Should consumers be offered more options?

Page 3 - Passionate about caravans & motorhome? Join our community to share that passion with a global audience!
Mar 14, 2005
9,023
144
30,735
lutzschelisch.wix.com
Why do you think that as it is not a mandatory statutory sticker although the one on the chassis is mandatory since about April 2012? Most caravans now have a sticker on the body and not a plate.
I was, of course, referring to the statutory plate on the body of the caravan (not the chassis), and not to any sticker by the door which has no legal significance. In fact, unless the statutory plate in incorporated in the same sticker (I believe one or two manufacturers do this) one might just as well remove the sticker completely and save one's self the cost of buying a new one through eBay.

The mandatory plate (or sticker) must state the type approval number, the MTPLM, maximum axle loads and the noseweight limit. Without these details it is not the mandatory sticker.
 
Last edited:
Jun 16, 2020
531
172
435
People do have choice, either accept what's on offer and the compromises it brings, or look elsewhere, or don't buy at all. After all very few if anyone actually needs a caravan, they only desire one, I doubt anyone's life depends on owning a caravan.

You can "wish" for anything, but realistically you can only choose from what's available, and what's available is driven by the caravan manufacturers bean counters, not customers wishes.

UK caravan manufacturers have had more than enough time to realise that many caravanners might desire a greater payload capacity, so ask your self why haven't they listened? Its down to what they think they can sell, and in the UK ( and EU) the way the way the licencing regulations and industries' own guidance have developed mean that increasingly manufacturers are being forced to look for less heavy caravans which counters against larger payloads.
I also find your responses very odd. Not because they are wrong as they are stating the obvious. But are not relating to the topics title which is simply asking.

Should consumers be offered more options?

John
 
Nov 11, 2009
8,969
1,118
30,935
I also find your responses very odd. Not because they are wrong as they are stating the obvious. But are not relating to the topics title which is simply asking.

Should consumers be offered more options?

John
If you read Prof John’s post at 13 you will see that he did respond to the OP”S question. His subsequent posts come in response to others posts.
And now here we are again on the old chestnut of the legality of the makers stick on label by the door.

PS I think that your keyboard has a bold font problem. 🤭
 
Jun 20, 2005
11,631
425
40,935
It’s simple. Most manufacturers today do not want to sell a heavy weight. They know the new Covid caravanners , tongue in cheek, only have light weight cars .Downgrade the MTPLM and make it available to the new entrants Ford Ka🤪😃.
Back to Buckman‘s point, the manufacturer can if they wish issue an upgrade MTPLM plate to the designed maximum and still be compliant. It’s knowing where that maximum design is🤔🤔🤔
 
  • Like
Reactions: JezzerB
Mar 14, 2005
13,422
611
40,935
I choose to state the obvious because too many contributors have ignored it, and are trying to suggest impossible things are possible, and that some action are actually illegal.

Looking at the reality of the UK caravan market. Personally I think the caravan manufacturers should do a lot more practical research into understanding what caravanners need, and ways to improve what they do now before giving them selves more headaches by offering more options.

As it stands the caravan manufacturer's call the shots on what options are available or not. Whilst customers can add things like caravan movers, you have very little scope to change any of the fundamental design components. I don't decry anyone wishing to personalise there property, but I see no point in people purchasing a product they know is not suited and cannot be modified to what they want and then complaining about it.

No one forces you to buy a caravan!

The manufacturers specifications and options are readily available for prospective customers to review before they agree to purchase. If you want a caravan with an load margin of 300kg, don't buy one with a 200 MTPLM unless you know it can be legally upgraded to 300Kg.

I have predicted many time on this forum that the way we presently caravan is likely to be more restricted as we go into the future. Weights are one area that are going to become tighter, and if caravanning is going to be a practical thing in future, practitioner's will almost certainly have to consider greater compromises on what goes into a caravan. Probably less choice not more.
 
Mar 14, 2005
9,023
144
30,735
lutzschelisch.wix.com
The trouble is that UK manufacturers are seemingly reluctant to offer caravans with upgraded axles or chassis, which is strange considering that the models that they export to the Continent do have different chassis that enable higher payloads, presumably because they know that they would be able to sell there without acceptable margins.
 
Jun 16, 2020
531
172
435
If you read Prof John’s post at 13 you will see that he did respond to the OP”S question. His subsequent posts come in response to others posts.
And now here we are again on the old chestnut of the legality of the makers stick on label by the door.

PS I think that your keyboard has a bold font problem. 🤭
Look in #30 and 43. That is not the case. They are not as you say. But you are correct, re post #13

Excuse me for emphasising the crucial word. That’s how it was copied and pasted from the title.

Also, I have made no mention of labels. Are you confused.

The OP’s question in the title is clear.

John
 
Last edited:

Parksy

Moderator
Nov 12, 2009
10,639
606
40,935
I really don't want to start to edit or delete posts, but if this silly points scoring and nit picking doesn't stop right now in this and other topics, expect to see forum posts disappearing into cyberspace without further explanation.
 
  • Like
Reactions: Jcloughie
Jan 31, 2018
768
244
2,135
Simple answer ,bet most people think yes, but manufacturers don't think it commercially viable? And still think why not offer a different fridge if it fits in the same slot, cooker, TV brackets purpose installed, and yes some do offer alternative curtains ,yes one sort, why not more?Again economies of scale mean it probably wouldn't satisfy the bean counters and profit margins.
 

JTQ

May 7, 2005
1,973
183
19,735
They presumably don't need to, or would.

"We", collectively, buy their products, and I would add despite shortfalls, failings, warts and all, until we don't, why "should" they do otherwise?
As I read it the demand is as strong as ever in these "odd" times, so I suspect any change is not imminent.

Edit: Though, as a couple we are friends with commented, come the end of Covid the market is going to be overwhelmed with "used" caravans & motorhomes, many barely "used"; that is going to present the builders with some real challenges.
 
Last edited:
  • Like
Reactions: JezzerB
Jan 3, 2012
2,682
383
20,935
In one of our caravans there was no room for a microwave so we took out the oven and put it there , but this suited our needs .
 
  • Like
Reactions: JezzerB
May 7, 2012
5,507
421
25,935
Are you saying higher specification tyres or more upmarket brand. I’ve not really seen any replies to my “ survey” on tyres to really deduce that the OEM tyres are “ cheap” by that I mean budget. In fact the responses albeit limited tend to point the other way. Perhaps I could surmise that as long as the tyre meets specification most. owners aren’t that concerned.
I think the tyres end to be cheap makes, certainly the ones we have had were but at the end of the day they did the job and it is difficult to see how the caravan builders could justify spending more or why you would want them. They could offer Michelins or similar as a more up market option but why would you pay the difference and if it reduced the discount they get from the usual tyre supplier because they bought less of the cheap ones it could be a problem.
 
  • Like
Reactions: ProfJohnL
Jun 16, 2020
531
172
435
I have brought this up on other forums and been lambasted by those that say it is not cost effective for manufacturers and would not work on a production line.

I disagree and see it as short sightedness. Car manufacturers manage to offer many options with a far more complex product.

Another objection is that the van model has been type approved in one form and it would not be cost effective to have variations. Sadly that may apply to upgrading an axle, but surely not to the type of radio that might be fitted.


John
That was my #4 post. Seems right given some of the replies.

While I fully agree with JTQ, Jezzar B, and others who say if the current model is working then why should they offer more choice. It does, in my opinion, demonstrate the stuck in the past, out of date, lack of customer focus and poor innovation that is indicative in the industry.

John
 
  • Like
Reactions: JezzerB
Jul 18, 2017
1,780
326
5,935
I think the tyres end to be cheap makes, certainly the ones we have had were but at the end of the day they did the job and it is difficult to see how the caravan builders could justify spending more or why you would want them. They could offer Michelins or similar as a more up market option but why would you pay the difference and if it reduced the discount they get from the usual tyre supplier because they bought less of the cheap ones it could be a problem.
Very true and i threw in the tyre example as one of many things. I would be happy to pay the extra for a mid range tyre which I know will last longer than any budget range and probably be more reliable. Maybe an option would be to have run flat tyres however I do not know if they offer the same protection in the event of a blow out as have never had them fitted to any vehicle that we have owned?
 
  • Like
Reactions: Jcloughie
Jun 20, 2005
11,631
425
40,935
When new my Bailey came with Trailermax tyres. A good make by all accounts.Note all caravan tyres irrespective of make need to be changed every five years no matter how little worn.
The tyre is an integral part of the caravans suspension and specified by the chassis maker together with the van maker .
Run flats are a bit like tyron bands. I’ve never understood the benefit nor to the best of my knowledge is there any evidence to support the efficacy of either? More cost for no gain ??
 

Damian

Moderator
Mar 14, 2005
6,995
476
25,935
Part of the workings of caravan suspension is the type of tyre fitted.
It relies to some extent on the flexibility of the sidewall to absorb some of the bumps with the axle rubbers taking the rest.
Run flat tyres have much stiffer sidewalls and that produces a harsher ride and increased road noise.

Given that the fittings in caravans are generally rather fragile and that a caravan jumps about a lot in travel, runflats would make the situation much worse and owners would almost literally see their van shake itself to bits !!
 
Jul 18, 2017
1,780
326
5,935
Part of the workings of caravan suspension is the type of tyre fitted.
It relies to some extent on the flexibility of the sidewall to absorb some of the bumps with the axle rubbers taking the rest.
Run flat tyres have much stiffer sidewalls and that produces a harsher ride and increased road noise.

Given that the fittings in caravans are generally rather fragile and that a caravan jumps about a lot in travel, runflats would make the situation much worse and owners would almost literally see their van shake itself to bits !!
Very good advice and maybe should be a sticky. We have never considered buying run flats for any of our vehicles at any time mainly due to the extra cost as have no knowledge fo how good or bad they may be.
I gather that a mid range tyre may be more suitable and if it stands up to stress and sunlihgt a lot better then no need to change them after 5 years.
On the rear of a 4x4 that I had a bridgestone tyre that was exposed to weather 24/7 365 days a year for 13 years and showed no sign of deteriotation. No cracking etc which is the main reason for a caravan tyre to be replaced at a maximum of 8 years.
 
Last edited:
Jan 31, 2018
768
244
2,135
There are plenty of testers who would argue runflats are worth their weight in cars but having had them on past cars couldn't wait to get rid when they wore out. Harsh noisy and less grippy than non runflats andVERY expensive. I'd risk a puncture and would worry about the poor van though some dont have shock absorbers which must be worse.
 
Mar 14, 2005
13,422
611
40,935
I can never get my head around people who insist on having tyre bands on caravans but don't have them on their cars, and the same argument would apply to run flats.

And again I can't see the reason to specify or change a caravan tyre to a more expensive model. Provided the tyres are in good condition and with the possible exception to winter tyres, I do not see any reason to think that a more expensive caravan tyre will provide any real difference to caravan grip or handling. Anyway tyres can be easily changed by the caravan dealer.
 
Mar 14, 2005
9,023
144
30,735
lutzschelisch.wix.com
I can never get my head around people who insist on having tyre bands on caravans but don't have them on their cars, and the same argument would apply to run flats.

And again I can't see the reason to specify or change a caravan tyre to a more expensive model. Provided the tyres are in good condition and with the possible exception to winter tyres, I do not see any reason to think that a more expensive caravan tyre will provide any real difference to caravan grip or handling. Anyway tyres can be easily changed by the caravan dealer.
I quite agree with you. On top of that, caravan tyres are normally changed well before they are worn out so it seems to be a pointless paying a premium for something that is not going to be used to the full.

Runflats on cars is a slightly different issue. There is usually the opportunity to store a spare wheel for a caravan, if only on an underslung cradle, but some cars, like mine have no provisions to store a spare wheel of any sort, not even a space saver. Besides, runflats only make sense in conjunction with tyre pressure monitoring systems, so such a system would have to be present on the caravan, too. That's not a problem, of course, but it needs bearing in mind.
 
  • Like
Reactions: JezzerB
Jul 18, 2017
1,780
326
5,935
I can never get my head around people who insist on having tyre bands on caravans but don't have them on their cars, and the same argument would apply to run flats.

And again I can't see the reason to specify or change a caravan tyre to a more expensive model. Provided the tyres are in good condition and with the possible exception to winter tyres, I do not see any reason to think that a more expensive caravan tyre will provide any real difference to caravan grip or handling. Anyway tyres can be easily changed by the caravan dealer.
Tyron bands were had fitted to our single axle caravan as in those days no TPMS so if you had a blow out no knowing if it had happened.
We prefer mid range tyres as that is our choice as generally they will probably last longer than any budget tyre so not matter of grip, handling etc. Fitting budget tyres may be false economy.
Actually do not know of any caravan dealer that can change the tyres as generally it is always done by the third party. We take our caravan to a fitter and have the tyres fitted and the wheels balanced at the same time.
 
Nov 6, 2005
4,309
223
20,935
I can never get my head around people who insist on having tyre bands on caravans but don't have them on their cars, and the same argument would apply to run flats.

And again I can't see the reason to specify or change a caravan tyre to a more expensive model. Provided the tyres are in good condition and with the possible exception to winter tyres, I do not see any reason to think that a more expensive caravan tyre will provide any real difference to caravan grip or handling. Anyway tyres can be easily changed by the caravan dealer.
And yet some people will make a point of "upgrading" their car tyres, sometimes by trading in their original tyres.

I've been known to "upgrade" my caravan tyres by going up in size to a higher Load Index to gain more margin - although my present tyres are the same size, etc as the OE originals.
 
Jul 18, 2017
1,780
326
5,935
If at 8 years of age and the tyres are still looking good with no cracking etc why bother to change them?
 
Jun 20, 2005
11,631
425
40,935
If at 8 years of age and the tyres are still looking good with no cracking etc why bother to change them?
Buckman ,
I used to feel the same.
The CAMC say”Caravan tyres need regular replacement, irrespective of their visual appearance. We recommend that you replace your caravan tyres when they reach five years old and should never be used when more than seven years old”.
Not mandatory but probably good advice to avoid a potential blow out.
 
Jul 18, 2017
1,780
326
5,935
Buckman ,
I used to feel the same.
The CAMC say”Caravan tyres need regular replacement, irrespective of their visual appearance. We recommend that you replace your caravan tyres when they reach five years old and should never be used when more than seven years old”.
Not mandatory but probably good advice to avoid a potential blow out.
However when was in decided on that advice? In the sixties? :D
 

ASK THE COMMUNITY

TRENDING THREADS

Latest posts