I have been looking at new tow cars, can any body explain this to me please Ssangyong sports pickup 2Lt 360NM of torque can tow 2300 Great Wall Steed 2Lt 305NM can tow 2500 My car is a Peugeot 407 Lt 320NM can only tow 1600. The stated torque of these cars don't seem to match the towing power. Can any help please
My word, where do you start with a question like this. The makers fiqures, they say it can pull this and that. The clubs, and most other people say 85% of the towcar kerbweight is all you want to pull. Others pull more, but over 100%of kerbweight is a no-no. Some manufactuers know they have a weakspot, be it chassis, transmission or what ever, so quote what seems to be a very low figure. All in all, it's not just down to pulling power, so many other things to throw into the mix
Senator 6 Wyoming, Jeep Grand Kareeoke, Full Wine Cellar, but still keepin' it country.
This is the starting point. The law states that it is illegal to tow a trailer which is heavier than 100% of the towing vehicle kerbweight. The general concensus of opinion as stated by both the Clubs is that the trailer/caravan should not weigh more than 85% of the kerbweight. This gives a comfortable towing dynamic and a bit in hand when the muck hits the fan. Not that we experienced towers ever get into a muck hitting the fan situation, do we?
The manufacturers give a towing capacity which is the maximum trailer weight for a take off from rest on a slope of, I think, 1:3 (I'm open to correction on that one). That is steep, believe me! However, this theoretical trailer weight is precisely that, theoretical. My MAZDA 6 estate has a published max. towing capacity of 1600kg but the kerbweight is only 1575 kg. Towing the max. capacity of 1600kg would be silly not to mention, illegal. I have had discussions with caravanners who think that by loading the car up to max. thus increasing the weight of the car, they can tow a heavier than the kerbweight caravan. Fortunately, the law prevents this and such a caravanner would be in dire straits if stopped by the boys in blue.
As Albundy says, it is not all down to the pulling power although the more HP and torque there is available the better.
Then we have to take into account the nose weight of the caravan which is generally accepted to be 7% of the MTPLM of the caravan. Now we get into another fine mess. 7% of the weight of a 1500kg MPTLM caravan is 105kg. Normal towbars on saloon or estate cars have a download capacity of 50 to 75KG which is governed by the overhang of the towball, i.e. the distance from the chassis fixing points. It follows therefore that, in theory, it would be unsafe to tow a 1500kg caravan because the noseweight would be too high for the towbar and towbar fixings. It is not until we get into the realms of large 4x4 vehicles that the towbar noseweight capacity gets above 100kg.
Finally we come to the power and, more importantly, the torque from the engine. Generally speaking, petrol engines put out less torque for a given HP than diesel engines. It follows that for towing, diesel is the way to go.
If you are a member of the Caravan Club or the Camping and Caravanning Club, they both offer a car/caravan matching service. You give them the car details and the caravan details, ask the question and they will tell you if it is a good match or not.
Some people think it is just a case of buying a car, putting a towbar on it, buying a caravan, joining the two together and disappearing off into the wide blue yonder. Would that it was that simple.
Sorry if that all dampens you enthusiasm but we want to get things right so that our Forum members don't come unstuck. At least you have been responsible enough to ask the question rather than bashing blindly on.
Post by supertractorman on Mar 30, 2013 13:05:19 GMT
I would add to this, whatever the car, caravan or motorhome, make a visit to an authorised weighbridge at some time just to check your weights are OK when loaded up with holiday gear. Another tip is take anything out of the van that you have not used in 12 months as the chances are you don't need it.