Hooniverse Asks- What's the best cold weather ride?


As the Midwest endures triple-digit temperatures with 115+ degree heat indexes, and the whole country languishes in the dog days of August, a mental break from summer would be welcome, if only for a little while. So, what’s the best winter ride?

Snowmobiles offer great mobility in the snow (hence the name), but only if you happen to live where snow covers the ground completely for an extended period of time. Even then, you only want to go where the trails go. They’re not the best option for commuting to the office unless you have a really, really well insulated suit and a waterproof attaché case.
So, when the snow flies and the temperatures plummet, what is your ride of choice?

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78 responses to “Hooniverse Asks- What's the best cold weather ride?”

  1. Hopman Avatar

    Anything with a good set of snow tires and a powerful heater!

  2. miklm Avatar

    A plane ticket south.

  3. LTDScott Avatar

    I have no idea. No, this is not a snarky SoCal resident response, it's just that I've never driven in any weather or conditions worse than rain.

    1. dr zero Avatar

      Well we're in the middle of winter down here, and I'm with you. Never driven in anything worse than rain, and the Focus has handled it fine. I don't think that it has ever snowed in Sydney, not in my memory at least.

      1. LTDScott Avatar

        I too drive a Focus, but as mentioned above it's seen nothing worse than rain.
        I grew up just outside Melbourne, and it only snowed once there while I was a kid.

  4. Juliet C. Avatar

    Saab.
    Duh.

  5. muthalovin Avatar

    Its been a while since I used this, and I am pleased to have the occasion to do so…
    <img src=http://lh5.ggpht.com/_z51hrrVaAI0/Suz1FxLlb6I/AAAAAAAACAA/vrI3VswuT8U/raptor_snow2_1024x768_thumb%5B2%5D.jpg">
    SNOW RAPTORZ!!!!1!

    1. engineerd Avatar

      You may use that as much as you like.

    2. Peter_Dushenski Avatar

      I think I’ve had this dream before. Or maybe it was a dream within a dream. But probably not. It was probably just a regular dream. I might’ve had a mullet in the dream though.

  6. Maymar Avatar

    Chevy Chevette on nearly bald tires – tail-out hoonery whenever you want, at speeds that even an amateur like myself could handle (over the course of a winter, I spun it once, and it wasn't for lack of trying).

  7. Rust-MyEnemy Avatar

    <img src="http://img.alibaba.com/photo/11183805/Hovpod_Hovercraft.jpg"&gt;
    Hov Pod
    Capable on all flat terrains, water, sand, snow
    Noisy,
    Hideously uncomfortable,
    Almost impossible to accurately control,
    Dangerous as hell.
    Ticks all the right boxes for awesomeness.

  8. scroggzilla Avatar

    Why, a Ferrari 275 GTB is perfect for snowy conditions….
    <img src="http://farm4.static.flickr.com/3288/3385581285_f0115281d3_o.jpg&quot; width="627" height="557" alt="monte carlo rally 66 pianta-lippi ferrari 275gtb" />
    <img src="http://farm3.static.flickr.com/2584/4187909976_7c6bc49ea0_o.jpg&quot; width="638" height="529" alt="66 monte carlo rally pianta lippi ferrari 275gtb" />

    1. Maymar Avatar

      Every Ferrari must be driven like that at least once. F1 cars, you're not exempt.

  9. engineerd Avatar

    The Hilux. It's good for snow
    <img src="http://www.radiotimes.com/content/features/galleries/top-gear-polar-special/05/mainImage.jpg&quot; style="width: 450px; height: 450px; border: 0" alt="imgTag" />
    And volcanoes
    <img src="http://cache.gawkerassets.com/assets/images/12/2010/06/500x_top_gear_cooking.jpg&quot; style="width: 500px; height: 284px; border: 0" alt="imgTag" />

    1. Texlenin Avatar

      Is it me, or is that a hard-shell rifle case being ejected out the bed in that first pic?

    1. longrooffan Avatar

      Hot D*mn…I finally got it right!! Thanks Jeff!

  10. tonyola Avatar

    Having lived in Florida most of my life, I am no authority on driving in temperatures much lower than the '40s, and I've driven in snow and ice maybe twice in my life. However, I think a 4WD Jeep Cherokee would do the job nicely. Or a sled with a team of Huskies. What do I know?

    1. Hopman Avatar

      Ironically, in the first snow of the season in NH, it's those 4wd Cherokees and AWD Subarus that usually the first ones into the ditch.

      1. SSurfer321 Avatar

        It's usually the AWD/4WD luxury SUV's/crossovers in the ditch first in NW Ohio.

        1. CptSevere Avatar

          They're also the first ones into the ditch on the way up to the ski resorts in the Utah mountains. Except the ditch is the creek way down there along the canyon floor.

      2. engineerd Avatar

        That's not the fault of the vehicle, but the fault of drivers thinking that 4WD/AWD gives them magical powers.

        1. SSurfer321 Avatar

          It doesn't? Every time I move the floor shifter in my truck into 4-High I hear chimes and glitter falls from the headliner…

        2. skitter Avatar

          The fallacy of AWD: An increased ability to accelerate means there is also an increased ability to corner and stop.

          1. Kogashiwa Avatar

            I had a WRX briefly, and the first time I ever drove it was in a nasty storm with the roads covered in snow rapidly turning to ice. It still had the summer tires on it that it came from Japan with. I thought all was going just swimmingly, didn't really notice that it was all that slippery, until a light changed right in front of me and I ended up halfway through the intersection …

  11. IronBallsMcG Avatar

    As ususal the answer may be W12 Phaeton.
    On a more plebian level I have loved a 5-speed 240 wagon as a cold weather ride. Seat heaters are a must. My current B5.5 Passat (sadly not 4motion) is a very nice cold weather ride. There's something very comfortable about it.

  12. TurboBrick Avatar

    Classic box-Lada. Most vehicles start getting finicky at -30C, Lada doesn't mind at all. It'll fire up on the first try and the heater will still sear your eyeballs.
    <img src="http://www.ladakerho.fi/kuvasivu/mobilia/230203/mobilia230203F.jpg"&gt;

  13. omg_grip Avatar

    A tan Oldsmobile Cutlass Ciera, with TruCoat of course.

    1. Age_of_Aerostar Avatar

      What about that burgundy 98?

      1. Smells_Homeless Avatar

        I wouldn't expect an answer soon. That guy's been known to flee the interview.

  14. IronBallsMcG Avatar

    Am I seeing that right?

    1. engineerd Avatar

      In Canada, Mustangs are FWD.

      1. IronBallsMcG Avatar

        I knew not taking Canuckistani Culture 101 in high school would catch up to me

    2. Maymar Avatar

      He missed the memo that they named it the Probe instead of the Mustang.

    3. Charles_Barrett Avatar

      Several years ago, my '88 Lincoln Continental (an over-sized, over-optioned Taurus clone) required a California Smog test on a dynamometer. In the waiting are I watched the assistant position the car on the rollers, and remarked to the supervisor "he does know that's a front-drive car, right…?" He quickly scampered over to get the car turned 'round.
      Could have proved interesting, but I was fond of my car and didn't want to see it harmed by incompetents on the Cali Air Resources Board payroll.

  15. lilwillie Avatar

    A bottle of brefass scotch and the wife…

    1. engineerd Avatar

      This may be the perfect answer.

    1. damnelantra™[!] Avatar

      tatra really is the worlds best car maker.

      1. CptSevere Avatar

        I'm getting to be a big Tatra fan myself.

  16. Andrew Avatar

    S2000 (or any other lightweight RWD convertible with an LSD and no ESP/TC/Etc) on Blizzaks. If you're doing it right, you should have to shovel snow out of your footwells/center console/everywhere else when you're done.

  17. BobOfTheFuture Avatar

    Chains up front for some control, nothing in the back for slide action.
    C'mon guys, this is the hooniverse, and you missed that?!

    1. IronBallsMcG Avatar

      Did that on a K-5 Blazer. That was fun.

  18. Eurylokhos Avatar

    I've driven a lot of different cars in brutal NH winters, and none have been better than a Subaru Justy. Tiny, manual trans, 3cyl with a button on the shifter to kick it into 4wd. Even on all seasons, those tiny little tires would get that car through anything. It even had a great heater. Just a great car all around. About the only thing I've had that came close was a 91 325ix. The only thing that stopped it was snow higher than the hood. That thing was a tank.

    1. joshuman Avatar

      Yes indeed. My Mom had a 4WD Justy when I got my license. We had some good snow that winter. I drove it like every 17-year-old drives their parent's car.

    1. ZomBee Racer Avatar
  19. Charles_Barrett Avatar

    I'd opt for the Unimog, but barring that, how about one of these…?:
    <img src="http://www.freewebs.com/jmsstarwars/ATAT1.jpg&quot; width=500>

    1. JeepyJayhawk Avatar

      Way to go for the thread kill.

    1. JeepyJayhawk Avatar

      Whatever that is the IT wall doesn't like it.

  20. JeepyJayhawk Avatar

    <img src="http://www.americantracktruck.com/uploads/images/jeep/ATT 94 Jeep Wrangler 005.jpg" width="500/">
    Call me when this heat wave breaks.

    1. SSurfer321 Avatar

      When you absolutely have to have the most ostentatious vehicle around
      <img src="http://www.carpictures.com/media/images/400/03KNK320246696A.jpeg"&gt;

      1. JeepyJayhawk Avatar

        The chrome rack really ties it together and says "look at me I'm serious about coke deals"

        1. SSurfer321 Avatar

          Thanks. Thank you for that. Now I have to requisition a new monitor and keyboard from the IT department. The invoice will be mailed at the end of the month.

          1. JeepyJayhawk Avatar

            Sure, no problem. Just send the invoice to Jeff Glucker, CO Hooniverse Insurance Corp…

  21. rikadyn Avatar

    How am I the first one to repost this:
    http://cgi.ebay.com/ebaymotors/Archimedian-Screw-

  22. name_too_long Avatar

    D8 CAT
    9030T Series
    Steiger 535
    LeTourneau Land Train

  23. coupeZ600 Avatar

    A Brick! This one just climbed out of a huge hole made by a record snowfall while we were all out plowing snow. Proceeded to pull two Ford F-150's out of their respective graves (until Spring at least).
    <img src="http://i422.photobucket.com/albums/pp308/rexjenney/PC070854.jpg&quot; border="0" alt="Photobucket"></a 600>

  24. ZomBee Racer Avatar

    A fat chick! (snort!)
    OMG I'm so sorry, no really… (prepares to burn in hell)

  25. CptSevere Avatar

    When I had my '71 Caddy Fleetwood 75, nothing, absolutely nothing would stop it when it had the studded snows mounted. I didn't even have to put weight in the trunk, like I did the Caprices when I drove cabs, or when I had a '69 Cutlass. After I got rid of the limo, I kept the studded snows and put them on my F100, let the bed fill with snow, and it did just fine. That limo was something else, though. Serious traction, whether it had people in it or not.

  26. ptschett Avatar

    I like an extended-cab 4×4 pickup for winter, like my '05 Dakota. Extended cab for the extra wheelbase (on the theory that yaw will be slower, and more controllable, and therefore more fun — plus more warm and lockable cab space for people or stuff), 4×4 for getting out of trouble and creating more travel opportunities in marginal weather, and I like the ground clearance of a pickup giving enhanced parking-spot opportunities (like halfway onto the snow pile.)
    Here it is in front of my old apartment building during a blizzard a few years ago.
    <img src="http://i33.tinypic.com/nl75ld.jpg&quot; width="500"/>

  27. jjd241 Avatar

    Whatever Jeremy Clarkson says…
    [youtube yNqx62uSQhk http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yNqx62uSQhk youtube]

  28. Bo Darville Avatar

    It is often maligned, but I used to dread snow before I got my X3, and now I love it. Heated seats and steering wheel, great AWD system, and a reasonable amount of ground clearance. The stability control is such that it will keep you going straight if you behave responsibly, but can be driven sideways when you feel like it. I love practicing my Tokyo Drift moves while taking the kids to school, but they love it more.

  29. P161911 Avatar

    My first serious snow driving came at the wheel of a 1977 Corvette. A limited slip diff and a 51% rear weight bias helped a lot. The little air dam on the front made a horrible snow plow though. I was working a co-op job in Midland, MI in the "Spring". It was my only car. This would have been the early 1990s.

    1. Kogashiwa Avatar

      Similar principle to my '85 RX-7 that got me through three Manitoba winters. On terrible "all-seasons" no less. Just have to know your limits, is all.

  30. dr zero Avatar

    I can tell you that the best shoes for winter aren't a pair of Chuck Taylors, even through I did three Norwegian winters in various pairs of them. Not too bad when it is really cold, but not at all great when slush forms in the gutters and soaks your foot through.
    I terms of cars, from talking with the folk who actually had cars in Norway (they are hideously expensive over there, not good when you are on a lowly post-doc wage), I think that the tyres you use are more important than the actual car. Of course I did have the experience of a FWD Astra getting us up a hill in reverse when it wouldn't get us up forwards, but I wouldn't recommend an Astra to anyone.

  31. Rory Carroll Avatar

    911 with cheap-o snow tires. Best winter car I've ever had.

  32. PowerTryp Avatar

    Anything I can drive. I'll drive anything in the winter being the adverse weather weirdo that I am.

  33. dustin_driver Avatar

    There is only one answer: Fordson Snow Machine.
    [youtube zBjlSJf4274 http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zBjlSJf4274 youtube]

  34. Black Steelies Avatar

    For when its just too sketchy out to justify taking the Veyron out of the garage…
    [youtube IUaH-dw7FzI http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IUaH-dw7FzI youtube]
    a beater with a heater for the looooaaaded

    1. Bo Darville Avatar

      I've seen three Gallardos and an R8 driven in the snow in the CO town where I live. One Continental GT too. Rich people are nuts.

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