September 1, 2008 When ice and snow cover the roads, people have been turning to snow chains for a hundred years in order to get traction. Now there’s no denying they work, but there’s also no denying that there has to be a better way. A new alternative for ensuring winter traction has been announced and the initial claims make the Navimetrix Snobootz look pretty good. Snobootz consist of a durable fabric boot which wraps around the tire. Rubber traction pads are bonded to the fabric which are embedded with steel cleats to offer aggressive ice-clawing traction. Independent university tests show the Snobootz are about 20 percent faster than snow chains from zero to 20 mph on a full-size SUV, 66 percent faster to install and at one-third the weight of chains, Snobootz are easier to handle and store. At US$250 a pair, they’re not cheaper than chains, but they are faster, easier and safer.
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