tow car options

May 29, 2021
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So new to the caravan life and looking at buying in the next few months. I currently have a BMW 520D tourer. We'd like an Adria Isonzo or similar either new or a couple of years old. I have the relevant licence having past my test in 1987. I've not towed much but I'd consider myself a professional driver, having passed Police driving courses.

I know the Isonzo and the BMW is more than the 85% rule. My question is are there any websites where you can put in caravan details and a car match is found?

I've looked at tow match websites and it seems you have to put the car in first. Even the Discovery Sport is more than the 85% match for this caravan :oops:

Any vehicle suggestions? I like something with a bit of OOOMPH too for when I'm not towing.
Thanks in advance
 
Oct 21, 2020
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Firstly, Welcome.
I can’t comment on the match, others will be along shortly.
From looking at new vans myself, the Adria’s seem to be heavy.
Your 520 should be a decent tug, for that added oomph, I’d look at the 530d tourer, superb vehicle.

Kev
 
May 29, 2021
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Firstly, Welcome.
I can’t comment on the match, others will be along shortly.
From looking at new vans myself, the Adria’s seem to be heavy.
Your 520 should be a decent tug, for that added oomph, I’d look at the 530d tourer, superb vehicle.

Kev
Thanks Kev
I also like the 530 but from what I can see even that is more then the 85% rule seems only big SUV's are suitable
 
Sep 26, 2018
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Others will come here and give more info than me, but the 85% CAMC "rule" isn't. It's an arbitrary number given as GUIDANCE. As an experienced driver who back in the day towed at probably 110% (two horse trailer loaded with two 600kg nags) and didn't have any issues. Previously I towed with a Mk2 150 FWD Kuga (93%) and now with an XC40 (91%) and the main thing isn't the % but getting the nose weight right. My Cabrera with nothing in it gives a 140kg nose weight (ridiculous for a 100 kg Alko coupling) but when balanced to 100kg towing is a great. Hardly notice the van is there...
 
Mar 14, 2005
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Thanks Kev
I also like the 530 but from what I can see even that is more then the 85% rule seems only big SUV's are suitable
It iso only advice and has not legal authority whatso ever so it definately is not a "rule"of any sort. It is however sensible to always try to keep a trailer as small as possible both in size and weight in relation to the tow vehicle.

If you have a free choice of cars, then there are several larger cars that will tow the size of caravan you are looking at - you are not obliged to go for and SUV or large 4x4.
 
Jul 18, 2017
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The Isonzo has MTPLM of 1850/1900kg and is one of the heavier caravans for its size on the market. Similar UK caravans with similar layout would probably weigh a lot less.
Kerbweight of the 520 is just over 1700kg so you would be towing at over 95% of the kerb weight of the car however as said it is a only a guideline and not a regulation.
I have also done police driving courses and I would tow at 100% or higher with confidence, but I would not recommend it to anyone that is not experienced at towing.
Some caravan insurance companies will not insure you if the caravan exceeds 95% of the kerbweight of the towing vehicle.
 
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May 7, 2012
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Yes I was going to correct the MTPLM, but Damian beat me to it. Probably the caravan needs a big SUV or 4x4 for safe towing as it is a very large single axle model. Reports in magazines do suggest it tows well but I think it has to be the right tow car. You are looking at something over at least 2,000 kg kerb weight and are probably in the realms of the big BMW's Mercs and Range Rover. You will also need a B+E licence, personally I think it is rather big for a beginner.
 
Nov 11, 2009
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I’ve found Towcar. info the best matching site. It gives you flexibility to change parameters to assess the effect of changes. It predicted my last three outfits very well. But like everything you need to check your data inputs and model selection for car and caravan.
 
Jun 20, 2005
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Looking at Clive’s Towcar site the variances in weights are worrying. None seem to mirror the Adria brochure.
The Isonzo is one of the heavy weights. Anything is possible . It’s worth looking at PCV top six non SUV tow cars. Note the OPs current vehicle with the 3.0 engine is tugging a big TA on test. I’m a dinosaur dog and prefer BIG safety margins on weight. Must be age🤪🤪🤪
 
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Mar 14, 2005
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Some caravan insurance companies will not insure you if the caravan exceeds 95% of the kerbweight of the towing vehicle.
I'm not saying thsi isn't true, but I have yet to see one that actually states this. However it is advisable to check you insurance T&C's just in case they have slipped this or any othe clause in about towing or permitted usage.

if you intend towing with a vehicle it always advisable to inform the insurer as addinga tow bar is technically a modification. Most insurers do not charge more
 
Nov 16, 2015
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I'm not saying thsi isn't true, but I have yet to see one that actually states this. However it is advisable to check you insurance T&C's just in case they have slipped this or any othe clause in about towing or permitted usage.

if you intend towing with a vehicle it always advisable to inform the insurer as addinga tow bar is technically a modification. Most insurers do not charge more
I am with you Prof, non of my insurers have asked what I tow, or have any limitations, And for the last 4 years I have used Aviva. .
 
Jul 18, 2017
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I'm not saying thsi isn't true, but I have yet to see one that actually states this. However it is advisable to check you insurance T&C's just in case they have slipped this or any othe clause in about towing or permitted usage.

if you intend towing with a vehicle it always advisable to inform the insurer as addinga tow bar is technically a modification. Most insurers do not charge more
Towergate state this in their T&Cs. I believe there are others. In their Insurance Product Information Document under excusions. "We will not pay for loss or damage caused by you towing your caravan if your caravan weighs more than 95% of the towing vehicle’s kerb weight"
 
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Jun 16, 2020
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I am with you Prof, non of my insurers have asked what I tow, or have any limitations, And for the last 4 years I have used Aviva. .

I agree, I also have never been asked. But that does not mean that Buckman is not correct. Perhaps the company should point you to their T&C’s when adding a caravan if they do have such limitations.

I will be checking mine at sometime though I am around 85-90%.

John
 
Mar 14, 2005
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I agree, I also have never been asked. But that does not mean that Buckman is not correct. Perhaps the company should point you to their T&C’s when adding a caravan if they do have such limitations.

I will be checking mine at sometime though I am around 85-90%.

John
It would be helpful yes, but it is up to the proposer to check the T&C's and to keep within the their limits.
 
May 7, 2012
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Towergate state this in their T&Cs. I believe there are others. In their Insurance Product Information Document under exclusions. "We will not pay for loss or damage caused by you towing your caravan if your caravan weighs more than 95% of the towing vehicle’s kerb weight"
To me this is not generally enforceable as the insurer is unlikely to be able to show that the 95% figure has been exceeded unless the MIRO exceeds the cars kerb weight, and it will almost certainly need a definition of kerb weight as there are several according to who wrote it. If the caravan has been seriously damaged proving the actual weight at the time cannot be achieved and it is for the insurer to show that it was over 95%. They cannot use the MTPLM as there it is unlikely to be loaded to that figure and by the time they can check what is in it most of the contents may have been removed.
If there is no definition of kerb weight then you can use the highest available including the driver, luggage and a full tank of fuel and again as the makers figure is not always specific actually proving what the kerb weight is might prove difficult. You could also add the weight of the tow bar as that is now part of the car.
The wording is sloppy in the extreme and while I would not personally touch the policy because of the main wording it will almost certainly cause them problems in the future.
As far as the motor policies are concerned I am not aware of any using 95% of kerb weight but the simpler "weighing more than the towing vehicle". Even then you still get the same problem of proving the caravan weighed more than the car.
 
Mar 14, 2005
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As the thread was about choosing a tow vehicle Iassumed the point Buckman was making was about CAR insurance. To be fair he did write caravan insurance companies.

I have looked up the Towergate CARAVAN policy which does contain the wording
"8. We will not pay for loss or damage caused by You towing Your caravan if Your Caravan weighs in excess of 95% of the towing vehicle’s kerb weight. "


Itried to look up Towergate's car policies T&C's but they don't seem to publish them unless you start a proposal. In my view they should make them available before a proposal so you check to see if their policy is teh one for you.

I was not about to start a proposal as I don't want to be bombarded by unwelcomed remiders about taking up the policy.

BUT as vehicle insurance should cover the specific vehicle that has a certificate of conformance, they must cover its full towing capacity, as I said I have never seen a weight limiting clause in a CAR policy.

I agree with Raywood, the wording of the limitation is very poor, and almost impossible to verify in the event of a claim.
 
Mar 14, 2005
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...
As far as the motor policies are concerned I am not aware of any using 95% of kerb weight but the simpler "weighing more than the towing vehicle". Even then you still get the same problem of proving the caravan weighed more than the car.
A simpler and unimpeachabe process could be the MTPLM of a trailer must not exceed the GTW-GVW, there is no room for argument. and it can be determined at any point before during or after a claim.
 
Jul 18, 2017
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As the thread was about choosing a tow vehicle Iassumed the point Buckman was making was about CAR insurance. To be fair he did write caravan insurance companies.

I have looked up the Towergate CARAVAN policy which does contain the wording
"8. We will not pay for loss or damage caused by You towing Your caravan if Your Caravan weighs in excess of 95% of the towing vehicle’s kerb weight. "


Itried to look up Towergate's car policies T&C's but they don't seem to publish them unless you start a proposal. In my view they should make them available before a proposal so you check to see if their policy is teh one for you.

I was not about to start a proposal as I don't want to be bombarded by unwelcomed remiders about taking up the policy.

BUT as vehicle insurance should cover the specific vehicle that has a certificate of conformance, they must cover its full towing capacity, as I said I have never seen a weight limiting clause in a CAR policy.

I agree with Raywood, the wording of the limitation is very poor, and almost impossible to verify in the event of a claim.
I think they can make their own T&Cs as the clause is nto an unfair clause and if the caravan is manufactuered with a MTPLM which is at a fixed value surely they do not have to prove whether the 95% was exceeded or not as they can use the value on the sticker?
It would probably be up to the consumer to prove that caravan did not exceed 95% of the car's kerbweight. Car insurance only pays for third party claims and not for th caravan that may have been damaged, but we all know that anyway? Best is to be careful.
 
May 7, 2012
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The Prof is right, as that would be a far more effective wording, but the one used was probably written by someone who did not fully understand the point. It can only be the result of some unfortunate accidents though, so it does reinforce the advice given by others on weights.
Towergate do have to quote the correct wording as they are selling the policy on the basis of what they publish. They cannot change that unless they tell you before you take out the policy. They are brokers but the policy is one specifically written for them and is probably not the insurers wording.
Conditions have to be fair and the Ombudsman will not support an insurer who turns down a claim due to an unfair condition, I would not rely on that though.
The exclusion also has to be relevant to the accident, so might not even work unless there was a connection between the weight problem and the accident. As an example catching a gate post on a tight bend would have no relationship to the weights and the exclusion could be viewed by the Ombudsman as not enforceable there.
If they insure both the car and caravan there is also the possibility of them being aware of the problem if it is obvious, at the extreme a Fiesta pulling a Buccaneer might be an example, but where you draw the line is difficult.
 
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