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Is Bigger Always Better? Debunking Towing with Your 4x4

Updated: May 13

When it comes to hitting the road with your 4x4, whether it's a rugged Toyota Landcruiser, a versatile Ford Ranger, or a robust American Pick-up Truck, there's a burning question many of us face: Does having a bigger vehicle mean you can tow anything you like? Let's dive into the nitty-gritty and find out.

ram 1500 towing a large caravan
When it comes to towing with your 4x4, we know exactly what we are talking about. We recommend only what we use ourselves.

1. How do I calculate GVM and towing weight for my vehicle?

Calculating your Gross Vehicle Mass (GVM) involves adding up the weight of your vehicle, passengers, fuel, accessories, and cargo. You can find the GVM rating in your vehicle's owner's manual or on a compliance plate. To determine towing weight, you need to consider your vehicle's towing capacity, which is also specified in the owner's manual or compliance plate. It's essential to stay within both the GVM and towing capacity limits to ensure safe towing.

2. Can I tow a caravan model with my 4x4?

Yes, you can tow a caravan with your 4x4, but it's crucial to ensure that your vehicle is properly equipped for the task. Factors to consider include your vehicle's towing capacity, the weight of the caravan, the type of hitch required, and any additional towing equipment needed for safe and comfortable towing. It's also advisable to undergo towing training if you're new to towing caravans to ensure you're confident and competent on the road.

3. What upgrades do I need to tow heavier loads?

To tow heavier loads safely, you may need to consider several upgrades to your vehicle. These upgrades can include installing a towing hitch and brake controller, upgrading your vehicle's suspension system to handle the added weight, and possibly enhancing your vehicle's cooling system to prevent overheating during towing. Additionally, you may need to invest in heavy duty or load rated wheels for optimal performance when towing heavy loads.

4. Are there legal limits in Australia for towing with a 4WD?

Yes, Australia has legal limits and regulations governing towing with a 4WD vehicle. These limits typically include maximum towing capacity, GVM, Gross Combined Mass (GCM), and specific requirements for towing equipment and safety measures. It's essential to familiarise yourself with these regulations and ensure that your vehicle and towing setup comply with all legal state requirements before hitting the road.

5. What happens if I exceed my vehicle's towing capacity or GVM?

Exceeding your vehicle's towing capacity or GVM can lead to a range of safety risks and performance issues. These can include reduced vehicle stability, braking effectiveness, and control, as well as increased wear and tear on your vehicle's components. In extreme cases, overloading your vehicle can lead to mechanical failures, bent chassis, accidents, and legal repercussions. It's crucial to stay within your vehicle's specified limits to ensure safe towing and avoid potential hazards on the road.

Want to know more? Check out our latest episode!

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