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Battled some nasty weather and surfaces Saturday night and the Prius handled surprisingly well. Heavy winds and snow on roads already coated with ice made the conditions quite slick. I encountered icy but sanded freeways, bridges and overpasses, long gentle hills with a couple of inches of new snow atop the older ice, short steep hills on unsanded country roads and even a 1.5 mile stretch over the river and through the woods on a rutted dirt track with about 6 inches of unplowed snow before reaching my final destination. Then, of course, after 4 hours of moderate snowfall, I had to turn around and go home--exciting! Aside from fears of getting high centered I felt quite confident at every turn. The car tracked solidly and, even on a skating rink formerly known as a grocery store parking lot, the factory tires didn't slip much at all. (I don't have VSC.) I gave up Subaru's AWD for the Prius and after this adventure I don't think I'll miss it. The last car I had that felt this good in snow was my '66 Volvo Amazon. Starting this weekend I'll be volunteering with a ski school and am glad that I had a chance to test the Prius before heading into the mountains. I'm still planning on getting snow tires this week, but it probably wouldn't be necessary as the conditions I faced Saturday were every bit as challenging as anything I've ever faced getting to and from the lifts.
Drive happy,
Moo :)
 

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Agreed. On a snowy/icy day (dusting of snow that melted under tires and then quickly refroze) my '04 (with traction control and VSC) handled very well. I had some steep declines and it slipped only slightly, and handling and braking were good.

And this while watching other cars (camrys, BMWs, etc.) slip-sliding away.

:lol:
 

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Ran into some really nasty stuff on our way home from Detroit auto show last weekend - ice, freezing rain/snow. We passed a lot of ditched vehicles but the Prius handled the situation very well. The VSC is amazing. I think this is the best snow/ice handling car I have owned.
 

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I have to agree with the other comments. Just a few hours after my Prius was delivered, I faced snow, some ice, and a steep snowy driveway. Absolutely NO problems.

I had snow tires put on today (learing from living in Vermont for a few years awhile back). I can't wait for an icy driveway to try the combination out.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
I took my Prius up into the mountains again last weekend. An overnight storm had left the final stretch before the pass incredibly slick and the roadway was littered with cars, which caused traffic to halt. Of course from that point it was extremely difficult to get traction, so I listened to my wiser inner-voice and chained up. I felt vindicated later when a guy in the lift line told me he'd had to chain up in the same spot--even though he had studded snow tires. On a side note, the chains left nasty black marks on the wheels. I'm happy to report that a light buffing with some rubbing compound removed the offending marks completely. I never noticed before but the outer ring of the stock alloy wheels is protected by a plastic cover, which proved quite helpful in this instance.
Drive happy,
Moo :)
 

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Albuquerque got a nice dose of winter earlier this week. The roads quickly iced up and I got the oppurtunity to use the traction control and the VSC. The traction control monitors the acceleration very well , ensuring smooth start ups. The stability control is probably the most interesting and impressive feature though. I was driving up-hill and came around a corner to see an S-10 sideways in the road spinning his rear wheels. I pulled the car to the left and started to brake, but the Prius continued straight for a split second, but then the slip indicator light illuminated and the and car pulled to the left. It felt as only if the left wheels were braked because the car actually leaned over to the left. A long story short, the ABS, VSC, Traction control worked seemlessly on icy roads. I am impressed as always with the Prius...I love this car! :D
 
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