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4 SUVs That Rock in the Winter

December 19th, 2013

snow drivingIf you’re in a snow-prone area, the winter season can be an introduction to slushy, messy, sleek roads. For many drivers, this is not ideal – and can even ruin holiday plans. But, as the colder months rush in, don’t let the less-than-optimal road conditions keep you from enjoying all of the activities that the winter season can offer. Check out our list of four SUVs that can get you through all types of weather conditions – with minimal hassle.

SUVs to Check Out During the Colder Months:

1. Chevrolet Traverse:

The Chevrolet Traverse comes in a 7-passenger version with 2nd row captain’s chairs and a 8-passenger version with a 2nd row bench seat. According to our consumer car reviewers, this American classic breaks away from midsize 3-row SUV tradition by sporting a more “cross-over-like” look.

Regardless of its look, you can easily take the Chevy Traverse through snow-filled roads, because it comes equipped with a standard StabiliTrak dynamic control system, anti-lock brakes and hill-start assist, which gives drivers more control even in the most uncertain driving situations.

Looking to store extra salt, snow gear or holiday presents in your Chevy Traverse? Well, you’ll be able to, because this car boasts plenty of cargo space. In fact, among our testers, this car received an above-average rating for its cargo area. Our reviewers particularly liked the Traverse’s flexibility due to added room and flatness when its seats were folded.

2. Jeep Grand Cherokee:

Ranked as Top Overall vehicle in our midsize 2-row SUV segment, the Jeep Grand Cherokee is a prime choice for winter driving. This car comes with a Selec-Terrain system, which allows drivers to match car settings to road conditions. Setting options include auto, snow, sand/mud, rock and sport. Getting stuck in the snow won’t be much of a concern with the Jeep Grand Cherokee either, because it comes equipped with a Quadra-Lift setting that will allow you to elevate the car by four inches to get through snow-filled, unplowed roads. You also don’t have to fret when going down steep hills, because this car has a hill-decent button that will ensure that you maintain a low speed while safely going downhill. Overall, the Jeep Grand Cherokee is a great winter-car option.

3. Nissan Xterra:

Are you looking to get “extreme” this winter? Thinking about hitting the slopes as the weather gets colder? Originally branded as a “rugged, off-road” vehicle, the Nissan Xterra provides an edgy spin to winter driving.

This compact SUV comes equipped with optional four-wheel drive that comes loaded with BFGoodrich Rugged Trail tires, a locking rear differential, Bilstein shocks and three skid plates (if driving the Off-Road trim). In automatic-transmission-equipped versions of this car, hill-descent and hill-start-assist controls come standard. The hill-descent option will ease the car down steep inclines, while the hill-start setting will prevent the car from rolling back while going uphill.

If you’re planning an action-packed winter season, then the Nissan Xterra could be a great match for you – after all, it does also include luggage nets, a snow drivingfirst-aid kit and racks for sports gear.

4. Subaru Forester:  

The Subaru Forester may look like a station wagon, but don’t let that fool you. When it comes to driving through winter-weather conditions, this SUV fares quite well. The Subaru Forester comes with standard all-wheel drive and an X-Mode traction assist system that makes driving through undesirable conditions easier. This car also offers responsive, well-weighted steering, which gives drivers more control while navigating through difficult weather conditions. Overall, if you’re looking for a car that’s going to get you through some difficult weather, the Subaru Forester is a solid bet.

So now you know that these four SUVs rock when it comes to driving in the winter. But, that doesn’t mean that there aren’t other cars that can serve as great cars during the colder season. Make sure to utilize our car comparison tool to see what other cars could help get you through these chilling, slushy months.