If you regularly encounter ice, unplowed snow, or slush, then you're going to need winter tires (also known as “snow tires"). Winter tires will give you that extra traction, braking and handling you'll need to confidently drive on snow and ice. They have specialized rubber compounds and tread designs to handle the cold temperatures. The tread remains flexible to prevent snow buildup and help with traction on ice. Tests that has been conducted on ice show that even at 15mph, vehicles equipped with winter tires stopped from 1/2 to a full car length shorter than identical vehicles on. Without winter tires you are more likely to fishtail on corners and spin out on that icy hill.