Prius v & Winter Weather

Discussion in 'Prius v Main Forum' started by iDonna, Jul 23, 2014.

  1. iDonna

    iDonna Junior Member

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    Hello everyone :). Been many years since I've visited this site; boy has it come a long way! :)

    I'm considering purchasing a Prius v. Took a ride in one a 2014 this evening and was impressed. I've owned a 2006 Prius and loved it but after five years, I strayed. Now I want back in. I think at this point my main concern is how it will perform in the snow/winter weather. I'm based in Central NJ and have a pretty decent commute (60 miles RT daily). Basically my questions are a) what kind of performance can I expect from a Prius v, and b) does it make sense to go for the 17" tires; would that improve things? I believe that was an upgrade.

    Thanks for any input.
     
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  2. rdgrimes

    rdgrimes Senior Member

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    The 17" wheels are standard on the Five package. I doubt they will have much effect on winter traction unless you want specific tires that aren't available in 17".

    The v is heavier, longer and wider than your previous hatchback. All those things should add to winter driving performance in comparison to a hatchback. Obviously it can't plow deep snow, but I've found it to be more than adequate for occasional ice and slippery conditions. A lot depends on the driver. It does have some traction control functionality that your 06 did not.
     
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  3. Stevevee

    Stevevee Active Member

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    Hi Donna. I've had mine for a year, and those Vermont winters;)

    It did pretty well. If you like the first one, this will be no different, maybe better who knows?

    I think the 17" tires drop the mileage a hair, but they do look better. Tires will generally be more expensive as well.

    Love my fairly new iMac BTW ;)
     
  4. JimboPalmer

    JimboPalmer Tsar of all the Rushers

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    Since you are wise enough to p!an for winter, plan to buy wheels that have good snow tire choices.

    Go on tirerack.com and pretend you own a 2014 v five and then a three and see your future.
     
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  5. wjtracy

    wjtracy Senior Member

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    Wow 60 miles RT daily that's alot of miles per year, no wonder you want to get back into the club.

    You probably want to focus on good All Season tires.
    If you study the tire testing on TireRack.com and comments here, you cannot really get a tire that "does it all."
    The best low rolling resistance, high MPG tires, generally sacrifice some winter grip.

    So for us in the Northeast, some of us want a top notch winter grip and sacrifice some MPG. So now we are talking about Michelin Defenders, or Goodyear Assurance ComforTred and there is a new Continental True Contact sounding good. Nokians are a lesser known brand but some here use for winter conditions and good all year around good MPG. Some of the tires in this category are quite long life, so although we sacrifice a few MPG, the cost savings for less tire changes makes up the difference.
     
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  6. SageBrush

    SageBrush Senior Member

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    Some 15k miles a year for work. I thought that was about average for US cars. It *is* a lot, and common.
     
  7. ny_rob

    ny_rob Senior Member

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    Hi Donna,

    I'm out in the middle of LI, so we get most of the same bad weather you get, an my commute is 56mi RT. vs your 60mi commute.
    I put real snow tires (Michelin x-ice) on their own dedicated rims for the winter- and my 2012 PIP (Plug-in Prius) was excellent in snow with them on! As others have mentioned- once it gets deep and you start plowing it with the front chin spoiler it's not so great, but for slop/slush/3-5" snow or packed/plowed roads the Gen III Prius with proper winter snow tires is excellent at starting, stopping and turning.

    I wouldn't rely on the "all season" tires from Toyota to get me through a 60mi commute in the Tri-State area.
     
  8. Tideland Prius

    Tideland Prius Moderator of the North
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    Is there a different steering ratio for the 17" wheel version of the Prius v? I know there is a difference on the regular Prius liftback so you may want to drive both versions of the v (16" and 17" wheels) to see if there's a difference in steering (particularly lock-to-lock).

    Note that the 16" alloys wheels have wheel covers like the Gen 2 but the 17" alloys are regular alloys.

    With a longer wheelbase and "Pitch & Bounce Control", it'll feel a bit more comfortable than your Gen 2 with regards to the ride quality.

    According to Toyota.com, the Prius v has 0.2" more ground clearance (5.7") than the regular Prius.
     
  9. ryankokesh

    ryankokesh Junior Member

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    I tried some conti DWS all seasons, but couldn't deal with the inability to turn off traction control. So I got a dedicated set of Blizzaks. Turned it into a snow machine. Like others have mentioned, the only thing that's going to stop you is the front lip or bottoming out in a drift. (Ask me how I know...) my wife feels much more confident driving it in the snow with the Blizzaks. Really was a night and day difference.


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  10. Stevevee

    Stevevee Active Member

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    I drive a lot in the winter, so snow tires have always been a must have item. Besides the extra traction, you have far better ability to stop. But one of the most important things is turning in an snow conditions. Due to the design of all seasons or summer tires, they simply don't have the side tread to grip around turns, so you slide. I might add that while I don't like to drive with studded tires on, this past winter was the first in two decades I wish I had them on. For studded tires, the two that seemed to outperform the others were the Nokians and the Generals.
     
  11. ryankokesh

    ryankokesh Junior Member

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    I've heard great things about nokians.

    I too am pretty partial to being able to stop and turn. Much more important than being able to go :)


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  12. Stevevee

    Stevevee Active Member

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    I had a terrible experience a few years ago with a new Nokian winter tire, one they developed that wouldn't drive like a snow tire. They not only wore down like crazy, but the experiences in snow conditions was white knuckle driving. I never looked back to see if they dumped that model, or if they were all like that. Regardless of the glowing praise on all things winter tire related, I usually have to find out the hard way if the claims match the real-world experience. So far, the only two snow tires I've ever owned that lived up to the tests have been the Blizzaks and the Generals. People that live in less severe climates can easily take advantage of more driver-friendly designs.
     
  13. Air_Boss

    Air_Boss Senior Member

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    We use Dunlop Winter Sports M3 on both the Prius v and the CR-V and are quite pleased with their performance.
     
  14. mikefocke

    mikefocke Prius v Three 2012, Avalon 2011

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    Pull the wheel covers off the 16" wheels and you find some decent looking wheels only minus the center caps (available on ebay). In the NE where temperature variations lead to potholes, the smaller wheel diameter gives you more tire crush space before the edge of the pothole digs into the wheel itself.

    You might find some of the 16" OEM wheels available from folks who think the size relative to the body opening matters and who have "upgraded".
     
  15. Danhool

    Danhool New Member

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    Did nokian hakkapeliitta r3 on the honda fit last year. Excellent in colorado mtns
     
  16. Centerpunch

    Centerpunch Junior Member

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    I changed to 17" wheels and have a set of oem 16" wheels I'd sell.
     
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