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While on the return leg of a 2500 mile road trip which took my family from San Diego to Colorado and back, it rained. Not just any rain. It was the kind of rain that you need the fast speed on your windshield wipers.

It rained for hours - sometimes harder than other times.

The Q50 electronic steering was absolutely incredible. Let me explain why.

When there is standing water in one of the tire lanes, a normal steering system tends to pull the steering wheel to that side. The steering wheel actually moves in your hands a bit. And the driver makes a correction within a second. The second it takes to make the correction means the car is 88 feet down the road if the car is moving at 60 MPH.

With the Q50 electronic steering, there is no steering wheel movement. If your steering wheel is straight, it stays straight. The car just keeps going. No need for driver intervention.

It was incredible.
 

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Definitely glad to hear that!!:D
 

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That is awesome. I wish I had that feature. I didn't get that option on my Q50 and the steering wheel is quite sensitive. Whenever I drive over some raised patch of tar or small pothole I get that pull you talked about which I hate. Oh well, next time.

Robert
 

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Good to hear! Never crossed my mind that rain would be a factor! Thanks for sharing that experience!
 

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Not to burst anybodies bubble, but this could just as well be the result of having new tires with nice thick tread. My BMW 330 exhibited the same resiliency to standing water when I first got it and it had a nice fresh set of tires on it.
 

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for me not feeling the road condition is a bad news, and a safety issue. when would you know you reach the maximum speed you could drive with safety ?
same comment for ice, snow etc...

Feeling a slipping give you a clue that you are overpassing the car capacity, for me it s a very important feedback to have
 

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Sounds interesting but I would want to know what is going on where the tires meet the road. For instance, at night, when I might not be able to see how much water is on the road, that pulling gives me a clue that I have to beware of hydroplaning.
Clearly some people like that isolation from the road and some don't.
 

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Actually, I've spent many nights hydroplaning through puddles at 75mph and there's one thing I always force myself to keep in mind:

DON'T OVERREACT.

Just like ice, any time the wheel speed becomes inconsistent with the road speed, momentum will carry you forward and the car basically requires zero input from you to go straight. It's when you panic and add steering input that things go sideways, assuming your tires are perfect and there aren't violent crosswinds.

The best thing to do when you lose traction momentarily is force yourself to relax for a few milliseconds and evaluate the vehicle direction. Sounds like the computer is doing this for you and keeping the wheel straight despite the tug the tire is experiencing. I see this as a good safety feature.

A lot of inexperienced drivers (Vegas drivers in rain) may overcompensate and panic when they hit puddles at speed. This is a bad idea, particularly in a RWD car that could introduce you to the world of snap oversteer. While the nanny stability systems would try to keep you straight, you can overcome them to some degree by sheer force of will. Don't ask how I know this. ;)
 

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Not to burst anybodies bubble, but this could just as well be the result of having new tires with nice thick tread. My BMW 330 exhibited the same resiliency to standing water when I first got it and it had a nice fresh set of tires on it.
Depending on the design of your tires, you could still hydroplane easily. My brother got brand new tires and still ended up hydroplaning and crashing his '95 Maxima. Granted, the tires were of low quality and it didn't have the various nannies like ABS, VDC, TCS etc...

Although the Q50's electronic steering practically eliminates road feel, the other technology still would intervene if you don't detect any loss of traction by yourself.
 

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Actually, I've spent many nights hydroplaning through puddles at 75mph and there's one thing I always force myself to keep in mind:

DON'T OVERREACT.

Just like ice, any time the wheel speed becomes inconsistent with the road speed, momentum will carry you forward and the car basically requires zero input from you to go straight. It's when you panic and add steering input that things go sideways, assuming your tires are perfect and there aren't violent crosswinds.

The best thing to do when you lose traction momentarily is force yourself to relax for a few milliseconds and evaluate the vehicle direction. Sounds like the computer is doing this for you and keeping the wheel straight despite the tug the tire is experiencing. I see this as a good safety feature.

A lot of inexperienced drivers (Vegas drivers in rain) may overcompensate and panic when they hit puddles at speed. This is a bad idea, particularly in a RWD car that could introduce you to the world of snap oversteer. While the nanny stability systems would try to keep you straight, you can overcome them to some degree by sheer force of will. Don't ask how I know this. ;)
Its funny I ran across all of this today as we had some heavy rain in Houston today. On the freeway I was hitting a couple of patches of standing water and I think the "don't overreact" approach is the way to go also. Over correcting is probably the cause of a large portion of accidents in avoidance situations and that's what I always try to be cognizant of when avoiding something or hit a puddle of water. I noticed today that I automatically let off the throttle and let the car do what it does.

As I noticed that I noticed traffic slowing down in front of me and see a car that had JUST hydroplaned and hit the concrete barrier on the shoulder and was facing traffic... and sadly it was a nice modded Red G37S Coupe with matte black wheels and blacked out chrome. =[ Such a sad sight. I figured just as afrosheen said, overcorrected during a hydroplane and caused oversteer.
 

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Depending on the design of your tires, you could still hydroplane easily. My brother got brand new tires and still ended up hydroplaning and crashing his '95 Maxima. Granted, the tires were of low quality and it didn't have the various nannies like ABS, VDC, TCS etc...

Although the Q50's electronic steering practically eliminates road feel, the other technology still would intervene if you don't detect any loss of traction by yourself.
There is about a 50/50 split between German and Japanese cars that I have owned in my lifetime. For one reason or another, German cars, in my experience, seem to be less affected by big puddles. My 2002 Maxima was terrible in the rain. 2001 Audi A6 was great, as was a 2004 Touareg, 2007 Passat, 2010 Audi A4 and 2013 Touareg. 1998 Accord was ok, 1996 Mitsu Galant was bad. The only Japanese car that I have owned that was good at dealing with large puddles, ironically, is my 2011 G37x. Glad to see that the Q50 intervenes in this situation though - more cars should do this.
 

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Depending on the design of your tires, you could still hydroplane easily. My brother got brand new tires and still ended up hydroplaning and crashing his '95 Maxima. Granted, the tires were of low quality and it didn't have the various nannies like ABS, VDC, TCS etc...

Although the Q50's electronic steering practically eliminates road feel, the other technology still would intervene if you don't detect any loss of traction by yourself.
tires are about tread, shitty tread shitty tires. good tires will channel water away and no hydroplaining, the tire will actually carve the puddle.
 

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There is about a 50/50 split between German and Japanese cars that I have owned in my lifetime. For one reason or another, German cars, in my experience, seem to be less affected by big puddles. My 2002 Maxima was terrible in the rain. 2001 Audi A6 was great, as was a 2004 Touareg, 2007 Passat, 2010 Audi A4 and 2013 Touareg. 1998 Accord was ok, 1996 Mitsu Galant was bad. The only Japanese car that I have owned that was good at dealing with large puddles, ironically, is my 2011 G37x. Glad to see that the Q50 intervenes in this situation though - more cars should do this.
All the cars you list as doing well with large puddles are AWD. That's why they do well.
 

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All the cars you list as doing well with large puddles are AWD. That's why they do well.
Passat was FWD. And does AWD have anything to do with hydroplane resistance?
 
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