MINIs are known for the excellent level of control they offer drivers, thanks to their compact size and “wheel-at-each-corner” approach to suspension design. Still, no vehicle can compensate for unsafe driving habits, and failing to switch your MINI to winter tires is a pretty good example.
What’s the Difference?
One of the first things to bear in mind about winter tires is the material that they’re made from. Their compound has a higher percentage of rubber and is therefore softer, which means that they grip the road better than their warm-weather counterparts. The tread and siping, meanwhile, are carefully designed to avoid buildup of slush and manage the movement of water across their surface in order to maintain a solid grip. The low temperatures and unstable surfaces of winter driving conditions can wreak havoc on tires that are not built for them.
Choosing the Right Ones
Winter tires all express varying levels of quality and different approaches to design in their siping, tread, and overall shape. The first thing to remember when choosing a set for your MINI is that you quite often get what you pay for. If you want a durable tire that can offer you optimized performance and safety, you should invest accordingly. Secondly, remember that some MINI models do not come with a spare tire, so it may be a good idea to choose run flat winter tires if this applies to you. Michelin’s X-Ice Xi3 run flat is a good example.
Driving in Winter
Regardless of how well you invest in your winter tires, never forget the importance of smart winter driving. It may be easy to get carried away when you’re driving a vehicle that can corner as well as a MINI, but you should nonetheless be careful on turns and keep your stopping distances as safe as you can. Even in a car so compact, keeping an eye on how close you follow the vehicles ahead of you is especially necessary in icy conditions. With a good set of winter tires and even better driving technique, you and your MINI will be ready for winter!
If there’s one season when driving can be the least pleasant, it’s probably winter. However, if you stay safe and get your maintenance from the right technician, you’ll run into far fewer problems! To give your MINI the best service, give Motorwerkes a call at (403) 453-0269 today.