Anyone have any experience with a G35x in the snow? If so, how does it compare to your AWD S40? I drive over a mountain pass almost every weekend in the winter so traction and stability is important. I'm going with the S40 but just curious.<p>Thanks!
Don't have experience with either(I have a fwd s40), but the S40 is front biased whereas the G35 is rear. Both can shift power to either axle when needed, but the bulk of the power goes to the front wheels under most driving conditions in the S40, so stability most likely will be better in volvo.
I have not driven the g35 although we got hit with over 20 inches of snow one day last winter and I was very impressed with how capable the s40 was <IMG NAME="icon" SRC="http://********************/smile/emthup.gif" BORDER="0">
I have driven my uncle's G35x sedan in the snow and driven my car in ridiculous winter conditions and its a no comparison; the volvo is much easier to control. I have gotten it up my very steep and narrow driveway in 15 inches of snow with no difficulty and driven on basically ice. The S40 AWD is an unbelievable winter car.
I have a funny question.<p>I have not read the G35 forums. I DID read a lot of reviews of the G35 on Epinions.com, and also drive the car twice (once used, once 2006 new car). In the reviews, people touched on their "RWD handling," but mostly they were in it for the power.<p>What is the main thing(s) that the G35 forum people like? I have a theory that people like the G35 mostly because it looks sporty and has a LOT of power (as opposed to liking it for being a RWD handling sports car - it did not deliver spritely handling in the same way that the Mazda RX-8 did in my test drives). People, especially in America, love power. Push the pedal, and heavy thrust happens. I'm wondering if the people say it handles like a real RWD sports car, or if the main thing is power and "luxury" as you read those forums.<p>
I can't speak to the G35's snow performance but we had one (a non-X '04?) for two weeks from Hertz in Orlando. One week in the Keys and one week near Wally World. It was a fun, powerful, but smallish car. It must have screamed money because we had to turn it in after a not so nice guy smashed a rear window to steal our diaper bag!<p>At sea level it's probably a quicker drive than the AWD T5. Here at 7,600 feet I'll bet the T5's turbo more than evens the playing field. In fact that's why we went for the V50 T5 AWD over competition like the BMW 325xit. The very nice BMW sales consultant talked about "linear" response -- all I could think was sluggish and underpowered!<p>The new A4 looks worthy of consideration too, although reliability and reluctance to deal could be show stoppers (they were for me).<p>Our XC70 is simply awesome in the snow and I expect our new V50 with DSTC to be at least as good. We put almost 1,800 miles on it touring Europe on our OSD trip -- fun, fun, fun!
Treacherous, good news... From my own test drives, my opinion was that the steering on the Mazda 3 and RX8 was great. I have a car afficianado friend who agrees that historically Mazda steering has always been one of the best. He has a Protege and loves the steering - and he's a Porsche 911 guy.<p>I wrote in some other posts that (IMO) the G35 steering was heavy and insensitive. Heavy is fine, but does not automatically mean sporty. I thought it did not communicate anything, just heaviness.<p>With only the Mazda line of cars as a possible contender, based on my driving of just about everything including a 2001 BMW, the S40 steering is best in class, among other things for its crispness, linear feel, lack of fakeness at low speeds, turning radius, and even steering wheel itself.<p>
Mazda's steering is wonderful. My girfriend's 626 always surprises me and her sister's 6 is a blast with the sport suspension. They have nice weighted steering that will snap back fairly crisply once you finished the turn. I've been in a 2-door G35 6-speed and that combo makes for a very quick car, but the seats are average at best. Wasn't too imrpessed for the price.
I can't speak to winter driving but I spent 3 days with a G35X rental. I drove in brutal rain storm and had no issues with traction.I found the AWD system in the G35 transparent and leaves it feeling like a RWD. I don't think I like the system as much as a Subaru 50/50 system but much prefer it to a FWD biased system like the Volvo.<p>I've owned a v50 2.4i with the Sport package for 2 years now so I've experienced the "best handling" Volvo v50/s40 style and i can honestly say Ifound the G35 FAR superior in handling and feel. Yes I know my car is FWD and an S40 AWD has AWD but they are both front biased and have identical suspensions so I think my opinion is based on a valid comparison.<p>Unless you are far above sea level there really is no comparison engine/power wise.A G35 has a seemingly endless supply of power and torque from idle to redefine. It while whomp a T5 at basically every RPM and situation.<p>Now interior/exterior is a personal choice. The newer G35 is better interior wise but still has issues. the Volvo has a cleaner more modern design no doubt. I found the G35 although a smaller sedan larger inside than the Volvo. <p>Despite its larger size and more conservative styling i sound the G35 a much sportier drive than the Volvo. The fact that the G35 X comes in Auto only might be a factor for some people(it would for me).<p>I am seriously considering a Used 6 speed G35 as a replacement when my V50 lease is upnext summer. if i can convince my wife that losing the wagon is not a deal breaker the power and handling of the G35 (plus the likely superior reliability and service experience form Lexus) makes it a tempting choice.
Good feedback on the G35. Makes me want to try to drive it again, this time getting a friend to let me do it so I can drive it for real (unlike in a test drive). The V50 I have has AWD. It does not feel like a ploddy FWD car, although I do admit I have the 150 $ (US) IPD stiffer rear sway bar.<p>RWD, or even AWD with rear bias, SHOULD handle better. The G35 would be a failure if it didn't handle better as equipped stock. I was not blown away, especially in the steering feel, but admittedly the test drive is not the best place to get a REAL feel of the car. I do have a friend with a G35 (2 door coupe, 19 inch wheels, sports package). He loves it.<p>The G35 coupe has very little space. The sedan has a bit more. I went with three total people in the V50 T5 AWD into heavy snow territory. We had skis, boots, food, luggage, etc. We never even used the roof rails.<p>Bassman<p><br>