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Old 19 November 2009, 09:47   #21
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Seriously, go find a weighbridge - I reckoned mine all up to be about 6000KG. Took it over the weighbridge - turns out to be 749Kg (fully fuelled). You'd be amazed how heavy your wiring can be! That's the reason I went for a braked trailer - the current car will take a 750Kg unbtraked, but as vehicles suipposedly get lighter, I bought a braked trailer to "future proof" it.

Also rememeber the absolute max weight of your trailer will depend how much weight is in the car. - It's to do with the Gross Train Weight, which is worked out based on a combination of brake force, vehicle mass, hitch - rear axle overhang, engine power at a couple of thousand feet above sea level (in case you want to tow a caravan across the Alps and stall on Gross Glockner kind of thing) and assumes "Euro standard Brakes" on the trailer for stopping.


Also look at Estate vs Saloon - sometimes the extra metalwork can add a few Kg to the Max trialer numbers. 1500Kg trialer is going to be at the top end of most cars, from memory is the Mk1 Disco not rated for a couple of tons?

Did someone not post a link to a website with tow weights recently?
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Old 19 November 2009, 12:22   #22
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Quote:
Originally Posted by HUMBER P4VWL View Post
. 330D 2004 seemed to tick the boxes but perhaps not.
A 530D will give you a little more capacity.
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Old 19 November 2009, 13:02   #23
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Paul,

Just a thought. You are trying to pick a car for everyday use and possibly compromising on the spec for everyday so that you can get it to tow your boat twice a year...

Would it be more sensible to buy the car you need for everday, and then either hire or buy a separate vehicle to tow with. Fuel ecconomy and comfort won't be critical for it and if you get an old uggly thing then it will be cheap to insure 3PFT or even 3P only, with a very low annual mileage etc. It would mean taxing another vehicle (unless you get a genuine classic). I believe quite a few "caravaners" take this approach. If you got something like an old transit you could even stick a mattress in the back!
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Old 19 November 2009, 13:14   #24
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Yeh I kinda take that approach now. Disco is £180 road fund licence, insurance under £80 with a 1k miles limit MOT at full price is £54. At 1k miles/year servicing is negligible. Wash it down after each dunking and it seems to last fine. And it's always a back up vehicle and can go where you wouldn't take your everyday car if necessary. At least it's a fixed cost you can pretty much budget for.
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Old 19 November 2009, 13:19   #25
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Quote:
Originally Posted by HUMBER P4VWL View Post
Just trying to find a relatively quick estate or 4x4 that is quite comfy that does 30mpg for <10k and pulls over 1500kg once or twice a year. 330D 2004 seemed to tick the boxes but perhaps not.

Audi A4 quattro 3.0 tdi auto.
Or
Audi Allroad 2.5tdi you can even get the manual ones with a low range box?

But aye a old Range Rover would be best and you would not damage the 330. which is often the case when cocking about with boats light boards and ropes.
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Old 19 November 2009, 13:48   #26
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Old man has an old v8 lwb rangey for the boat each year, problem is it drinks fuel. If I go from here to anglesey, whip the boat out and head to Pwllheli, then home again I will have spent over £100 in fuel before the boat!

Perfect for taking it down and back once year but I've got the bug to go other places.

Just thought I could combine the purchase of a new car with the ability to tow with family and dog.

Audi 3.0 tdi avant is >£10k

530d estate are also mor. For a clean one and use the old 3.0d which is slow and thirsty for modern mpgs

think it is the 330d 2004 onwards for normal use and lump using the rangey when I need to tow. £100 gets me round the peninsula to pwllhelli and back anyway in the boat! Stay over then play down Cardigan bay!!

Cheers for comments everyone.
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Old 19 November 2009, 16:28   #27
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I went through a similar dilemma a couple of years ago when I bought a heavier RIB. Wondered whether to buy a cheap 4x4 and a smallish diesel runaround car, 'cos I didn't want to incur the heavy running costs of a 4x4 for everyday use, or a compromise car which would be reasonably economical all round. I ended up buying an Audi A3 TDi, which has sufficient towing capacity and turns out 40+ mpg in everyday use. Since buying the A3, I've only used it twice to tow the boat, 'cos I prefer to use my camper van (no fridge in the A3 for post-boating refreshments ). How mad is that?
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Old 19 November 2009, 16:48   #28
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Hi Paul, you do seem a bit confused about where the limits are, as I don't perceive that the car is a major issue, but the trailer may be. If the dry weight of your boat+trailer is 1325kg them you have a 475kg margin before you reach the limit for the car. However, you are within 175kg of the trailer limit.

It looks like you can keep your margin by avoiding fueling up before the journey.This sounds like it will fit in with your plan to keep the nose weight within the spec for your car.

So, away from the figures, and into the real world. As many have pointed out, towing is a serious business, and there are many things that can go wrong. I have a lot of experience from my younger days when I worked on farms and we towed 40' trailers loaded with about 12 tonnes behind agricultural tractors on main roads.This was quite a dangerous activity as agricultural tractors have brakes on only the rear wheels, so emergency stops are to be avoided at all costs. We also had a 7.5 tonner with uprated springs, but not uprated brakes as the boss used to remind us of frequently! Many things did go wrong, but that's another story.

I have towed our rib behind my old Merc E280 which reminded me of the the old days on the farm. The previous owner of the RIB had meticulously documented the boat and trailer weight following a weighbridge visit, so the boat+trailer+everything weighed in at about 2150kg. Trailer is rated at over 3000kg so that's fine, but the car is rated at 2200kg. This gave an absolutely frightening drive! Despite fantastic, huge disc brakes on the merc, stopping distances were immense. I drove most of the two journeys at just over 30mph, and the one time I got over 40mph on the downhill of the Millbrook flyover was quite concerning with the boat and trailer pushing us faster, not smoothly, but bang, bang, bang as it took up the slack and the spring in the auto-reverse braked coupling. Roads that I previously thought of as flat were now perceptibly hilly, and the engine temperature rose proportionally with the gradients.

Given that your gross weight is considerably less, and you have a much greater margin, I don't anticipate you will have such a drama, as long as you watch your speed and think well ahead.
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Old 20 November 2009, 04:54   #29
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Thanks to all again

Cheers for the pointers and comments. Think I'll choose the car for relevant purpose, then try towing and go to weighbridge in spring. If it is fine, great, if not I'll take appropriate action. Ie if boat is just over trailer max, no road journeys other than to launch/recover once a year. If ok and car can take it, great. If not, range rover it is.

Just need to spend the weekend with tfr, stainless cleaner, brushes, wax etc to clean it up ready for April!
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Old 20 November 2009, 11:48   #30
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||Having been on the wrong end of a trailer related accident where weights etc were not correct I would advise that you do not attempt to tow unless all is legal. The police will have a field day if they find anything wrong and your insurance will be void too.
Happy days !
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