Winter Testing

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Information about Smithers Winter Proving Grounds

Smithers Winter Test Center - Raco, Michigan

Engineering concepts and theories will always remain just that until tested in real world conditions. This is especially true in the transportation industry, where it is critical that the design and performance of vehicles and their components be evaluated and verified through testing that duplicates conditions encountered in actual use.  Smithers Winter Test Center can fulfill an almost unlimited array of winter testing needs.

Located in northern Michigan, Smithers Winter Test Center, is ideal for testing and conducting performance evaluations of vehicles, tires and components under the special challenges of extreme cold and hazardous road conditions.

Smithers Winter Test Center is ideal for testing all types of vehicles and components in harsh winter climatic conditions.

 Smithers Winter Test Center Proving Grounds

The Smithers Winter Test Center is utilized by manufacturers of vehicles ranging from small automobiles to Class 8 trucks, vehicle components (both OE and aftermarket), snow handling equipment, construction equipment, recreational and seasonal sport vehicles and military equipment.


Our winter operations provide clients with:

Special testing surfaces

Smithers Winter Test Center Proving Grounds
  • Snow surfaces of various compaction ratings and area sizes
  • Ice surfaces on straightaway, circular and arc-configured roads
  • Split coefficient surface pads of ice/concrete and ice/snow
  • Alternating Mu pads (ice/asphalt)
  • Checkerboard pads (ice/asphalt)
  • Varying degrees of slope (snow and ice)
  • Various packed-snow vehicle handling courses

Vehicle durability and component evaluations

  • Tire testing Smithers Winter Test Center Chatter Bump Track
  • Cold weather power train
  • Snow-ingestion testing
  • Heater/defroster testing
  • Fuel system testing
  • Antilock brake testing
  • Cold-start testing
  • Power steering evaluation

In addition to the extensive outdoor test facilities, the complex includes a well-equipped 20,000-sq. ft. heated garage and offices. Off-site remote office and garage locations may be available on request. We can also construct special test surfaces to meet your needs.

Smithers Winter Test Center has multiple test areas for testing all types of vehicles and components.

Smithers Winter Test Center Track Map