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Everything posted by Lutz

  1. The noseweight limit applies only to an entirely static condition. When towing, the instantaneous dynamic forces acting on the towbar can easily be 10 times the static value, so there is really nothing to worry about.
  2. Vehicle registration documents throughout the EU have the same item numbers for each criterion, so anyone can read the details even without knowledge of the language of issue.
  3. There may be the odd exception where the above restriction may apply, but in general, in the case of Vauxhalls, the maximum towload also applies with a fully laden towcar. The note in the brochure was obviously taken over from a case in the past where there was such a restriction, without checking first whether it always applies. However, in most cases it is incorrect.
  4. The plate doesn't quote any towing limits. If you are reading a towing limit from what is on the plate then this is arrived at by pure deduction, which may or may not be correct. The actual towing limit will, however, never be less than one calculated on the basis of what's on the plate. Manufacturers are quoting technical towing limits, irrespective of how the vehicle is laden. If they feel that the towing limit achievable with a fully laden vehicle is at the same time the absolute limit, then so be it, but if they feel that the vehicle is technically capable of towing heavier loads if the GVW is not used to the full, then they are fully at liberty to do so. It all depends on what is technically possible and permissible.
  5. The VIN plate doesn't quote the towing limit. One can only deduce a limit by subtracting the GVW from the GTW, but that need not necessarily reveal the true towload limit. It could be higher, which would be the case, for example, if one has to trade off part of the GVW in order to make full use of a higher towload and still stay within the GTW limit.
  6. It depends whether the rims were type approved for the respective wheel load.
  7. The format is laid down quite clearly in the Certificate of Conformity. It is, and has always been, item 18. If the V5 didn't show towloads before 2010 then this was a serious omission and prior to that date owners would have had to approach the manufacturer and ask for a copy of the CoC for their vehicle if they wanted full clarification of towloads that may be greater than the difference between the GTW and the GVW.
  8. The need to specify towload limits has applied ever since the introduction of vehicle type approval, and that has been in existence for over 20 years.
  9. I'd just like to point out that for driving licence purposes, the mass of the combination is the sum of the plated GVW and the MTPLM of the trailer and neither the sum of all masses acting on each axle, nor the plated gross train weight. It is unfortunate that the same term is being used for two different values.
  10. What a number of respondents to this thread are forgetting is that towload limits are not only there for caravanners, but for all trailers. It may therefore be perfectly legitimate, in certain specific circumstances, to allow a towload which is greater than the difference between gross train weight and gross vehicle weight.
  11. Unless you compensate the larger diameter of the wheels with lower aspect ratio tyres you will lose wheelarch clearance and run into the risk of tyre/wheelarch contact under full bump, rather like the infamous Bailey/AlKo axle failure problem.
  12. Yes, I have rechecked my information and in Germany it is the actual weight per vehicle that counts, and it applies to each vehicle, not to the complete outfit.
  13. Having been to over 80 countries I think I can rightly claim to be a reasonably well-travelled man, but I would say that it would be a bit presumptuous to suggest France is the world's number 1 destination, even though I do have a liking for the country.
  14. Of course, we don’t have the expense of a ferry to contend with, but for our 7 week 6500km round Trip in June/July, starting with Tuscany and ending up on the Costa Calida in Spain we spent under 3000 Euros, including campsite charges, all our food, tolls and diesel.
  15. Having been to Spain several times these last few years, we obviously pass through France to get there and we've got to like the regions in France that we pass through now, too, so much so that we now pop down to France for short breaks in between longer trips. After all, the campsites that we go to there are only about 600km from home, so that's reasonably easy to do in a day, whereas our destination in Spain is 2000km away. The main thing is that wherever we go it must be possible without booking ahead. We tend to go on tour at very short notice, deciding where and when to go just a few days ahead, but then it's easier for us as we don't have ferries to contend with..
  16. The link that you refer to makes no mention of warranty or product liability. The latter is a completely different kettle of fish as it's nothing to do with any legal requirement.
  17. Warranty and product liability are of course affected if plated weights are exceeded, but also if the towing limit is exceeded. This is because the tensile forces acting on the towbar directly affect the durability of the towbar itself and that of the vehicle underbody structure, regardless of the gross train weight which only has a bearing on engine and transmission and braking performance.
  18. If you have a Truma Crash Sensor fitted you can even leave the regulator open and gas appliances, such as the fridge or heating on, while towing.
  19. Even if the towing limit is not legal constraint it still has warranty and product liability implications.
  20. Lutz

    towing weights

    True, but that would make it virtually impossible to assess the suitability of an outfit in advance before the purchase.
  21. Lutz

    towing weights

    Still, I find it hard to believe that the 30%, 80%, 100%, 120% differentiated legal weight ratio limts were pulled out of a hat.
  22. Lutz

    towing weights

    Based on years of experience of a multitude of caravanners I don't think that anyone would deny that the heavier the caravan relative to the weight of the car, the more the outfit will be liable to instability under certain conditions, so maybe one should just leave it at that and not try to put a magical figure to a weight ratio. Suffice to say that there are specified legal weight ratio limits that must be observed in Germany if you want to tow at 100km/h instead of theregular 80km/h speed limit that applies to towing trailers and one would imagine that those who laid down these limits did their homework before they were incorporated into legislation.
  23. Some caravan manufacturers have recently started to combine the NCC label by the door with the statutory plate, so there is just the one, but it’s easy enough to check whether it complies with legal requirements or not. It just needs to show the details that I mentioned in my previous reply.
  24. The statutory plate may be metal or self adhesive. The only conditions that apply to a self-adhesive version are that it must be readily accessible and it must be tamperproof, which presumably means that it must be self-destructive if tampered with. To fulfil the requirements for a statutory plate it must show the MTPLM, max. permissible noseweight and max. axle loads in a prescribed order and the type approval number, in addition to the chassis number and the name of the manufacturer.
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