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I'm thinking about getting a 2017 Volt but I have some concerns about it's winter performance. It's FWD which concerns me, my current car is AWD and I for conventional cars I wouldn't consider anything else, but the Volt's technology is sufficiently interesting that it's on my short list. How does it handle in the snow?

I've read that the heater is poor, how bad is it? BTW I'm not concerned about dropping the fuel economy when it's cold, my current car has a HEMI and gets 14MPG in th winter on short trips so anything looks good, but I am concerned about comfort and safety.

On the heater note, how well does it handle defogging windows and defrosting the rear window?
 

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All I can say is that FWD is better than RWD. And I imagine that AWD is better than FWD. The few times that I drive in the snow, I have had no problems getting thru with FWD.
As far as the heater is concerned, the 2017 heater is NOT poor. It has been greatly improved from the Gen 1 models. Defogging the front is fast and the rear hatch has the heated lines on the glass that does a good job defogging, defrosting takes a little longer.
 

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I've only had mine through a couple of snow/ice storms, but I was very impressed. I took it to an empty parking lot to do some skid familiarization and I couldn't even get it to break loose. The traction control and stability control works. I found it better than any FWD I have owned. Clearly AWD is going to be better for going, but it doesn't help with stopping, and that is a limiting factor for driving any vehicle in the snow. I would be confident with this as a winter car. Snow tires should put it about on par with an AWD car with all season tires.
 

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I'm thinking about getting a 2017 Volt but I have some concerns about it's winter performance. It's FWD which concerns me, my current car is AWD and I for conventional cars I wouldn't consider anything else, but the Volt's technology is sufficiently interesting that it's on my short list. How does it handle in the snow?

I've read that the heater is poor, how bad is it? BTW I'm not concerned about dropping the fuel economy when it's cold, my current car has a HEMI and gets 14MPG in th winter on short trips so anything looks good, but I am concerned about comfort and safety.

On the heater note, how well does it handle defogging windows and defrosting the rear window?
FWD is fine in the snow, based on my personal experience, AWD is wasted on most drivers out there. Enthusiasts can tell the difference, but most daily drivers cannot.

I drove my 2012 Volt with OEM Assurance tires during this past Michigan winter with zero issues. I'll go to a good snow tire next year for added security, but the car handled quite well in the snow :)

The heater works just fine.
Front and rear defrosters are excellent.

You'll find some on the Volt forum/facebook group choose to not use these items for the sake of range, your choice. I prefer comfort and function over range personally :)
 

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You really don't need AWD in the snow in MA. I live in NH, and have had FWD cars all my life. I still go out in snow storms, you just have to be smart about it.
A good set of tires makes all the difference too. The stock GoodYears are marginal in the snow. I put on Continental TrueContacts this fall, and in the few snow storms we did get, they were fantastic.
It is a heavy car, so you do have to make sure you account for the stopping distance.
 

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I'm thinking about getting a 2017 Volt but I have some concerns about it's winter performance. It's FWD which concerns me, my current car is AWD and I for conventional cars I wouldn't consider anything else, but the Volt's technology is sufficiently interesting that it's on my short list. How does it handle in the snow?

I've read that the heater is poor, how bad is it? BTW I'm not concerned about dropping the fuel economy when it's cold, my current car has a HEMI and gets 14MPG in th winter on short trips so anything looks good, but I am concerned about comfort and safety.

On the heater note, how well does it handle defogging windows and defrosting the rear window?
There is no trouble with heating in cold, assuming you allow it to use the gas engine to do the Engine Running Due To Temperature. We Volt owners in Minnesota can attest to that.

As for snow, with the low center of gravity and relatively high weight we have found it a very good winter car. Of course the rubber matters greatly but even with the OEM tires it has been good.
 

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I live in MD, and the Volt has served me well in the winters. You're not gonna be driving around in 12+ inches of snow, but then again you can't do that with most cars anyways. I found that the regen braking in the snow actually works very well, and I prefer to slow down that way compared to using the brake pedal. All winter driving with the stock OEM GYs.
 

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The '16 Volt has been fine in light snow (haven't tested it in more than an inch or so, and I try to avoid driving under conditions of more than a few inches of snow anyway). The traction control does work very well.

If you run "eco mode" heat, you will probably feel colder than what the temperature setting is telling you you should feel. Here in NY, I routinely set the temp to 74 (which I NEVER do in ICE cars) and used the seat heater. Even then my legs still sometimes felt cold.

If you don't care about fuel economy, then run the heater in "max" mode and it will be pretty much just like an ICE car. Also, the engine turns on when it gets very cold precisely to provide you (and the battery) with heat. You can set the temperature at which it comes on to either 15 degrees F or I think 35 degrees. The higher one is the default. You would probably want to use the higher temp setting if you're sensitive to cold and are not concerned with burning some gas. (If the engine is just running to provide heat, it actually runs slower than when it's trying to propel the car or charge the battery - so the fuel usage is quite minimal.)

Defrosting is perfectly fine. Front defogging is very fast even without the regular defog setting (there is also a "max defog" button). Rear defrosting is rapid as well; my only complaint about it is that it turns off too quickly - in 5 mintues or so. But it's not that much of a problem to press the button a few times during a trip.

Do keep in mind, though, that your electric range will be much, much lower in winter. On the coldest days I got just 36 miles on electric, whereas I routinely get 64-69 miles now (65-75 degree weather).
 

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Put on dedicated snow tires, and you'll make out fine. Range gets cut during winter due to more use of ICE and higher friction losses (like all cars). But not a reason not to get the car. (Amusing double negative there...)
 

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One more pont I haven't seen mentioned in this thread: Resistive electric heat does have one great advantage. It is available immediately with no need to wait for the ICE to warm up. I expect that you can be more comfortable more quickly than you were in your old car as long as you don't mind the reduced efficiency. This is especially true when combined with the seat heaters.
 

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One more point I haven't seen mentioned in this thread: The phone app !! You can heat or cool the car, plugged in or not.
You just have to remember to whip out your phone ~10 minutes before you get to the car....
You can do it safely in a garage if you configure it to not run the engine during very cold conditions.
 

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You just have to remember to whip out your phone ~10 minutes before you get to the car....
THIS! It's is fantastic to step into a pre-warmed car on a freezing or wet day, and even more fantastic that to do so, you don't have to spew out exhaust gases for ten minutes while the whole neighborhood listens to your car running before you leave in the morning.
 

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I live between Vail Pass and the Continental Divide at the Eisenhower-Johnson Tunnels, the most closed segment of freeway in Colorado. I have had no problems with traction in my 2013 Volt. I will be changing-out the standard Goodyear tires next winter with Michelin X-Ice, but the Volt is a heavy enough vehicle to hold the road and sure-footed if driving speed is reasonable. I pass vehicles in the ditch every snowstorm, usually pick-up trucks and AWD SUV's. Generation 1 does not have adequate cabin heat, but the defroster is acceptable with cracked-open windows. Pre-heating is probably a good idea if the vehicle is garaged with a charging station. Electric range drops from above 40 miles to close to 30 miles in sub-zero snowstorms. The Volt is overall an outstanding achievement in vehicle technology.
 

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It drives in the snow like any other FWD car I've owned. As far as heat goes, as long as ERDTT is on it is great. If it is 33-40 out and there is no ERDTT, I find that the heater will draw up to 8 kW, which obviously affects the range quite a bit.
 

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It drives in the snow like any other FWD car I've owned. As far as heat goes, as long as ERDTT is on it is great. If it is 33-40 out and there is no ERDTT, I find that the heater will draw up to 8 kW, which obviously affects the range quite a bit.
Same experience here in MA with my new 2016 ... no complaints with the heat at all. And I went through 3-4 inches of snow (with stock michelin energy tires) with no issues. It's very stable in the snow, again as others have said because it has some heft.
 

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I ran mine all winter in Quebec (now at 12k miles). What no problem. Range sucks but that's to be expected.

The traction control while accelerating is good, the abs is OK but everything else is quite below average.

Never drive in L and often you have to switch in Neutral to brake with the pedal and use the ABS, even in D the small regen will lock the tires and the car will leap forward sliding. I had a manual tranny jetta and it was much better in winter.

I still went though the winter no problem, but it's a much trickier car to drive in very slippery condition than other cars I've had!

Sent from my Nexus 6 using Tapatalk
 
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