Originally Posted by CHRISfromRI
Originally Posted by Walt
The problem is that while they may look like winter tires, they suck as winter tires.
I know. I owned a pair and suffered through a couple of winters on those things.
The Nokian WR is an all-season tire. It is not a dedicated winter tire and the engineers had to make many many compromises in winter performance in order to allow them to survive in the summer. These compromises show up as poor performance - I would get stuck in places with the WR that were no problem with the Hakkepallitas or the Blizzaks.
That's very funny because on my last vehicle I had Hakka RSIs and I also had Blizzak snows, and the vehicle before that I had Gislaved and Vredestein snows and both of those vehicles were rather poor in the snow (albeit the more recent one was even worse than the one before it) compared to my current two vehicles on the Nokian WR G2 - which BTW has only been been around for 2 years, so you must be thinking of the original directional tread WR and not the new asymmetric tread WR G2.
My current two AWD/4WD vehicles were actually quite a lot better in the snow on the OEM tires they came with from the factory than my prior two 2WD vehicles with their dedicated winter snow tires - and MUCH better at that. So it's not just tires, but the whole package including the driver and the vehicle. With me driving as a constant between all of the vehicles, either one of the AWD/4WD vehicles was tremendously better on the worst possible tires (the ones sold on them), than the previous 2WD vehicles were on the best specialty dedicated winter snow tires. Then when I put the Nokian WR G2 tires on the AWD/4WD vehicles they became vastly better yet, so much so that my quest for better was over.
It's always fun comparing apples to oranges. Let's diverge for a moment and think about how AWD/4WD driver skill, and tires are related.
Let's think about what is meant by "was tremendously better".
Some questions spring to mind:
If you suddenly had to stop your vehicle, could your 4x4 with the worst tires ever outstop the 2wd with the best tires?
If you got into an icy corner too hot, could you coast around a corner faster on the 4x4 on the worst tires than you could with the 2wd and the best tires, or could you trail-brake into the corner gradually reducing braking effort and increasing steering effort and get around a corner with a higher entrance speed?
If a deer jumped out in front of your car, or if someone swerved into your path could you avoid a collision better?
Could a professional rally driver also do the same?
First of all, it must be admitted that having a pull at the front and a push at the back does allow you to maintain a higher speed in control around a corner and achieve a higher corner exit speed, as some of the forward progress traction load is relieved from the drive wheels, giving them more cornering ability. You will not notice things starting to slip until you reach higher loads, if you are going for acceleration combined with turning out of the corner the 4x4 has a big advantage. If you have overcooked it, though there is no advantage. If you are a safe driver and drive according to conditions, you might not notice this symptom. A 4x4/AWD drive will appear to handle much better if you don't push the envelope. And you can get more out of a 4x4/AWD if you do push the envelope, but as far as performing an emergency stop or obstacle avoidance, it's all tires, and that's my not so humble opinion.