With the adoption of front-wheel drive as the mainstream power delivery system of choice, the semi-annual ritual of swapping snow tires has largely disappeared for most Americans. In many northern areas, all-wheel drive has become an increasingly popular choice when offered as an option. But as much help as putting power through all four wheels can be, it simply can't substitute for a good set of snow tires.
Problems caused by disappearing traction when roads get icy will be solved when we all get our flying cars - it is the 21st century, after all. Until that long overdue promise is fulfilled, we're all relegated to putting rubber to the road to reach our destinations. The way winter road conditions are currently mitigated involves lots of salt and many trucks. The trucks are pretty much necessary for removal of heavy precipitation, but salting exacts an environmental, as well as financial price. M