rustler vxl with out a doubt! it will totally make it through the winter but don't expect it to get traction everywhere. also advise your friend that the rear tires will probably loose their nubbs pretty quick if he drives it on the pavement. it will handle the snow just fine, he will probably have the most fun driving it on the ice cause he can drift and do 360's. so ya, get the rustler and the fact that its 100% waterproof unlike the MT4G3, he wont need to worry about the electronics frying. the MT4G3 would be a great 2nd rc cause its super durable and is pretty fast. the rustler is a good car to "get your bearings with". He should also look at the stampede 2wd vxl or the bandit vxl. And if he doesnt wanna save up the money, he could get the XL-5 versions of one of those 3 cars and have just as much fun with them.