LIGHT WORK

THESE TOP FIVE LIGHT­WEIGHT TOW VE­HI­CLES ARE EASY ON THE ROAD, EASY UN­DER LOAD AND EASY ON YOUR HIP POCKET!

Camper Trailer Australia - - BUDGET TOURING - WORDS PHILIP LORD PICS CAMPER TRAILER AUS­TRALIA

Not ev­ery­one wants or needs a big tow tug. In fact, a lum­ber­ing ve­hi­cle can prove costly and re­stric­tive when you’re driv­ing it un­hitched, but some nim­ble city cars re­ally strain un­der tow. So we’ve come up with a list of top five light­weight ve­hi­cles well equipped for tow­ing a camper trailer.

We’ve cho­sen 2000kg as the top haul­ing ca­pac­ity for ve­hi­cles fea­tured in this line-up. There are plenty of wag­ons and SUVs with a max­i­mum 2000kg tow­ing ca­pac­ity (mostly the Euro mod­els) but many have a 100kg max­i­mum ball load (TBM) or less. Here, we’ve nom­i­nated only ve­hi­cles that have a TBM closer to 10 per cent. As about 80 per cent of car buy­ers to­day choose au­to­matic over man­ual, we’ve knocked out man­ual-only tow ve­hi­cles, too.

This bunch has also been cho­sen for their prac­ti­cal na­ture; the abil­ity to swal­low a fair amount of gear – whether it be on ded­i­cated roof racks or in the cargo area and for their good all-rounder ap­peal as a ve­hi­cle as suit­able for the city peak hour trun­dle as it is haul­ing a camper on tour.

While many here are SUVs avail­able as a 2WD, we’ve gone for the AWD ver­sions where there’s an in­creased tow­ing ca­pac­ity by do­ing so – be­ing all-wheel drive also opens up the op­tions for beach or forestry trail for­ays.

Where a diesel op­tion is of­fered – and where it’s a bet­ter en­gine than a petrol al­ter­na­tive – then that has been cho­sen as the oil­ers usu­ally have more torque and are more fuel-ef­fi­cient than petrols gen­er­ally, which are im­por­tant el­e­ments for a good tow ve­hi­cle.

An honourable men­tion that didn’t quite make the list – the Subaru Forester tur­bod­iesel has ev­ery­thing go­ing for it as a strong tow­ing per­former and is well in the ball­park with its 180kg/1800kg tow­ing ca­pac­ity but Subaru re­stricts tow­ing speed to just 80km/h.

The Nis­san X-Trail also misses out as the petrol auto has just 1500kg/150kg tow­ing ca­pac­ity while the 2000kg/200kg diesel is only avail­able as a man­ual.

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