New to winter driving? Finding yourself getting stuck too often (despite having “good snow tires)? You may need a different vehicle.
Yes, if you live where it snows half of the year like we do, having a good vehicle, equipped for winter driving, is important. We checked out Kelly Blue Book for their top 5 recommendations:
1. 2012 Land Rover Range Rover Evoque
Smallest, lightest and most fuel-efficient model to ever grace the Land Rover lineup, the 2012 Range Rover Evoque also represents the most dramatic visual departure from its conventional kin. Based on the LRX concept vehicle, this super-styled 5-passenger SUV is available in 3- and 5-door body configurations plus three unique design-themed trims, all fitted with a 240-horsepower/2.4-liter turbocharged four-cylinder engine and six-speed automatic transmission. To ensure it maintains Land Rover’s legendary all-access capability, the Evoque’s standard intelligent all-wheel drive system incorporates the marque’s signature Terrain Response feature as well a comprehensive suite of traction/stability assists and offers optional tri-mode Adaptive Dynamics suspension that uses MagneRide dampers to instantly optimize ride and handling characteristics under all driving situations.
2. 2012 Subaru Impreza
All-new, the fourth-generation 2012 Subaru Impreza has grown in size and desirability. Available in sedan or five-door form and offering multiple trim levels, all versions share the same outstanding all-season core competence that’s become a Subaru hallmark as well as a new 2.0-liter/148-horsepower flat-four engine that can be backed by either a five-speed manual transmission or Lineartonic CVT automatic, each matched with a dedicated version of Subaru’s Symmetrical All-Wheel Drive system. Those new powertrain combos deliver a huge 30-percent bump in highway mpg for 2012, making the Impreza the most fuel-efficient AWD model you can buy in the U.S. Well-appointed and now even more spacious, the Impreza’s cabin matches impressive standards with an optional voice-activated Navigation system that includes Bluetooth connectivity, AM/FM/CD/MP3/WMA audio, iPod control capability and USB/AUX inputs.
3. 2012 Jeep Grand Cherokee
An iconic name in off-roading, the 2012 Jeep Grand Cherokee combines comfort and confidence in a handsomely styled, five-passenger luxury SUV that also excels in on-pavement maneuvers. Motivated by a standard 290-horsepower/3.6-liter Pentastar V6 and available with either a 360-horse/5.7-liter or 470-horse/6.4-liter Hemi V8, the Grand Cherokee offers three different four-wheel drive systems — two with high/low ranges — as well as its trick Selec-Terrain torque management system and Quadra-Lift Air suspension, all designed to keep it forging ahead under any conditions. Multiple trim lines step up the Grand Cherokee’s creature-comfort index while its impressive infotainment roster includes optional Uconnect Navigation/Phone and Internet features.
4. 2012 Chevrolet Traverse AWD
A popular choice anytime of the year for anyone needing a full-size crossover with style, space and a bounty of features, the 2012 Chevrolet Traverse with optional all-wheel drive really shines when the sun doesn’t. Fitted with a torquey 3.6-liter direct-injected V6 that makes 281-288 horsepower and a six-speed automatic transmission, the Traverse integrates its torque-managing intelligent AWD with the standard StabiliTrak dynamic control system and anti-lock brakes plus hill-start assist to help reduce driver stress under less-than-ideal road conditions. Offering room for up to eight and a class-leading 116.4 cu ft of maximum cargo space, the Traverse also can be outfitted with an optional DVD-based rear entertainment system, Bose premium audio and a Navigation radio package that includes real-time XM NavTraffic.
2012 Audi A6 3.0T Quattro
Bigger, better and even more engaging than its highly-regarded predecessor, the all-new 2012 Audi A6 3.0T Quattro sedan brings its own special touch of Teutonic class to this contingent of AWD all-stars. A 310-horsepower supercharged V6 and legendary Quattro all-wheel drive system provide the grunt and the grip to keep to keep this luxury sedan pressing on regardless, with or without the benefit of the A6’s optional Cold Weather Package. The A6 3.0T Quattro is available in Premium, Premium Plus and Prestige trim levels that offer increasingly higher levels standard comfort and convenience touches, while the cool Audi Connect feature allows it to be transformed into a mobile WiFi hotspot that can support up to eight devices.