recommend me a 4WD - or not....

#1
have a seemingly insurmountable problem:

i do about 35k on motorways per year, 99.99% of my driving is A road/Mway, 50mpg, 60+mph boring stuff - however, i live 2 miles up a steepish lane that will never see a gritter before the end of time, and last winter i was stuck, completely stuck - for several weeks we were unable to leave our house, and only the kindness of neighbours with proper 4WD's stopped us starving to death and being sacked.

my current wagon, a 56 2.0 TDCI mondeo estate, is wonderful - its utterly reliable, masses of room, comfortable to drive, gets 50-55mpg and is cheap to run, however it won't do 2 miles of upto 1in6 ice - even with those fancy 'snow glove' things on the tyres.

so advice please - will a 'normal car' with 4WD (Volvo, Audi, Skoda Subaru etc..) do the deed - 50mpg, and the ice wall - or will i need to get a 'proper' farm gate Landy-type thing for the ice wall and a 'normal' 2WD car for my 35k of motorway driving?

realisticly my budget is going to be about £8k.

ideas?
 
#3
Audi allroad/quattro TDI? or Volvo XC70 maybe?
most 2.0l 'proper' 4x4 (Nissan Xtrail, Freelander, Hyundai, Kia etc etc) will only give about a max of 40mpg but they will get you up the ice wall.
 
#4
Volvo XC70 - go anywhere estate car with good MPG.

Having lived and worked in the North of Sweden in the depths of winter, it's the only way to get around, in style and comfort. Highly Recommended and there's plenty around 2nd hand within your budget.
 
#5
cokecan said:
i live 2 miles up a steepish lane that will never see a gritter before the end of time, and last winter i was stuck, completely stuck - for several weeks we were unable to leave our house,

my current wagon, a 56 2.0 TDCI mondeo estate, is wonderful - its utterly reliable, masses of room, comfortable to drive, gets 50-55mpg and is cheap to run, however it won't do 2 miles of upto 1in6 ice - even with those fancy 'snow glove' things on the tyres.

realisticly my budget is going to be about £8k.

ideas?
Buy youself a £1k fourtrak or something similar and leave it at the end of the road, that way you can keep your " utterly reliable" "56 2.0 TDCI mondeo estate" and just play in your old shitty motor when you need to.
 

Alsacien

MIA
Moderator
#6
cokecan said:
have a seemingly insurmountable problem:

i do about 35k on motorways per year, 99.99% of my driving is A road/Mway, 50mpg, 60+mph boring stuff - however, i live 2 miles up a steepish lane that will never see a gritter before the end of time, and last winter i was stuck, completely stuck - for several weeks we were unable to leave our house, and only the kindness of neighbours with proper 4WD's stopped us starving to death and being sacked.

my current wagon, a 56 2.0 TDCI mondeo estate, is wonderful - its utterly reliable, masses of room, comfortable to drive, gets 50-55mpg and is cheap to run, however it won't do 2 miles of upto 1in6 ice - even with those fancy 'snow glove' things on the tyres.

so advice please - will a 'normal car' with 4WD (Volvo, Audi, Skoda Subaru etc..) do the deed - 50mpg, and the ice wall - or will i need to get a 'proper' farm gate Landy-type thing for the ice wall and a 'normal' 2WD car for my 35k of motorway driving?

realisticly my budget is going to be about £8k.

ideas?
I have a similiar situation. Audi quattro is the best compromise solution the big 4x4's are big, heavy and you lose on handling, performance and economy. Ideally the new'ish Audi option of air suspension raising the car up a few cm's for the odd times you actually need the extra ground clearance.
 

Alsacien

MIA
Moderator
#7
bobtheclog said:
Volvo XC70 - go anywhere estate car with good MPG.

Having lived and worked in the North of Sweden in the depths of winter, it's the only way to get around, in style and comfort. Highly Recommended and there's plenty around 2nd hand within your budget.
I had one for a short time, did not work for me. Up and down hills with sharp bends it was rubbish, just too much inertia going on - fine on the flat and on reasonable curves though for such a big vehicle.
Its also a bus - narrow lanes, villages and car parks were a nightmare.
 

TheIronDuke

ADC
Book Reviewer
#9
Thanks for your input girls, and your comments on upping the air suspension on an Audi barge were most welcome. Thanks.

cokecan said:
i do about 35k on motorways per year, 99.99% of my driving is A road/Mway, 50mpg, 60+mph boring stuff - however, i live 2 miles up a steepish lane that will never see a gritter before the end of time,
Land Rover Defender. It'll cost you between £2k and £10k, depending on spec. It'll do 60mph on the motorway all day long, then climb a mountain and pull a house down. Go for the 300tdi rather than the girly V8.

OK, so your kids are strapped into the back benches in what looks like a bondage harness. Just turn up X-Ray Specs to volume 11 on the stereo and spit upon Audi driving girls.
 
#10
I bought an Audi Allroad just before Christmas and that was just as well - apart from the tractors and Landys it was the only thing going in and out of the village in 9" of snow. The adjustable suspension gives you lots of clearance off-road and can be cranked down low for better fuel economy (did 1400 motorway miles last weekend across Europe at a shade under 40mpg).

Only downside is that they're not cheap and there aren't many around second hand. I believe that Skoda have their own versions which, second hand, might be better for your budget.
 

TheIronDuke

ADC
Book Reviewer
#11
theinventor said:
I bought an Audi Allroad
Are you a print rep? Just an associate of mine wants some leaflets delivered. Cash up front, yeah?

Jesus. Right my friends, ignore the air suspension bolloks of the fairy side of the street.

I shall say this once, and I shall not be in the mood for fucking questions, all right?

Land Rover

Are we clear?
 

Fronty

Old-Salt
Book Reviewer
#13
For the number of miles that you do, and for the number of times that you need proper 4WD, you are far better buying a cheap 4x4 and just leaving it down the bottom of the road like DFM said.

If you get something with proper low ratio as a day to day car and do that sort of mileage, you are going to get shafted on fuel, probably on road tax as well, so it would make a lot more sense to buy an old fourtrak/frontera/hilux/whatever and just use that as and when needed.

I mean, my Frontera has low ratio, has done 200k+ miles and still works. With the right tyres, it can cope with anything. You can get slightly dented ones with less mileage for under a grand on eBay...
 
#14
Alsacien said:
cokecan said:
have a seemingly insurmountable problem:

i do about 35k on motorways per year, 99.99% of my driving is A road/Mway, 50mpg, 60+mph boring stuff - however, i live 2 miles up a steepish lane that will never see a gritter before the end of time, and last winter i was stuck, completely stuck - for several weeks we were unable to leave our house, and only the kindness of neighbours with proper 4WD's stopped us starving to death and being sacked.

my current wagon, a 56 2.0 TDCI mondeo estate, is wonderful - its utterly reliable, masses of room, comfortable to drive, gets 50-55mpg and is cheap to run, however it won't do 2 miles of upto 1in6 ice - even with those fancy 'snow glove' things on the tyres.

so advice please - will a 'normal car' with 4WD (Volvo, Audi, Skoda Subaru etc..) do the deed - 50mpg, and the ice wall - or will i need to get a 'proper' farm gate Landy-type thing for the ice wall and a 'normal' 2WD car for my 35k of motorway driving?

realisticly my budget is going to be about £8k.

ideas?
I have a similiar situation. Audi quattro is the best compromise solution the big 4x4's are big, heavy and you lose on handling, performance and economy. Ideally the new'ish Audi option of air suspension raising the car up a few cm's for the odd times you actually need the extra ground clearance.
Alsacien

I beg to differ I drive a Range Rover 4.4 V8 yes it is big and weighs 3 tonnes, but the performance and handling are excellent, not too good on the juice but I am converting to LPG so I have the duel fuel option.

The best option for this guy would be a long wheel base defender superb workhorse.

Magic
 

Alsacien

MIA
Moderator
#15
The_Magician said:
Alsacien said:
cokecan said:
have a seemingly insurmountable problem:

i do about 35k on motorways per year, 99.99% of my driving is A road/Mway, 50mpg, 60+mph boring stuff - however, i live 2 miles up a steepish lane that will never see a gritter before the end of time, and last winter i was stuck, completely stuck - for several weeks we were unable to leave our house, and only the kindness of neighbours with proper 4WD's stopped us starving to death and being sacked.

my current wagon, a 56 2.0 TDCI mondeo estate, is wonderful - its utterly reliable, masses of room, comfortable to drive, gets 50-55mpg and is cheap to run, however it won't do 2 miles of upto 1in6 ice - even with those fancy 'snow glove' things on the tyres.

so advice please - will a 'normal car' with 4WD (Volvo, Audi, Skoda Subaru etc..) do the deed - 50mpg, and the ice wall - or will i need to get a 'proper' farm gate Landy-type thing for the ice wall and a 'normal' 2WD car for my 35k of motorway driving?

realisticly my budget is going to be about £8k.

ideas?
I have a similiar situation. Audi quattro is the best compromise solution the big 4x4's are big, heavy and you lose on handling, performance and economy. Ideally the new'ish Audi option of air suspension raising the car up a few cm's for the odd times you actually need the extra ground clearance.
Alsacien

I beg to differ I drive a Range Rover 4.4 V8 yes it is big and weighs 3 tonnes, but the performance and handling are excellent, not too good on the juice but I am converting to LPG so I have the duel fuel option.

The best option for this guy would be a long wheel base defender superb workhorse.

Magic
I guess it depends on your personal expectations regarding performance and handling..... :)
 
#16
Have you considered the somewhat cheaper option of getting yourself a second set of wheels fitted with decent winter tyres with chains as a back up? Millions of Germans, Swiss and Austrians manage perfectly well in rwd car thus equipped.

Even if you go the 4x4 route absent appropriate rubber for the conditions may not help much. Every time it snows round here I see big flash 4x4's with their poxy low profile "sports" tyres in ditches and buried in trees.
 

Alsacien

MIA
Moderator
#17
Blogg said:
Have you considered the somewhat cheaper option of getting yourself a second set of wheels fitted with decent winter tyres with chains as a back up? Millions of Germans, Swiss and Austrians manage perfectly well in rwd car thus equipped.

Even if you go the 4x4 route absent appropriate rubber for the conditions may not help much. Every time it snows round here I see big flash 4x4's with their poxy low profile "sports" tyres in ditches and buried in trees.
Happens in Europe too - even winter tyres cannot change the laws of physics.....heavy and high may work for those who feel a need to look down on folks, but it is a big handicap in winter handling.
Top of the ditch league has to be BMW X3's, I think a rear towing eye is standard :D
 
#18
Alsacien said:
Blogg said:
Have you considered the somewhat cheaper option of getting yourself a second set of wheels fitted with decent winter tyres with chains as a back up? Millions of Germans, Swiss and Austrians manage perfectly well in rwd car thus equipped.

Even if you go the 4x4 route absent appropriate rubber for the conditions may not help much. Every time it snows round here I see big flash 4x4's with their poxy low profile "sports" tyres in ditches and buried in trees.
Happens in Europe too - even winter tyres cannot change the laws of physics.....heavy and high may work for those who feel a need to look down on folks, but it is a big handicap in winter handling.
Top of the ditch league has to be BMW X3's, I think a rear towing eye is standard :D
Yes, there was a nice 3.0i BMW X3 stuck against the underground garage door of my block of flat this winter....did not like the icy ramp one bit... :D

In all honesty, the X3 really is the turkey of BMW's current range. I even had one dealer telling me to stay well clear of it because it has such a lousy ride and such a high center of gravity; according to him, on snow, it was safer driving a 320XD than an X3.

As for the XC70, are you talking about the current version or the previous one ? I am actually considering getting one at the moment and any other comment would be interesting...
 
#19
AFAIK, Q7s have had a number of reliability issues; I was surprized to see Audi given quite bad reliability marks in a recent issue of Auto Plus...and they cost an arm and a leg while in fact benefiting from the VAG pool of common parts.

Maybe you can look at VW 4-motion range like the Passat ?
 
#20
I don't know if they are available in the UK but I have a vintage 1972 Toyota FJ40 Land Cruiser that is the bees knees.
 

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