You would have been a "goner", seriously? Just what do people think police cars, ambulances, fire engines, and other emergency vehicles have for the drive wheels? The vast majority are rear wheel drive with snows mounted. Colorado Highway Patrol Crown Vics are out on I-70 in the mountains here in some of the worst conditions you will find anywhere - sub zero temps, white out blizzards, steep grades... They are nose heavy, huge pieces of shit and they do great. I have been in my M in those conditions and my car performed great as well.
If you have the means and desire to have two cars, good for anybody who does (seriously). And, yes, an AWD car with snows would have better traction under acceleration than a comparable RWD car. Personally, I like having one car that can handle anything, a snowstorm in the mountains or a track in 100F heat. Just don't say that the M cannot be driven in severe winter conditions unless you have actually experienced it yourself with the right equipment (tires).