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Hi All, first drive on partially snow-covered roads in my new Q5 and it was terrifying.

The highway was not slick or icy but, a thin layer of snow covered the lane making it all white except for black asphalt in the two tracks made by the tires. Traveling around 45 miles and hour, the car began to swerve left and right. I was not on ice. It felt like the car was trying to keep me between the white lines but, there were three white/snow lines, one in the middle of the lane between the tires. The car would not let me take control and kept swerving for at least a minute. We figured out how to turn the active lane assist off and switched to off-road mode. This improved the driving but, it still felt unstable. Every time we crossed a small and very shallow snow drift, the car drifted to the left and then over-corrected to the right.

Are there any reported issue with ALA and ESC on winter roads? I'm calling the dealer next but, wanted to put this on the forum as well.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Personally haven’t experienced this however excuse the link and forum but seems lane assist and some other safety systems are better turned off in certain conditions

M135I Accident - Car Totalled


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Nemo, thanks for the response and the link to the article. Like the driver in this accident, it felt like I was caught in a feedback loop between the ALA trying to get the car back between the lines (which in this case included a white snow-line down the middle of the road and the ESC overreacting to the changes between the three strips of snow and the two strips of asphalt where my tires were supposed to be. I hope someone from Audi sees this and takes note.
 

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You experienced exactly what I would have expected if you did not select the 'offroad' option on the Drive Select. I have found this to be the best option for snow/ice and the ESC is partially disabled stopping the wandering around. If you have the Hill Descent Assist option you can go down virtually any snow covered hill safely. No matter how many computers and sensors are in a car, the best one is behind the wheel.
 

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All weather or winter tyres? I have driven long distances in snow with no issues. My only issue was when the snow was too deep!
 

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I have had all weather Nokian tyres. You can get through anything with these but they are noisy. There are other makes of all weather tyres but do you want to fork out approximately £600 to find out that they are of limited use. In an ideal world two sets of rims would be required, summer tyres on one set and winter on the other. I would research all weather tyres specifically looking at road noise.
 

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Hi All, first drive on partially snow-covered roads in my new Q5 and it was terrifying.

The highway was not slick or icy but, a thin layer of snow covered the lane making it all white except for black asphalt in the two tracks made by the tires. Traveling around 45 miles and hour, the car began to swerve left and right. I was not on ice. It felt like the car was trying to keep me between the white lines but, there were three white/snow lines, one in the middle of the lane between the tires. The car would not let me take control and kept swerving for at least a minute. We figured out how to turn the active lane assist off and switched to off-road mode. This improved the driving but, it still felt unstable. Every time we crossed a small and very shallow snow drift, the car drifted to the left and then over-corrected to the right.

Are there any reported issue with ALA and ESC on winter roads? I'm calling the dealer next but, wanted to put this on the forum as well.
You are not the only one having this problem, I have a 2020 55e and drove it last year on the same tires, worse road conditions, and the little beasty handled like a gem but this year it is absolutely terrifying going above 50km/hr even with lane assist off. I’m thinking that there’s an issue with the sensors because I’ve been fishtailing (more than it’s new normal wiggle) whenever someone passes or any objects around the road, including snow banks. Hopefully Audi figures this out because these are very expensive vehicles, they should be handling much better than this.
 

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It depends on what type of snow and how much of it. Where I live in Yorkshire we get no more than a couple of inches for a short period of time. I have summer Hankook's and I have found that even in just wet conditions the road holding difference between new and very worn is significant. I replaced all four tyres recently for identical ones and I found no problems driving through snow in all terrain. As I have said previously, in snow I always select the 'offroad' mode, as from experience I have have found that it is the best option. I agree totally with missile that you need winter tyres dependent on the type and amount of snow.
 

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There can be significant difference between newish tyres and well worn tyres even on some snow tyres. As some tyre manufacturers cheat and the sipes that they heavily rely on for snow grip only go into the first few millimetres of tread. They do this because it's easier and cheaper to manufacture and their tyre moulds are cheaper and last longer, and the tyres perform great as always tested new, but then they last longer as the rubber doesn't flex as much without deep sipes etc.
So your tyres might perform great one year in the snow and then if worn down sufficiently perform terribly the next in snow. This is obviously not all but some tyre manufacturers.
 

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Car feels like it's floating on icy road conditions. 2018, I've owned the car for 4 years since new. I have winter tires. Replaced rear lower spring plates due to corrosion prior to snow fall and icy road conditions. Before replacement, with previous winter driving condition, car performed normally on ice and snow, no issues and no "floating". Feels like it wants to fish tail. Was taken in recently to get an alignment, found a broken rear spring. Both rear springs have since been replaced. Anyone else experience this? Mostly highway driven. I don't mistreat my vehicle, though I do drive a great deal. Mileage is higher than average.
 

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Hi All, first drive on partially snow-covered roads in my new Q5 and it was terrifying.

The highway was not slick or icy but, a thin layer of snow covered the lane making it all white except for black asphalt in the two tracks made by the tires. Traveling around 45 miles and hour, the car began to swerve left and right. I was not on ice. It felt like the car was trying to keep me between the white lines but, there were three white/snow lines, one in the middle of the lane between the tires. The car would not let me take control and kept swerving for at least a minute. We figured out how to turn the active lane assist off and switched to off-road mode. This improved the driving but, it still felt unstable. Every time we crossed a small and very shallow snow drift, the car drifted to the left and then over-corrected to the right.

Are there any reported issue with ALA and ESC on winter roads? I'm calling the dealer next but, wanted to put this on the forum as well.
Hi All, first drive on partially snow-covered roads in my new Q5 and it was terrifying.

The highway was not slick or icy but, a thin layer of snow covered the lane making it all white except for black asphalt in the two tracks made by the tires. Traveling around 45 miles and hour, the car began to swerve left and right. I was not on ice. It felt like the car was trying to keep me between the white lines but, there were three white/snow lines, one in the middle of the lane between the tires. The car would not let me take control and kept swerving for at least a minute. We figured out how to turn the active lane assist off and switched to off-road mode. This improved the driving but, it still felt unstable. Every time we crossed a small and very shallow snow drift, the car drifted to the left and then over-corrected to the right.

Are there any reported issue with ALA and ESC on winter roads? I'm calling the dealer next but, wanted to put this on the forum as well.
We have a 2021 Q5 and experienced the same issues a few days ago driving north. Ran into snow and ice and the car fishtailed all over the place. After researching, we put it into off- road mode and it made it somewhat better, but still couldn't go more than 45 without feeling like the car was out of control. I have a new Q7 on order, but after this driving experience I am really rethinking it.
 

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Putting it in off-road mode was the right thing to do. What make etc tyres do you have? The narrower the tread the worse the handling in snowy conditions.
 

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Putting it in off-road mode was the right thing to do. What make etc tyres do you have? The narrower the tread the worse the handling in snowy conditions.
I think you have that backwards
"Snow driving — Because there is low friction on the road, having greater pressure on the road is more important than having more surface area. Therefore, narrow tires perform better when the roads are covered with snow, since they can dig deeper into the snow, providing more traction."
 

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I said the narrower the tread not the tyre. Although, dependant on the snow type the narrower the tyre the better. The best car I have ever seen going through snow is a Citroen 2CV that has bicycle sized wheels. With wider tyres they can float over the snow so if you have wider tyres then the best tread is wider so the tyre can dig in to the snow.
 

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