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I'm trying to decide b/w a 2000 9-3 and 2001
is it worth getting one with traction control?
does it help at all?
 

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I'm not at all sure about the American market.. but the model year 2001 9-3 had various other improvements.. a new electronics bus system (same as the 9-5), a Trionic upgrade to Trionic 7, resiteing of a few bits to allow 17'' wheels to be fitted comfortably.. some more little bits and pieces as standard etc..
 

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If you are planning to upgrade the ECU for more power at some point, there is currently a much wider choice for Trionic 5 cars than Trionic 7, and simple mechanical modifications such as manuual boost controllers don't work with Trionic 7 because it's too clever to be fooled.

My only experience with traction control was on a 9000. I hated it and never found it useful in any situation, ever. More often than not, it got in the way. The 9-3 might be totally different, though.

It would have been intersting to see whether TCS would have got me out of my street this morning in the snow. I had to park the car and walk, even with new tyres fitted yesterday.

Brief tyre review:

Bridgestone S-03:

Dry grip - superb
Wet grip - superb
Snow grip - zero...
 

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Hmm, I tried to go to work today too, made a 8 mile round trip in just ober an hour (decided that the 30 mile trip to work would take 4 hrs!)

TCS worked fine, even in 5th with none to 5% thottle it was coming in and stopping wheel spin.

Had great fin coming back the 4 miles, hanging the back end out on all the corners
 

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Originally posted by BillJ:
[qb]Brief tyre review:

Bridgestone S-03:

Dry grip - superb
Wet grip - superb
Snow grip - zero... [/qb][/b]
Hmm, yes, can't say I was overly impressed with mine either. Especially wehn I tried stopping doing sub 10mph yesterday evening and found the ABS in overdrive and no apprecialble deceleration happeing. So I just jammed the handbrake on and used that instead...

Although they did seem to cope reasonably well this morning with packed snow down a country lane, but I was taking it easy

Wished I still had SO2s
 

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I would have liked to give you guys an update on how the f1's do in the snow but ...no snow!!!!
it seems we have a snow free area around edinburgh..it must be all the hot air from our parliament
btw I am very surprised at the lack of traction even with tcs and lsd as they will work in harmony...
 

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Originally posted by BillJ:

Brief tyre review:

Bridgestone S-03:

Dry grip - superb
Wet grip - superb
Snow grip - zero...  [/b]
Ditto. SO-3's on a 9-5 in snow?


Got out of my road, just, got to work, but unladen Transits were stopping better!!

So much ABS ankle doesn't work this morning, 25 metres to stop from 10 mph -!!!!!
Also checked that the "Winter" mode was working on the auto box
 

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I would be interested to find out from any eagle F1 owners how these tyres have performed in the snow. I just ordered some, but haveen't been able to try them in the current London driving conditions, as the car is in the garage.
I read on another board that the TCS is quite good in preventing wheel spins on snow. I don't have TCS, so I can't say if it is so. But I was pleased to have been driving Corsa loan car during the 11 hours it took me to get from Birminham back to London. I amm not sure the 9-3 with wide tyres would have been so easy to control with all that power and no TCS. I am also glad that my 9-3 driving experience and car control were of so much help on the slippery road. Saw many crashes..
 

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Originally posted by ylee coyote:
[qb]btw I am very surprised at the lack of traction even with tcs and lsd as they will work in harmony... [/qb][/b]
I don't have TCS on the Aero, but the LSD was pretty useless, as I kept breaking both wheels free and losing any steering control.
 

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Actually I found the LSD was useful. Maybe I also found making progress not too difficult because I've had off road driving training and used those techniques
 

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F1'S are surprisingly good in the snow so much so I seriously considered not putting snow tyres on this year. They are certainly better then the Yokohamas I had before. Does anyone have experience of pseudo traction control by left foot braking? - a friend of mine has just done the Landrover off road course and was taught to use it.
 

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Yes, I've used left foot braking for traction control on several occasions on slippy surfaces. It's pretty effective, but you really need to be moving first to make best use of it- it's very difficult to "feel" how much braking you're applying when trying to move a car off from rest! Of course if the handbrake still worked on the front wheels, life would be much simpler!

I find it interesting he should be taught it on a Landy course though- after all they have 4wd diff locks!

It's amazing how useful the techniques you learn on such courses can be in everyday driving- a bit like track driving I suppose
 

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I've used left foot braking for traction control on several occasions on slippy surfaces[/b]
The old saab owners manuals used to recommend this.

Possibly a throwback from their rally heritage.

Andrew
 

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Originally posted by Mark E:
[qb]Actually I found the LSD was useful.[/qb][/b]
Perhaps I would have had a lot less grip without it. The car just couldn't handle the left-hand turn out of my street up a steep icy slope. I could see no way around having to do it more or less from a standing start and it was just too much for the tyres to handle.

If I need to go anywhere tonight, it'll be on foot, and even that's a bit dodgy around here.
 

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I just had my first real experience of the 9-5 Aero in the snow last night. I was pretty dissapointed, the major problem seems to be that the tyres are just too wide to get decent traction. I went out at lunchtime and switched the ESP off and found driving much better, at least I could feel where the grip limit was. It would be nice to be able to switch the TCS/ESP/ABS off seperately, but I guess that would be considered too complex for Joe public and the electronics are probably all interdependant.

Interesting to see the comments about S-03s. Keeping a long story short about 20 years ago I vowed never to buy Michelin tyres again and 15 years ago discovered Bridgestone RE71's. Since then my preference has been for Bridgestones, but I was getting less than 10,000 miles on the front of my 9000 Aero so switched to Eagle F1 which were not quite as good, particularly in the wet but still pretty good.

When it came time to replace the tyres on my 9-5 Aero I did the usual trick of putting S-03's on. I have to admit they didn't really feel any better than MVS's, (I think that is what was standard fit), and were worse in the wet so I just switched back to Michelins. I think this is due to the tyre / chassis combination being the same as that used for homologation / development, either that of F1 is really helping Michelin with its performance road tyres

Anyone have any other ideas ?

Coming back to the original question, for normal driving in a 9-5 the TCS is of value, particularly with the higher torque cars, decide how you drive, but don't choose it based on hopes for snow or mud abilities, it really is only effective on tarmac, wet or dry

regards

carrera
 

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The TCS seems to do a good job of getting you moving, and keeping you straight on straight roads, but the ABS doesn't seem to match it when you want to stop

But as you say, it's really for wet and dry tarmac when your 'giving it some'

Andrew
 

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It would appear that, like so many other engineeering exercises, tyre design always involves an element of compromise. Interestingly enough, the handbook for my 1989 T16s advise that the tyres fitted to the base models ave acceptable performance in snow, but those fitted to the turbos do not and it recommends the use of winter tyres in snowy conditions.

High performance tyres seem to fall in to one of two broad basic design types- those with angled/swept groves running away from the centre eg F1's:

F1 Pic

or circumferential grooves like the S03:

S03 Image

Winter tyres, on the other hand, have a very pronounced "block" pattern:

Snow Tyre Image

The fundamental difference is that the high performance types are designed to disperse water effectively and have a tread that is resistant to deformation under acceleration/braking/steering loads, whereas the winter tyres are designed to bite into the snow with as many edges as possible to maximise traction. It would seem that you can't have one with the other.

Thinking further, I suspect that the reduced grip in snow will also apply to many of the energy saving tyres which aim to reduce rolling resistance. To get a grip in snow, you need to increase the effective rolling resistance.

Regarding the comment about being dissapointed with the 9-5's grip and blaming it on the width of the tyres, this isn't quite correct. Whilst a wider tyre will, for a given load, reduce the ability to "bite" into the snow, the key to traction is actually tread design.

We have got used to not having to cope with snow in this country, and so have tended to towards the high performance or energy saving designs...
 

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Although tread pattern is an important factor, the other key design element is the rubber compound. The rubber compound is designed to be sticky within a certain temperature range. High performance/summer tyres, a-la VR/ZR rated have a compound suited to higher temperatures as generated by higher speeds and cornering loads. The compounds used in winter tyres on the other hand are designed to give better grip at lower temperatures.

carrera
 

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I would say that TCS is not needed provide you buy proper tires for the season. For the winter, I have Dunlop Winter Sport M2s and like them very much. They are H rated so I can still go 130 mph in the dry but have the much improved wet weather and snow/ice grip of a proper winter tire. I climbed a 8% grade in 6 inches of snow a few years ago with these no problem.

And then on the other hand, I will be putting on S03s for the summer. I had used SP5000s last summer and they were good in the dry but wet weather performance was horrible.

So in my opinion, tire choice will make a larger effect on performance than the TCS ever will.

Eric Burr
 

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Originally posted by blue99turbo:
[qb]I would say that TCS is not needed provide you buy proper tires for the season.  [/qb][/b]
Spot on Eric- you've neatly summarised my underlying point. Don't expect a high performance tyre to be any good in snow or ice...
 
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