Winter Driving with FCA

FCA Winter Driving 560x280As we enter the fourth month of winter weather for much of the United States, it’s likely that most of our audience has experienced driving in some form of frozen precipitation this year. If you live in New England, you’ve had more than your fair share of winter driving this season, if you can even find your car. So that makes it the perfect time to explore the many capable winter driving options offered by the folks at Fiat Chrysler Automobiles (FCA).

FCA invited us to Montreal this past week to get some seat time in All-Wheel Drive (AWD) and Four-Wheel Drive (4WD) models across their entire lineup. Sadly they didn’t bring a Ferrari FF with them on this trip, but we still had plenty of fun in the snow with 2015 models from Chrysler, Dodge, Jeep, and Ram. Check out this video with Jeep Vehicle Integration Engineer, Richard Silbert, for a taste of our experience at the track, and an overview of the vehicles tested :

Normally at these events, we like to take our own photographs, but this time there were just so many vehicles to try, we focused our time instead on testing the entire fleet. We drove the entire test track in each, from the AWD Chrysler 200, to the massive 4WD Ram Power Wagon and everything in between. Below are the fourteen different FCA vehicles we tested in the snow and ice at ICAR Mirabel in Quebec. With a variety of technologies employed, each have their own capabilities, strengths, and weaknesses but all were impressively able to handle the conditions without losing control.

Let’s be honest, we pushed the speeds faster than you would typically do when driving in such conditions in your own vehicle. Sure things got a bit loose and we slid around a few turns and had a delightful time doing so. As the day progressed, the carefully groomed snow wore down into polished ice, and we were driving in some very slick conditions. Never once did we worry that we were going to slide into the solid glaciers at the sides of the track, as the vehicles were able to regain traction and keep us moving in the right direction with confidence. It shows what an effective combination AWD and snow tires (required in Canada) can be, even in extreme conditions.

Below we’ll take a look at the entire lineup of AWD and 4WD capable vehicles from FCA, and highlight the relevant features and starting prices of each…

2015 Chrysler 200

Chrysler 200 560x280

  • FWD-based Mid-Size Sedan
  • Available AWD automatically disconnects and reconnects rear axle.
  • Chrysler 200S AWD MSRP starts at $29,025

2015 Chrysler 300

Chrysler 300 560x280

  • RWD-based Full-Size Luxury Sedan
  • Available AWD with active transfer-case and front-axle-disconnect tech.
  • Chrysler 300 AWD MSRP starts at $36,495

2015 Dodge Charger

Dodge Charger 560x280

  • RWD-based Full-Size Sedan
  • Available AWD with active transfer-case and front-axle-disconnect tech.
  • Dodge Charger SE AWD MSRP starts at $30,995

2015 Dodge Journey

Dodge Journey 560x280

  • FWD-based Mid-Size Crossover
  • Available AWD with Electronically Controlled Coupling (ECC)
  • Dodge Journey SE AWD MSRP starts at $27,295

2015 Dodge Durango

Dodge Durango 560x280

  • RWD-based Sport Utility Vehicle
  • Available full-time AWD system with low-range transfer case.
  • Dodge Durango SXT AWD MSRP starts at $32,995

2015 Jeep Renegade

Jeep Renegade 560x280

  • FWD-based Subcompact Crossover
  • Available 4WD with automatic rear-axle disconnect system.
  • Available Jeep Active Drive with Selec-Terrain traction-control system.
  • Jeep Renegade Sport 4×4 MSRP starts at $19,995

2015 Jeep Wrangler Unlimited

Jeep Wrangler 560x280

  • RWD-based Sport Utility Vehicle
  • 4×4 with live axles and electronic lockers.
  • Command-Trac NC241, part-time, two-speed transfer case.
  • Jeep Wrangler Unlimited Sport 4×4 MSRP starts at $26,595

2015 Jeep Cherokee

Jeep Cherokee 560x280

  • FWD-based Sport Utility Vehicle
  • Available 4WD with rear-axle disconnect.
  • Available Jeep Active Drive with Selec-Terrain traction-control system.
  • Jeep Cherokee Sport 4×4 MSRP starts at $24,995

2015 Jeep Grand Cherokee

Jeep Grand Cherokee 560x280

  • RWD-based Sport Utility Vehicle
  • Available Full-Time 4×4 Quadra-Track system with Selec-Terrain traction-control.
  • Jeep Grand Cherokee Laredo 4×4 MSRP starts at $31,995

2015 Jeep Patriot

Jeep Patriot 560x280

  • FWD-based Compact Sport Utility Vehicle
  • Available Freedom Drive 4×4
  • Jeep Patriot Sport 4×4 MSRP starts at $18,995

2015 Jeep Compass

Jeep Compass 560x280

  • FWD-based Compact Sport Utility Vehicle
  • Available Freedom Drive 4×4
  • Jeep Compass Sport 4×4 MSRP starts at $20,995

2015 Ram 1500

Ram 1500 560x280

  • RWD-based Light Duty Pickup Truck
  • Available 4×4 with either part-time or on-demand transfer case.
  • Ram 1500 Tradesman 4×4 MSRP starts at $29,520

2015 Ram 2500

Ram 2500 560x280

  • RWD-based Heavy Duty Pickup Truck
  • Available 4×4 with part-time transfer case and front axle disconnect.
  • Ram 2500 Tradesman 4×4 MSRP starts at $33,505

2015 Ram Power Wagon

Ram Power Wagon 560x280

  • RWD-based Heavy Duty Pickup Truck
  • 4×4 with part-time, manual-engagement transfer case.
  • Ram 2500 Power Wagon 4×4 MSRP starts at $49,715

Overview

Winter Drive 560x147

Nobody likes getting stuck or even worse when winter storms hit. Getting where you need to go safely is certainly much more fun and productive. If you’re looking to maintain traction and push through some terrible winter weather, FCA has plenty of vehicles to choose from. Each satisfies the needs of different types of drivers and does so with technology suited to the task at hand.

You may have also noticed that Off-Road winter driving was part of this event, and we had so much fun with that segment of the program, that we’re going to make that the focus of a second feature coming soon. We’ll leave you with another video of FCA vehicles majestically cutting through the test-course and a preview of the off-road goodness :