Prius scare me i the snow

Priusi stink in the snow, I don’t know how they have not been sued yet.

But you’re getting great fuel mileage, and that’s more important than anything else in your life, otherwise you wouldn’t have bought a Prius. All kidding aside, it’s due to the torque of the electric motor, electric motors have their torque peaks a low RPM, usually zero RPM. The traction control should compensate for this, but it’s not magic. You may want to consider a set of snow tires. Or try the driver mod.

That’s right. Sue every car manufacturer that makes a car that handles poorly in snow. Put them all out of business. Of course, this is a matter of opinion, and could be an indication of bad driving habits, but sue them anyway. Toyota has deep pockets.


what is driver mod?

The Prius is just evil, it does not break in the snow, I may sell it before I die in it.

Prius’s have low rolling resistance tires. Not good in snow. People in Minnesota that own Prius’s install winter tires. They work good in snow.


Call up tirerack ( and install four winter tires. It will transform the vehicle.

Cars are not poor in the snow, its all the tires…also some bit the driver too

The brake system is a two step process in Hybrid cars. The first step triggers the regenerative brake system using the electric motors to recharge the battery. The second step kicks in the standard hydraulic brakes.

If the tires start to skid during the first phase, the ECM will turn off the regenerative braking system, making seem like the brakes are failing. This is because the regenerative braking system is simply an on/off option. The ABS cannot manipulate the electric motor braking, so it simply turns it off.

Then you press the brake harder, and the ABS kicks in to pump the hydraulic brakes. All this should be spelled out in the owner’s manual. You need to know how this system works and be prepared for it.

As Tester said, the more correct statement would be “original Prius tires stink in snow” because, as he said, the tires are designed for low rolling resistance, which means they don’t stick to the road very well even when it’s dry.

Get yourself a good set of tires (do your research at and you’ll be amazed at the difference.

The rest of the car can affect how it does in the snow. A suspension that doesn’t stop the rear axle from moving around coupled with high torque and a non-linear accelerator linkage (think 70s GM cars) can make a car terrible in the snow no matter what tires are on it.

The two things that most greatly impact a car’s abilities in the snow are driver skills and good snow tires. The latter is easily corrected for a few hundred dollars. The former is corrected with time, experience, and common sense. Being endowed with the ability to learn is also helpful. Suing the automaker could get you a lifetime supply of snow tires, but won’t help your driving abilities, but I suppose the good news is that here in the 'States, a lawsuit like this would almost certainly fly. I read a few years ago about a guy who got several hundred thousand dollars out of Ford Motor Company because his 40 year old Mustang stalled out on a California freeway, got rear ended by someone going 65 mph, burst into flames, and badly burned him. Shame on Ford for building a vehicle 40 years ago that can’t survive that kind of accident 40 years later, or would have a mechanical breakdown 40 years after it was built.

Trust me, Prius’s are fine in the winter conditions. Two ski buddies own them and we make it in middle of storms to mountain without incident. They use top tier winter tires (nokian/blizzack).

Usually car manual’s(Honda’s, Subaru at least ) have blurp about using winter tires so people don’t get idiotic ideas of suing them.

I think you should sell your Prius, because it sounds like you hate the car and hate Toyota.

If you can’t sell or don’t sell it then you have to buy 4 winter tires for the Prius and stop complaigning about the car. It is the tires that are awful in snow, not the car.

My then new 1998 Pathfinder was HORRIBLE in the snow when I bought it…This truck was made for the snow…4wd…good ground clearance.

I bought the pathy in Feb…I replaced the tires in November…Made all the difference in the world. With the new tires it was one of the best vehicles I ever owned for driving in the snow. The OEM tires from Bridgestone were HORRIBLE.

If it does not break in the snow, that is a good thing!
Do you really want a car that breaks down in inclement weather?

On the other hand, if you have a car that does not BRAKE properly during slippery conditions, that can be a problem. The solution to that problem is to drive much more slowly and to use winter tires on the car. The tires that your car is equipped with are designed to maximize gas mileage, not to maximize traction.

But if Trayfwa buys four winter tires that work well in the snow, that means he/she can’t sue Toyota! [sarcasm] Thanks a lot for bringing common sense into the discussion! You’re a big help! [/sarcasm] :wink:

Replacing/tightening the loose nut behind the steering wheel. :stuck_out_tongue:

Hey, Wait Just A Minute, Here. I Am Common Sense And I Wasn’t Even In The Discussion.


Those tires wouldn’t happen to have been Dueler H/T’s? Everyone I’ve ever met that has then, really, really hates them. The Dueler A/T Revos on the other hand are amazing.