Originally Posted by Vincenzo
It will be interesting to read your report on how your HRV takes to the mountain roads to the North of you.
I can quickly answer you because I use to go in the mountains here, in the Alps, skiing in winter. Like I wrote you, I have a Mercedes and so far a Toyota RAV4, that is a 4WD car. Before the Mercedes I used an Audi A2 2WD. Now I am going to change the RAV4 4WD with the Honda HRV 2WD.
Based on my direct experience I am quite convinced that a 4WD car is more a fashion that a real need compared to a FWD car, at least if you do not need it for the off road. Winter tires makes the differences. They are the only thing that makes the differences between the above mentioned 2 categories on normal roads with snow. With a 4WD car you have some advantages when you need traction, but nothing that it can create problems on a FWD car.
The situation with cars having traction in the back is completely different even with winter tires. Honestly I try to avoid to go in the mountains with my Mercedes E class if it is snowing. If you are going up on a road covered with snow and you need to stop and go - due to traffic or people putting snow chains – it is likely to happen that you are not able to restart and moving anymore.
The above mentioned differences are obviously existing only if you are going up, when you need a good traction. If you are going down the traction is less important, and the most important things are good tires and the electronic systems available on car (ABS, EBD etc )
My Mercedes is heavy and long, but I have also seen many smaller cars having a lot of troubles (e.g. BMW Class 1). That is why I do not have doubts or worries to move from a 4WD car to a FWD car like the Honda HRV, (in Italy the 4WD version is also not available) . If you exclude difficult off road, what you can do with a 4WD it is also possible with a FWD on normal roads. A 4WD car without winter tires is by far less efficient compared to a 2WD car with winter tires…
This is clearly my experience.