For owners ... how is the awd??

ozon8r

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Any recommendations for a good winter tire for the 392?
I recently bought new wheels and Nitto MT tires, for off-roading, but was planning on keeping the factory wheels and K02s for snow since I know mud terrains aren’t the best for that. But I’m considering selling the K02s and replacing them with something better suited for winter only use after reading a fair amount of comments similar to yours.

We clearly won’t get nearly the snowfall that you do, here in northern Illinois, but for being in the Midwest, I will say that winter here last year, (my first) was, well, surprising. Especially as a transplant from nearby St.Louis. Very different winters despite their relatively close proximity to each other.

I guess it would have to be something that’s available in similar sizes to the factory tires, but TIA for any recommendations.

-Rob
Living in Colorado and regularly traveling over Vail Pass, my favorite SUV tire has been the Wrangler Duratrac owning three different sets. However, the Duratrac is limited to 35" max size. I've also had multiple sets of BFG KO2s and Nitto Ridge Grapplers. Both are very good tires on road and off in Colorado and Moab area and I have found both to perform competently in the Colorado snow, not as good as the Duratracs, but well enough to trust with my family of four off roading, highway driving and traveling across Vail Pass in the winter. I did have a harder time balancing the Nittos than the KO2s or Duratracs, but the Nittos lasted as long as advertised.

I just bought 37" KO2s for my 392 driven by my confidence in winter, off road, and highway performance along with long life and lighter weight.
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Reinen

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Any recommendations for a good winter tire for the 392?
I recently bought new wheels and Nitto MT tires, for off-roading, but was planning on keeping the factory wheels and K02s for snow since I know mud terrains aren’t the best for that. But I’m considering selling the K02s and replacing them with something better suited for winter only use after reading a fair amount of comments similar to yours.

We clearly won’t get nearly the snowfall that you do, here in northern Illinois, but for being in the Midwest, I will say that winter here last year, (my first) was, well, surprising. Especially as a transplant from nearby St.Louis. Very different winters despite their relatively close proximity to each other.

I guess it would have to be something that’s available in similar sizes to the factory tires, but TIA for any recommendations.

-Rob
Frankly, it's hard to go outright wrong with any Winter Tire. It's like how any MT tire will be better in mud than any AT tire, but some MTs are a little better than others.

Size is the biggest limiting factor. I run Nokian Hakkapeliitta LT3s, they're available in a 33" (285/75R17) and an almost 35" (315/70R17). Cooper Discoverer Snow Claws are available in 33" (285/75R17). Nokian isn't well known in the US but they are a Finland company that pioneered Winter Tires, they are the gold standard for Winter Tires in northern Europe. I don't have experience with the Snow Claws but they have a great sidewall design. Bridgestone Blizzak LT is a great winter tire but they only make a 33" for an 18" wheel and it is IMO rather boring looking.

I did the same thing as you're looking to do. Kept the OEM wheels and put Winter Tires on them. I call them my "winter boots" and put them on whenever it's appropriate.
 

Reinen

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I just bought 37" KO2s for my 392 driven by my confidence in winter, off road, and highway performance along with long life and lighter weight.
For perspective, I quickly got rid of my KO2s driven by my lack of confidence in winter. Once you drive on Winter Tires your scale of "good in winter" shifts dramatically. KO2s will get you moving in 4WD/AWD but they don't do anything else particularly well. A good winter tire will have half the stopping distance of KO2s and it will be twice as hard to get them to slide out.
 
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thegame81

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For perspective, I quickly got rid of my KO2s driven by my lack of confidence in winter. Once you drive on Winter Tires your scale of "good in winter" shifts dramatically. KO2s will get you moving in 4WD/AWD but they don't do anything else particularly well. A good winter tire will have half the stopping distance of KO2s and it will be twice as hard to get them to slide out.
And what did you replace with?
 
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thegame81

thegame81

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I still use the KO2s for 45+ degree weather, they are a good tire. For winter I use Nokian Hakkapeliitta LT3s.
Do they come in xtreme recon sizes as well? Where I'm from we get a lot of slippery crappy weather also.
 

ozon8r

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I still use the KO2s for 45+ degree weather, they are a good tire. For winter I use Nokian Hakkapeliitta LT3s.
What size are you running? I've heard great things about that tire. BTW, I grew up in Ogden.
 

Reinen

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What size are you running? I've heard great things about that tire. BTW, I grew up in Ogden.
Hey, fellow Wasatchian! So you know life in LCC.
I'm running the stock Rubicon size, 285/75R17.

@thegame81
The Hakkas are also made in 315/70R17, almost 35" (actual size 34.4").
I lived in NJ for a while. The Hakkas will give you zero fear on NJ winter road conditions, great fear of every other vehicle on the road. :LOL:
 
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Rob97RR

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@ozon8r & @Reinen Thank you both for the feedback, much appreciated!

I'll say, it's been a long while since I've owned anything off-road worthy, but in my teens I primarily used BFG ATs year round. (Not sure when they started to be known as "K02s", so my experience may have been with a predecessor of today's version.) We didn't get much snow in STL Missouri, at least not much more than a few inches here and there a couple times each winter, and where I lived there weren't a ton of hills to be concerned with in my daily driving. The BFG all-terrains seemed fine at the time, hence the reason I originally planned to just keep them for that. But the more I've thought about it, even from my way-back experience with them, I do remember them behaving similar to what Reinen described in the snow. IE: great traction when accelerating or climbing, but only decent at best (if not a little sketchy) on the brakes. However, prior to reading more about them in recent months, I had always assumed that this was typical of any tire in the snow.

Fast forward to now... As I mentioned before, here in northern Illinois last year, we got a ton of snow, FAR more than I was used to, even from my brief three years in Jersey. And, after my neighbors told us that this was pretty typical here, I decided it was time to dust off my old Ivan Stewart persona and jump back in to my old favorite pastime. It was just perfect timing I suppose that Jeep announced the 392 at the very same time that I was beginning the process of deciding what to buy. (There was certainly a possibility of a little "mid-life crisis" in my reasoning to be sure! ;) )

Anyway, I was excited to read your comments that there are options out there that can decelerate and turn nearly as well as they launch, and I do very much appreciate both of your input! Time to start searching! Thanks again,
-Rob
 

N75

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2.0 or 3.6?
Mine's a 2.0t which I love. Had a Sahara with 6MT and Pentastar before this - lack of torque coupled with tall gearing was awful on the highway, constant downshifting to maintain speed.
 

GATORB8

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Noticed on some park roads this weekend that one interesting perk of 4 Auto is the ability to run disconnected without actually being locked in 4hi.
 

Tiger1

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4Auto is default, I believe it's the same Rock-Trac FT case (MP3022 4:1) with 2 hi left off the selection.
I have a JLUS with 4H AUTO and a BMW with AWD. Definitely different systems. For what it's worth, I've driven the Jeep in 4H AUTO during heavy rain and snow/ice and thought it performed great, never any issues or dangerous handling.

 
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