San Diego may not have much of a winter, but when we do have rain and snow in our county borders, we’re at a loss for how to handle it. Lucky for us, car manufacturers have been making safer cars with more life-saving technology, a boon in winter weather! Taking a long weekend drive to Mammoth or Big Bear are no longer transportation unknowns. Here are our top 10 all wheel drive cars for winter:
1. Subaru Outback – Subaru is largely regarded as THE manufacturer of all-wheel drive vehicles. Their AWD system differs from other manufacturer systems, providing what many feel to be is superior quality. The Outback is our top pick because of it’s overall comfort, generous interior space, and versatility.
2. Jeep Wrangler – If you’re looking for a 4-wheel drive system, you can never go wrong with the classic. The Jeep Wrangler has been in production (with some model name changes) for 70 years, starting as a go-everywhere war vehicle in 1945. The Wrangler can get itself out of nearly every terrain with proper driving and accessories.
3. Subaru Forester – For those looking for more of a crossover, look no further than the Subaru Forester. Outstanding reliability and resale value make this one of the most popular AWD vehicles on the market.
4. BMW 5 Series – For the luxury sedan shopper, the BMW 5 series with the xDrive AWD system will offer you extra stability in inclement weather without feeling like you’re in a rugged back-country ride. Just be sure to put on all-season or snow tires before you hit the mountains!
5. Mazda CX5 – Mazda is known for their sporty models and upgraded entertainment options, and the CX-5 with the optional AWD is no different. If the Forester is a little sparse for your tastes, the Mazda might fit the bill!
6. Subaru Impreza – The Subaru Impreza is one of the few economy spec cars available with AWD. This comfortable, competent sedan comes in a 4-door or a 5-door option, and offers the safety and reliability Subaru is known for with a lighter price tag.
7. Toyota Tacoma – Sometimes when you need an AWD or 4WD vehicle, you need a truck. The Toyota Tacoma with optional 4WD offers drivers long-term reliability, excellent resale value, and rugged good looks.
8. Toyota Sienna – If you’re looking for a minivan with AWD, you really only have one option: the Toyota Sienna. All the practicality of the minivan, plus the additional ride security of the AWD.
9. Ford Fusion – Ford has a few models with 4WD or AWD, but we like the versatility and subtlety of the Fusion AWD. It may just look like a sedan, but this car is safe and dependable when you need it most.
10. Lexus RX 350 – You may have seen this car in the news recently for having zero deaths reported in 2011 or newer models. Lexus’ reliability and comfort, plus nearly unheard of safety, make this crossover SUV a luxurious and safe ride for the whole family.
If you're headed up to our local mountains to catch some seasonal snow, be sure to give your car a once-over before hitting the road. Chains are sometimes required to make it up slick mountain roads (unless you have 4WD!), and snow or all-season tires are a must if you hope to make it up and down safely. Stop by Convoy Auto Repair for an inspection to make sure your car is ready for extreme temperatures and slick, winding roads!
San Diego may not have much of a winter, but when we do have rain and snow in our county.