With the change in colors and cooler temperatures, we all know what that means – Winter is on its way! And with Winter, that means it is time to start thinking about winterizing your gear, which also includes waxing those skis. One of those items to consider winterizing is your vehicle, which includes fluid checks, changing windshield washer fluid to the Winter blend, and swapping your tires from Summer to Winter tires. However, if you realize your Winter beater is on its last leg, you may want to consider a new vehicle. Here at SwerveAutos, we want to help you get a head start on that car search! We put together a list of the four you should consider getting you to the ski runs.
Jeep Grand Cherokee L – The Choice to Make It On-time to the Bunny Slopes
Completely new for 2021, the Jeep Grand Cherokee L offers buyers the legendary Jeep off-road capability with the seating capacity for 6 or 7 depending on the configuration (the Summit trim can seat 7) to make sure the kiddos make it to their lesson on-time. The Grand Cherokee L boasts an impressive standard feature list regardless of trim, including heated front seats and steering wheel, 3rd row USB charging ports, and full speed forward collision warn plus. If you are taking your family to the mountains for a powder day, I recommend opting for the Limited or Overland trims, since they both come with standard leather seats to help keep the cabin clean. Powering the Grand Cherokee L is Jeep’s 3.6L V6, with the option for a 5.7L V8 Hemi in the Overland and Summit Reserve trims. Personally, I would choose the Overland trim, as you receive quite a few luxury items and have the option for the V8 Hemi without the sticker shock of the Summit Reserve.
Kyle from Out of Spec Reviews did a “rapid fire” video on the Grand Cherokee L, and he was impressed with the upscale interior, creature comforts regardless of seating position, and that 5.7L V8 Hemi!
Subaru CrossTrek – For the Back Country Skier
I would be remiss if I did not include the “official” car of Colorado – a Subaru! Whenever I am driving up to the slopes, I always find a Subaru parked in the back country, especially on Loveland Pass. The best value for the money and lifestyle is the CrossTrek Sport. With the Sport, you receive the more-powerful 182-hp 2.5 liter Boxer® engine, StarTex® water-repellant upholstery, Linear CVT transmission, and X-Mode® with hill descent control, which helps you get up and down difficult terrain. If you are content with the base engine, you can have a 6-speed manual transmission, not available on the Sport model.
I built a CrossTrek Sport online for under $30,000. The option package I think is beneficial is the Optional Package, which gives you Starlink™ Multimedia display, blind spot detection & rear cross traffic alert, and a power tilt/sliding moonroof. I also configured the car with auto-dimming exterior mirror with approach light, auto-dimming mirror with compass and HomeLink, and a rear bumper cover, an important feature for someone loading skis into their CrossTrek Sport. The base CrossTrek starts at $22,245, and the CrossTrek Sport starts at $26,495. All Subaru come standard with the venerable Symmetrical All-Wheel Drive system.
Volkswagen ID.4 AWD – For the Skier Trying Out Snow Boarding
It would not be a SweveAutos article without the mention of an electrified vehicle. The ID.4 AWD is a perfect EV companion to take you to the chairlift swiftly and efficiently, especially in adverse Winter Conditions. Though the ID.4 RWD starts at $39,995 excluding tax credits, the dual motor ID.4 AWD, which starts at $43,675 for the Pro trim, is your confidant for snowy conditions. The ID.4 AWD also comes equipped with a tow hitch (2,700 pounds of towing capacity) and a heated windshield to quickly melt the ice after a long-day of boarding. I recommend stepping up to the Pro S (Statement) trim, which has an estimated MSRP of $48,175, as this gives you leatherette seating and Premium LED headlights. An additional package I would consider adding is the Protection and Convenience Package, which has Monster Mats® with the ID.4 logo and a heavy-duty trunk liner, perfect for a snow-covered board.
Kyle from Out of Spec Studios recently reviewed the ID.4 AWD with the Pro S (Statement) Gradient, and he was quite complimentary of the ID.4 in this recent video. I personally drove the RWD model, and I found it to be a great value proposition to get into an EV. I actually suggested it to a few acquaintances who are considering an EV.
With the ID.4 Pro S AWD, you have an estimated EPA range of 240 miles. Icing on the cake is that buyers of new ID.4 receive 36 months of complimentary DC fast and Level 2 charging for your ID.4 through Electrify America, which has over 17,000 charging stations nationwide (they just installed some Electrify America chargers at my King Soopers). Given the current market, you have better luck ordering the Pro S (Statement) AWD trim, which has been available since October 2021. The Pro AWD trim is estimated to be available starting February 2022.
Volvo V90 Cross Country – For the Blue Run Skier that Dabbles with Black Diamonds
Though not completely new for the 2022 model year, the V90 Cross Country T6 receives a 48-volt battery, transforming it to be a mild hybrid and denoted now as the B6. This engine now puts out 295 horsepower with 310 pound-feet of torque, a tad bit lower horsepower but increased torque due to the battery. Volvo wagons, safety, and snow are synonymous, and the V90 Cross Country offers the elevated ground clearance and agile handling needed to traverse those snow-packed roads to get you safely up to the ski runs to make first tracks. All V90s come with a ski pass-through, keeping you from having to struggle with a Thule on the roof, though with a station wagon it is much easier to work with if you do.
If you truly want to be unique, I think the Thunder Grey, Denim Blue, and Platinum Grey would look phenomenal on a Volvo wagon, which I have seen in-person on other Volvo models. The V90 Cross Country driver is not new to skiing or trying to impress others on the double blacks – they are content in their own skin on the blue ski runs, enjoying the scenery along the way. As a long-time station wagon fan and a Volvo wagon owner, I am thrilled to see Volvo keeping the V90 Cross Country and its smaller sibling, the V60 Cross County, stateside. The V90 Cross Country starts just over $55,000. As a Volvo wagon owner and a blue run skier, this would be my choice!