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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
So first snow fall in the East Coast and wanted to know how the ascent and stock tires did. Unfortunately I had some major surgery this past Monday and I am restricted from driving for about 2 weeks :crying: Lets hear some feedback!
 

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There was a recent post from someone in Alaska I believe. Sounds like the stock tires aren’t great...
I don’t have the $ to switch to better winter tires for the few days of snow we MiGHT get in VA so I’ll be testing the stock ones eventually
 

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That was me and the stock are ok as they do fine for traction but the issue I had with them was stopping and turning. Emergency stopping with the stock tires in the snow are a joke and when it comes to turning the front end tend to plow.
 

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I'm about to hit the snow on my Kumho Road Venture AT51s. I expect it will be rather uneventful, though, I may get the chance to yank some people out of the sand on Ocean Parkway.

Probably putting my tow hook on before I head out and do that Subie thing.
 

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I've never switched from stock tires on any of my Subarus. But I don't do anything other than normal freeway driving. We get about a dozen or so big snow days here in Utah and most of the time my driving is after the plows have been out.
 

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I’m planning to try out the stock tires this winter, I live on the west side of Denver, I do drive up to the mountains quite a bit to go skiing, but I never go when there is a snow storm. I drove a GMC Sierra truck the last couple of years, and I hardly ever needed to put it in 4WD. If I had to use my car every day I would definitely buy snow tires if you live in the snow belt. Back in the day I had an 2005 Outback XT with snow tires, it was great in the snow.
 

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We're supposed to get about 6-8" overnight here in Western NY tonight. If we get enough worth reporting on... I'll chime in tomorrow!
 

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Here in MI, I just drove about 40 minutes in rush hour on surface streets on stock 20-inch wheels/tires. Temperature is just below freezing, but the ground is cold enough the roads were snow covered. Snow is coming down in big flakes at the time. My frame of reference is a previous 2008 Outback/H6 and current MK7 VW GTI. With both cars, we switch to Blizzak winter tires around the end of November through March.

The Ascent seemed to have decent traction moving forward from a stop – no problem. The new tires really helped cut through the snow with around 1 inch of snow cover. But, both turning and stopping were not great when the tires couldn't break through to pavement. During more snow I would be really cautious. Near the traction limit, its huge bias for understeer was clear – it just plows through turns. This is one of the main reasons I switch to winter tires. I was happy that I could rotate around corners with a bit of right foot similar to how the Outback behaved. I wasn't sure how front-biased the Ascent was in comparison, but plenty of torque makes it to the rear quickly. The Ascent is a larger car than I'm used to, but I had the sense it would do a good job keeping things going straight and safe.

We have a set of Blizzak DM-V2 mounted on 18-inch wheels ready to go on this weekend. That should make things pretty solid. Would be great to hear other opinions.
 

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I live in Montana, last week the weather coated the roads with a layer of ice followed by snow. There were multiple accidents across town. I ended up sliding my Ascent uncontrolled through 2 intersections before getting the message to drive really slow. While the Ascent was trying to brake it maintained its direction, it also perfectly maintained its track accelerating on this really slick surface.
The really exciting stuff happened at the weekend when the nearby mountain pass was effectively shut down due to crashes, slide offs and trucks without chains. We decided to take another route over the pass, a mountain road I had driven several times in summer but never at night in a snowstorm. We would not have completed this trip without the following on my Limited Ascent: bright headlights, steering responsive headlights, paddle shifters. The bright headlights were great since the road surface was totally white with no other vehicle tracks, the minor road also did not have any reflector posts, there were no buildings or any other source of light. The steering responsive headlights were absolutely essential driving around the tight bends. On the many descents, touching the brakes caused the Ascent to slide so I finally got to use the paddle shifters. If I did this trip again, I would have the top display show which wheels were engaged and the slope of the vehicle since in the total darkness you had no visual clue if you were going up or down. I also would have had the GPS on and zoomed in as much as possible so I could see any bends/intersections ahead.
 

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My road was very icy yesterday morning with no sand or salt yet applied. Not pure ice, but close. So as a test, I tried stopping at various speeds with the stock tires. At low speeds (5-10mph) normal stops were reasonable with no skidding. At higher speeds (10-20mph) stops were long with the antilock braking system activating and appreciable skidding. The winter tires on my Forester do considerably better. I would consider emergency stops on ice at these speeds, with the stock tires, dangerous.

Ice traction however, was reasonable. I did not slip or lose traction going up the hill with mostly an ice covering. Steering was a bit vague but no appreciable skidding at low speeds. I did not test this at higher speeds for safety reasons. I'll need to find an empty icy parking lot for that.

So, for the stock tires, I would rate ice braking as poor, and ice traction as fair.

There was not enough snow yet to test, but that will be coming very soon.
 

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So first snow fall in the East Coast and wanted to know how the ascent and stock tires did. Unfortunately I had some major surgery this past Monday and I am restricted from driving for about 2 weeks :crying: Lets hear some feedback!
My wife and I took our Ascent up to the Adirondacks last weekend and drove through some heavy snow the entire way up and throughout the weekend. The stock Falkiens did better than I expected in the snow. I didn't feel much slipping and didn't have any issues breaking, but I was leaving a LOT of distance because I knew I didn't have snow tires on. I used the CVT to slow us down as much as I could to help prevent braking issues as well.

Ever since we got back I've been looking for a set of snow tires (I'll feel more comfortable driving my 4 year old and soon to be newborn twins) but may have to wait until next year due to the cost. The Falkiens will probably be fine for the first winter anyway.
 

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Did anyone try X-Mode in the snow?
I did. It opened up the screen with Hill descent and driving through sand/snow/mud graphics in the center mini info screen.

Not sure if I needed it. Once I got to plowed streets, X-mode disappeared. Did not hear a warning.... I need to re-read the manual. Maybe I was driving too fast to be in X-Mode.

Anywho.... The Ascent did very well. No different than my previous Land Rover Discovery Sport... Which was terrific in snow and sand.
 

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I drove to work today up mountain roads that were snow covered roads with ice underneath. I drove up a particular stretch of road that gives everyone fits (steep grade with sharp curves) where a vehicle was stopped in my lane. I was at a complete stop and was able to steer around the stopped vehicle when the opposing lane was clear and continue to the top. I would have never been able to do that in my Toyota.

I was impressed with the traction. But this is my first Subaru, so maybe someone whose had other Subies may not have been as impressed.
 

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I drove to work today up mountain roads that were snow covered roads with ice underneath. I drove up a particular stretch of road that gives everyone fits (steep grade with sharp curves) where a vehicle was stopped in my lane. I was at a complete stop and was able to steer around the stopped vehicle when the opposing lane was clear and continue to the top. I would have never been able to do that in my Toyota.

I was impressed with the traction. But this is my first Subaru, so maybe someone whose had other Subies may not have been as impressed.
Were those stock tires?

I've found them miserable (only in dry circumstances).

Maybe I need to reevaluate.
 

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I did. It opened up the screen with Hill descent and driving through sand/snow/mud graphics in the center mini info screen.

Not sure if I needed it. Once I got to plowed streets, X-mode disappeared. Did not hear a warning.... I need to re-read the manual. Maybe I was driving too fast to be in X-Mode.

Anywho.... The Ascent did very well. No different than my previous Land Rover Discovery Sport... Which was terrific in snow and sand.
X-Mode will disable after you get over a certain speed - I think it's 25 mph. But, you did the right thing in turning it on. It's a really, really big difference with it on. It helps with throttle inputs etc so there's less chance of wheel slippage, among other things.
 

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Drove through snow and snowy ice yesterday after a storm and the stock tires did really well. After reading horror stories on here about the stock tires I was a little worried. I had very little slippage when slamming the brakes on to test them. I will ride them out at this point. The Ascent did wonderful. Very impressed so far.
 

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Woops didn't see this thread, if you've read this already, my aplogies.


We had our first snow storm here in NJ yesterday. I thought the Ascent handled pretty well. I never had any problems accelerating. I saw several cars not able to accelerate with their rear wheels just spinning in place. And I saw several cars just straight up stuck. I attribute this to the all wheel drive and maybe the extra weight compared to a sedan. I was cautious but drove fairly aggressively when I could and I never lost traction on turns or anything. I was using the stock 18" Falken tires that others on this site have called garbage. Maybe it is more a combination of the tires with user driving skill that made everything work yesterday. I drove a Jetta in snow for 10 years, so in comparison, this was a cakewalk.
 

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Discussion Starter #20
Thanx for sharing everyone. By reading all the comments it seems the stock tires whether 18inch or 20inch faired well if precautions and smart driving is in effect. Im a pro at driving in snow storms but now I am a medical professional which means most times I cant really give an excuse on not making it to work and just rather have an easy trip in the snow. if I can drive a 2013 scion frs with bald summer tires through 15inch of snow from the long island to westchester I can drive anything in the snow lol. Ill still consider on changing the falkens on the ascent but I dont have to rush due to most of the positive comments.
 
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