When most people are dreaming of a warm day after the cold winter months, you’ll find Subaru owners in the middle of the extreme “Bomb Cyclone” conditions slamming the Northeast. When other SUVs and crossovers are getting stuck in the white stuff, Subarus are powering their way through it.
Subaru is known for their all-wheel-drive vehicles and you’ll find many in cold-weather states like New Hampshire where the “Bomb Cyclone” hit the area hard. The New York Times reported, all along the Eastern Seaboard, roads were iced-over, snow-covered or slush-filled and treacherous on Thursday and likely to remain that way for a few days. The Outback, Forester and Crosstrek have a “go-anywhere” attitude, and the vehicles are purpose-designed for snowy, icy and extreme winter conditions like these in the Northeast.
Subaru uses a Symmetrical AWD system fitted with a purely mechanical viscous coupling in the center that nominally splits torque 50/50, but will divert power to the axle with more traction if a wheel starts to slip. The Outback, Forester and Crosstrek have open differentials in the front and rear, that feature a "Limited Slip Device" (called LSD by Subaru) which brakes the slipping wheel to help send more torque to the wheel that has traction for greater acceleration.
Because the Subaru Forester, Outback and Crosstrek all have 8.7-inches of ground clearance, the vehicle can handle deep snow without getting stuck. It’s ideal for those living in the mountains and high country where snowfall is measured in feet not inches. The 8.7 inches of ride height is more than you’ll find with the Jeep Cherokee (5.7-in) and even Jeep Grand Cherokee (8.6-in).
X-MODE will get you out of a sticky situation
All three Subaru vehicles can be equipped with a feature called X-Mode for extreme winter conditions like the Bomb Cyclone. When the wheels begin to slide or slip in deep snow, ice or sticky slick mud, the average all-wheel-drive vehicle will still get stuck. The 2018 Forester, Outback and Crosstrek with X-MODE changes that and is easy to engage with the push of a switch located on the center console. X-MODE allows you to keep your foot off the brake and let the system do the work, and you can keep your attention on the road.
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Photo credit: Subaru