I am about to order a fleetwood heritage van mtplm 1700kg. Towcar merc e class estate 270 cdi.,kerbweigt 1840kg.I know about 85%,but don't fancy a 4x4.Am I asking too much from the car & putting my family at risk?
Mick, provided you take it easy and check that the 'van's within your car's towing limit and gross train weight, you should be ok. Just be careful when going down hills as this is when severe snakes can easily occur when towing near the limit.
Too much emphasis is placed on achieving an "85%" match and not enough on sensible loading. Towing a caravan exceding 85% of the cars kerbweight is not dangerous OR illegal, providing the caravan is loaded sensibly with the correct noseweight. Also remember that a twin axle caravan such as yours will be more stable than a single axle version as it has a bigger footprint on the road. You will be fine, just enjoy it!!!
Emphasis is placed on weights for good reason. If you tow 1700kgs with a car weighing 1485kgs this will be extremely unstable. Heaven forbid an accident but if you were i know for a FACT that a prosecution would be inevetible for towing an unsafe load.