Could you please comment on YOUR AWD system?

noelmnoelm Member Posts: 2
edited June 2014 in General

Hello folks,

After brutal NY winter, I am out in the market to buy AWD SUV. Looking primarily at CR-V, RAV4 and Forester/Outback.

Few videos I checked on YouTube consistently conclude that Subaru has best AWD but none of my friends and family circle owns a Subaru so no idea of first hand experience on Subarus overall. Mostly Hondas or Toyotas, but none AWD (they are not in Snowy region of the country).

Those who have AWD (any make,CR-V, RAV4 or Forester/Outback), could you comment on how satisfactorily it works in NY winter, esp. in black ice condition?

Thanks in advance.

(P.S. - Apologies if this is already discussed, I never got hang on Edmunds forum and the old format was way out of my comprehension. Now don't know how to search the forums.)



  • steverstever Guest Posts: 52,457
    edited June 2014

    It's the tires. :smile:

    I just sold my '97 Outback since we're moving to NM and going back to one car. It was a friend's Anchorage car and had studs on it when I got it for Idaho. Easy life there (I sold the rims since studs weren't needed where we were); mostly I took it up to the ski hill a lot during the winter. For the last three winters we lived in the UP on Lake Superior. Last winter we had over 200 inches of snow and an elderly relative in failing health we had to take to the hospital 2 hours away several times. The Subaru performed admirably, including a couple of trips in blizzard conditions.

    Mostly I used all season tires on it. The last two years I put Nokian "all weather" tires and that really made it bombproof.

    The only test it didn't really see was black ice. We'd get that in Anchorage at the intersections but didn't see much of it in the UP, I suppose because there wasn't enough traffic to compress the snow before the plows got to it. For starting out at packed down intersections, nothing beats studs on black ice. But good winter tires would be important for running around where you might find a patch of it on the road no matter which vehicle you get.

    I test drove a CR-V a couple of months ago and liked it a lot. Never tried a RAV4 although I had a Tercel back in the day that ran good. But an Outback or Forester or maybe the new Crosstrek should work well for you in upstate NY. I'm kind of surprised that you don't have friends with them or don't see a lot of them there.

  • steverstever Guest Posts: 52,457
    edited June 2014

    Oh, you can search by "awd" under the Car Forums link above, but click the dropdown arrow there and search in the Title box and your hits will be a bit more on point. Here's a couple to skim:

    4WD and AWD systems explained

    Subaru Outback AWD vs Toyota Venza AWD

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