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Focus V Micra On Ice


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#1 starfield

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Posted 03 December 2010 - 08:08 PM

I have got a ford focus 1.8L petrol manual (mk2). My wife has got a 1L nissan micra (bubble shape). Surprisingly enough, the micra outperforms the focus by far on ice. both have standard tyres as everything else.

Why is that? Why is the micra better on icy road as compared to the focus?

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#2 Syke

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Posted 03 December 2010 - 08:45 PM

I have a Focus 1.6 TDci diesel and my wife has a Panda 1.2 Dynamic. I live in Central Scotland and we have a drive of about 100 metres with a right angled bend about halfway, slightly up hill, and after the recent snow, I tried to get out in the Focus and spent about an hour digging snow and generally messing about and only just got out to the main road. Yesterday, without much expectation of success, I tried the Panda and sailed out! I think it's something to do with the skinny tyres (155/80) I know it's counter-intuitive, but there you are.

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#3 r0b3r7

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Posted 03 December 2010 - 08:50 PM

Smaller cars are also lighter

#4 H3lly

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Posted 03 December 2010 - 10:59 PM

The car needs speed to pull the extra weight up the hill. If you had enough speed you would have easily made it up the hill / incline. Remember high gears for going low gears for slowing. Sometimes 2nd gear can be good if on ice to get you moving again. :)

#5 calmcdermott

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Posted 03 December 2010 - 11:04 PM

I heard if you have massive tyres your car will be crap on ice and snow, to be honest my little fiesta isnt too bad, especially when I was behind an Audi A4 4wd drive and that had a massice drama over a slight increased it was all over the shop, I slipped a little but, reversed and tried again and went straight up haha!

#6 r0b3r7

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Posted 03 December 2010 - 11:47 PM

The car needs speed to pull the extra weight up the hill. If you had enough speed you would have easily made it up the hill / incline. Remember high gears for going low gears for slowing. Sometimes 2nd gear can be good if on ice to get you moving again. :)


Reverse is also good if you cant get up in 1st or 2nd

#7 GRAHAM46

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Posted 04 December 2010 - 01:26 PM

If you ever see a rally car on a snow covered special stage they always go for skinny tyres.

#8 r0b3r7

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Posted 04 December 2010 - 07:53 PM

If you ever see a rally car on a snow covered special stage they always go for skinny tyres.


actually makes sense when you think its less surface area in contact with the snow/ice

#9 taffg

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Posted 04 December 2010 - 09:50 PM

actually makes sense when you think its less surface area in contact with the snow/ice


but crucially more weight bearing down on the smaller contact area of the tyre forcing it to do its job! however there is a case when driving in icy conditions or hard packed snow to have a wider tyre, but what you've got on your car is what you've got.

just a few snippets from a regular artic driver, the most important rule to remember when on ice or snow is "locked wheels do not steer".
when going up a hill second gear is usually good for most jobs, dont be afraid to gun the engine to maintain momentum, however if you feel the wheels spinning throttle off a bit to retain traction.



when going down hill, let the engine take the weight of the car and control the speed, if you want to bottle it as you feel you are going to fast "do not", dip the clutch,things can happen very quickly. simply slow the car down gently with the brake and stop. drop a gear and you will go slower.

short positive inputs of steering and braking are far more effective than long winded inputs.

remember locked wheels do not steer, have bags of fun in the snow you lucky lot as its still raining down here. :)

#10 johnH

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Posted 06 December 2010 - 12:45 AM

the tips above are perfect...i did that when in the falklands in the landys during winter... and currently in the moors, works a treat on blue bank, sutton bank, hole of horcum and birk brow :P

#11 ford focus edge

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Posted 06 December 2010 - 11:42 AM

Not all big cars are crap in the snow my dads saab 9-3 is effing great in it really shows up alot of other cars that were getting stuck the little 9-3 flew up hills no bother at all. Some of you guys must of had really bad snow my focus didnt get stuck once bar on the icy hill up my road in which case a bit of heavy footed flooring and a run up cured that. I've found that sometimes in these conditions the softly softly approach goes wrong alot so sometimes the "sod it i've had enough" way works ;)

#12 johnH

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Posted 06 December 2010 - 09:56 PM

yeah snow drifts 3ft+ in places where im at.

#13 artscot79

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Posted 07 December 2010 - 01:56 PM

yeah snow drifts 3ft+ in places where im at.


well in scot;land as you know the snow has been bad as has the ice and so far ive had no issues and i live at the top of a fairly steep hill the foci has got uop fine i use 2nd instead of first keep the revs low and the speed steady no sudden acceleration dont be tempted to change down a gear just keep the momentum going and the cars fine though ive seen mk1 micras blitzing the snow easily even my mates nissan note had issues with the snow yet his wifes clapped out mk1 micra was fine


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