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    Ground clearence (Carrera 4S 96mm) and snow.

    Hi - this is my first ever post and I do not have a Porsche yet. I have done a search and found one thread about driving the C4S in snow titled "Worst Commute EVER". I already PM'ed the original author. Right now I have 2 cars. I use my BMW Z4M in the summer and Infiniti FX45 in the winter. I am considering getting a C4S and after putting winter tires on it using it through the year. I am in Southern Ontario and usually we get 4-6 major snows per year (defined by me as > 10cm).

    What is the deepest snow that you guys have driven in using a C4S with winters. I believe "Coochas" drove through 10 inches which would be 25.4 cm give or take with a ground clearence of 9.6cm.

    What do you guys think of my plan? Should I keep the FX45 for winter??


    Re: Ground clearence (Carrera 4S 96mm) and snow.

    Here's ground clearance for the turbo. I think the C2 and c4 are one inch higher.

    I'd never drive the Turbo in the snow since the front cowling will get ripped off.

    Also it will suck to have snow melting in footwells and then staying wet all winter.

    Just IMO.

    Re: Ground clearence (Carrera 4S 96mm) and snow.

    Thanks for the reply. I got the 96mm ground clearence for the C4S from: - at the very bottom of the page it gives the ground clearence....

    That being said - I am going to lease the the C4S if I get it. I am not concerned about rust after the first 3 years. Leasing makes sense from a tax point of view (business). I will wash it etc. My main concern is if it gets stuck when the snow is between 10-20cm.....

    Re: Ground clearence (Carrera 4S 96mm) and snow.

    enfield said:
    I got the 96mm ground clearence for the C4S from: .

    Gotta be a mistake I guess. 96 mm is only 3 3/4 inches. Actual has to be more than 7 inches.

    Re: Ground clearence (Carrera 4S 96mm) and snow.

    [ My main concern is if it gets stuck when the snow is between 10-20cm.....

    And the simple answer is it will get stuck and you will get your front spoiler ripped off if you drive it in those conditions. I'm assuming it's why you don't drive the Z4 in winter...The 997 is a sports car, not a sports ute.

    Re: Ground clearence (Carrera 4S 96mm) and snow.

    I have a friend who drives his 997 turbo all winter in Jackson Hole. The C4s doesn't have the front spoiler lip that the turbo has--the C2 is about 1 inch higher if you don't get the adjustable shocks even over the C4 or turbo. I am planning to get a Targa 4S as well to drive in winter. I would say that around 4-6 inches of snow on the ground would be the max since you will be scooping snow into the radiators at that point and with fat tires (which aren't good for snow anyway) you won't have the best traction even with snow tires. At 6 inches you are really plowing the snow even with a Cayenne. Most of our roads stay clear of the 6 inch stuff until you need to cross over a lane to pass a car..Hope that helps

    Re: Ground clearence (Carrera 4S 96mm) and snow.

    ^^^ yep - it helps. Our roads are cleared pretty quickly too. It's mainly the sub-divisions that may not be cleared during a major event on the same day. This only happens once or twice a winter and thus a taxi may be of help or I just may not go to work for that one or 2 days. Even if I break a lip a year - I could still get that lip replaced....

    I could keep the FX45.... for that one or 2 days per year.... My FX45 with Blizzacks took 3 foot snow drifts very easily last year on that one day!! It's all paid for and all.... However, it seems over-kill for 2 days out of 365 days.... The ground clearance on the Infiniti FX45 is around 7.6 inches (19.3cm) and it easily took 90cm drifts (but it was soft powdery snow and the car just pushed it aside.)

    Re: Ground clearence (Carrera 4S 96mm) and snow.

    The clear distance between the bottom of the bumper on a 997 2S Cabrio and ground is 6.75 inches +/-. There is a flexible lip several inches behind the leading edge that is about 1 inch deep. Assuming adequate traction from the wheels(forget about summer tires & consider chains on rear winter tires) & applying some engineering judgment, the car ought to go through 5 inch deep unplowed snow. The lower part of the bumper might get hammered. Be mindful also that, under normal conditions, the front of the car grounds frequently on pavement transitions and driveways. The summer tires are useless on snow. Give the highway crews a day to clear the roads or leave it parked.

    Re: Ground clearence (Carrera 4S 96mm) and snow.

    Why not replace the Z4M with a C2S?

    I have lived in Southern ON, and I've been driving 911's since 2003. I now live in Calgary, and as much as I am enamored with the idea of my 911 being the most versatile all-round daily driver in the world that can also do the N'ring in 8 minutes, I choose not to drive it in the winter for 2 reasons. First, winter is awful on the car - cracked windshields and paint chips galore, not to mention paint damage overall and the hit to the interior with all the sand/muck. IT would just kill me to take my 911 out into that sand and rock box. Secondly, I really don't think that its possible to enjoy a 911 in the winter. Sure it can be driven, but really enjoyed?

    When I lived in Ontario, I put my 911 away in December and brought her out in April. That's still a 7-8 months driving season. If you can afford to drive a dedicated winter car that performs well in Canadian winters with few surprises, and that you don't mind heaping the abuse of winter driving upon, that is the ultimate solution IMO.

    You'll enjoy a C2S in the summer more than a C4S anyways, especially if you decide you want to start tracking the car (if you don't already). Tremblant is terrific.

    Re: Ground clearence (Carrera 4S 96mm) and snow.

    You need to establish with a Porsche dealer where the minimum ground clearance is - on the Boxster its from the underbody spoilers ahead of the rear axle - it is probably the same on a 997 - don;t assume its the front end of the car. there are also various flaps ahead of the front wheels which dip below the bumper lip level.

    You also need to be careful of other items - not necessarily submerged int he sno - like coil packs and any other low down electircal items/connections in the engine bay.

    Re: Ground clearence (Carrera 4S 96mm) and snow.

    I live in Minnesnowta and drove a 2003 996 C4 cab (with hardtop) all winter long with delight. I had separate 18" wheels with winter tires. I also have 3 years experience with an Audi S8 and 5+ years experience with an Audi Allroad. All with dedicated winter wheels/tires. The C4 was able to easily handle up to 6 inches of snow. The S8 could not handle much more. The Allroad had to take on everything else. The most interesting difference was how soon the PSM would intervene in the C4. With stability control ON in the S8, I could drive with the rear end way out :-) With the C4, I could not get the rear end out at all unless I turned the PSM off. However, with the PSM off and some new snow........ never had so much fun! The pickups and SUVs with "truck" tires are no match for the Audi/Porsche AWD/winter tire combo (unless the snow is over 8-10")

    Re: Ground clearence (Carrera 4S 96mm) and snow.

    Thanks for the reply cmjgolf. I will get into details with the ground clearance (with the dealer) in the spring when I plan on placing my order. I am quite certain that the Z4M will be replaced with a Carrera. If I keep my Infiniti then I will probably get a C2S. However, I am more partial to just having one leased C4S with a set of Winter tires. I think keeping the Infiniti for 2-4 days a year is too much of a pain. Between upkeep and insurance costs for the Infiniti I could replace a front lip easily. I have also PM'ed "coochas" and he has been using the C4S as his only car in Boston. They can get huge amounts of snow with a storm and he has never been stuck in 2 years of winter driving and neither has he broken a front spoiler.

    Last but not least I am going to LEASE the C4S and for me it is just something I will use for 3 years. There will be no pride of ownership.

    Re: Ground clearence (Carrera 4S 96mm) and snow.

    I have a 2006 C4S and live in Colorado. I drive it a fair amount in the snow and can speak from a lot of experience. Assuming that you get real winter / snow tires it drives very well in the snow. There are obvious depth limitations as others on the board have pointed out - any more than about 4-5" of snow depth on the road and you need a different vehicle. But if you live in a densely travelled area where traffic will pack down snow quickly, it is as good as a big SUV in getting from A to B. I have not had problems with ground clearance except in one or two monster snowstorms. Prior to the C4S I drove a 996 C2 and there is a tangible improvement in snow handling provided by the 4 wheel drive. I know that is not a reason to buy a Porsche but for a daily driver it does help. Deep in the winter I have resisted long drives into the mountains because of the gravel that gets kicked up. Hope that helps.



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