Jump to content

Kerbweight


conorandlucy
 Share

Recommended Posts

We went to the NEC at the weekend and spoke to the Towcheck team and they advised us that the kerbweight of our 2014 Skoda Superb hatch is 1557kg but everywhere else is stating 1457kg.

 

How do we know who is right?

Link to comment
Share on other sites

You empty it out and take it to a weighbridge - have you looked at your V5 registration document - down the left had side G. Mass in Service. That should give you a fair idea.

 

In the end most cars are different, engines, gearboxes, accessories etc all have an effect on the basic kerbweight of the vehicle as does the way it's been specified. Some include the driver and some don't so the only way to get an accurate figure is to weigh it yourself.

Edited by matelodave
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Thanks.

 

The V5 says 1457. If that's the case our newly ordered van is 43kg too heavy!

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I'm generally in favour of a cautious approach, and acutely aware of what a hot potato the whole "how much can I safely tow" debate can be. ..

 

But having towed a 2009 Bailey Senator (1495Kg MTPLM) with a 2. 0 140hp DSG Superb Hatchback for a couple of years I can only report what a joy the whole thing was.

 

I was careful to load awning and all the heavy stuff etc into the huge boot (largely because I hate having to wade through junk on the floor when we stop for tea), but the outfit never once gave me any cause for concern, despite encountering some pretty dire conditions from time to time.

 

For me the answer is in keeping the car heavier than the van, and since the loaded van is only slightly heavier than the empty car - and that ratio only gets better as I put stuff into the car, and ultimately, it performed admirably on the road, I'd not do anything different if I had either back again.

 

Just my 2 penn'orth - I'm sure others will be along to start the debate again using all sorts of figures. ...

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I thought we'd been through this before C&L.

 

The maximum amount your car can legally tow is specified by your car manufacturer, but it's a good idea not to test that too closely and keep a good margin if poss.

 

As you're quoting kerbweight, rather than max. tow weight I'm assuming you're cogitating on the caravan industry recommended guideline that those new to towing should consider the maximum ratio of caravan MTPLM to car kerbweight should be 85%.

 

Firstly it's not law, it's a guideline for new towers.

 

Secondly a car's kerbweight, as listed, is very rarely accurate because all the thousands of parts that make up a car have tolerances and can weigh a little bit more or less than the stated weight. Hence a weighbridge is a good idea.

 

Thirdly having a car/van combo that's 88%, say, isn't going to make any difference to the handling characteristics. What, in theory are the ratios involved?

 

Fourthly Skoda abandoned normal industry practice in their recent Octavia brochures by quoting kerbweights without the usual 75kg allowance for driver and kit. At a quick glance this made the new Octavias look much lighter than the previous generation, until you read the small print. Quite why they broke from convention and whether they continued the same policy with the Superb, I couldn't say, but check your brochure, it will be in the small print under the weights table.

 

Fifthly which generation Superb have you and which generation were the people you spoke to quoting?

 

Sixthly the 85% ratio is based on an empty car and a caravans maximum loaded weight. Such a ratio will probably never actually occur in real life, but it helps to ID relevant ideal car/van combo's. In reality your car will be loaded to a lot more than its kerbweight and your van, hopefully no more than its MTPLM. So the actual towing ratio will be much less than 85%. As an example my unloaded V70 has an 81% ratio to the MTPLM of the van and when both are loaded that ratio reduces to 68%.

I've got nothing to do on this hot afternoon

but to settle down and write you a line.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Yes we did Andy, but the trouble is that according to Towchecks website its 101% based on the kerbweight.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Have a look at this website

 

www. towcarinfo/outfitmatch. ptp

 

I'm going to be towing our new van at between 80 - 100% depending what figures you look at.

Our car has a 100kg variance in the spec for kerb weight. I suggest the caravan industry will always use the higher figure for kerb weight in order to give you as much scope as possible for what van you can 'safely' tow.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Try doing the sums by adding 75kg for a driver and about 20kg for the towbar - that increases your cars so-called kerbweight by 95kg. I'm guessing that the Mass in Service in your V5 doesn't include the driver nor a great lump of towbat either. Don't forget that the weight of the driver & towbar has to be included in the Gross Vehicle Weight as well.

 

As SDA says a bit of judicious loading by keeping most of the weight in the car and making sure that your nose weight is at the max that the car or van can accommodate and you should be fine. Assuming that the van is well within the car's towing capability for moving away on an incline and stopping you shouldn't have a problem

 

Sorry LeedsLad - just done the website that you've quoted and the car weight is wrong and so is the hitch load - so it's sort of near enough but not exact. It also doesn't have my new car listed.

Edited by matelodave
Link to comment
Share on other sites

I thought we'd been through this before C&L.

 

The maximum amount your car can legally tow is specified by your car manufacturer, but it's a good idea not to test that too closely and keep a good margin if poss.

.

 

Can we be clear on this. The cars legal maximum towing weight is defined by the plated max train weight, this together with all other plated weights are the limits that we have to abide by. All other figures are based on specific situations that take no consideration of actual weights and as such only apply to those specific situations.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Yes we did Andy, but the trouble is that according to Towchecks website its 101% based on the kerbweight.

 

OK

  1. Did those people at the NEC use the right generation car and model and have you ever seen that weight they quoted before in relation to your car?
  2. What figure are Skoda using in their brochure and what does the smallprint say? They built it and should be the experts
  3. What is the maximum towload of the car and the MTPLM of the van?
  4. Are you a new tower?
  5. I'm not keen on Dave's suggestion to include the towbar as that's part of the car's payload and therefore not included in kerbweight.
  6. Mass in Service on your V5 is the car full of fluids and with a 75kg allowance for a driver and their kit. Again the info is supplied by Skoda and therefore should be correct for a representative vehicle of your type, subject to tolerances.
  7. If you're still not sure a weighbridge, with the car suitably loaded is the nearest to a definitive answer.

I've got nothing to do on this hot afternoon

but to settle down and write you a line.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

My point about adding the towbar is that once it's on then it becomes part of the car and so that's the new kerbweight (unless you take it off) even though it does come out of the car's payload. it does not alter the GVW nor the GTW.

 

You could argue that the kerbweight might be reduced if yours is a detachable and you leave the hook at home - mine stays in the boot most of the time not that I have a problem with either kerbweight or payload with my S-Max.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

It's still an accessory Dave and therefore part of the payload. The kerbweight of a car is the kerbweight of the car, nothing that's added, or taken away can change it. It's a weight calculated at a particular time that remains the same. Individual cars with identical spec. will weigh differently due to tolerances but the kerbweight of the model remains the same. That's why it was chosen as a marker for the ratio used, once it's established it can't be altered.

I've got nothing to do on this hot afternoon

but to settle down and write you a line.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

The kerb weight in documentation is often the lightest car in a particular model range; possibly not a build spec marketed in the UK and very unlikely to be your specific vehicle.

So it is going to be quite a bit below the cars actual kerb weight, in almost every case.

This adds to the nonsense of the clubs quoting the 85% ratio guidance figure, there is no sound figure to start with unless you actually measured it and corrected for the right weight driver and fuel on board.

 

Then working off that figure using 85% is technically flawed if it is achieving tolerable stability that is the goal; but that's a whole different discussion with polarised views.

Edited by JTQ
Link to comment
Share on other sites

The kerb weight in documentation is often the lightest car in a particular model range; possibly not a build spec marketed in the UK and very unlikely to be your specific vehicle.

So it is going to be quite a bit below the cars actual kerb weight, in almost every case.

This adds to the nonsense of the clubs quoting the 85% ratio guidance figure, there is no sound figure to start with unless you actually measured it and corrected for the right weight driver and fuel on board.

 

Then working off that figure using 85% is technically flawed if it is achieving tolerable stability that is the goal; but that's a whole different discussion with polarised views.

 

 

Exactly right JTQ.

 

That's why Mass in Service from the V5 tends to be a heavier figure.

 

However kerbweight is what was selected for the ratio and therefore kerbweight should be used IF you're wanting to look at life through the 85% prism. Using another weight just totally invalidates the whole basis of the calculation, the reason for which is to provide the new tower with a guide as to the safest maximum ratio to tow at 'til they've developed suitable experience to handle what potentially may be more tricky ratio's in hairy conditions.

I've got nothing to do on this hot afternoon

but to settle down and write you a line.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Thanks.

 

The V5 says 1457. If that's the case our newly ordered van is 43kg too heavy!

When you add in the weight of 2 or more people plus luggage you may find that you are almost at the 85% guideline anyway.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Thanks.

 

The V5 says 1457. If that's the case our newly ordered van is 43kg too heavy!

For someone who seems to be aware of kerb weights, towing ratios etc. , I'm surprised you ordered a new 'van without checking the suitability of your towcar first.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

When you add in the weight of 2 or more people plus luggage you may find that you are almost at the 85% guideline anyway.

 

That's not the point DT. The ratio uses kerbweight not kerbweight plus people (or payload).

 

When they specified the ratio they realised people would load their cars for goodness sake. If they wanted a ratio for a car and two occpants they'd have said so.

I've got nothing to do on this hot afternoon

but to settle down and write you a line.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

The simple answer is to keep the caravan 10kg lighter than its MTPLM!

 

Easier said than done Tevan. Most people have trouble keeping under the MTPLM.

I've got nothing to do on this hot afternoon

but to settle down and write you a line.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

The whole idea of using kerb weight in the calculation was to ensure that the car was as light as it would ever be and therefore the ratio could only get better as you put more in the car and less in the van. The 85% was never a target for a fully or partially laden car or van.

 

IMO it's an outdated calculation anyway and subject to all manner of confusion as evidenced by this an numerous other threads on the subject. Also many of the contributors (myself included) have their own views and chucking them into the pot just totally confounds those who are new to towing.

 

Most just want a simple clear answer to the basic question "will my car be suitable to tow my van" and I don't think that's ever been answered properly.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I don't think it has either although more information from the OP would help as well as an answer as to why they value the opinion of a guy at the NEC so much.

I've got nothing to do on this hot afternoon

but to settle down and write you a line.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

As far as I'm concerned the 85% is for beginners, having seen caravans being towed happily at 100% I wouldn't be concerned with a theoretical few KG over weight.

 

But if the OP is concerned, just weigh the car.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

They're all rambling on but no-one has mentioned the loading plate. Look for a label - if like any other VAG vehicle it will be at the bottom of the B pillar - that is the pillar between front and rear doors - on the UK passenger side. That will show you all of the relevant data you need.

 

What is MUCH more important is to check the caravan nose weight as some Octavias are only rated 75Kg (or even less) on the ball. Exceeding that weight is not an offence but it may well damage your towbar or chassis. The towbar will have a label on it stating the maximum load; finding the maximum the chassis can handle may take a bit of digging - VAG are not known for being excessively free with their data!

Link to comment
Share on other sites

He has a 2014 Superb so vehicle noseweight limit will be 80kg unless the tow bar fitted has a lower limit.

Yeti 2.0TDi EU6 150 DSG 4X4 L&K, Octavia TSi Manual, Fabia TSi DSG, Swift Challenger.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Restore formatting

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

 Share

×
×
  • Create New...