Which car drives worst in snow?
The top 10 cars for ice and snowSafe used vehicles under 15,000 euros
Winter sports begin long before the first descent on the slope: even the drive to the ski area can be a very special kind of fun on the slopes. Not every car is suitable for this; At least front-wheel drive, transport capacity and one or two driving stability assistants should have it if you want to go into the mountains with it. With all-wheel drive, of course, the sled sprints even better.
BILD has rummaged deep in the snow and tracked down ten solid used cars that are not only safe as "winter sports cars" on slopes and in the plains, but are also really fun!
Our search criteria for the used car portals: “HU new”, maximum 100,000 km, budget from 10,000 to 15,000 euros and front-wheel, even better all-wheel drive.
1. Mercedes C-Class T-Model
The star has always been a bit more expensive, so our budget ranges from "only" for an older C-Class (built from 2000 to 2007). The second generation of the smallest Benz at the time has always done well with the TÜV, even if the chassis is often noticeable due to excessive wear due to above-average mileage (typical for the vehicle class).
Surface rust in many visible places is not threatening, but extremely embarrassing, paint and sheet metal from this C generation are not perfect.
In the past, people liked to ridicule Mercedes drivers when they heaved the obligatory two pavement slabs into the trunk in autumn. The measure was especially necessary in limousines so that the driven rear wheels did not spin without significant weight on a wet road.
Despite ESP, this sensitivity tends to exist to this day, so we advise Mercedes buyers to use the all-wheel drive version "4matic".
But let's not fool ourselves: When braking on a slippery road, all-wheel drive is of little use either. But four driven wheels give significantly more grip on snow and mud.
The C-Kombi also fits skis and snowboards when the rear seat is folded, but it is as Four-wheel drive car rare: the search engine finds almost 30 pieces autouncle.dethat searches several online portals at the same time. So for 15,000 euros you have to search a little.
2. VW Tiguan I
Volkswagen is notorious for calmly watching trends first, only to jump on the bandwagon later. This is what happened with the compact SUVs: in 2007, when the BMW X3 had been around for four years, the Tiguan I.
It was the best-selling compact SUV almost immediately and was built for a good ten years. It goes without saying that the used car market is also full. Nearly 1000 Tiguan of the first generation finds autouncle.de, and about half of them have all-wheel drive.
The compact SUV still makes a decent impression at the TÜV inspection, even if the axle suspension and dampers in particular are now decreasing significantly. The timing chains from the 1.4 TSI, which were available in various performance levels, should not be very durable - BILD recommends the two-liter gasoline engine, which was installed with at least 170 hp from 2008.
If you are frightened by the proud real consumption of around 10 liters per 100 km (spritmonitor.de), you have to buy a diesel - but that's mostly the notorious EA189 scandal diesel. Most of them should have received the controversial software update by now, so that the approval is not endangered.
For everyday users, the smallest configuration (110 hp) in the Tiguan has so far been just under 6.5 liters. After the software update, consumption should increase by a few percentage points, but the EA189 remains an economical engine. For under 15There are many models on the market, regardless of the engine size, of EUR 000.
3. Nissan Qashqai
The Japanese manufacturer hit the bull's eye in 2006 with its Qashqai compact SUV: the car has been selling splendidly since then. Although the Qashqai is also available with all-wheel drive, it is not a real off-road vehicle. Nevertheless, all-terrain drivers certify it is good off-road capability. The ground clearance is at least 20 centimeters, and a rotary switch can be used to distribute the drive power from one to both axles and also set it to 50:50.
Most people buy the qashqai as a shopping cart; Less than a sixth of all used vehicles are equipped with all-wheel drive - after all, there are just under 280 cars from the first generation, so you have a large selection. Prices start at around 8,000 euros for ten-year-old Qashqai with gasoline.
Don't expect too much in terms of manufacturing quality: Unfortunately, the car has an above-average number of defects in many assemblies, the TÜV found in its current HU statistics. So take a good look at the car of your choice! In the case of the Qashqai, this also includes the chassis, which an expert should check for wear.
4. Land Rover Freelander
The Land Rover Defender is, of course, the forefather of all off-roaders, all-terrain up to the point of no-longer-possible. A car for the toughest and those who like to spread the appearance (and then speed through city centers with it). Unfortunately, Defenders are so iconic that even stolen copies are still very expensive. Cheaper and better, because underestimated: the Freelander.
The little Land Rover came in 1997 and was built until 2014. A look at the market shows: it is apparently lasting, more than 150 Freelanders are offered for sale. Almost all of them have the diesel on board, which initially produced 98 hp and later up to 112 hp. You use between 8 and 8.5 liters per 100 km in everyday life. 22 cm ground clearance and 50 cm wading depth stand for off-road suitability.
As a real off-road vehicle with little distribution, the Freelander - like its big brother - falls through the usual HU statistics, there are simply too few! But in a current special evaluation by Dekra, the Freelander passed the general inspection with an average of 43 percent free of defects over all years of construction. No assembly appears to be particularly noticeable. For a budget of up to 15,000 euros, there are five to six year old Freelanders with around 100,000 km.
5. Audi A6 Avant Quattro
With the aid of the third generation of the Audi A6 in the estate version, it is easy to see when leasing contracts usually end: between 100000 and 150000 km mileage. For example, limit the odometer reading at autouncle.de to a maximum of 100000 km in, there are only 76 offers. Expand to 150000 km, it is suddenly more than 550. No wonder, the A6 is a typical representative of the salesman station wagon type.
If you want to filter out a Quattro, i.e. the all-wheel drive version, you will only see 170 vehicles. The price starts at around 7,000 euros for a twelve-year-old model with 130,000 km. Most of them are diesel - attention: Particle filters were not part of the series until 2005. Although the A6 is fully galvanized, over the years it rusts on door edges, in the entrances under the protective film and on the tailgate. You should pay attention to this!
The almost five-meter-long A6, at that time a car for managers, is still fully up to date today: It has six airbags, ESP and very often additional equipment, for example the business package with xenon light, multifunction steering wheel and parking sensors. Anyone who buys Quattro always buys a 240 hp TDI that consumes 8.6 liters per 100 km in everyday life. Remarkably little!
6. BMW X1
In 2009 BMW brought out the smallest SUV series: the first generation X1 is still 4.54 meters long and can hold up to 1350 liters of luggage. The standard equipment is lavish; ESP is just as much a part of it as six airbags, a start-stop function and recuperation when braking. Options include bi-xenon lights, a reversing camera and a panorama roof - but this has disadvantages, because the sliding glass roof rattles, especially when it's cold.
The first X1 was popular and is therefore on the used market in large numbers: 742 vehicles of all drive types are on offer, there are still almost 300 of the Xdrive (all-wheel drive). However, you shouldn't believe that you can drive it over the mountains : The X1 is just a pseudo-off-road vehicle, true Wallachia is rather alien to it. Gasoline engines are thirsty, so BILD recommends one of the diesels, for example the medium two-liter with 177 hp. In everyday life it consumes a little over seven liters.
The TÜV has not had much to complain about on the X1 so far: an above-average number of copies pass the HU without defects. The timing chains of the diesel engines are vulnerable. Otherwise, the SUV has no real weak points, even the exhaust and catalytic converter last longer than average. There are currently 291 X1s according to our criteria, almost all of which are diesel. For around 12,500 euros you can get a six-year-old X1 with around 120,000 km on the clock.
7. Mini Countryman
The Mini Countryman should actually be called Maxi, because it breaks everything that the brand has had before: 4.09 meters long, around 1.55 meters high - longer than the current Polo, higher than the current Smart. As befits the trend, there is the Landmann (the translation of Countryman) with either one or two driven axles. Most buyers choose the pseudo-SUV: of the 380 countrymen currently on offer, only 90 have all-wheel drive.
Since the little vole has only been around since 2010, the HU statistics are almost flawless: an above-average number of countrymen pass the TÜV test straight away, only oil loss in the engine and transmission is criticized relatively often. In tests, AUTO BILD criticized the hard chassis, but this is not uncommon in off-road vehicles.
Speaking of which: the Countryman is not a real off-road vehicle, which is evident from the lack of a differential lock and gear reduction. After all, there is an electromagnetic all-wheel drive clutch that shifts the drive force from 60:40 (front: rear) to 50:50, depending on the load. If the front wheels spin, the thrust goes all the way aft. For the budget there are 3 to 5 year old mini off-roaders with well below 100,000 km.
8. Suzuki Jimny
Winter sports with winter fun: The Suzuki Jimny is a real fun car - funny that it is so rarely seen here. The light off-road vehicle has been available in Europe since 1998 and has been built almost unchanged since then. It is only 3.65 meters long, has a turning circle of less than ten meters and very short overhangs - this compact design makes it a parking artist in the city and a climber on the mountain; Up to 42 degrees gradeability are possible.
The small decathlete is powered by small gasoline or diesel engines. A quick look on the Internet shows: there are almost only gasoline-powered vehicles. They make between 80 and 86 hp, which drives the 1.2 ton Jimny well. The real consumption is 8.4 liters per 100 km. The all-wheel drive can be switched on as required.
The Jimny is solidly made and obviously has a high long-term quality: In special statistics from Dekra, a high level of freedom from defects is recognized across the entire series; more than half of all Jimny pass the HU straight away. Since many first-time owners actually use the Jimny off-road, buyers should check the underbody to see whether the car has hit the ground hard and to what extent this has damaged the chassis. Basically, rust is the most common problem. You can get a Jimny with a new HU and all-wheel drive (almost all of them on the market) for just under 4,000 euros.
9. Lada Niva
The rolling risk for determined adventurers: the Lada Niva has many fans, especially among people who have never driven one. Because the car meets modern standards of quality only with great effort.
One of the best is the design, which can be described as similarly "classic" as that of the Land Rover Defender; the Niva was also built almost unchanged for decades.
The car has permanent all-wheel drive, but only 83 hp from a 1.7 liter gasoline engine, which is only enough for 137 km / h (factory specification). Since 2015, the Lada can only be sold as a small series vehicle in Europe because it no longer meets modern crash regulations. In other words: Exactly the right thing as a second car for an expedition into the white splendor. Because it is off-road capable, it is undisputed, in addition to all-wheel drive there is a reduction ratio and limited-slip differential. Frequent defects are oil loss and rust, the bearings wear out relatively quickly.
If you are looking for a Niva, you still don't have a lot of choice for your money: There are simply very few (why do you think?). The network unearths around 50 copies - at shockingly low prices. There is a seven-year-old Niva with 70,000 km for just under 3,000 euros. He has only had servo since 2006. Anyone who wants ABS and contemporary rust protection (both from 2013) pays at least twice as much. For the budget, a brand new Niva (which is now called 4x4) would also be included, because the basic version costs 10,790 euros. Little money for little car.
10. Subaru Legacy 5 (2009-2014)
This brand is an insider tip because its products are so rare: Subaru. The inconspicuous models of the small Indy brand have all had one thing in common for decades: all-wheel drive. And anyone who drives a Subaru won't give it up anytime soon, the manufacturer is proud of the brand loyalty of its customers. At the same time, the niche apparently does not produce large quantities - both of which explain why not too many are available on the market.
From the mid-range Legacy of the fifth generation from 2009 to 2014 there are just under 40 in the station wagon version. The price starts at just under 7,000 euros for a nine-year-old car with 100,000 km. Since relatively few Subaru drive through Germany, there is not much HU data. According to the current Dekra statistics, the predecessor Legacy 4 remained just below the average defect rate for mid-range cars.
If you don't just want to tie up roads, but also slopes, you should look out for an absolute rarity: The Legacy was also available as a special off-road version "Outback" with 20 cm ground clearance, a low center of gravity and for at least 12,000 euros, something for this car little is much.
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