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GaryB1969

A towcar over 1700kgs kerbweight between £10K and £25K?

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FYI, literally had the XC60 serviced this morning. £180. 60k miles, pads still at 50%,  spent nothing on it this year apart from 2 tyres consider that a proper result.

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I had new discs and pads on the front of my A2 at 50k but that was due to corrosion and under-use rather than wear! Replaced them again and had the read drums overhauled for the first time at 125k and 13 years old Feb last year.

 

Not suggesting my A2 is a viable tow car but at nearly 140k and over 14 years old apart from servicing it’s had a battery, three new glow plugs, new alternator and the brakes. It still has a FASH and just keeps on going, I’ve no reason to doubt a looked after A4 or A6 wouldn’t be the same.

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Posted (edited)
On 10/05/2019 at 09:30, GaryB1969 said:

As I mentioned in a thread in another area, redundancy sees me looking for a car.  Previously I've chosen a company car from a list of five manufacturers with little consideration for the list price, so I'm in unfamiliar ground and welcome the input and comments from all, just in case there's a manufacturer/model I haven't considered.

 

I'm looking for something with a kerbweight of over 1700kgs and a maximum towing weight of at least this as I tow a 2018 Sprite Quattro EB with an MTPLM of 1624kgs.  Considering fuel economy I'd prefer something car-derived (estate) rather than an SUV (and diesel), but that's not a complete given.  I even looked at Nissan Navara/Mitsubishi L200 type pick-ups with a crew-cab.  

 

Age?  Price?  I've looked at two scenarios, one being to buy something for around£10K with maybe 50,000 miles at 5 or 6 years old, or something only a few months old for around £25K.  So far I've looked at Audi A6 Avants, Volvo V90's, Hyundai Santa-Fe and Kia Sorento's.  The Hyundai and Kia surprised me with how expensive they are at a few years old, they seem to retain their value well.  Audi's depreciate a lot in the first few years and Volvo's are only a couple o years old anyway.  There are so many cars out there it's a bit over-whelming so I'd welcome any comments on this to try and clear some of the fog!

 

Thanks

 

We have a 2017 dealer special Sprite Quattro EW with an MTPLM figure which is the same as your van, although it was upgraded to 1800kg because we had an AWD motormover fitted.

The van is towed by a 2008 Honda CR-V which pulls it effortlessly, I get 38 - 45mpg solo driving and 26 - 30mpg towing depending on conditions.  Our CR-V is the older i-cdti engine, your price bracket will get you the newer idtec engine which had slightly more power, torque and better economy figures.

Also, don't discount the latter CR-V'S with the 1.6 diesel engine twin turbo 160bhp models. I was a bit sceptical of towing with the CR-V with this engine, but two mates of mine report that they are better than the older 2.2idtec which they had previously. One of them tows a twin axle which is heavier than ours and both report improved fuel economy towing and especially solo driving. I will be giving the 1.6 160bhp model serious consideration when the time comes to change our trusty CR-V. Just to add, the kerbweight on mine is 1713kg, the idtec was slightly heavier and the 1.6 versions range from 1650 - 1716kg depending on which model, the top of the range EX versions being the heaviest.

Edited by Llew

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Thanks for the comments, as expected there's a lot of different opinions!  The "security" of a new car is good but the depreciation hurts.  This morning I went round a few dealers looking at cars in the £10K range and concluded that some are simply £5K cars that have had a damn good clean.  Cars between £10K and £20K seem to be thin on the ground leading me to assume (rightly or wrongly) that cars get often retained for 3 to 4 years before working their way onto the market and get snapped up quickly, leaving the majority of the picking as being those over 5 to 6 years old or ex-demonstrators.

 

I've been into classic cars for years and in the garage I have a very nice old American car that I spent a lot of time & money restoring over a 7 year period.  It sits there most of the time, coming out occasionally when the weather's nice, but the sheer size of it and a 5 litre V8 means that it doesn't get used much so I've decided to sell it and use the money to buy something 6 to 12 months old, hence I won't have to touch any redundancy money.  I'm still not sure what to go for mind, but I really do like the Volvo V90 and the Audi A6 Avant.  I test drove both extensively last month as I had to chose a replacement company car, there was little to chose between them but the Volvo was nicer inside.

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Brake discs are now considered wearing items, and have been since asbestos was taken out of pads in the 80's.  Discs usually require changing on the second set of pads... front discs and pads on my Exeo were only about £100 in total from a main dealer...

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On 10/05/2019 at 10:27, Rodders53 said:

:rotfl:

My two Galaxys have never got anywhere near that frugality.  They have been proper torque converter autos though:   2.0 and now 2.2 (currently averaging almost 30 mpg, best is 37 mpg.)

Very comfortable seats though.

 

Our motorhome has the Ford 2.0 170bhp auto, and even lugging 3.5 tons around all the time in a non-too-streamlined body still manages 30mpg and it isn't fully run in yet.

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8 minutes ago, thebriars said:

Our motorhome has the Ford 2.0 170bhp auto, and even lugging 3.5 tons around all the time in a non-too-streamlined body still manages 30mpg and it isn't fully run in yet.

Bully for you.  

Your engine and gearbox will be different to those I have had in the Galaxys in any case (2.0 was 140bhp, the 2.2 is 200). 

I also doubt you use the MH in the same way as we use the car (mostly short journeys in and around towns);  and we're pretty low mileage users (only 25k in over 4 years) so relatively few long distance solo trips (though the high figure quoted is what we get on such runs).

My spreadsheets have my factual consumption figures on a tank by tank fill basis over the years we've owned both.  My trip meter computer mpg is also circa 5% 'generous' on most fills, do don't trust such readouts!).

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If your car is going back to lease company, often it is possible to buy it direct from them.  Typically they charge “auction price” plus 5% .   Might be worth a call.   

 

Alternatively I am very happy with our Touareg as a tow car basically it is like driving a big hatchback.  But each to their own. 

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Posted (edited)
39 minutes ago, Rodders53 said:

Bully for you.  

Your engine and gearbox will be different to those I have had in the Galaxys in any case (2.0 was 140bhp, the 2.2 is 200). 

I also doubt you use the MH in the same way as we use the car (mostly short journeys in and around towns);  and we're pretty low mileage users (only 25k in over 4 years) so relatively few long distance solo trips (though the high figure quoted is what we get on such runs).

My spreadsheets have my factual consumption figures on a tank by tank fill basis over the years we've owned both.  My trip meter computer mpg is also circa 5% 'generous' on most fills, do don't trust such readouts!).

We've had four S-max's in the past ten years. A 140 manual, a 150 Poweshift auto and two 180 Poweshift auto's. All have comfortably given me around 45mpg  general driving solo and about 30-33 towing around 1550-1600kg and I'd agree with the 5% optimism on the car computer.

 

The 140 & 150ps models were excellent towcars but the 180 is just that bit better

Edited by matelodave

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4 hours ago, GaryB1969 said:

Thanks for the comments, as expected there's a lot of different opinions!  The "security" of a new car is good but the depreciation hurts.  This morning I went round a few dealers looking at cars in the £10K range and concluded that some are simply £5K cars that have had a damn good clean.  Cars between £10K and £20K seem to be thin on the ground leading me to assume (rightly or wrongly) that cars get often retained for 3 to 4 years before working their way onto the market and get snapped up quickly, leaving the majority of the picking as being those over 5 to 6 years old or ex-demonstrators.

 

You're not looking hard enough! Loads of large estates in that range with FSH etc, they tend to be PCP part exchanges or ex company cars.  

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15 hours ago, fred said:

If your car is going back to lease company, often it is possible to buy it direct from them.  Typically they charge “auction price” plus 5% .   Might be worth a call.   

 

Alternatively I am very happy with our Touareg as a tow car basically it is like driving a big hatchback.  But each to their own. 

That's what I did when I left work, bought my company car.

 

Although it had done 80k, it was less than 3 years old, had been fully serviced, had decent tyres and was in excellent condition as I'd been it's only driver (apart from SWMBO) so I knew what it was like. I got it for an excellent price as it was destined for the auctions anyway (my replacement was already on order when I decided to volunteer for early redundancy)

 

It kept me going for another four years without any problems, especially as my previous high annual mileage (30-35k) plummeted to around a third

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Just to update/conclude this, I have just purchased an 8 month old Volvo V90 with 9,000 miles on the clock for less than others were selling 18 month old versions with double the miles.  Having free time meant I could have a very good look at what's on offer and found this ex-demonstrator at a Volvo dealer.  I looked at various others mentioned by folks on here (thanks everyone) but ultimately needing something fairly economical saw me shy away from the SUV/4x4 market despite there being some good deals.  

 

My company BMW goes back next week and I take delivery of the Volvo mid-June so I'll be squeezing myself behind the wheel of my wife's Fiat 500 until then.  Towbar will be fitted the day after I get it and the first holiday is mid-July.

 

VOLVO__V90__D4_MOMENTUM__DIESEL__BLACK__2018__HF68GZR-e04.jpg

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Looks smart, very nice, well done that man.

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Love it, I do think they are fantastic cars and my friend is utterly delighted with his D5 Powerpulse - is that the D4 Momentum?

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41 minutes ago, FrankBullet said:

Love it, I do think they are fantastic cars and my friend is utterly delighted with his D5 Powerpulse - is that the D4 Momentum?

 

Yes it is, while it's the lowest trim level, they do come well equipped as standard and with it being an ex-demo it's got a few other options fitted (but not a towbar unfortunately!).

 

I'd almost forgotten how horrible buying a car is, the amount of dealers that don't bother ringing you back is incredible.  

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The momentum spec has everything you need and more, whilst an Inscription would be nice you’re hardly losing out!

 

I can see one of these being my next car as Passat BiTDi and Alltrack seem to be rare and very expensive where as three year old V90’s (in any flavour) will likely be plentiful

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On 10/05/2019 at 10:27, robhar said:

I had the same issue when I retired as had spent years with company cars but restricted to what was on the list. I use to tow with VW Passats, BMW 320d and a BMW520d estate. When I retired I decided to treat myself to a proper towcar and purchased a year old VW Touareg which proved to be such a good towcar that I replaced it after 3 years with another newer Touareg which I currently run and will probably keep it for much longer then I usually do. Both have been totally reliable but do cost more to run then an estate car. To help you check on towing ability there is a website at https://towcar.info/GB/ where you can check how your chosen vehicle will behave with your caravan.

I did find that my BMW 520 estate was less stable than other cars I had towed with and subsequently found out that if the car was ordered with factory fit towbar, modified rear suspension and engine cooling was fitted, presumably to address this issue.  Car electronics are also very complicated these days so a factory fit or approved wiring kit is essential to ensure that the car knows you are towing and modifies the behaviour of traction/stability control system,  intelligent alternators (which can impact on fridge efficiency) for example. My point is that a used car with factory fit towing equipment is probably  a better bet then a car with retrofitted towing equipment

Another source of advice is the towcar of the year event which occurs annually so if you Google Towcar of the year you will get a listing of previous years events so if looking for a 3 or 5 year old car you can see how some popular towcars fared.

Personally, if I was looking for a big estate to tow with, I would look at VW Passat, BMW 5 series, Skoda Superb, Volvo, Mercedes C or E class. However, given you are towing a big heavy caravan I would feel happier in a heavy SUV.

 

If the Touareg appeals then don't overlook the Skoda Kodiaq. Superbly well built on the Skoda Superb chassis so miles of leg room and incredibly stable.

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2 hours ago, Woodentop said:

 

If the Touareg appeals then don't overlook the Skoda Kodiaq. Superbly well built on the Skoda Superb chassis so miles of leg room and incredibly stable.

 

I test drove a Kodiak and wasn't impressed with it, not only that the PC tow test said it was susceptible to side winds..

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20 hours ago, GaryB1969 said:

Just to update/conclude this, I have just purchased an 8 month old Volvo V90 with 9,000 miles on the clock for less than others were selling 18 month old versions with double the miles.  Having free time meant I could have a very good look at what's on offer and found this ex-demonstrator at a Volvo dealer.  I looked at various others mentioned by folks on here (thanks everyone) but ultimately needing something fairly economical saw me shy away from the SUV/4x4 market despite there being some good deals.  

 

My company BMW goes back next week and I take delivery of the Volvo mid-June so I'll be squeezing myself behind the wheel of my wife's Fiat 500 until then.  Towbar will be fitted the day after I get it and the first holiday is mid-July.

 

VOLVO__V90__D4_MOMENTUM__DIESEL__BLACK__2018__HF68GZR-e04.jpg

You will like this Gary. I am guessing it has the D5 engine? i had a Mk 1 XC90 from 2009 to 2014 and loved it. Went to a V6 Touareg in 2014 and loved it even more. In 2018  the new Touareg was not available and did not want a run-out of the model I had just had so looked back at Volvo. I was concerned the 2 litre 4 cylinder engine would struggle with our 2000kg caravan after the 3 litre VW even though on paper the figures suggested v similar torque /PS /performance form the twin turbo Volvo as the V6 (single turbo) VW.

Eventually i test drove one (solo not towing) and was mightily impressed so last year I ordered a new XC90  D5 (very similar car to yours) but mine is a bit higher. Its towing capability has blown me away to point where i believe it tows as well as the VW and have no issues with 2000kg on the back.

The car look nice and the Momentum spec is good - the extra features of the demo car can only make it better.

Will you have a Volvo tow bar/electrics?

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Isn't the Volvo a Ford in disguise hence similar lines to the Mondeo?  I don't know which is why I am asking the question.  Previously we have had Volvo's and there was nothing to beat them on seat comfort etc.  Not sure about the new generation.

Isn't the Volvo a Ford in disguise hence similar lines to the Mondeo?  I don't know which is why I am asking the question.  Previously we have had Volvo's and there was nothing to beat them on seat comfort etc.  Not sure about the new generation.

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The one I've gone for is the D4, 188bhp from memory. The D5 is a very nice engine but the D4 is fine for what I need. I had one as a demonstrator for four days & loved it. I've always liked Volvo estates and for me, the latest generation of them really ard very nice and if you spend some time looking, there's some excellent used bargains around. The Volvo retractable towbar was over £1,000 so I'm going for an aftermarket one but with dedicated electrics rather than a universal system.

 

I don't know if there's any commonality with the Mondeo but it wouldn't come as a surprise. 

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30 minutes ago, Durbanite said:

Isn't the Volvo a Ford in disguise hence similar lines to the Mondeo?  I don't know which is why I am asking the question.  Previously we have had Volvo's and there was nothing to beat them on seat comfort etc.  Not sure about the new generation.

Isn't the Volvo a Ford in disguise hence similar lines to the Mondeo?  I don't know which is why I am asking the question.  Previously we have had Volvo's and there was nothing to beat them on seat comfort etc.  Not sure about the new generation.

 

Ford sold Volvo to Geely in 2010 - since then, a new platform and new engines have been developed and introduced as new models are announced - the XC90/S90/V90 have been around in their new form since about 2015.

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1 minute ago, Black Grouse said:

 

Ford sold Volvo to Geely in 2010 - since then, a new platform and new engines have been developed and introduced as new models are announced - the XC90/S90/V90 have been around in their new form since about 2015.

Thanks for the update as we got our last Volvo just after Ford took it over and had issues with the automatic gearbox on the 2004 S80 and as it could not be resolved sold the car after 18 months.  In 2010 we bought a Mondeo and the gearbox had the same characteristics or issues as the Volvo.  Eventually Ford gave us a full refund and also compensation for the fitted towbar.  Nice to hear that Volvo are no longer part of Ford.

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