It’s the debate that is as old as time. Do you need winter tires even though you have 4WD?

Being that it’s the end of November, it’s safe to say that fall has come and gone and it’s pretty much winter already. In perfect timing, Tyre Reviews have dropped a video that shows the difference in performance of having winter tires compared to a car without them. To fully demonstrate the differences, two BMW X1 subcompact SUVs were used as test mules.

One labeled “winter” was front-wheel-drive fitted with a set of Goodyear Ultragrip Performance Gen-1 winter tires. The other X1 labeled “summer” was four-wheel-drive and equipped with Goodyear Eagle F1 Asymmetric 3 summer tires.  

With the test vehicles in place, it was time to put the never-ending debate to an end. For this to happen, both X1s were put through a series of tests in the snow. The first testing was a straight up acceleration and braking test from 0 mph - 31 mph then braking to a complete stop. The next test consisted of a hill incline and decline. The third test involved an emergency maneuver test while the SUVs were moving at around 21 mph - 27 mph. Lastly, the two X1s were put on a short track to test the snow handling on to see which one got around the course the quickest. 

Wherever you live in the United States, the need for winter tires is almost always a good recommendation depending on where you live or plan on traveling during the wintertime. Even in sunny Southern California, many people like to drive up to the mountains to catch the fresh powder. And when that happens, most vehicles are equipped with at least all-season rubber. However, if the snow gets too deep and chains aren’t available, having a set of winter tires would be the optimal solution. 

Is it absolutely imperative to have 4WD or can you survive with 2WD with winter tires? Watch the video to find out which configuration reigns supreme!

Source: Tyre Reviews via YouTube