Towing capacity of new espace 1.9 TD

Mar 14, 2005
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Hi,

completly new to caravanin and I'm currently looking for a tourer, the bigger the better as I plan to use it on a seasonal pitch most of the time.

Does anyone know what the heaviest caravan I can tow is with a 1.9 TD Espace (new shape). The specs say 2000KG so I presume 85% of this figure. However the kerb weight is 1695KG.

Any help would be good.

Cheers

ADAM
 
Mar 14, 2005
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My best advice...stick to the 85% rule. If the van you plan to buy is too heavy - buy a lighter one. There are plenty of lighter vans available, look at the Adria range.

j
 

Damian

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Mar 14, 2005
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Adam, all the Espace range have 2000 kg as the max tow limit of a braked trailer, BUT this is NOT the figure you need to work from, the main figures you need are the Kerbweight, which you state, and the overall Train Weight.

The max size of van you can pull MUST NOT make the overall train weight more than specified, as if you are checked by the Police and they weigh your complete outfit, and its over,then you face prosecution, and it invalidates your insurance.
 
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Hello Adamm, I have the older 2.2dt espace Grande, which I find to be an excelent towcar. It too has an MTPLM of 2tonne, What you can legally tow will depend on when you passed your driving test (Jan 97) before that date you could tow up to the manufactures max MTPLM but if you passed after that date then you are limited to no more that the kerbeight of the car. Confused? well it gets slightly worse as well, because the car will have a gross train weight specification. This is the combined weight of the loaded car and trailor, and must not be exceded. This is quite easy when you have a heavy caravan and a family in the car. Best advice for a new caravanner is to try and stick to the 85% guideline which still gives you about 1300Kg to play with.
 
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2000kg is the maximum weight the car can legally tow (providing you passed your test before January 1997), providing the Gross Train Weight isn't exceded. However, when towing high sided trailers & caravans it is recommended that the maximum weight of the trailer/caravan does not exceed the kerbweight of the tow car. The figure of 85% is there to ensure that the car is always considerably heavier than the caravan. However, it is not a "rule" or law, it is a guideline. Sensible loading of the caravan also plays a huge factor in towing stability, as does having the correct noseweight. If you have a kerbweight of 1695kgs, then you will find lots of decent sized caravans with a MTPLM of around 1500kgs which would be fine. There are some lighter twin axle caravans around between 1400 and 1600kgs, which providing they were loaded correctly, would also be okay. Lunar do a lightweight twin axle tourer, can't remember the exact model though....
 
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Although the manufacturer states a max towing limit of 2000kgs this is purely based on one test of the car and trailer to re start from standstill on an incline of 12%. It does not really accurately represent the general towing capability of the car. Most clubs and organisations recommond towing no more than 85% of the vechicles kerbweight. This is not law just a sensible guideline as to de- cresase the likelihood of any snaking etc. However you must not tow more than the cars kerbweight as this will make it extremely unstable and will liable you to prosecution for unsafe load etc. Also check your vechiles nose weigt and do not exceed this also, hope this helps.
 
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Response to Ian, You make a good point about "unsafe loads". I generally agree that for cars and caravans kepping below 1:1 is sensible, however the law applies to all vehicles not just towing ones. I have seen combinations that are well below the 85% ratio that are unsafe, and also consider Articulated HGV's where the ratio can be in excess of 4:1. The same law applies. Satbility is dependant on many factors of which weight is only one.
 
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The max towing weight of 2000kgs is not what the car legally tow as stated previously, its what the vehicle is, in theory capable of towing based purely on one test. With regards to law my previous correspodance should help.
 
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Your last response is rather misleading, Ian. Contrary to what you state, the manufacturer's specification regarding towload certainly does have legal significance. Subject to other restrictions such as driving licence requirements, this figure IS the maximum axle load that the vehicle may legally tow and it is also the maximum that the manufacturer will accept responsibility for in the event of a warranty claim and/or product liability in case of material failure or an accident. While the ability to restart on a 12% incline is one of the requirements that must be met, this is only part of the story. For example, the towing vehicle must also be able to maintain its towing performance on a long incline without overheating. The durability of the brakes, the suspension system and the body/chassis structural components must also be adequate to permit unrestricted use under these conditions. A failure to meet any or all of these requirements would constitute a product that is unfit for the purpose to which it is intended and the car (or, in some cases, towbar)manufacturer would be held responsible for any consequences.
 
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hello mate i have a new espace as acompany car with the 1.9tdi 120bhp. the book says 1750kgs for my vehicle. when i took it to 3 different weigh bridges witha full fuel tank and only 5 seats it came in at 1900kgs. it tows my twin axle fine and a great family car the electric hand brake is brill
 
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Lutz, if i attended the scene of an rtc with a towing vehicle towing more than its kerbweight i would be reporting for prosecution under construction and use acts
 
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There is some debate arrising from Ian D's assertion that you cannot tow more than the vehicles kerbweight. Ian is stating that Construction and Use regs would be invoked. If this is so then how can a 38 tonne artic combination only have a 12 tonne tractor?

Ian can you please state the particular regulations sectiones and subs sections that as a police officer you would use to press for a prosecution under construction and use?, and if this is so, then why are car manufactures permitted to state otherwise?
 

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