Non scim towing weights etc..

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Non scim towing weights etc..

Post by speedy555 » Wed Feb 19, 2014 10:00 pm

Ive been looking into towing with the RAV4, whats legal, what isnt, and whats safe! The more I look, the more I get confused :)

So, according to the V5, the RAV has a mass in service of 1715kgs, although has a towing capacity of 2000kgs.
Now the ridiculously large 25ft ish caravan has a max laden weight of 1500kgs.
So although a guideline and not law, 85% of the cars weight is something to aim for as a max to tow, though up to 100% would I think be legal. If I work from my 1715kgs then I reckon thats 87.7%??
So I think thats all legal and above board ?? But is it safe? Advisable? Will a RAV towing a 25ft plus caravan just look plain dumb anyway? :lol:
Thanks


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Re: Non scim towing weights etc..

Post by scimjim » Wed Feb 19, 2014 10:34 pm

Mass in service is defined under The European Directive 95/48/EC which includes 90% fuel and 75kg for driver and tools - it's not max gross weight or mass train weight (which are the important figures) 85% of the prime movers max gross weight is the guideline, 100% is the law (or max towing weight or total train weight, whichever is lower).

The RAV4 looks plain dumb without a caravan, so I wouldn't be too bothered :-)


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Re: Non scim towing weights etc..

Post by philhoward » Thu Feb 20, 2014 8:49 am

I remember having this chat with a guy recently.

In his case, the caravan was heavier than the kerb weight of the car. If he loaded up the car (so increasing its weight upto the gross weight), then it got him under the 100% law and just about get under the max train weight).

He decided to be sensible in the end though and bought a larger tow vehicle..


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Re: Non scim towing weights etc..

Post by speedy555 » Thu Feb 20, 2014 9:59 am

Well at around 87% I dont suppose weight wise its silly? Plus the car has the weight of the towbar fitted now...and Im just looking at the vin and think i have a train weight of 4190.


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Re: Non scim towing weights etc..

Post by scimjim » Fri Feb 21, 2014 2:04 pm

Actually I was just reading something else and realised I was wrong above - the CC 85% guideline IS mass in service (used to be kerbweight) - which is a bit silly as IMO it should be loaded mass as it sits on the road, not a theoretical empty (plus driver only) mass?


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Re: Non scim towing weights etc..

Post by philhoward » Fri Feb 21, 2014 2:15 pm

Hmmm...

The car I have on order (very similar to a certain procrastinator just over the Cheshire border) has:

Kerb weight (Mass in Service): 1207kg
Max Weight: 1852kg (KW + 645 max payload)
Towing weight unbraked: 640kg
Towing Weight unbraked: 1500kg

So, by law (not CC), vehicle weight must be greater than towing weight? If so, I need to (as I thought) load up the car if going over 1207kg on the back (assuming I'm 75kg and don't have my usual boot of gear).

According to the CC, I can never tow more than 1025kg, irrespective of actual weight of the towcar.

Before anyone pipes up, the manufacturer figure is (I believe) more to do with the ability of the car to start on a 12% incline than anything else.

"SO"'s will be about 200kg heavier than my upcoming one to start with, but only have 100kg more towing weight..


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Re: Non scim towing weights etc..

Post by scimjim » Fri Feb 21, 2014 2:40 pm

Steve's situation is even more confusing (car trailer as opposed to caravan) as the law also goes on the trailer's plated weight, not the actual weight of the trailer and load!


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Re: Non scim towing weights etc..

Post by philhoward » Fri Feb 21, 2014 2:42 pm

So if it's plated at 2000kg GW, he can't tow it (with a car max weight of 1700kg)? Hmmm - I was hoping that my new 'un would cope with a car and trailer...otherwise I might as well gone with the Golf instead as it can't tow as much!

Very, very confusing..


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Re: Non scim towing weights etc..

Post by scimjim » Fri Feb 21, 2014 3:03 pm

Replating the trailer with a lower figure is perfectly legal (but you can obviously only load it to the new lower figure).


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Re: Non scim towing weights etc..

Post by philhoward » Fri Feb 21, 2014 3:05 pm

Naturally you (I) would be knackered if you hire a 2ton trailer..


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Re: Non scim towing weights etc..

Post by scimjim » Fri Feb 21, 2014 3:06 pm

Technically yes :-(


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Re: Non scim towing weights etc..

Post by philhoward » Fri Feb 21, 2014 3:11 pm

Back to one of the original answers then - if you want to tow something heavy, get a proper 4x4...


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Re: Non scim towing weights etc..

Post by scimjim » Fri Feb 21, 2014 3:30 pm

The Merc has a max gross weight over 2000Kg and a towing max of 1900Kg IIRC.


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Re: Non scim towing weights etc..

Post by swoakes » Fri Feb 21, 2014 4:32 pm

scimjim wrote:Steve's situation is even more confusing (car trailer as opposed to caravan) as the law also goes on the trailer's plated weight, not the actual weight of the trailer and load!
Someone mention my name :)

My new trailer has a gross capacity of 2600kg and a load capacity of 2035kg.

Where does it say the above Jim :?: So the assumption is made that the trailer is loaded to the maximum and your vehicle must be able to tow that :?: (even if the actual load is far lower :? )
scimjim wrote:Replating the trailer with a lower figure is perfectly legal (but you can obviously only load it to the new lower figure).
What are the practicalities of doing this :?:


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Re: Non scim towing weights etc..

Post by swoakes » Fri Feb 21, 2014 5:10 pm

Just rang the garage that are supplying my trailer. Not only do the supply trailers they also fit tow bars and he seems a knowledgeable guy.

Apparently VOSA did attempt approximately 2 years ago to prosecute a driver who was towing a large capacity trailer behind a Passat (he thinks) loaded with an engine. The actual weight being towed was well within the plated limit of the towing vehicle but using the theoretical GW of the trailer it was exceeded.

This was apparently thrown out in court and it was ruled by the Judge that it was the actual weight of the load not its theoretical weight that mattered as regards whether the load was within weight limit. As regards the drivers license acceptability then the theoretical weights do apply.

Apparently all VOSA staff have had this ruling in writing and you would hope the same goes for the Police. :)
Last edited by swoakes on Fri Feb 21, 2014 6:17 pm, edited 3 times in total.


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