Rav4 PHEV to tow Swift Sprite?

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Jul 18, 2017
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And your point is what? The report was extensive and looked at several parameters of which caravan mass was one, and one conclusion is that mass doesn’t have a significant effect. But where is 85% mentioned? As I said above 85% predates University of Bath research as evidenced below

I don't recall making any a point? I never mentioned that it contained anything remotely to do with 85% I simply posted a link that I thought may be useful. Obviously you did not think the link was of any use or you have taken it totally out of context?
 
Nov 11, 2009
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I don't recall making any a point? I never mentioned that it contained anything remotely to do with 85% I simply posted a link that I thought may be useful. Obviously you did not think the link was of any use or you have taken it totally out of context?
I just thought that you had posted the link to support the 85% guidance. A brief explanation would have helped. But no problem. It’s lost in the depths caravan history. 😂
 
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Nov 6, 2005
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I could not find any evidence of this study.

Unfortunately the internet has caused a lot of hearsay comments to be repeated and by such exposure the myths have become popular beliefs.

If anyone has verifiable evidence please let us know.
The Caravan Club recommendation was in existence when I first took an interest in caravanning in the late '70s - it was then lower, 75 or 80% even though the towing speed limit was 40 mph

For a short while in the '80s there was a differential speed limit for trailers depending on weight ratio, 50 mph under 100% and 40 mph over 100% both were replaced when the dual carriageway and motorway limit for trailers was increased to 60 mph.

I've never been aware of any academic research to establish this recommendation, just a consensus of opinion from experienced caravanners within the Caravan Club.
 
Oct 11, 2023
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Suzuki Across (Rebadged Toyota RAV4 PHEV) 2016 Swift Conqueror 480 1500kg 70kg nose weight tows like a dream, we have have found 55mph using HV Sports mode the sweet spot last time out we recorded 38.5mpg towing, Sports mode use both the ICE and battery giving more power on the hill and better regeneration using HV ECO we used to see 35.4mpg.
 
Nov 11, 2009
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Suzuki Across (Rebadged Toyota RAV4 PHEV) 2016 Swift Conqueror 480 1500kg 70kg nose weight tows like a dream, we have have found 55mph using HV Sports mode the sweet spot last time out we recorded 38.5mpg towing, Sports mode use both the ICE and battery giving more power on the hill and better regeneration using HV ECO we used to see 35.4mpg.
Sounds a very useful Towcar with good fuel consumption.
 
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Suzuki Across (Rebadged Toyota RAV4 PHEV) 2016 Swift Conqueror 480 1500kg 70kg nose weight tows like a dream, we have have found 55mph using HV Sports mode the sweet spot last time out we recorded 38.5mpg towing, Sports mode use both the ICE and battery giving more power on the hill and better regeneration using HV ECO we used to see 35.4mpg.
38.5mpg when towing? find that hard to believe when the brochure spec says combined fuel consumption 42.9 mpg.
 

JRT

May 5, 2024
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Weights aside I'm unsure about the phev in question being suitable on the basis of it's CVT transmission.

They never have struck me as being an ideal set up durability wise for towing. I know the modern ones are not the same as the Dafs of the 70's but they don't seem to me as being ideal.
 
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Weights aside I'm unsure about the phev in question being suitable on the basis of it's CVT transmission.

They never have struck me as being an ideal set up durability wise for towing. I know the modern ones are not the same as the Dafs of the 70's but they don't seem to me as being ideal.
I’ve had two SJ Subaru Foresters a petrol 150 bhp non turbo, and XT 238 bhp turbo petrol. Both were rated at 2000 kg braked trailer and both were CVT. The non turbo was rev happy but the XT had good low down torque and didn’t flick up the revs. Excellent tow cars but not very frugal on fuel.

However the RAV 4 cvt is different in concept. Worth reading up on it.
 
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Have a look at the Toyota RAV4 PHEV forums, Toyota are very conservative with their claims, the majority of owner with both the hybrid and PHEV are regularly reporting average figure of 50mpg +. Driving a hybrid/PHEV is a different learning curve.
 
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CVT-e transmission have come a long way, and answer is yes and no. Our previous 2020 Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV 2.4 on steep inclines using the ICE using SAVE mode the ICE would become vocal raising the revs, switch to CHARGE mode the rear electric motor would assist the ICE, no raising of the revs, you also have 5 different setting to regenerate wasted energy, when you lift off or going downhill.

Our current Suzuki Across/RAV4 is a totally different animal with Toyota's CVT-e transmission towing in ECO/Normal mode on a steep incline it does raise the ICE revs slightly, but it is only slightly and not vocal, I have learnt to use SPORTS mode again it uses both the ICE and electric motors one 300 bhp and 500 Nm torque, no increase in revs plus better regeneration.

Driving a PHEV is a learning curve all are different you just need to work with it and find the sweet spot.
 
Jul 18, 2017
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CVT-e transmission have come a long way, and answer is yes and no. Our previous 2020 Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV 2.4 on steep inclines using the ICE using SAVE mode the ICE would become vocal raising the revs, switch to CHARGE mode the rear electric motor would assist the ICE, no raising of the revs, you also have 5 different setting to regenerate wasted energy, when you lift off or going downhill.

Our current Suzuki Across/RAV4 is a totally different animal with Toyota's CVT-e transmission towing in ECO/Normal mode on a steep incline it does raise the ICE revs slightly, but it is only slightly and not vocal, I have learnt to use SPORTS mode again it uses both the ICE and electric motors one 300 bhp and 500 Nm torque, no increase in revs plus better regeneration.

Driving a PHEV is a learning curve all are different you just need to work with it and find the sweet spot.
Our 1996 Corolla has the CVT box and we think it is brilliant. For a short while we had a 2007 Yaris with CVT and it was awful to drive as very jerky no matter how hard you try.
 
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Our 1996 Corolla has the CVT box and we think it is brilliant. For a short while we had a 2007 Yaris with CVT and it was awful to drive as very jerky no matter how hard you try.
The modern RAV4 Ecvt is very different to most people’s understanding of CVT. The clue is in the “E”. This video describes the hybrid, not too dissimilar to the PHEV.


 
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Whilst people may understand that CVT is a stepless gear changer, the way they work often sound counterintuitive and may be why they are often distrusted.

Many CVT cars have an engine which is tuned differently to keep the engine operating in a narrow rpm band where it is trying to maximising its efficiency, The vehicle uses the CVT to vary the engine to final drive RPM ratio to handle the range of speeds the driver needs. A well designed CVT system will also take into account varying loads such hills, and towing .

This sound so different to a conventional ICE and stepped ratios gearbox, its disconcerting.

There is also the history of CVT systems which proved to be unreliable which has biased opinions about their durability, but with better modern designs reliability has improved.

Public opinion has been listened to and several models that use CVT's now have have CVT shifts with pseudo stepped gear shifting.
 
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Our 1996 Corolla has the CVT box and we think it is brilliant. For a short while we had a 2007 Yaris with CVT and it was awful to drive as very jerky no matter how hard you try.
The 2007-2011 Yaris was a multi mode gearbox that had a poor reputation and in 2011 it was dropped in favour of a CVT. A number of manufacturers had issues with the automated manual gearboxes.
 
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Whilst people may understand that CVT is a stepless gear changer, the way they work often sound counterintuitive and may be why they are often distrusted.

Many CVT cars have an engine which is tuned differently to keep the engine operating in a narrow rpm band where it is trying to maximising its efficiency, The vehicle uses the CVT to vary the engine to final drive RPM ratio to handle the range of speeds the driver needs. A well designed CVT system will also take into account varying loads such hills, and towing .

This sound so different to a conventional ICE and stepped ratios gearbox, its disconcerting.

There is also the history of CVT systems which proved to be unreliable which has biased opinions about their durability, but with better modern designs reliability has improved.

Public opinion has been listened to and several models that use CVT's now have have CVT shifts with pseudo stepped gear shifting.
My 2014 Subaru XT had three modes. An Eco mode ( no laughing please) Sport mode which ran the engine at slightly higher revs but was still CVT without steps unless being used in paddle or “manual”. Then Sport# which introduced eight discreet steps. So when being driven it just behaved and sounded like a conventional automatic. You could still use paddle shift or the selection lever in “manual”. The only times I used “ manual” in any of the three modes would be steep descents. I firmly believe that as autos work better without my intervention. That’s why I prefer them.
 

Sam Vimes

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The 2007-2011 Yaris was a multi mode gearbox that had a poor reputation and in 2011 it was dropped in favour of a CVT. A number of manufacturers had issues with the automated manual gearboxes.
I had a 2008 Auto Yaris for a number of years and apart from it being on the small side it was a joy to drive.

You had to get to know the auto change gearbox and sometimes pre-empt it with a manual shift....when wanting to overtake for example.
 
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There was the Multitonuc but don’t know about the current models.
Probably what I am thinking about? Is it similar to the CVT? I took an Audi for a test run a few years ago and the gearbox was supper efficient and you did not know that it was changing gear.
 
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My experience dates back to CVT Volvo 340's. They were great but the driving technique was very different. Loads of throttle to get up to your required speed, then back off to maintaining revs... Amazingly quick off the mark...

But... it's a bit like comparing a 4 speed slush box (torque converter) from the same era with a modern 8 speed electronically managed box. I'm sure the CVT's are great, but I don't hear great things about the latest Kuga with CVT...

I backed away from the RAV4 because of the nose weight and the % of MTPLM on the bar...
 
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Didn't Citroen produce a car with a Varimatic gearbox or was it the hydramatic. No clutch, but gears were changed manually.
 

JRT

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Don't moan about a variable automatic until you've driven one of these, DAF with the "variomatic" transmission!


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When I was a kid my mates older brother wrote one of those off after hitting a pile of wet leaves. He managed to roll it, not as in a barrel roll but rather a transverse roll along a wall. He managed to crumple every panel apart from the roof.

His dad was less than pleased especially as it was about a week old.
 
Mar 3, 2024
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Suzuki Across (Rebadged Toyota RAV4 PHEV) 2016 Swift Conqueror 480 1500kg 70kg nose weight tows like a dream, we have have found 55mph using HV Sports mode the sweet spot last time out we recorded 38.5mpg towing, Sports mode use both the ICE and battery giving more power on the hill and better regeneration using HV ECO we used to see 35.4mpg.

Thanks for the hint. I located a thread where you were discussing this on a different forum which made good reading.

I am quite tempted to go for the Rav4 as it will save me a lot of money compared to other options, and Toyota seem to have some pretty good incentives for Rav4 PHEV right now - 1.9% PCP so I can have the option to spread the cost over a few years. I can actually afford to buy the car outright with tax free money from pension, but I can make a better return than 1.9% by keeping the cash myself.

Also due to the significantly lower cost than most of the other cars I'm looking at, if I decide to change it after a year or two I will only lose a relavively smaller amount of depreciation.

Only slight quibble is that there is no 360 camera unlesss you go for the higher spec model, which then has a lower towing limit.

I am also looking into maybe getting a Bailey caravan instead of a Swift as my research indicates that with a Bailey it will be much easier to stay within the 70KG nose weight limit. In fact it might be the other way around and need to struggle to get the nose weight up to 70KG.
 

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