I had the tC through a Saratoga Springs, NY winter last year. the car handled ok w/ stock tires, but was exponentially better w/ snows.
I got a full set of 15" stealies w/ Bridgestone blizzaks for $500 from tirerack...worth every penny.
Some folks may be too vain to put 15" stealies on their tC...but it's better than subjecting the stock 17's to the nasty winter weather and salt and sand on the roads.
It was below freezing most of the winter, and below 0 for a couple of weeks - sometimes down to -25F. The car was fine...heated up nicely...had the blower on level 1 or 2 once it was warm in the car. Never had a problem w/ not starting either.
Here's a post of mine from last year:
Originally Posted by 3 IGs
1st snowy drive w/ snow tires on tC w/ rear sway bar
I have 195/60R 15 Bridgestone Blizzak WS-50's mounted on steelies. The car and the tires performed great.
We had about 4" of snow yesterday - packed onto the roads (no asphalt visible). I was able to play around w/ the car a little and see where it stands in the snow. Like the farmer - it is outstanding in its field. :D
* Accelerating from a dead stop
: a little spin (of course) but better than almost every other car on the road. I sometimes start in 2nd gear to minimize spin - I don't think this puts much strain on the clutch as the wheels are spinning a bit and we have enough torque to handle it. I found myself accelerating the same as, if not better than, many AWD vehicles w/ all season tires.
: I did this at slower speeds in a parking lot (20-30 MPH). The car is very predictable at this speed. The RSB allows for the ___ to feel a bit loose - but it will not really step out on its own. You can induce a bit of of a slide if you lift off the gas abruptly near the end of the apex. Otherwise the car handles well w/ snows.
: 45 MPH panic breaking on empty road
was awesome! ABS worked AWESOME
!! - Sounded god-awful but worked awesome! Breaking was straight and basically controlled w/ very little skidding (A huge improvement over my jetta w/o ABS). I really cannot express how well the ABS worked in the snow. Cornering at lower speed w/ ABS
worked well too. I did this at about 20MPH in a parking lot. Cornering was pretty good while braking w/ ABS...a little bit of push up front but I was able to control my turn w/ the ABS.
Well - the car was great and very easily controlled w/ the snows on - no worries. I highly recommed snows if you live in an area that gets lot's O' snow.