Looks like I need a new tow car

Ph1lTurner replied on 20/08/2019 22:38

Posted on 20/08/2019 22:38

I have a Bailey Ranger 540/6 (2008) and is towed by a 2002 Volvo V70 2.5 automatic. It towed lovely.

Well I was coming back over the weekend from my hols at Abbey Wood (lovely site by the way) and along the A303 I had a sudden rev and the message "Transmission service required". Had a word with my garage and from Longleat area I carefully nursed the Volvo home 2 1/2 hours. Went in and had fluids, etc. changed and it isn't clicking into 3rd gear. They said just use for a week to see if it begins to work and the message "Transmission service required" has come up again.

Really beginning to look like I need to get a new tow car.

Our other car is a 2006 Ford Focus Ghia 1.8 TDCi. This site gives it a "possible" towing rating match while the tow car info site is a bit more favourable although I would need to purchase and install a tow bar for the car.

Would you think this is a good match or better to get something more specific? Just wouldn't know where to start. Diesel or Petrol? Any brand better than others (I did like my Volvo V70 although for general use it was a bit big). We don't have a lot of money so age I think would be around 2010.

Any thoughts appreciated.

cyberyacht replied on 21/08/2019 08:54

Posted on 21/08/2019 08:54

According to web figures a standard Focus is about 95%. A Ghia will weigh a bit more, so possibly 90%. Should be OK for an experienced user, particularly if you plonk some heavy kit, awning etc in the car.

flatcoat replied on 21/08/2019 09:48

Posted on 21/08/2019 09:48

Try searching on a Volvo specific forum. It may be a known issue and fix. If fixable at sensible money try an independant Volvo specialist. Otherwise use the Focus and bide your time. You might find the Focus is perfectly ok, probably more economical and unless you miss the auto keep it. Have you had the Volvo autobox serviced before this issue cropped up? 

Milothedog replied on 21/08/2019 10:49

Posted on 20/08/2019 22:38 by Ph1lTurner

I have a Bailey Ranger 540/6 (2008) and is towed by a 2002 Volvo V70 2.5 automatic. It towed lovely.

Well I was coming back over the weekend from my hols at Abbey Wood (lovely site by the way) and along the A303 I had a sudden rev and the message "Transmission service required". Had a word with my garage and from Longleat area I carefully nursed the Volvo home 2 1/2 hours. Went in and had fluids, etc. changed and it isn't clicking into 3rd gear. They said just use for a week to see if it begins to work and the message "Transmission service required" has come up again.

Really beginning to look like I need to get a new tow car.

Our other car is a 2006 Ford Focus Ghia 1.8 TDCi. This site gives it a "possible" towing rating match while the tow car info site is a bit more favourable although I would need to purchase and install a tow bar for the car.

Would you think this is a good match or better to get something more specific? Just wouldn't know where to start. Diesel or Petrol? Any brand better than others (I did like my Volvo V70 although for general use it was a bit big). We don't have a lot of money so age I think would be around 2010.

Any thoughts appreciated.

Posted on 21/08/2019 10:49

Is it of the type that allows you to drive the car as a semi auto by shifting the selector to a different position, i.e. select the gears manually ? If so, and you car get all gears driving like this, then in all likelihood its worth looking in to getting it repaired as its possibly a valve block or electrical solenoid issue. Either way, before you give up on the car, and if the people who did the fluids are not, get an independent auto transmission specialist to give you a diagnosis / opinion.   

TonyBurton replied on 21/08/2019 22:09

Posted on 21/08/2019 22:09

I had  1.8tdci Focus. It was a good tow car. You need to check the kerbside weight yourself or look at the unladen mass in the V5 log book document. The on-line sites can be very misleading.

Ph1lTurner replied on 21/08/2019 22:47

Posted on 21/08/2019 22:47

Ok thanks everyone. I contacted 2 auto transmission specialists and one just quoted to me £2000 to fix it. The other said come in for a test £40-60, but the problem is getting there. My garage knows the person well and said a range rover cost £3K to resolve. The issue is that my car due to age,. As soon as it hits 20mph it tries to go to 3rd gear and starts revving and so you lose power and speed. What makes it worse is I'm on a hill so I'd be surprised if I can get the car and van to a speed where it will jump from L -> L4 (jumping gear 2 - gear 4).

The garage is going to get a price to fix a tow-bar to the Ford. I would then like to take the van out for a weekend in Sept/Oct locally to see how it handles. If ok then good, but if not at least that gives me the winter to sort out a better towing car.

Thanks

Ph1lTurner replied on 22/08/2019 21:29

Posted on 21/08/2019 22:09 by TonyBurton

I had  1.8tdci Focus. It was a good tow car. You need to check the kerbside weight yourself or look at the unladen mass in the V5 log book document. The on-line sites can be very misleading.

Posted on 22/08/2019 21:29

Hi Tony,

Just checking the Bailey Ranger is max weight is 1300kg. On the V5 (G - Mass in service) is 1426Kg.

So 2726 Kg together well below legal limit, but as mentioned can put a few heavy things in boot to help weight.

 

Regards

Phil.

geoffeales replied on 23/08/2019 07:43

Posted on 23/08/2019 07:43

if you do need a new car I strongly advise you find something that's a GOOD match. Having changed from a 4x4 about 2 years ago I got so fed up with watching every kg on every trip I've gone back to a 4x4 again!

Ph1lTurner replied on 23/08/2019 20:52

Posted on 23/08/2019 07:43 by geoffeales

if you do need a new car I strongly advise you find something that's a GOOD match. Having changed from a 4x4 about 2 years ago I got so fed up with watching every kg on every trip I've gone back to a 4x4 again!

Posted on 23/08/2019 20:52

Thanks for your thoughts. I am looking around.

paul56 replied on 24/08/2019 17:58

Posted on 24/08/2019 17:58

Have a look at TD Mondeos - bit more weight than the Focus and ours used to pull our Bailey Pageant (S7) 1450 max kg easily. There are loads around so should be able to find one at a decent price.