Although I started thinking about this last spring, it's that time when snow has arrived. I've just parked the M Coupe up at the parents house as its incapable of winter more than basically any car I've ever had. Low, light, overpowered, with big broad rear tires. It's certified from auto testers to pull a G of lateral force on a a skid pad in a corner, and is in the upper 4 second range on 0-100, but won't go up a 3% incline with 1cm of snow on it. So…
… we have one good winter car. But there are times when we're doing opposite things in opposite places on opposite schedules, and it'd be handy to get around. I've been looking and thinking for a while.
I set these criteria in my mind:
1. Doesn't get stuck.
2. Cheap, as I don't drive much, don't want depreciation, op costs, insurance, etc. eroding my wallet daily.
I then turned to the internet for a meandering journey.
1 is somewhat easy. What doesn't get stuck? Range Rovers, Mercedes G Wagons, Subarus, Unimogs, Hummers, Toyota Tacoma 4x4's, Jeep Rubicons.
How about filter 2? Range Rovers are expensive. Benz's are too. Unimog's take that to a new extreme (when buying new anyway, but given they last for 50 years, might have to revisit the depreciation calc on those). Used Hummers actually aren't that expensive, but they depreciate like crazy and guzzle gas like nobody's business. Toyotas and Subarus probably aren't bad, but I'm not really looking in that price range regardless, and wasn't really on the new bandwagon.
In the end, through much contemplation I arrived at a solution. It's a question with many solutions, and every mind might come to it differently... and let's just say when it comes to cars, mainstream isn't what I gravitate too (there were only about 600 M Coupes on our continent after all).