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what vehicle for mountains and skis

 Poster: A snowHead
Poster: A snowHead
2planks wrote:
Audi RS6, you'll get to the alps quickly Very Happy


Scariest car I have every had when driven on snow!
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 Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
I have just got an Audi Q3, its really good, but oh I do miss my Subaru Forester, it got up literally anything and I live halfway up a mountain.
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 Well, the person's real but it's just a made up name, see?
Well, the person's real but it's just a made up name, see?
LM, we have a 57 plate Nissan X-Trail Aventura which, after years of driving to the Alps in regular saloons/hatches with roof boxes, is the dogs cahoonas.
Ski hatch (I get my 165's in comfortably), full 4x4 lock if you want it, loads of space and always get's up whatever I throw at it.
Economy's not too bad - 500 miles on a tank.
I'm looking to upgrade soon, and will buy another one again, although if I had the budget I'd look at the Discovery as well.
Hope this helps.
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@geoffers, Instead of the £700 winter tyres I would like to see the test repeated with snow chains (£60). Surely winter tyres are really at their best in cold rain and slush when you cannot fit chains.
@Little Martin, Why not take your skis I did to see if they would fit in an Audi (just)


@adithorp, I think you are pushing it a bit going around corners on two wheels (unless you are on a bike of course). In most cases all 4 wheel are required to steer. A friend of mine ran winter tyres on only the front wheels and though perfectly fine accelerating or braking the tendency for the rear wheels to want to overtake the front on bends was a little alarming.
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 Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
I was trying to avoid roof box for economy reasons
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Generally front wheel drive with winter tyres and snow chains fire for occasional trips. If in mountains regularly then 4WD with winter tyres way to go as when difficult can keep going when others messing around with snow chains and still have more control than 2WD with chains.
ski holidays
 Then you can post your own questions or snow reports...
Then you can post your own questions or snow reports...
We've driven several times, the best car we have done it in was a Passat Estate, loads of room for all the gear and really comfortable to drive long distances on the motorway. On the way back we come off in Burgundy to get cheap fuel and stock up on wine (plenty of space in boot). The detour adds maybe an hour or so but saves on tolls and the scenery is better.


Last edited by Then you can post your own questions or snow reports... on Sat 10-01-15 13:50; edited 1 time in total
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 After all it is free Go on u know u want to!
After all it is free Go on u know u want to!
Little Martin wrote:
I was trying to avoid roof box for economy reasons


Can I be honest? It saved us about £30 in diesel not having the box on...same journey, slightly different resort. One less passenger too.
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You'll get to see more forums and be part of the best ski club on the net.
I've had 4x4 VW Passats for the last ten seasons with winter tyres in the winter. Never needed chains, never been stuck, loads of space inside for people and skis, perfect.
Decent mileage and drives like a car.
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 Ski the Net with snowHeads
Ski the Net with snowHeads
We had a renault espace which was comfy but greedy on fuel, and when the engine went it was uneconomical to have it fixed. we have a renault clio. just drove to the lift with 3 adults 2 kids, 2 snowboards,1 set adult skis and 2 sets kids skis. its not comfortable, but possible. Winter tyres hakkapeliitta, considerably cheaper than for the espace:-)
(have driven from england with similar loading. its not comfortable for longer.)
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 snowHeads are a friendly bunch.
snowHeads are a friendly bunch.
johnE wrote:
@geoffers, Instead of the £700 winter tyres I would like to see the test repeated with snow chains (£60). Surely winter tyres are really at their best in cold rain and slush when you cannot fit chains.


Winter tyres make a masive difference in temperatures below 7C (which is relevant even in a British Winter). There's a real problem driving abroad when the locals are all on winter tyres and you're not, as summer tyre stopping distances are significantly poorer at low temperatures, even on tarmac. And surely, mixed conditions are exactly what you're likely to be hitting when you go to the Alps?

I do appreciate the cost question, especially if you need new wheels as well. Even if winters extend the life of the summer tyres, you are still paying an up-front cost. But I use winters on the basis of British winter conditions alone anyway, and see the Alpine advantages as icing on the cake.
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 And love to help out and answer questions and of course, read each other's snow reports.
And love to help out and answer questions and of course, read each other's snow reports.
I would be uneasy doing much with skis unsecured inside a car. I am a bit anal about securing my luggage. Heavy items in the back are always tied back to the strong points usefully provided for this purpose. For short journeys ski boots are stood on mats provided for the purpose but they are dangerous like that and for longer journeys they'd be in boot bags, and tied down.
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 So if you're just off somewhere snowy come back and post a snow report of your own and we'll all love you very much
So if you're just off somewhere snowy come back and post a snow report of your own and we'll all love you very much
Does everyone worrying about skis inside the car not have ratchet straps on the anchor points in the boot? We've packed 20 sets of skis in the car, strap them down they are going nowhere.

My vote is subaru. Legacy outback or forester. Perfect snow cars, most of the 4x4s aren't long enough to comfortably fit longer pairs of skis, and 4x4 plus roof box is too top heavy for my liking.
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 You know it makes sense.
You know it makes sense.
Mistress Panda wrote:
Does everyone worrying about skis inside the car not have ratchet straps on the anchor points in the boot? We've packed 20 sets of skis in the car, strap them down they are going nowhere.

My vote is subaru. Legacy outback or forester. Perfect snow cars, most of the 4x4s aren't long enough to comfortably fit longer pairs of skis, and 4x4 plus roof box is too top heavy for my liking.


With you on the first point - strapping down skis is easy with a ratchet strap.

Second point... Well I can fit 194cm skis down the middle of my Duster no problem!
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 Otherwise you'll just go on seeing the one name:
Otherwise you'll just go on seeing the one name:
Caterham 7
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 Poster: A snowHead
Poster: A snowHead
Quote:

What about an Octavia estate 4x4. They have a ski hatch in the back seat don't they?


Seconded. That was our hire car in Chamonix last year, and it was brilliant on the skating-rink lanes to the chalet. Made my own car (a Merc) seem a bit of a precious princess, actually.
ski holidays
 Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
T Bar wrote:
Caterham 7


Haha !! Toofy Grin

You haven't justified your choice though so here're some tips:

+ Talk about the gnarly places you've taken your trusty winter steed, adding an anecdote too, for example about the time you gave a lift to the driver of an abandoned snowcat.
+ Economy/size doesn't count. After all you only use it for getting up the snowy mountain when the helicopter is grounded and it's primarily for carrying 190 cm + powder skis in its boot without any risk of getting rust, slush or water on the leather upholstery or your nice goretex.
+ But if you have a Ford Focus with winter tyres, find a snowy video on the internet showing it trouncing an American made monster truck, or a Japanese made builder's wagon.
+ If you have a Rangerover, Porsche Cayenne, BMW X5, Audi Q7 or VW Touareg etc, it's honestly best just to stay silent.

And talking of anecdotes, I did genuinely use my Skoda to tow a broken down quad bike off a mountain top during a blizzard today. Madeye-Smiley
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 Well, the person's real but it's just a made up name, see?
Well, the person's real but it's just a made up name, see?
We have a 04 reg Vauxhall zafira (the first shape, not the rubbish next one with fiat bits inside). It's worth next to nothing, has 150000 miles on the clock, it's a diesel and has full leather seats.

This car is like a tardis, I don't think I have found anything that won't fit in it yet. Great seat design. The middle seat in the middle row (it has 2 more seats in the boot) folds flat which is great. Interior trim so far seems indestructible!

We don't use a roof box for our ski/board trips if we are with just my husband and 11 and 14 yo sons. We fit in:
4 people
4 pairs of skis
2 snowboards
4 pairs of ski boots
2 pairs of snowboard boots
Lots of clothes and kit including helmets, back protectors, back packs etc.
Box of food as we are veggies.

All fits INSIDE the car and sometimes we can still look out of the rear window! (I am great at luggage Tetris!)

I am hoping it will never die, how can you not like a car that does everything and costs peanuts!

Yes, get an extra set of wheels with winter tyres.

We looked at a replacement car 6 months ago and considered a Volvo v70. The dealer even let us take one home just after our ski trip to try and fit all the luggage and skis in! It did fit, again middle seat folds down. We just could not justify spending lots of money on a car that does the same as the one we have.
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Quote:

We just could not justify spending lots of money on a car that does the same as the one we have.

Indeed, you sound very sensible, and if it does breakdown then you can just walk away. I admire you and the fact that a GM car managed 150,000 miles
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 Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
@pam w, Subaru used to be good, but started going downhill in 2006, when they introduced the "chocolate" 2.5l engine, to pass euro emissions. The first diesels, up to 2009/10, also are now encountering main bearing failure. My 2009 diesel ate its gearbox just outside Chambery, with 2 weeks warranty remaining, and was quickly swopped for the Skoda superb 4x4. There is now a class action that has been started against them in the US, due to the number of vehicles that have suffered ringland failure. They used to top the J.D Powers satisfaction surveys, but no longer feature at all, and there is speculation that they may drop out of the UK market.
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In the early 90's I remember my Bulgarian friend driving me to ski resorts in his rear engined, rear wheel drive skoda (before VW take over). It would go any where.
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 Then you can post your own questions or snow reports...
Then you can post your own questions or snow reports...
Well the front runner from today is the Mazda CX-5, can get the skis inside, fuel efficient/lower CO2, nice interior, electric seats with memory so both myself and Mrs LM can have our positions. Downside there's no spare tire, only repair kit. Cost isn't too bad and appears to get good scores in reviews.

Looked at the kia sportage, slightly disappointed here, looks ok on the outside, but inside didn't approve to Mrs LM's tastes. Also boot space limited, and probably not suitable for getting skis in without dropping a seat. I was expecting more tbh, and the mazda (was in the same dealership), certainly gave more for the same money.

Checked out a VW tiguan, smaller than both the cx-5 and sportage, but has a ski hole like the cx-5, smaller, but probably more expensive.

Has anyone got a Mazda CX-5 ?
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 After all it is free Go on u know u want to!
After all it is free Go on u know u want to!
Vw transporter, get between 2 and 9 seats, plenty of room for skis inside. Vw do 4motion for most cars including the transporter.it's the vehicle of choice for local taxis. I can get 3 kids, wife double Buggy uncollasped, sledge and an array of skis inside. Can come with all the gadgets you'd ever want.


Last edited by After all it is free Go on u know u want to! on Sat 10-01-15 20:23; edited 1 time in total
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 You'll get to see more forums and be part of the best ski club on the net.
You'll get to see more forums and be part of the best ski club on the net.
..


Last edited by You'll get to see more forums and be part of the best ski club on the net. on Fri 13-02-15 20:57; edited 1 time in total
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 Ski the Net with snowHeads
Ski the Net with snowHeads
When looking for a car for my wife we had a shortlist of the Kuga, Sportage, Hyundai ix35 and the CX-5. We liked the CX-5 but could not get a good enough deal to bring it in budget. I agree with your via on the Sportage; great on the outside but a bit drab inside. My wife liked the ix35 and although it is the same car underneath as the Sportage the interior was much better. However, they were going through a facelift at the time so we couldn't get one when we wanted it. That left the Kuga. My wife really liked it. It had a great interior and all the spec she wanted; leather seats, panoramic roof, heated seats, etc, etc. We attempted to order a new one but were told delivery was 16 weeks! The internet was full of stories as to people waiting for up to 6 months for a Kuga. There weren't many of the Mk2s on the used market but by chance we picked up a 3 month old ex-dealer manager car with 3k miles at a great discount on new. We snapped it up on the phone without even seeing it.

It really is a fab car. The seats are extremely comfortable and the 2.0 diesel engine has plenty of pull although economy rarely tops 36 mpg. This is party due to how it is used. We live in a rural area and my wife's journey to work is on B roads. The main issue is there is no ski hatch so it means dropping a rear seat. Not an issue for us as there are only 3 of us.
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 snowHeads are a friendly bunch.
snowHeads are a friendly bunch.
carroz wrote:
waynos wrote:
wife double Buffy uncollasped.


Er whats one of them? or two of them?................................. Shocked Shocked Shocked Shocked Shocked


Doh, corrected it now.
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 And love to help out and answer questions and of course, read each other's snow reports.
And love to help out and answer questions and of course, read each other's snow reports.
We got a much more cost effective deal on the Tiguan than that offered for the CX5. Are you buying new or preowned?
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 So if you're just off somewhere snowy come back and post a snow report of your own and we'll all love you very much
So if you're just off somewhere snowy come back and post a snow report of your own and we'll all love you very much
Fruity wrote:
We got a much more cost effective deal on the Tiguan than that offered for the CX5. Are you buying new or preowned?


The Tiguan may have a higher residual value so a PCP deal can be cheaper. This is why the monthly payments on a PCP deal for something like a BMW or Audi can be less than for Vauxhall or Ford that has a lower purchase price.
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 You know it makes sense.
You know it makes sense.
Just remember 4x4s are no better at stopping, if anything they're worse as they're generally heavy. SKi pods are great but noisy and put the fuel consumption up considerably. Check with the ferry company to as they can put the price up. I've done the drive many times in both our fwd car and 4x4. We generally take the 4x4 more for space than any extra grip.
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 Otherwise you'll just go on seeing the one name:
Otherwise you'll just go on seeing the one name:
They were also doing £2750 off for a PCP at VW and 3% interest when I bought mine Wink we also looked at the Sportage. Our test car was abysmal & the sales guy broke down in his, en route to take us out. Not a great advert for Kia
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 Poster: A snowHead
Poster: A snowHead
I was so close to the Octavia estate though... Sport button, mahoosive boot & loads of gadgets. But it only towed 1800kg and we wanted tow capacity 2000kg as we have a caravan
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 Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
Best car we ever took down was Renault Megane RX4 with winter tryres. Typical crappy French car that broke down a lot but bags of character and we loved it. I used it to piste bash a sledging run for my kids once. It got up anything. It also had loads of storage space under seats and under the floor.
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 Well, the person's real but it's just a made up name, see?
Well, the person's real but it's just a made up name, see?
@Little Martin - Before you place an order check out Drive the Deal. Even if you don't use them it is a great bargaining tool to use with your local dealer.

A quick look shows they can offer around 10% discount plus all the other incentives that Mazda are offering:-

Quote:
Mazda are offering the following finance deals:

1. Hire Purchase finance at 5.9% APR Representative over 12 to 60 months with no minimum deposit.
2. PCP finance at 5.9% APR Representative over 24 to 42 months with no minimum deposit.

The dealer we put you in touch with can arrange it for you if you would like it. Subject to Status, terms and conditions apply.

Mazda are also offering a 3 year servicing pack for just £299. If you wish to buy this pack then the dealer we put you in touch with will arrange it for you.
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I have an Octavia Scout which has 4wd, a ski hatch and pretty good economy and performance. The ability to cruise at 130km/h and still get over 50mpg when loaded is a bonus as it avoids the need to buy expensive autoroute fuel; moutier to calais being easily doable on a tank. The latest model Scout has more interior space than a Passat. I have Continental Winter Contact tyres fitted which are superb and was able to use the back roads when chaos descended on the Tarentaise on 27 Dec; at times I was driving through snow up to about 10 inches deep with no troubles. I have had Subarus in the past, both Legacy and Impreza, and found their winter handling a little wanting; they were very thirsty. So called soft roaders like the CX-5 and Kuga are huge (bigger than a range rover classic) but this does not convert into interior space very well and the 'Urban' bling wheel / tyre combinations they seem to come with make fitting decent winter tyres very expensive indeed.
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 Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
Drive the deal. Fantastic if you are buying brand new. We got the Tig at a much reduced price, plus the VW discount still applied. We live in Surrey but bought through a Cheltenham based dealer and he managed to get one for me in under ten weeks, start to finish. Local dealer finally matched his price to secure the deal, 30 mins too late and then had the audacity to ask me to cancel my order with Cheltenham and buy through them!!!
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@cstreat, my subaru was 1991. Still a rogue though.... I'm hoping my Zafira will do as well as the one described above. Hugely adaptable, carries big loads, cost well under £12k, does loads of miles to the gallon and hasn't had a moment's hesitation on some very snowy roads.
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 Then you can post your own questions or snow reports...
Then you can post your own questions or snow reports...
Fruity wrote:
Drive the deal. Fantastic if you are buying brand new. We got the Tig at a much reduced price, plus the VW discount still applied. We live in Surrey but bought through a Cheltenham based dealer and he managed to get one for me in under ten weeks, start to finish. Local dealer finally matched his price to secure the deal, 30 mins too late and then had the audacity to ask me to cancel my order with Cheltenham and buy through them!!!


My local Audi dealer, Edinburgh Audi, were an nightmare to deal with. I had to hound them for a test drive but eventually they managed to sort it. When we returned I was very impressed and keen to purchase. I asked the 'so-called-salesman' to investigate delivery dates and whether there were any available for immediate delivery. 48 hours later I had heard nothing so I called to chase. When I finally spoke to him he made me feel like I was a nuisance to him. He promised to look in to it and call me back. 20 months later I'm still waiting for the call. rolling eyes rolling eyes rolling eyes rolling eyes

The contrast with DtD could not be more different. They were exceptionally helpful and once I made the decision to buy they put me in contact with their West Midland based Audi dealer. He called me immediately and said they had a car at another of their dealerships in the colour and spec I wanted. He kept me well informed and even offered to come in on a Saturday (he doesn't work weekends) as it was the only day I could collect it. I had planned on flying in to Birmingham and getting the train to the dealership but he insisted on collecting my son and I from the airport and driving us to the dealership.
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 After all it is free Go on u know u want to!
After all it is free Go on u know u want to!
Looking at the Octavia estate 4 x 4 for when we move to Serre Chevalier, there's a Skoda dealer in town so makes sense, probably go for a new one and keep it for 10 years, s/h prices in France are on the high side!
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 You'll get to see more forums and be part of the best ski club on the net.
You'll get to see more forums and be part of the best ski club on the net.
Gaza wrote:
Fruity wrote:
Drive the deal. Fantastic if you are buying brand new. We got the Tig at a much reduced price, plus the VW discount still applied. We live in Surrey but bought through a Cheltenham based dealer and he managed to get one for me in under ten weeks, start to finish. Local dealer finally matched his price to secure the deal, 30 mins too late and then had the audacity to ask me to cancel my order with Cheltenham and buy through them!!!


My local Audi dealer, Edinburgh Audi, were an nightmare to deal with. I had to hound them for a test drive but eventually they managed to sort it. When we returned I was very impressed and keen to purchase. I asked the 'so-called-salesman' to investigate delivery dates and whether there were any available for immediate delivery. 48 hours later I had heard nothing so I called to chase. When I finally spoke to him he made me feel like I was a nuisance to him. He promised to look in to it and call me back. 20 months later I'm still waiting for the call. rolling eyes rolling eyes rolling eyes rolling eyes

The contrast with DtD could not be more different. They were exceptionally helpful and once I made the decision to buy they put me in contact with their West Midland based Audi dealer. He called me immediately and said they had a car at another of their dealerships in the colour and spec I wanted. He kept me well informed and even offered to come in on a Saturday (he doesn't work weekends) as it was the only day I could collect it. I had planned on flying in to Birmingham and getting the train to the dealership but he insisted on collecting my son and I from the airport and driving us to the dealership.


When I was in the market for the last car our Local Nissan dealer took one look at us in our weekend scruffs and immediately offered me the preowned deals list on the Qashqai. So we walked out and went straight to VW. I was offered a glass of wine, a seat and greeted by name by the staff ( as I already had a golf)..45 mins later I had bought the then brand new mk 6 Golf. My third Golf!
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 Ski the Net with snowHeads
Ski the Net with snowHeads
+1 for the Skodas, had a 2wd Octavia estate and recently replaced it with a Superb 4x4 estate and both were fitted with winter tyres for trips to the Alps. Both have been used for ski trips, the most recent with the Superb at Christmas to Austria. Got 4 people, 4 pairs of skis, 3 pairs of boots and all the gear in without a roofbox. Did nearly 2,000 miles at just under 50mpg at 130kph which included the daily 6 mile drive to the lifts and will only get better as the engine frees up. Also had no problems with snowy roads once the white-stuff eventually arrived. A fellow guest with a Saab fitted with standard tyres had to fit Snow-socks just to get out of the chalet carpark.
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