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Issues with the AWD system

3507 Views 6 Replies 5 Participants Last post by  luxocarnut
I purchased a 2014 CTS last January. It was great in the snow. Now this winter when we go out on slick snowy roads the rear end feels like it is going to come around on you, but only for a second. Then the front seems to take over and it's ok, except it keeps doing this, very scary feeling. I took it back to the dealer and he says that he checked it all over and it's ok. Blamed it on the tires, said that I need to buy winter tires, but that might not make it better either. Has any one felt this issue? Let me know, Thanks.
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You're feeling the traction control kicking in. Also depends how deep, and how much snow you're getting this year vs last year. How many miles do you have on your tires?
Tire wear and snow conditions could certainly be factors. Have you tried switching the traction control setting to "Snow/Ice" (mode button behind the gear shift lever)? It steps in earlier and is more sure-footed.
We only have about 8500 miles on the tires. Will try to switch modes to see if this helps, thanks.
How much snow are you driving in compared to last year?
Your tires were brand new last January so they have thier best grip. Now after a few months they lost their advantage, not a surprise, I can easily invoke oversteer with my AWD in the snow, a bit surprising but it's all tire here, 40 series and runflat contribute to no flex and that will compromise tread contact
Just got my 2014 CTS 2.0T AWD Lux with 17" wheels/tires in September. Have 4,300 miles on it and live in Buffalo NY and we've had quite a bit of snow here this winter. I'm on my first season so its done very well in the snow, but there are certain types of snow and slush that can lead to some slippage for me as well particularly the slushy mushy variety (thats a technical term by the way :) ). When I notice slippage that seems to be pushing the car around while it attempts to gain grip I'll slip it into Ice/Snow mode which has helped a lot. Overall though its pretty stable. I have played with it a bit in a slippery stop condition and its RWD bias nature will let the tail start to go one way if you slam the gas from a stop on ice or packed snow. I came from a 2012 A4 Quattro and had a similar sensation though the Cadillac is even better in the snow than the Audi was with stock all season tires. On both cars I also noticed they first apportion power between the front and rear axles via the center differential which is almost seamless in many cases and you may barely feel it as it makes virtually no noise from within the car or sensation. If you're seeing the traction/stabilitrack light come on often then you're likely either getting enough movement or yaw to one side that its correcting or more likely its also applying traction control to slow down a spinning wheel or wheels in addition to using the center diff to apportion power which means you are lacking some substantial grip.

That all said, one season can make a difference even though your tires still have very low mileage on them. Temperature makes a big difference too. If you're experiencing very low temps in low teens or single digits that may make the rubber even harder which affects the grip since all seasons don't stay as soft in the snow to grip like a snow tire does.

Lastly, both my Audi and the CTS with their rear bias nature will let the tail wag if you give any power while in a turn so you do have to take it easy. AWD vehicles only give a slight advantage (some may argue none) to 2WD vehicles when it comes to turning. For that it all comes down to tires.

All in all, your AWD may be just fine, but if you apply too much power in a situation where all four tires are in a low traction situation you may still end up sliding a bit as the car works to apportion power and try to find grip.
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