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Hello everyone,,
I just traded in my Subaru Impreza for a CX-3 and I've been reading that the AWD systems are different on both cars. Most people here say having the right tires is more important than AWD and since I expect to be doing a lot of driving this winter up the northeast corridor, should I get snow tires or are the tires that came with it good enough?
 

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IIRC, the AWD systems on normal (non-STi) Subies are a viscous coupling for the manuals and a electro-mechanical clutch. They've probably got open diffs in the front and rear and use the brakes to act like a limited slip diff.

Mazda claim the CX-3's i-Activ AWD system is better because it's predictive. That said, it's still an electro-mechanical clutch and uses brakes to manage torque between wheels of the same axle. So it's really just computer programming that they say makes the difference.

AWD and snow tires serve slightly different purposes.

AWD helps you get moving in low traction conditions, especially in deep snow. It won't help you turn or stop any better.

Snow tires help you get moving in low traction as well as turning and stopping.

I can verify that AWD + snow tires make the CX-3 almost unstoppable in snow as deep at 6" (probably deeper, but we haven't had snow deeper than 6" since I got my snow tires).

Whether or not you should get snow tires depends on how risk-averse you are. Driving to work on 5"-6" of unplowed interstate highway in Chicago, I was relaxed and weaving in between stuck cars at 5 mph. Others seemed a lot more stressed out.

Last year, Discount Tire Direct offered a stupidly wicked deal around President's Day and I got $320 off a set of Continental WinterContact SI tires mounted to 16" alloys. The whole packaged cost me a bit over $300 delivered. Right now, they're offering $75 instant rebate on a set of winter tires (excluding Bridgestone Blizzaks), with an extra $50 MIR on the same set if you apply for their credit card and use it. There's also $50 instant savings and a $50 MIR if you buy a set of wheels with your DTD credit card. The interest rate is ridiculous but if you just pay it off right away, you're golden.

So, right now, with the right wheel/snow tire combo, you'd be looking at (roughly) $550. Is that worth it to you?
 

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Get the snow tires

NotAPreppie is entirely correct. Conventional (and correct) wisdom is that having snow tires is much more important than AWD. AWD, with summer tires that are hard-as-a-rock at low temperatures, helps a bit. Snow tires, that are much more supple at low temperatures, and thus have much more traction on snow and ice, are much more important. The two together, on the CX-3, are what you need on snow and ice.
 

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I will second/third the opinion that snow tires make a world of a difference on an AWD CX-3, and are arguably more important than AWD itself. The factory Yokohoma tires on the CX-3 don't do you any favors either. They aren't particularly great (or bad) with regard to summer performance, but are abysmal in the snow. If the factory tire was something like the continental DWS, I would say you could get away without dedicated snows (depending on where you live/your typical commute). I went with a wallet friendly option and got Falken Eurowinter HS449 tires for my CX-3. Their snow performance is not as great as my other cars on Blizzak WS70s, but dry (cold weather) performance is better. And as a bonus, they wear much slower as well.
 

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Hello everyone,,
I just traded in my Subaru Impreza for a CX-3 and I've been reading that the AWD systems are different on both cars. Most people here say having the right tires is more important than AWD and since I expect to be doing a lot of driving this winter up the northeast corridor, should I get snow tires or are the tires that came with it good enough?
Here's my dumb question. Did you have winter tires on your Subie?

I've got Blizzaks on my AWD CX-3. It is virtually unstoppable in cold weather, and when the going gets tough when there's snow, she's a beast. The Yokohamas are an OEM tire and they suck mightily. I will tolerate them for one more summer, then I'm getting rid of them. I can't even imagine what they would be like in snow, as they can barely handle wet pavement without chittering on a fast launch.
 

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You won't get a reply.
PetterJhon was a spam bot and has been banned.

That said, it asked questions that might have had value to others so I answered them.
 
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