Whether you’re towing a ski boat, horse float or a caravan, once you know the specifications of the trailer, you can start looking for the best towing vehicle. We’ve found three top vehicles for recreational towing.
To find a vehicle to suit your towing requirements, you first need to understand the jargon used when rating towing capacity.
Kerb weight tells you how much a vehicle weighs when it’s sitting by the kerb ready to be driven. Kerb weight includes standard equipment, a full tank of fuel, and all necessary liquids — such as oil and coolants — required to jump in and drive it away. It does not include optional extras such as the weight of a bull bar.
Payload capacity is the maximum weight of everything your car can carry. This includes everything in your vehicle, such as passengers, tools, or luggage.
Gross Vehicle Mass (GVM) is the most your vehicle can weigh when loaded. It is the kerb weight plus the payload of the vehicle.
Gross Combination Mass (GCM) is the weight limit for your vehicle and trailer combined.
Now you know the jargon, let’s find your perfect towing vehicle.
If you’re looking for a four-wheel-drive with enough grunt for off-road towing, look no further than the VW Amarok. Ahead of its time, it is the only 4×4 dual-cab on the market with a 6-speed manual transmission.
The core has a kerb weight of 2,076kg and GVM of 3,080kg, meaning the payload rating is just over one tonne. With a braked tow rating of 3,000kg and a GCM of 5,550kg, you’d need to reduce the payload of the vehicle if you need to tow at capacity without surpassing the GCM.
Delivering up to an extra 200kW on demand, the Overboost function ensures you’ll never struggle with overtaking or trying to maintain power going uphill. The low-range crawler ratio is unmatched by competitors and makes navigating rough terrain a dream.
With a powerful turbo-diesel engine, the Amarok was made to tow. The large cubic displacement of the engine means that the engine braking is incredible, to reduce any braking trouble travelling downhill.
A comfortable family vehicle derived from Ford’s tough Ranger ute, the Ford Everest is a great choice. For around $50,000 you can have yourself a rear-wheel-drive five-seater SUV with 3,000kg braked towing capacity. Perfect for family trips with the caravan or for towing a ski boat.
If you’re looking for something a bit heartier, consider the Everest with 4×4 capability. With seating for up to seven people and coil-spring multi-link rear suspension, this vehicle will transport your crew while towing whatever you need to move, and then finish off the day with some off-road action.
The twin-turbo four-cylinder diesel engine is superior for towing, but the five-cylinder diesel engine does an adequate job.
The heaviest of the Everest range has a towing and vehicle mass of 5,900kg for the GCM, 3,100kg GVM, a kerb weight of 2,446, and maximum braked towing capacity of 3,100kg. With those stats, you’ll have plenty of room for your family, luggage and caravan.
Toyota Land Cruiser 200 Series
The Toyota Land Cruiser is one of the most popular and trusted SUVs for towing and makes easy work out of towing a caravan (or whatever else you need to move!).
The 3,500kg braked towing capacity is easily pulled along with the 4.5L Twin Turbo diesel V8. The towing performance is made comfortable with the six-speed automatic transmission, so you can sit back and relax while the Land Cruiser does all of the hard work for you.
With a massive GCM of 6,850kg and GVM of 3,350kg, this powerhouse of a machine has the ability to tow some serious weight, and doing so with a full payload. This is something not many vehicles can do without reducing their payload. The GCM allows you to tow massive weights while having your car loaded with whatever else you need for your trip.
This versatile vehicle is perfect for all terrains. Be it city, country, or off-road, this car is made for all conditions.
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