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Having part exchanged my 4x4 Subaru for Evie I'm now experiencing slight concern about the capability of the Leaf in snow. This has not been helped by the fact that the slightest wheelspin on wet roads results in instant power reduction.

Seeing as I have to get to my horses every day regardless of the weather (23 miles round trip so not walking distance) leaving Evie on the drive is not an option.

Anyone driven their Leaf in snow? Thanks.
 
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I can't say I have driven my Leaf in the snow so I am no help I am afraid, but I have heard of some people getting a significant improvement in winter grip performance when using winter tyres. You might want to invest in a spare set of wheels and winter tyres... it has got to help I would have thought...
 

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A guy I know on a cycling forum told me a very amusing tale of his beaten-up old Volvo fitted with winter tyres coping very easily with compacted snow on the motorway and keeping up a constant 40 mph whilst all the other cars were in the slow lane struggling with 20mph. A BMW driver decided that he wasn't going to be outdone by a mere Volvo and tried to follow, with hilarious consequences.

I've never driven my Leaf in snow either, since we haven't had any. However, I do recall having trouble with my old Prius (automatic transmission) in a muddy field a few years ago. Someone who knows about these things will be along in a moment to explain that a Prius doesn't really have automatic transmission and that a Leaf, somehow, is very different!
 

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I've got my Prius momentarily stuck on a slightly inclined slightly wet archery field, also. Given the amount of throttle mapping that must go on in any EV just to be able to get it off the line smoothly when it *isn't* slippy, I wonder why a low-torque "Ice Mode" isn't a common addition. Only having a single ratio of drive to revs with which to pull away seems like an oversight?

My old 2003 Tiptronic Merc had a snow-mode meaning one could pull away in a higher gear regardless of being an auto, so there must be a reason for not including it?
 
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Having used winter tyres on my cars for the last 6 years I can vouch for the massive difference they make, I suggest you buy a set asap though as the price goes up pretty quick this time of year. I get mine from my tyres. Co.uk and store them until I need them. Never tried them on the Leaf but they should be fine. In really slippy conditions you should turn the traction control off and be light on the throttle, or try the economy button which softens throttle response. I've tried Klebers Nokians and Vredesteins all have been good in the snow.
 

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We only had a small amount of snow in our three years with the Leaf, but it was fine. Leafers in America have reported that the Leaf is quite good even in deep snow - but they do tend to have drier snow. Ours tends to be the 'wrong sort' especially after gritting.
 

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When I had two Pandas, the petrol one had ESP the diesel did not. The diesel car was poor on snow the petrol version was excellent. As I drove I could feel the ESP operating by braking the spinning wheel, forcing the diff to put the drive through the wheel that had best grip. Since the LEAF has a variation of ESP built in I expect it to be not too bad on snow. There is some advice in the drivers manual.

A good test track is to drive on short wet grass which seems to act like ice under a car.

Remember that low power is the secret to driving on ice and snow, perhaps use eco mode to turn down the throttle pedal action?
 

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Winter tyres are the only answer to safe driving on snow. In many European countries they are required to make switch to allow safe winter driving. We think the expense of a second set of tyres is not worth it for the 2 days of snow we get each year. Which I understand. The problem is the roads are hazardous because everyone else driving without winter tyres. Driving on snow is great fun in a car with winter tyres.
 

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My old Prius was the best vehicle I've ever driven in snow (haven't experienced snow in the Leaf yet) because of eco mode, creep and no gears. It just takes a different method of driving, i.e. applying power as slowly and smoothly as possible until you start rolling. The "stomp on the pedal to spin the wheels and hope you get some grip at some point" method doesn't work at all, as the car just cuts power. I'm expecting the Leaf to be similar :)
 
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We take our leaf on skiing in Glenshee, and we found that driving in snow is not bad at all, we also purchased some chains for if the snow is too much and we are not getting the traction. This has been mostly short distance and slow speed though.
 

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Winter ability has been on my mind since Summer started to slip away but I resisted the temptation to talk about Snow in the same way as I resist any mention of Christmas earlier in the year.

I remember an elder cousin once saying "Don't try to drive an automatic in the snow." Since then gearbox technology has moved on and my last car Honda Hybrid with CVT was excellent in the snow. The key was using the engine braking which was actually regen braking. With the engine in the drive train there was less tendency to lock the wheels as when you use normal brakes and the transmission could be locked into (an imaginary) low ratio.

I therefore expected the Leaf to be even better as it has more regen capacity. Unfortunately as the leaf has no gears all the regen occurs at higher speeds. There is much less below 20mph and much less than you get with an ICE with manual. I looked at some items on a US forum which seemed optimistic but I belive there is usually more space out there before you hit something.:oops:

I have been thinking about winter tyres but I'm not sure I would want to have the tryes on and off the rims. Once on leave them on is my way of thinking. Any suggestions of suitable alternative rims with the focus on price more than looks?
 

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I had this conversation with my wife only today. I suspect it'll be a case of gently does it. Leave in ECO mode for sure. As with any vehicle, leave larger gaps and be gentle with the controls.
 

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Nope, but my last Volvo was worse than useless. Wide tyres and no weight are a bad combination. Throw in low ground clearance and you soon have a beached plastic Volvo floating on piles of snow.
I purchased some snow socks. They work like chains, but are lighter and simple to fit.
Only had to use them twice, both times to get onto my driveway !
 

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I was gutted last year as there was no snow :(:confused: whilst I dont want it to last long I still also wanted to see how the car handled in the snow, well they use them (Leafs) in Norway but I think they have to by law run winter tyres over there as they have to in Germany.

I think turning off the traction control will prevent the power reduction from wheelspin, Ill be out there as soon as there is significant coverage, there may not be any again though just rain rain rain :mad:
 

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My old (OLD) Mini was great in the snow. I remember once driving through the snow, watching BMWs and other big cars literally sliding by sideways as I just trundled along no bother at all.


Sure it was freezing and you had to roll it to start half the time, but the little skinny wheels worked well in the snow. :)
 

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My first winter with Leaf fitted with winter tyres highlighted how sure footed and well behaved the car was. The smooth power delivery helped a lot. It was amusing passing my neighbours stranded at the bottom of the hill. Winter tyres are the answer. Mine are being fitted on Friday now it's cooler in the morning. The benefits start at 7 degrees
 
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