FWD snow experience? | Ford Explorer Forums - Serious Explorations

  • Register Today It's free!

FWD snow experience?


Well-Known Member
January 21, 2002
Reaction score
City, State
Cleveland, Ohio
Year, Model & Trim Level
'04 XLT
Im back! After owning two explorers I switched to a mercedes for a while and recently had the chance to rent an explorer for a trip from Cleveland to North Carolina and fell in love. I am looking around at my local dealerships inventory and I am finding way more FWD explorers then 4WD. Because of this I am wondering how the FWD Explorer does in the snow. I did some searching on the forum and all I can find is discussions but not any real time experience with the FWD in the snow. Can anyone tell me if they have any experience with the FWD explorer in deep snow? Thanks in advance.

Join the Elite Explorers for $20 each year.
Elite Explorer members see no advertisements, no banner ads, no double underlined links,.
Add an avatar, upload photo attachments, and more!

FWD is FWD with very litte difference between two vehicles of the same type. The biggest factor is going to be the tires and, because the front buumpper hangs so low, there's a chance you might rip something off in the deep snow drifts.

On paper, it's about as good as an FWD sedan.

With all the traction control nannies it may be better than all but the most modern vehicles.

Snow driving, as you already know, comes down to 2 things - tires and driver. Without a good combination of the two, doesn't matter what-wheel-drive it is.

An Explorer (or any sedan like FWD) with a good driver and winter tires will outperform almost anything out there except when you are dealing with heavy accumulations, as the Explorer's snout is pretty low.

Might not be the answer you're looking for....hope it helps.

Is the nose of the FWD much lower then the 4WD? I assume it is a bit. My last EX had a 2" lift so I am completely forgetting about the low clearance on the EX. Thats the one thing thats bad about my mercedes, its so low to the ground, other then that, its AWD and the tires rock so its great in the snow. Thanks for the comments, I will probably lean towards the 4WD.