Which car to choose.

Nov 22, 2019
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Hello all,

The time has come to replace my trusty Pathfinder. But with what...
The breif is as follows.
Needs to be able to tow a large t/a van in all weather as we tour all year round. Need to be big enough to fit 2 kids and 2 dogs in, plus kit. Needs to be reasonably quick, do at the very least real world 30mpg as well as being nice to drive.
The budget is up to 15k.

I've been looking at toureg, ml, x5, xc60, freelander, a6 allroad etc.

Just want anyone's thoughts on this.

Cheers

James
 
Nov 11, 2009
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Freelander not really large enough space wise.

Toureg or A6 All Road. Possibly Passat or Superb awd too. Same car for less money than Audi.


Have you thought of the Santa Fe or Sorento. Both have good reputations and might fit the bill. Plus at your budget you may still get makers remaining makers warranty.

Auto makes towing a delight 👍
 
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Nov 6, 2005
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Freelander not really large enough space wise.

Toureg or A6 All Road. Possibly Passat or Superb awd too. Same car for less money than Audi.


Have you thought vanity Santa Fe or Sorento. Both have good reputations and might fit the bill. Plus at your budget you may still get makers remaining makers warranty.

Auto makes towing a delight 👍
The VW Touareg (3.0 TDi) would be my recommendation but Skoda Superb Estate (2.0 TDI), Hyundai Santa Fe (2.2 TDi) or Kia Sorento (2.2 TDi) would be better value - at £15k budget the VW, Hyundai and Kia have proper torque converter autoboxes.
 
Jan 31, 2018
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Biassed response here-Navara-all the car we would ever need-just absolutely amazing towcar with a canopy space enough for every item you could think to take-inc an electric disabil buggy once and we're got 30mpg on A rds at 50mph last time out! Loads of std kit in the Tekna too.
 
May 7, 2012
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If you are towing in Winter given the conditions will possibly be tougher I would go for something heavy and with a very good towing pedigree which would take out some of the lighter suggestions.
If you know what the caravan you will tow is then letting us know what it is and the MTPLM would help.
All JLR models are excellent tow cars and are arguably the best in any towing comparison, they have a less than perfect reliability record though, and because they hold their price very well, it may be a problem to get a good one at short notice.
After that I suspect the Toureg is the best bet, certainly some of the lighter suggestion here like the Mazda are probably a bit too light, but without knowing what the caravan is it is difficult to know where to draw the line.
 
Nov 22, 2019
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Hi all, thanks for the replies and suggestions.

@Raywood, to clarify I've got a 2019 Lunar Quasar 696. Around 1750 fully laden - so needs to be a decently weighted tug.
I love the toureg and am very interested in a nav too, like the idea of a pick up for some reason. My mate has always had then and swears by them.

Anyone had either of these?
 
Nov 6, 2005
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Hi all, thanks for the replies and suggestions.

@Raywood, to clarify I've got a 2019 Lunar Quasar 696. Around 1750 fully laden - so needs to be a decently weighted tug.
I love the toureg and am very interested in a nav too, like the idea of a pick up for some reason. My mate has always had then and swears by them.

Anyone had either of these?
Several of us have Touaregs - simply the best as long as you budget for a premium car - had mine for nearly 5 years, have no intention of replacing it - overall fuel consumption has been 30 mpg over 35,000 miles - it's very spacious but if you need even more space, consider the Audi Q7, it's the same car underneath with longer wheelbase
 
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PTA

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Another Touareg owner here.
Advantages (for me).
. High kerbweight
. Load space
. Comfort over long distances
. Power is awesome. With " Sport" mode for quick overtaking
. Reliability (This is my second Touareg, first, "preowned', second, brand new. Neither has put a foot wrong over a combined 76,000 miles of my ownership)
. Hill hold facility (no need. to apply the handbrake when stopped on a hill. It does it automatically, even with heavy 'van attached)
. Traction on slippery surfaces
. Visibility
. Quiet cruising
. My wife loves it (!)

Disadvantages.
. No 7 seat option (Not a disadvantage for us but it may be for families)
. Ad blu filler is a faff to access requiring lifting out of spare wheel in boot (remedied in the new model with access next to fuel filler)
. Suspension is quite hard when driven only two up. Settles nicely when loaded and with 'van on back. (This can be remedied, at a cost, with air suspension option)
. Stop/Start system can be somewhat sharp but can be switched off. Factory fit tow bar automatically switches it off when towing)
. Replacing with quality. tyres is not cheap.
. Depreciation is marginally higher than that of more "upmarket" brands. But this is an advantage if buying "preowned."

Conclusion
. It fits our particular brief more than any other tow car option.
 
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Nov 6, 2005
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Another Touareg owner here.
Advantages (for me).
. High kerbweight
. Load space
. Comfort over long distances
. Power is awesome. With " Sport" mode for quick overtaking
. Reliability (This is my second Touareg, first, "preowned', second, brand new. Neither has put a foot wrong over a combined 76,000 miles of ownership)
. Hill hold facility (no need. to apply the handbrake when stopped on a hill. It does it automatically, even with heavy 'van attached)
. Traction on slippery surfaces
. Visibility
. Quiet cruising
. My wife loves it (!)

Disadvantages.
. No 7 seat option (Not a disadvantage for us but it may be for families)
. Ad blu filler is a faff to access requiring lifting out of spare wheel in boot (remedied in the new model with access next to fuel filler)
. Suspension is quite hard when driven only two up. Settles nicely when loaded and with 'van on back. (This can be remedied, at a cost, with air suspension option)
. Stop/Start system can be somewhat sharp but can be switched off. Factory fit tower automatically switches it off when towing)
. Replacing with quality. tyres is not cheap.
. Depreciation is marginally higher than that of more "upmarket" brands. But this is an advantage if buying "preowned."

Conclusion
. It fits our particular brief more than any other tow car option.
I agree - but - the awkward Adblue filler only affects 2015-2018 models, earlier ones didn't have Adblue and later ones have it by the fuel filler - suspension is sublime with air suspension but only a few used ones will have it
 

PTA

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I agree - but - the awkward Adblue filler only affects 2015-2018 models, earlier ones didn't have Adblue and later ones have it by the fuel filler - suspension is sublime with air suspension but only a few used ones will have it
Have you got air suspension?
I'm considering it for when I next trade in...for another Touareg of course!
 
Nov 6, 2005
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Have you got air suspension?
I'm considering it for when I next trade in...for another Touareg of course!
Yes I went mad with the option list when I ordered it - but I do expect it to see me out - as well as a smooth ride and adjustable dampers, the ride height can be adjusted, useful when manoeuvring the caravan over uneven ground.
 
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PTA

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Yes I went mad with the option list when I ordered it - but I do expect it to see me out - as well as a smooth ride and adjustable dampers, the ride height can be adjusted, useful when manoeuvring the caravan over uneven ground.
Thanks. Considering the new "Black Edition" when I have the option to change . Like you, I intend the next Touareg to be a "keeper."
 
Jan 31, 2018
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2020 model Navara Tekna ; 2.3 twin turbo diesel 193bhp and over 400nm torque i think-don't quote me-full leather, heated seats SatNav with sim card so full updates of cameras and roadworks and reads texts to you, climate control, cruise and limiter , 1000kg load bay and 3500kg towing capacity 140kg towball weight-5 year warranty and serviced every 12500 miles or 2 years . The new model has better gear box, trailer sway assist, all round cameras-we drop onto the tow ball very easily and are getting 36-38mpg long runs all day every day and 30 towing-VERY happy is an understatement! Tows a Bucanneer Cruiser as if it weren't there!
Full size spare wheel too!
You need the speed limiter as it is a deceptively fast cruiser.

Sorry all the advans -didn't do the minuses; ride is firm-it has multilink rear suspension and dual rate shocks but load bay empty it is a sporty ride, and the thing is quite long-feels like a car to drive but supermarket carparks can leave you overhanging a tad at times. The tailgate is quite heavy -you can get an assister kit but doesn't bother us and of course it's so huge that if you don't have too much stuff you may need to climb in if it slides to the front-but of course you can climb in! Total cost inc protection pack was around £28k. Insurance is classed as commercial but no more than a car and road tax £245 same. Am not used to diesels either so engine sounds rather gruff to me.
See this as an advantage or disadvantage -not sure but the 4x4 is a simple one-rear wheel drive most of the time, 4x4 only to be used if traction is an issue (never has been with a caravan on it) and diff lock 4x4. Not one of the fancier permanent 4x4s with a differential.
 
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Oct 12, 2016
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We had a Navara for 3 years. Acenta+ so not so many toys. Acres of space in the back, towed our TA Swift no bother. Yes it’s a bit long but I never found it a problem.
Just changed to a SsangYong Musso. Every bit as good as theNavara but much more car like, especially in internal and external appearance. Basically a Rexton with a pick up bed.
Quieter and smoother. Heated and cooled seats, heated steering wheel too. The hardtop is a better fit than the Euro Hardtops one we had on the Nissan.
About 12” shorter than the Navara it has the same payload of 1 tonne but has the bonus of being able to tow 3.5 tonnes at the same time. Not that we’re anywhere near that of course as the caravan has almost nothing in it payload wise, it all goes in the truck.
 
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Oct 12, 2016
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Might have to have a drive at some point!
Thing we both noticed was how quiet it is. At times the engine is inaudible whereas the Nissan was always there, quite gruff at times. I was amazed that it’s the same Renault engine Mercedes use in the 220 series cars C220 E220 etc. The Ssangyong engine is built by Steyr in Germany who build Mercedes engines 🤪.
 
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Oct 22, 2019
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Jezzer has said it all really...another Navara owner here with a TA conqueror 645. Mrs Jim has to remind me of the speed at times as you can forget.

As regards to the load bay - get a divider - best bit of kit you can have. 2 Adults, 2 grown kids (if we must) and a dog all fit in comfortably.
 
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Nov 22, 2019
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Thanks folks, appreciate all the comments. I think I'll probably sway more towards the Nav. With the pathfinder I've got now, it's big enough, but you can always do with a bit more room, especially with growing kids etc. And I feel that nav would just swallow it all without issue.

Just a matter of finding the right one now!
 
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We don't travel light-but it swallows the lot with ease-we have a Aeroklass canopy which seems nicely made and the paint is good-much cheaper than the Nissan item, but the rear window catch doesn't always open correctly-not much hassle though. So far so delighted! We have the Nissan genuine towbar and ball-no one at nissan could tell us if it was alko compatible but once home i measured it and it is!
 
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Nov 22, 2019
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Hi folks,

Just a quick update. Strangely veered off in a completely different direction and bought a mk3 Kia Sorento from the online site Cazoo. First kia, but have a friend with one who swears by it. It gets delivered Saturday so will probably take the van for a tow Sunday to see what it's like.

Anyone had one or know anything about how well they tow?

Cheers

James
 
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We had a 2014 KX2 for four years. Without doubt the best car I have ever owned. It towed both our TA Swifts faultlessly. I suffer with back problems but found I could drive the Sorento for long periods without discomfort. It was economical too. Lovely driving position, superb tow car, plenty of space, not too many useless ‘toys’. I could go on. I’m sure you’ll love it. In 60,000 miles the only thing that went wrong on it was the radio aerial, fixed in a couple of minutes by the dealer. I only changed the original Nexen tyres at 50,000 miles because they had reached my personal limit of 2.5mm. The replacements, Nexen again, cost a little over £300 The only reason we didn’t replace it with another one was because we decided to use the company’s Pickup to tow our van.
 
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Nov 22, 2019
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We had a 2014 KX2 for four years. Without doubt the best car I have ever owned. It towed both our TA Swifts faultlessly. I suffer with back problems but found I could drive the Sorento for long periods without discomfort. It was economical too. Lovely driving position, superb tow car, plenty of space, not too many useless ‘toys’. I could go on. I’m sure you’ll love it. In 60,000 miles the only thing that went wrong on it was the radio aerial, fixed in a couple of minutes by the dealer. I only changed the original Nexen tyres at 50,000 miles because they had reached my personal limit of 2.5mm. The replacements, Nexen again, cost a little over £300 The only reason we didn’t replace it with another one was because we decided to use the company’s Pickup to tow our van.
Ahh brilliant. Your experience echoes a lot that I've been reading.
Hopefully it'll be a good change from the trusty old pathfinder!!
Gotta be better than the current 20mpg I get with that at least if nothing else 😂
 
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