2011 Sonata SE in Winter Weather - Hyundai Forum - Hyundai Enthusiast Forums

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Old 12-12-2010, 08:08 PM
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Default 2011 Sonata SE in Winter Weather

Hey all,

I am buying a 2011 Sonata SE in the next few weeks. I live in a region where, in the winter, we get snow regularly. How does your guys' 2011 Sonata SE handle in the snow and slush? Do the low profile tires make it very difficult to handle the car?

How many have had to buy winter tires?

The more information the better! Thanks guys.
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Old 12-21-2010, 09:23 PM
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The wider the tire, the chances of excess tire slippage are likely due to the tire riding on top of the snow. Now a narrower tire such as the '11 Sonata GLS model 205/65/16's will not ride on top of the snow but instead cut through the snow providing better traction. With the 18" wheel, I recommend you look into a decent set of winter tires which should definately help provide better traction than those overrated "ALL-SEASON" low profile tires. I put winter tires (Bridgestone Blizzaks WS-50's) on the stock 16" rims that my GLS came with and I'm pullin away in snow like it was pavement. Come spring/summer, I'm gonna upgrade to the 18" rims/tires.
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Old 12-22-2010, 07:26 AM
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While most of what John said above is true, it's also exaggerated. Yes, the wider the tire the more likely it is to ride on the snow instead of through it. But in your case, the difference in width is less than 1" (0.8" to be exact). The 225/14-18 SE tire is 8.9" in width. The 205/65-16 GLS tire is 8.1" in width.

My wifes Sedona minivan has 235/60-17 tires and has no problem in the snow. But it also has fairly good all-season tires (BFGoodrich Long Trail T/A Tour). I have 235/50-18 all-season tires on my Tucson (BFGoodrich g-Force T/A KDWS) and had no problems through 2 winters with them.

However, I did choose to buy snow tires last season and mount them on the original 16" wheels. They were 215/70-16 Firestone Winterforce tires. The only reason I went with a narrower tire was because they didn't come in the 235/60-16 size that was original to my Tucson.

You can read more about that here:

All that said, winter tires are much better than even the best all-season tires. My suggestion to you and everyone else is that if you get regular snow in the winter, buy a set of snow tires no matter what size is on your car. And yes, go with a narrower tire if possible.

If you only get snow ocassionally and not that much at a time, you will be fine with all-season tires.

Lastly, if you have summer tires, do not drive in snow with them at all.

Go to TireRack.com and enter your vehicle information and they will come up with a great set of 16" snow tires and rims so installing them is simple.

Last edited by NovaResource; 12-22-2010 at 07:29 AM.
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Old 12-22-2010, 11:12 AM
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I live in the Chicago area and it has been snowing the last few days. I had to drive cautiously, but I didn't have any real issues. I have an SE with the 18" wheels.
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