How to prepare your car for winter driving
Get your Porsche ready for wintry weather and learn how to drive safely
Green Porsche Taycan driving on snowy mountain road towards town
Whether you’re driving a classic or a newer model, here’s a handy guide to help you get your Porsche ready for icy and snowy conditions
Use winter tyres on your carIf you do one thing to get your Porsche ready for winter then it’s to swap regular road tyres for winter ones. Specifically designed to perform in cold, wet, icy or snowy conditions, winter tyres are made from a softer rubber compound and have deeper tread depths. This means a stronger grip on challenging road surfaces like snow and ice, helping to reduce the braking distance compared to regular tyres. For instance, when braking on wet surfaces from 80km/h down to 0km/h in temperatures of 3°C, Porsche Tequipment Winter Tyres can shorten the braking distance by approximately 12 per cent compared to their summer equivalents. At lower speeds (40-0km/h), they help shorten the braking distance by around 19 per cent. Porsche Tequipment Winter Tyres will fit all Porsche models and complement your Porsche perfectly. When choosing winter tyres, look for the M+S (mud and snow) marking along with the Alpine symbol – a three-pointed mountain with a snowflake – on the tyre’s sidewall. While any tyre can carry the M+S designation without specific winter testing, the Alpine symbol indicates certified winter performance. For this reason make sure that your Porsche tyres feature both the M+S mark and the Alpine symbol for optimal winter readiness.
Porsche Tequipment Winter Tyres on a Cayenne E-Hybrid Coupé
Porsche Tequipment Winter Tyres help improve grip and stability on icy roads while perfectly complementing your Porsche look and feel
Fitting snow chains can make a differenceWhether you are driving up a snowy mountain pass or just need an extra dose of grip, winter tyres are the answer. They give an extra level of traction and can boost your driving confidence. But, for those occasions when you encounter conditions that are especially perilous, it’s worth investing in a set of snow chains. Porsche offers fine-link chain strands that are easy to install and remove. For 18-inch wheels, fitting snow chains on all wheels is recommended, while for 19- and 20-inch wheels, you should only fit them on the rear axle. One thing to remember: if you have wheel spacers fitted (an aftermarket product that some drivers install to widen the track of their vehicle), Porsche snow chains will not be compatible.
Man fits snow chains to tyres of green Porsche Taycan
Winter tyres are common for drivers in countries that are affected by snowy weather. For really bad conditions, consider fitting snow chains
Prepare your car before driving on wintry roadsNow that you have the tyre basics sorted, it’s time to prep your car for your winter road trips. There’s a huge list of ways to get your Porsche interior and exterior ready for the season. Here’s some tips that will help you head out onto the road with confidenceCheck and replace the fluids in your PorscheFrom engine oil to transmission fluid, brake fluid to windscreen wash, ensuring that the range of essential fluids your car needs are topped up and replaced is a quick, easy and important fix. Many fluids aren’t made to operate at their optimum levels in freezing temperatures. Make sure you stock up on antifreeze, which will help prevent the engine from stalling, and switch to winter-grade motor oil, which flows better through a car’s engine at lower temperatures. Porsche also offers specialised winter window cleaner concentrate and an ice scraper to help keep your windscreen clear.Keep doors and window seals in good conditionIn frosty weather, the rubber seals on your car doors and windows can take a battering from ice. A touch of silicone-based lubricant on the seals can work wonders, preventing any sticking or tearing when winding windows up and down.Give your Porsche a coat of winter waxWinter’s elements along with the salt that is spread on roads are a big challenge for the exterior of your car. To help counteract rust and corrosion, applying a layer of wax creates a resilient barrier that guards your car's paintwork from the damaging effects of moisture and salt.Keep an eye on your car battery’s conditionWinter can also be tough on a car battery, as it can lose power in the cold – so make sure it’s always fully charged and in top condition with the Porsche Charge-o-mat Pro trickle charger and battery monitor. A quick check-up with a professional at your local Porsche Centre will also set your mind at ease.Consider using a block heater to warm up your car’s engine bayIf you don’t keep your car in a garage, or live in a place where winters are especially harsh, then a block heater can come in handy to get your car's engine warmed up before you start it on a cold morning. Once you’ve finished using it, start your car and let it idle for a short while before you set off. This will allow the engine oil to work at its best. A word of caution – avoid letting your engine run in enclosed spaces like garages to avoid any chance of inhaling exhaust fumes.Top Porsche winter accessories for your carFloor mats and luggage matsIf you or your pets are out in the snow, there’s a chance that you will bring the sludge from outside into your car. To avoid damaging the interior of your Porsche, stock up on all-weather floor mats, as well as something that will line your boot.Roof cagesWhether you’re off skiing, sledding or even just heading to the shops, don’t forget to add an extra layer of storage on top of your car using a Porsche Roof Cage. It’ll make sure that your winter gear and bulky goodies are safely transported – it’s rather good for a small Christmas tree, too!Pack for every scenarioIn your Porsche, always stow an emergency kit equipped with the essentials –for example, blankets, torch, first-aid kit and basic tools. Don’t forget to include water and some basic supplies as well. And always keep a snow shovel at hand in case of particularly wintry surprises.
Blue Porsche Cayenne E-Hybrid Coupé with roof cage on snowy road
Driving in winter is a unique challenge, offering scenarios that you encounter only infrequently. The biggest tip is to stay calm at all times
How to drive your car in winter conditionsSo you’re all set to drive. Now comes the really interesting part. Driving in wintry conditions is an art in itself. Your car may do things you weren’t entirely expecting – and that will be the same for other drivers, too. There are some great tips from the lead instructor at Finland’s Porsche Ice Experience on how to drive in wintry conditions in an all-electric car, like the Porsche Taycan, much of which is relevant to drivers of all cars. But here’s some of the basics to consider before you head out onto wintry roads.Learn how to react when your car understeersThe levels of grip that you encounter driving in icy weather will inevitably be different to roads in normal conditions. It’s good to learn how to deal with understeer – when you turn the steering wheel but the car turns less sharply than you intended. The first thing to do is to keep calm, and then brake. Do not continue to steer in. Once you have slowed your vehicle's speed down, hopefully you’ll be able to turn accurately once more.Regulate your speed and brake safelyA simple tip, and perhaps an obvious one too, but don’t expect to drive safely at the same speeds on a snowy road that you would on a warm summer’s day. Safe stopping distances are greatly increased in snow and ice, while other road users are more unpredictable too. Give yourself as much time as possible to react by keeping it steady and smooth.Read the road and the conditionsThe unseen peril on winter roads, black ice blends in with the asphalt on a highway, making it hard to see from behind the wheel. Pay special attention when crossing bridges, on overpasses and in areas shielded from the sun, as these spots are notorious for black ice. One of the simplest and most helpful tips to avoid an accident in bad weather is to look as far ahead down the road as possible when driving so you can (weather permitting) spot any hazards or danger at the earliest opportunity.Adjust your headlight settingsIf your LED headlights bounce off the snow causing glare, switch on your fog lights for a clearer, safer drive.Fuel upKeep your fuel tank full to prevent its fuel line from freezing. A full tank also adds extra weight to your vehicle which can help both traction and stability on icy roads.Avoid using cruise controlIt’s best to use manual gear selection rather than slip into cruise control when driving in winter – you will get a better feel for the frequently changing road conditions so that you can react accordingly.
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