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Discussion Starter #1
How does the slk 350 do in the winter?

I am having a hard time deciding what car to get. Between slk350, infinity g37x coupe and a c5/c6 corvette. This car was way more fun to drive than the g37 which felt way too big, I absolutely loved the slk in the test drive. I hear the corvette is absolutely awful in the snow and am yet to test drive one.

I will never drive in snow storms but will need to drive in light snow/icy roads on a daily basis during the winter. I live in Chicago, Illinois.

I plan too put blizzak snow tires on for winter time whichever car I get.

With snow tires will the car still be fish tailing all over the place and feel sketchy or unsafe? That is really my biggest concern.

Thanks
 

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Super Moderator - DAS/STAR Registered Owner
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I use my 55 all year round, and even in the winter it's still rock solid ... (I don't bother changing over to winter tyres....)
 

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Yep ... and with students you get used to the backend wobbling around .... it takes a while for their feet to start working
 

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I use my SLK the year round too. Commute every day 100 km to my work and 100 km back home. Been doing that in light snow and heavy snow. No problems whatsoever. I do have winter tyres fitted however. And imho they do make a difference. But they don't perform miracles, you have to use your right foot with caution and still have to drive more carefully than during summer ofcourse.
 

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I use my SLK all year round too, but TBH I have found it absolutely useless in snow!
ESP on it won't move at all from a standing start.
ESP off (which isn't really off....) it will barely move from a standing start.
The safety system applies the brakes as soon as a wheel spins, which they tend to do in snow!
Don't plan on any crucial journeys when it's a winter wonderland :)

TonyS
 

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For a purpose built sports car the SLK does well in cold weather, especially when put next to other comparable cars.

You have to be VERY conservative with the throttle though.
 

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The tire choice makes it doable as a winter car...but as said just above, stay off the throttle and leave it in C mode till spring. The Corvette would be a monster in the winter imho. Never driven a G37 aka Nissan 370Z (n'est-ce pas) but although they look nice, they strike me as soulless, kind of like Japanese "scotch". Were you considering a G37 convertible (is there such a thing?)?

Oh, treat all the seals before it gets cold....
 

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Discussion Starter #12
Awesome thanks for the quick replies.

Do you just put the slightly thinner winter tires on the rear rims as I see no snow tires in rear width are made. It seems a a 225/40-17 tire will fit ok on a 245/45-17?
 

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I put winter tyres on from October to April. Use it all through winter and with some caution, especially if the snow is deep then the nose will plough into it and progress will be difficult.

It is a fabulous car whatever the weather.
 

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Short wheelbase and fairly even weight distribution makes the SLK platform really great in snow.
With snow tires, your only concern might be clearance of large piles of snow.
Mercedes has fantastic ECU parameters for slick conditions too, you can feel and hear traction control constantly switching and applying power to the correct wheel when necessary.

This will be my first winter to try it out on the R171 SLK55, but I'm not real concerned as I did 2 winters in my SRT6(SLK32 AMG) that was an 11-second car, so it had lots of torque and horsepower and performed FLAWLESSLY in the snow with proper snow tires.
 

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.. .. .. you can feel and hear traction control constantly switching and applying power to the correct wheel when necessary.
.
MB ESP does not "apply power" to individual wheels - it is purely a function of the braking system.

Braking on uncertain surfaces is just one situation that puts a high demand on both drivers and vehicle technology. ESP®, the Electronic Stability Program, comes as standard in your vehicle to help you keep your grip on the road. If, for example, a wheel starts to spin or is about to skid, then sensors recognise the first signs of a potentially uncontrolled situation. Active motor management and electronic brake force distribution (EBV) then apply specific braking forces to individual wheels in order to stabilise the vehicle. ESP® prevents the vehicle under or over steering in critical situations, thereby noticeably improving both the traction and driving stability. It combines the functions of ABS, ASR and BAS, to which it also adds a stability aid.
 

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I personally don't think it would be that great. I am driving it around now, whilst my Z4 is in the garage and the back end kicks out at the slightest of pressure when moving off....probably the only thing that puts me off the SLK 350....

My wife is worried as I've put a deposit on an SLK today, and my BMW is out of the shop this afternoon, and she thinks I will change my mind.....

She's loves the SLK....I personally think the BMW is a better drivers car, but I love lots of things about the SLK....sorry going off topic now!!
 

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I have driven SLK R171 through two winters in Norway. I will now drive the R172 for the first time through the winter, but expect it to be at least as good as the R171. As mentioned above, it is important to have good winter tires (I ride with stud free), but this applies to whatever type of car. Choose narrower tires so that the ground pressure/weight gives better friction per square cm. One should have automatic transmission in economy / comfort mode for softer gearing. Be gentle on the accelerator and plan for stooping well in advance (common with whichever car type you drive in winter). From experience I have learned to avoid driving in slightly deeper edges with snow because it wraps itself under the front of the car so that it no longer gets the momentum. Should preferably drive on well shoveled road or not too deep fresh snow. It helps a lot to drive with a relatively full tank for extra weight in the boot. I put about 100 kg in the trunk, and I never run the tank under half tank. Not because it is necessary, but because it gives me extra pressure/weight on the rear wheels, especially on days when there is ice on the roads.
 

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I live in SE Michigan...Owned a C5 Corvette prior to my SLK55...Driving a C5 on wet roads is even a challenge don’t think I ever drove it even in the rain. There are quite a few Corvettes in my area but I NEVER see them in the winter months...Fortunately I don’t have to take my SLK55 during in the winter, but would not recommend it at least on our quality Michigan roads 🙄
 
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