Snow Day! Can A Cheap Land Rover Conquer Deep Snow?

Only one way to find out!

A foot of snow in late April? Granted, it’s not something most people have to deal with. If you do live in a region with temperamental weather, though, it’s nice have a vehicle that can tackle it. Fortunately, you don’t need to break the bank to do it, but what sort of vehicle is best for that job? There are many to choose from, but when it comes to snow it really helps to have a bit of ground clearance.

That was exactly the case we found ourselves in as we faced down a recent snowstorm that happened to drop about a foot of wet, heavy snow on the Denver area. Around our home base in Boulder, Colorado, we ended up seeing roughly two feet of snow as Mother Nature decided to hit us with one more volley before our transition to warmer temperatures and spring showers. In that type of weather, we wanted to see if TFL’s $5,000 long-term 2006 Land Rover LR3 was one of those SUVs that could truly handle the wintry conditions, and get you where you need to go comfortably and safely.

2006 Land Rover LR3
It’s not like the LR3 lacks ground clearance…and yet even it couldn’t completely clear the fallen snow. [Photo: TFLcar]

Stock, the Land Rover LR3 manages up to 9.5 inches of ground clearance through its air suspension, which can raise the car to suit tougher off-road conditions. This one also has a 300 horsepower 4.4-liter V8, with 316 lb-ft of torque to help provide some needed low-down grunt. Match that with chunkier snow-capable tires, and there’s not much that can actually stop the car moving forward. Even when the snow drifts were tall enough that our LR3 couldn’t completely get over them, acting more like a snow plow than towering above the fallen snow, it still manages to handle winter weather with relative ease.

Check out the video above to see how it performs, and stay tuned to TFLcar for another off-road review coming soon! Once all the snow melts, we have the chance to test the LR3 in mud, which means we get to have even more fun going off-road.