for a driver mod.
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Old 05-24-2016, 03:55 PM   #14
Annihilator817
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Frivolous View Post
If this is still active...

Maybe a cv Axle up front isn't working? I've never had this issue and have a 95 impreza l
When an axle brakes on an AWD Impreza, the car will no longer move under its own power.
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Old 05-24-2016, 06:02 PM   #15
auskip07
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do you have wider than stock tires on the car? If so you might want to switch back to the stock size. I know some people will chime in with "i have wider tires and i dont notice a difference" well some people are idiots. Wider tires all around will cause this.
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