Since snow is approaching in a couple months, I was wondering how our Q7s handle. Does the quattro handle like it should? Better then the MDX or Xdrive BMWs? I have the 18inch wheels with All Seasons on them. Will they be good enough?
perhaps better than good enough. I have the 18" wheels with all-seasons and went over several mountain passes last winter and it was no different than my A6 or A4 before them. I'm hoping that the xdrive is okay as my fiancee just got a 328xi and we plan on using it for some of the same reoccurring trips.
Some might recommend winter tires. Yes, they are better than all-seasons but how much better is the question. Having used an all-season/winter setup on my A6 I can say that it wasn't enough of a difference to warrant the cost of the winter tires, the quattro and ESP really make this vehicle shine.
I wonder, too--I'm also in New England. I normally run dedicated snows in the winter, but we plan to spend time in the South this winter. My OEM tires (Goodyear Eagle LS2) are complete crap according to everything I've read. Between that and the 20" low profile times, I'm thinking I'm in for some adventures this winter.
The 20's will do OK, but winter tires will make a difference.
Only drove the 20" Contis through one snowfall and they were pretty good, probably because the Q7 is so heavy. Winter tires will always provide better braking and cornering on ice. I also have the beautiful (and expensive) s-line wheels which is why I bought winter wheels & tires. I want to save them from road salt and NE potholes. I bought 18" AT Italia wheels & Pirelli Scorpion Ice & Snow tires from Tire rack.
It's all about priorities. There is no doubt that dedicated winter tires will out perform A/S tires in snow/slush/ice conditions. Period. Unfortunately, you won't experience the performance difference unless you are in a situation where you wish you weren't.... Kinda like insurance - you never need it until you do.
Will all seasons with quattro get you from point A to point B in most conditions? Sure. Will you be thankful that you invested in dedicated winter tires when you are driving through a blizzard with the kids asleep in the back seat? Or trying to avoid an accident on an icy decline? Absolutely.
If you consider the value/assets (i.e., life and car) that are 100% dependent of the four small patches of rubber that keeps your car stuck to the road, I think it's a no brainer. Sure tire/all-season technology has gotten much better over the years, but manufacturers cannot solve the diametrically opposed consumer priorities of ride comfort, treadwear, dry performance, wet performance, and snow/ice performance with a single product (okay, maybe for states below the Mason-Dixon line...)