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I have heard lots of members discussing their concerns for the Promasters traction considering the back end has very little weight. Here's what we have found driving the Promaster over lots of thick ice, and a little bit of snow:

The Promaster has exceptional traction! The only time the vehicle would lose any traction what so ever, was driving over huge ice clumps 6"-8" tall on iced roads. Driving over flat ice, and snow posed no problems. The rear end did not fish tail! This is surprising as you would think it would have rough handling, however, it had hands down better traction than driving a jeep compass. Very impressed! It would even climb icy hills that were quite steep, and would have been impossible to climb up. The tires they have selected perform very well, and after seeing how well they grip we will be replacing the tires with factory oem when needed (we usually use michelin). There was little to no load in the cargo area...maybe 800lbs, and it wasn't centered over the rear wheels. We had one appliance, metal floor, bulkhead, link ramp accounting for the weight plus some tools. I'm amazed!!!!
 

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Sure could of used a front wheel drive Promaster today, I had to drive 100km (60 miles) on pure ice.
Seen one guy go by me and minutes later he was in the ditch There were about 20 vehicles
in the ditch that I counted today.
Thanks Businessman for the updates on how it drives!
 

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Front wheel drive should be better for driving through snow and ice conditions right? Better than RWD at least.

Thanks for the update. Important info, especially for people like me in Canada.
 

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This RWD has more problems.
During the winter often I have to go down in the valley to meet express couriers that use Sprinter and Daily coming up from the cities at lower altitude . I have no problems with my Ducato with winter tires. Here in the Alps people prefer FWD vans that are easier to drive on snow. Here the Sprinter is considered one of the worst vehicle on the snow. A friend of mine drive a Sprinter school bus and when there is fresh snow, also with winter tires, he have to mount chains. I have chains on board, but I have never mounted them...
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hdTPwqel8Ag&feature=youtube_gdata_player
 

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With a front-wheel drive, on a short climb, you always have a chance to try in reverse with great traction due to the weight of the engine plus the load.
 

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This RWD has more problems.
During the winter often I have to go down in the valley to meet express couriers that use Sprinter and Daily coming up from the cities at lower altitude . I have no problems with my Ducato with winter tires. Here in the Alps people prefer FWD vans that are easier to drive on snow. Here the Sprinter is considered one of the worst vehicle on the snow. A friend of mine drive a Sprinter school bus and when there is fresh snow, also with winter tires, he have to mount chains. I have chains on board, but I have never mounted them...
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hdTPwqel8Ag&feature=youtube_gdata_player
Hey I watched the video and I could see that Sprinter rusting as the video went on...:)
 

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My sprinter does great in snow and ice. I also carry about a ton in the cargo area tho. With the right tires anything would do good.
 

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I haven't been impressed with the Promaster's snow/ice capabilties at all. With winter studded tires it barely gets around traction wise. I have been surprised by its STOPPING ability though - it stops reasonably well on snow or even ice.

ONE FOOT of snow hit Portland last night and there is no way my PM is going anywhere (MAYBE if I put the cable chains on).

Couldn't even make it up my steep driveway last night. My neighbors crappy little Prius with studs will run circles around the PM.
 

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One thing I found really helps is to turn off the Electronic Stability Control (ESC) when negotiating a hill with 4'' of snow. It makes a huge difference, as the throttle does not go to idle when one wheel looses traction, but let's you pick up a little speed.
Up here in Quebec, this winter has been a real one with plenty of snow storms, and I find it handles just great. I have the 136'' and 159'' wheelbase. (this is compared to the Sprinters of coarse! )
 

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Dressed her up with Blizzaks all around. She's a beast in the snow and ice, totally planted up front. Especially impressed with the stopping capability. 14" coupled with melt/freeze = no challenge. With more weight being added in the rear (see: picked up the AL for the platform bed panels) I think the performance is only going to improve.
 

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I'll be damned - I guess I'll have to try Blizzaks at least on the front. Can't use studs?? - that worries me.

Cable chains on my mostly empty PM turns it into a violent rattle trap where over 30 mph would be impossible - no freeways.

I have Cooper Discovery tires on my PM now -- not recommended. I tried turning of ESC just a bit in my driveway and no go, but I am sure if cautious with the throttle ESC off is a good idea - that cutting out crap makes it even more frustrating.

I have seen a bunch of videos of people driving around in the snow in PMs bragging about how wonderful they are, however they are almost all on flat ground - YES, fine - but try any hill ... w/ ice or tall snow .... done, finito.

Are these the correct Blizzaks??? I don't care that much about load - my van rarely is 25% full (telecom work - I always see
BLIZZAK W965





thanks
 

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