'99 SLK 230 - How Will It Handle In the Winter? - Mercedes Benz SLK Forum

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#1 Old 10-19-2012
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'99 SLK 230 - How Will It Handle In the Winter?

I have a '99 SLK 230 (Sport), manual transmission, with over 122,000 miles on it. I bought it used about 3 years ago and I have always stored it in the winter months. I've been thinking I might have to drive it this winter.

Because of a unique work situation, I spend 4 days a week in the Twin Cities (Minneapolis/St. Paul) and head back home to La Crosse, WI (about 150 miles away) for Fridays and the weekend.

This winter will be a little different than years past because my 16 year old son (who has a ton of extra curricular activities) now has his license, and if the SLK goes into storage, that leaves one car between my wife and my son during the week....which I think is a recipe for disaster.

One solution is to not store the SLK and I would continue to drive that back and forth from Minneapolis to La Crosse every week (weather permitting, of course). While I'm not planning on driving it in extreme blizzard conditions, anyone who has lived up here knows it can get darn cold, and I'm still worried how it's going to handle, even with a little snow. Does anyone have any experiences to share?

I'm lucky enough to have a heated garage and a car washing facility at my condo in the Cities, so I can make sure to keep the salt/grime off. I'm not concerned about exposing it to the elements, because it has 122,000 miles on it and I'm pretty sure the previous owner(s) operated it during the winter months, I'm more concerned about how it's going to handle with any amount of snow.

Thoughts?
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#2 Old 10-19-2012
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In snow The label "Handle with Care " methinks
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#3 Old 10-19-2012
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I did drive mine all year last year. I have about a 50km commute (one way) from the outskirts of suburbia into the downtown area. Mostly highway, but HEAVY traffic.
I do have to admit that I have a beater (firebird) that I used whenever my better half wasn't using it, so that saved the SLK from some of the abuse.
We did have very little snow this year, but I did get out in a few storms, with good snow tires the car handled beautifully, hardly any wheel spin and cornered confidently. I never got close to being stuck. My one worry is that deep heavy snow can push against the bottom of the car and litterly "lift" the wheels off the ground...then you're screwed. I seen that happen a couple times, but it hasn't been a problem yet.
Car seems to handle the cold temps well, no issues that way, top remains tight, heat works well. Being so low sucks on the salty/wet highways because you catch tons of spray when passing trucks, which can really limit your visibility.

I plan to use it again this winter, I have the car oil sprayed annually, which has prevented any rust at all. Hopefully after this winter I'll be moved and will have space to park the SLK during the winter, so I can buy a proper beater.

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#4 Old 10-19-2012
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My observings're the same...
Last winter,at -15deg.C, and 20 sm snow, it was pleasure to be driven... Just carefully and slowly!!!
The consumption's fallen to 13 L/100 km 'In'
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#5 Old 10-20-2012
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As long as your....... 16 year old son (who has a ton of extra curricular activities) now has his license ........doesn't drive the SLK>
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#6 Old 10-20-2012
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As long as your....... 16 year old son (who has a ton of extra curricular activities) now has his license ........doesn't drive the SLK>
Not in my lifetime

I did let him drive it a couple of times this summer...with me as a passenger. When he was driving, he seemed to have the same smile I do when I drive it.

I really love this car. I am amazed with the number of people (young and old) who make an effort to tell me how much they like my car. Whether it's at the gas station, or a thumbs up from a biker going down the interstate, they just keep coming....
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#7 Old 11-19-2012
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I live in Denver Colorado, and my 2002 SLK 320 auto is a daily driver, all year long. The traction control is amazing. You literally can not put the car sideways. When it senses wheel spin it does its magic and straightens it out. Traction getting going is still a problem with the rear wheel drive; the aforementioned traction control applies brake to the spinning wheel and can actually stop both wheels from even turning at all. If it is this bad I just drive my F-150 4x4. I once went over Eisenhower Pass in a blizzard that had many other vehicles spun out on the side and a semi rig jack-knifed right in front of me, scary stuff! I don't ever want to do that again.
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