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Has anyone else had handling issues with snow? I was disappointed in my Passport's (AWD Touring with OEM wheels and tires) handling during our first major snowfall (6") here in NE Kansas. The Passport unexpectedly slid out several times despite slow (<25 mph) speeds, flat roads, and gentle braking. One time I banged the curb hard and one rim now has a large scrape along 1/3 the rim's radius. I am now researching (mainly reviewing previous Passport Forum threads) to either buy winter tires and/or buy 18" rims plus winter to get better winter handling (and more rubber and hopefully less rim scrapes). Has shifting to small diameter rims (18" or 17") helped? Overall, I love the Passport. Appreciate any advice.
 

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First, all-season tires are no substitute for winter tires especially with the deeper snow. There are a few recent article on Road & Track on the subject. Winter tire's tread compound and tread pattern help with handling in extreme cold and various winter road conditions.

Typically when changing to a smaller wheel diameter, the tread width is narrower and one aspect of improving winter weather handling (a compromise versus dry weather handling). Owners have been able to install wheels as small as 17". There are a few existing threads on this topic.
 

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It is my understanding that on a dry road a greater tire contact patch provides greater grip; think racing tires.

Conversely - with rain (and/ or snowy roads) that greater tire patch becomes more like a ski and rises above the roadway, which results in riding the slippery surface - not good.

For those type of road conditions a lesser contact patch (read smaller/ narrower tires - results in the same vehicle weight better cutting thru the slick stuff) which yields more road surface contact and better control.

Smaller, narrower, softer compounds - with lots of grippy thread - will be superior in snow. Bigger meaty tires - specifically designed for high speed use - will be superior on a dry surface. Of course your mileage may vary.
 

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I live on the Snowbelt in North Western PA. I haven't had any issues with the stock rims or tires we have only got hit hard once so far though. If you get 17/18s with snow tires though it will be night and day difference. I am still pissed at Honda for only offering 20s. I would of been so much happier with 18s.

The AWD system is good for getting you going even with All-Seasons. As far as stopping, turning, and taking bends winter tires is what you'll really need.

You add our advanced AWD system + some Blizzaks and you'll have one of the most road worthy winter vehicles on the road. Keep in mind that thinner tires are usually superior in the snow for almost all situations. I wouldn't go with a 265 if you're getting snow tires. Try a 245.

Remember in deep snow to get going take traction control off. Once you get moving turn it back on. Getting up hills a "safe" amount of momentum is your friend. On turns/bends slow down to your desired speed before the turn as braking or accelerating while turning can cause you to slide.
 

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The Touring and Elite models have wider tires. 265/45 x 20"
I wonder if any of the Sport and EX-L models, with their narrower tires 245/50 x 20" are having snow handling issues?
 
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I live on the Snowbelt in North Western PA. I haven't had any issues with the stock rims or tires we have only got hit hard once so far though. If you get 17/18s with snow tires though it will be night and day difference. I am still pissed at Honda for only offering 20s. I would of been so much happier with 18s.

The AWD system is good for getting you going even with All-Seasons. As far as stopping, turning, and taking bends winter tires is what you'll really need.

You add our advanced AWD system + some Blizzaks and you'll have one of the most road worthy winter vehicles on the road. Keep in mind that thinner tires are usually superior in the snow for almost all situations. I wouldn't go with a 265 if you're getting snow tires. Try a 245.

Remember in deep snow to get going take traction control off. Once you get moving turn it back on. Getting up hills a "safe" amount of momentum is your friend. On turns/bends slow down to your desired speed before the turn as braking or accelerating while turning can cause you to slide.
i have the 17 inch blizzacks on and i cant get over how much the driving dynamics have improved over the 20 inch oem all seasons. i dont get why they went w the 20's at all. now i am considering getting dedicated 18 inch summer tires , more $$$ i dont have lol.
 

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I wonder if any of the Sport and EX-L models, with their narrower tires 245/50 x 20" are having snow handling issues?
Tire compound (i.e., remaining pliable in cold temperatures) and tread pattern (i.e., tread block sips grip snow) have a bigger impact on improving winter traction.

i dont get why they went w the 20's at all.
For the appearance and dry weather handling? The majority of SUV never leave the pavement. We are in the minority.

As an aside, I had the pleasure (um, need) to test out the AWD Snow mode during our recent road trip in severe winter weather conditions. AWD Snow mode severely reduces throttle response to prevent wheel spin and loss of traction.
 

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Tom - I was driving in that same storm on Sunday in KC. I was disappointed in the Continentals on my Elite. I slid when coming to a stop and turning. I used the paddle shift to keep it in lower gears. I had less problem with control doing that. The transmission in Drive will put you in a higher gear for economy purposes. I didn't care for the Selectable drive, having to shift up and down. I just used Drive in the Snow mode and the down shift paddle to help it slow.

We were on a road where people were just parked because 10-12 cars were in the ditch on both sides. I was making my way through those cars without trouble until the truck in front tried to stop. Thought I was going to hit him. Once their truck was in the ditch, I drove away from the scene without issue.
 

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Discussion Starter #10
Tom - I was driving in that same storm on Sunday in KC. I was disappointed in the Continentals on my Elite. I slid when coming to a stop and turning. I used the paddle shift to keep it in lower gears. I had less problem with control doing that. The transmission in Drive will put you in a higher gear for economy purposes. I didn't care for the Selectable drive, having to shift up and down. I just used Drive in the Snow mode and the down shift paddle to help it slow.

We were on a road where people were just parked because 10-12 cars were in the ditch on both sides. I was making my way through those cars without trouble until the truck in front tried to stop. Thought I was going to hit him. Once their truck was in the ditch, I drove away from the scene without issue.
Wow! Thanks for the tips on using snow mode and paddle shifters. I was in snow mode when I banged the curb. Based on everyone's comments so far, I plan to get winter tires. Still researching if I am going to lay out more money to shift to 18"/17" rims or just stick with the stock 20".
 

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I run winter tires on 17” steel rims for winter. My passport goes through the snow like it was on rails, I love it. Winter tires are a must.
 

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Thanks everyone for the advice and ideas. I decided to go ahead and buy new (smaller diameter) rims and winter tires. I plan on driving the 18" wheels with 245/60/R18 Michelin Latitude X-Ice Xi2 tires during the winter (November to mid-March) then shift to the OEW 20" wheels with the stock 265/45/R20 Continentals the rest of the year. Will post pictures once they are mounted and installed.
 

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Has anyone else had handling issues with snow? I was disappointed in my Passport's (AWD Touring with OEM wheels and tires) handling during our first major snowfall (6") here in NE Kansas. The Passport unexpectedly slid out several times despite slow (<25 mph) speeds, flat roads, and gentle braking. One time I banged the curb hard and one rim now has a large scrape along 1/3 the rim's radius. I am now researching (mainly reviewing previous Passport Forum threads) to either buy winter tires and/or buy 18" rims plus winter to get better winter handling (and more rubber and hopefully less rim scrapes). Has shifting to small diameter rims (18" or 17") helped? Overall, I love the Passport. Appreciate any advice.
I haven't had the opportunity to drive mine in the snow yet, but this video seemed quite interesting to me.
2019 Honda Passport Elite AWD - POV Winter Driving (Night)
 

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Discussion Starter #16
I think I am ready for the snow now! I bought 18" rims that are 8.5" wide with a 35 mm offset (TSW Sebring in matte black) and Michelin Latitude X-Ice Xi2 winter tires (245/60/R18). Pictures attached. The ride is a bit softer but still quiet and smooth (on dry pavement). Thanks again for all the posts.
IMG_3581.JPG
IMG_3582.JPG
 

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Wow! Thanks for the tips on using snow mode and paddle shifters. I was in snow mode when I banged the curb. Based on everyone's comments so far, I plan to get winter tires. Still researching if I am going to lay out more money to shift to 18"/17" rims or just stick with the stock 20".
Got a 2019 Sport PP and hate the black rims and stock 20" tires! Haven't been able to sell them to save my life! $800, mounted and 1500 miles on 'em. Anyway, it's winter here in Maine and I've got "17 WinterForce Studded tires mounted on 17" Sport edition wheels. Gonna cost me......but buying another 17" set in Spring and new all-seasonTires (undecided) Those black 20" can rot.
 

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Discussion Starter #18
2000crv - nice looking rims! I understand and feel the pinch of buying new rims and tires. I am happy with my 18" wheels - still look good (at least to me). Enjoy
 

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I am happy to post that my AWD Touring Passport now equipped with 18" rims and winter tires (Michelin Latitude X-Ice Xi2) performed awesome in the ice and snow today! Today's conditions were almost the same as last month (1/4 ice covered in 4-5 inches of snow) when I was sliding all over the road and scraped my rims as described in the first post. I used the Snow mode and downshifted when slowing down. I could not get my Passport (named Blue) to spin or slide at all. While other SUV's and four wheel drive pickups were fish tailing all over the road, the Passport tracked straight and smooth. Thanks for all the comments and suggestions. I love this vehicle!
 

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Winter Tires are a true life saver, not to mention just easier to stay calm behind the wheel rather than being all tense worring about sliding or braking on ice.
I've never heard anyone complain that they were sorry they bought winter tires. Love mine too! Love the 17" size... now I want 18" All-Season for the warmer months. The ride quality is so much better even with Winter tires over the 20's.
 
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