Victory for Volvo at Towcar of the Year 2019

19/09/2018

London, 21 September 2018: The Volvo XC60 D5 PowerPulse AWD R-Design has won this year’s overall trophy, and also scooped two category wins in the Caravan and Motorhome Club Towcar of the Year 2019 competition.

The 36th edition of the industry’s premier towcar competition features significant changes to previous years, driven by the Club’s desire to provide the most relevant information for those thinking about purchasing a towcar.

New for this year, vehicles were put into caravan weight categories – rather than listing them by price – to make it easier for buyers to tell which cars could tow their caravans. Cars were entered into classes using their 85% kerbweight figure or by their towing limit, whichever was the lower. The Club also introduced two new categories – ‘Best Family Towcar’ and ‘Best Large Family Towcar’.

The Volvo XC60 beat some very worthy rivals in the competition, claiming a well-deserved hat trick of titles. The Volvo took top spot in the new ‘Best Family Towcar’ category and the class for ‘Caravan Weight 1500-1700kg’ before clinching the overall title Caravan and Motorhome Club Towcar of the Year 2019.

The complete winners’ line-up is as follows: 

  • Caravan Weight Under 1100kg – Volkswagen Polo SEL 1.0 TSI 115PS DSG
  • Caravan Weight 1100kg - 1350kg – Peugeot 3008 Allure BlueHDi 180 EAT8
  • Caravan Weight 1350kg - 1500kg – Volvo XC40 D4 AWD First Edition
  • Caravan Weight 1500kg - 1700kg, Best Family Towcar and Caravan and Motorhome Club Towcar of the Year 2019 – Volvo XC60 D5 PowerPulse AWD R-Design
  • Caravan Weight over 1700kg – Volkswagen Touareg R-Line Tech 3.0 V6 TDI SCR 4MOTION 286PS Tiptronic
  • Pick-Up – Volkswagen Amarok Highline 3.0 V6 TDI 4MOTION 258PS Auto
  • Best Large Family Towcar – ŠKODA Kodiaq Edition 2.0TDI 190PS 4x4 DSG

The competition attracted 35 entries and each car was put through its paces at the Millbrook Proving Ground near Bedford, which provides a variety of testing driving environments. Manufacturers were invited to submit for testing any vehicle that was capable of towing a trailer over 750kg and on sale on 1 October 2018.

The Club’s technical team thoroughly checked each vehicle before handing it over to the ‘caravanability’ and driving judges.

Caravanability judges tested whether a car’s boot could swallow the bulky accessories normally needed on a caravan trip. They also measured the towball height, both solo and hitched up, and checked the towing information provided in the manufacturer’s handbook.

The cars were then hitched up to caravans ballasted to 85% of their kerbweight, or towing limit if lower. Using specialised apparatus the technical judges then measured the cars’ acceleration and braking capabilities. The car/caravan combinations were then passed over to the driving judges who set off around the Millbrook circuit to put the vehicles through their paces.

The cars were tested at speeds of up to 55mph on the ‘Alpine route’, which featured various gradients culminating in a 17% hill start and a 26% downhill brake test. The ability to join fast traffic from a standstill was also assessed.

Judges then took the vehicles to the high-speed bowl to further assess their capabilities at speeds in excess of UK legal limits. In the safety of a controlled environment, the judges could induce some instability at 60mph to see how the cars reacted. The vehicles were also put through reversing examinations.  All-important issues of driver and passenger comfort and visibility were also assessed.

The results of the competition were announced at the Caravan and Motorhome Club Towcar of the Year Awards ceremony, held at the Royal Automobile Club in London on 21 September. The awards were presented by journalist and TV presenter Matt Allwright, who also spent time at Millbrook to see how the judging process was carried out.

Grenville Chamberlain, Caravan and Motorhome Club Chairman, said: “Here at the Caravan and Motorhome Club we are committed to driving forward positive change within the motoring industry and to providing our one million members with relevant information for them to use as they make their next towcar purchase. Our congratulations go to all the winners.”

Matt Allwright commented, “This was my second time being at Millbrook Proving Ground for the competition. It was great to see how the event continues to evolve in order to get the best independent information for car buyers. The testing is so thorough, the winners should rightly be proud of their achievements.”

Simon Howard, Marketing Director of Bailey of Bristol, which provides the caravans for the event, said, “Vehicle testing for the Caravan and Motorhome Club Towcar of the Year competition really is leading the way. We are extremely proud to have been supplying the caravans for testing for over 20 years.”

For more information about the Caravan and Motorhome Club Towcar of the Year competition please visit https://www.caravanclub.co.uk/towcar/.

For further information and details about the Caravan and Motorhome Club visit www.camc.com

-Ends-

Media enquiries

Nikki Nichol, External Communications and Sponsorship Manager at the Caravan and Motorhome Club on 01342 336797 / 07771 834443 or email nikki.nichol@camc.com

 

Notes to editors

Champion of the great outdoors, the Caravan and Motorhome Club represents the interests of over one million caravan, motorhome and trailer tent owners across the UK. Founded in 1907, the Caravan and Motorhome Club has 111 years’ experience and prides itself on offering great value and high quality sites for caravanners and motorhomers.

For further information about becoming a member of the Caravan and Motorhome Club please visit www.camc.com or call 01342 318813.

Driving Judges: Deborah Black, Events Committee member; Lesley Harris, motoring journalist; Andrew Ditton, specialist press journalist and blogger; John Harris, Events Committee member; Dan Cartwright, Caravan Times; Mark Sutcliffe, specialist press journalist and John Sootheran, Warners Group Publications.

Caravanability Judges: Caroline and Keith Rogers – Caravan and Motorhome Club expert course instructors.

Thanks: The Caravan and Motorhome Club would like to thank Bailey of Bristol for supplying all the caravans used in the competition, and for providing staff on site throughout the event. The Bailey team ensured the caravans were correctly ballasted, that their noseweights were kept in trim and that they were in general good working order. Thanks also to AL-KO who ensured brakes were adjusted, wheels were kept tight and all undergear was properly fettled. 

Press team contacts

Contact our press team - they're happy to help with any media enquiries.

Nikki Nichol
External Comms & Sponsorship Manager
nikki.nichol@camc.com
@Media_CAMC

01342 336 797
07771 834 443

For press information and imagery, please contact Molly Downes, Zoe Poulton or Helen Coop at Four Travel:

camc@fourcommunications.com

0203 697 4200 

For general enquiries, please contact us on: enquiries@camc.com

More information about the winning vehicles

Caravan Weight Under 1100kg – Volkswagen Polo SEL 1.0 TSI 115PS DSG

Judge’s comments about the VW Polo included “outstanding car”, “truly amazing” and “superb”.  Small and fun to drive solo and even more enjoyable to tow with. The seven-speed DSG gearbox is a delight and keeps the 1.0-litre three-cylinder engine buzzing along nicely. The Polo excelled in the brake test and scored well for passenger comfort. 

Caravan Weight 1100kg - 1350kg – Peugeot 3008 Allure BlueHDi 180 EAT8

Eye-catching interior and exterior, great fuel economy and a very capable all-rounder.  The Peugeot scored highly in all the tests and its stability at all speeds really impressed the judges.

Caravan Weight 1350kg - 1500kg – Volvo XC40 D4 AWD First Edition

The XC40 has been getting rave reviews since its launch and the judges were all in agreement – towing just got cooler!  It excelled in many of the judging elements including the 17% hill start where the car pulled away without hesitation. 

Caravan Weight 1500kg - 1700kg, Best Family Towcar and Caravan and Motorhome Club Towcar of the Year 2019 – Volvo XC60 D5 PowerPulse AWD R-Design

The XC60 won two categories and went on to take the overall title. The driving judges were impressed by its outstanding performance when a caravan was hitched – in terms of acceleration, braking and stability. It also gave one of the most comfortable rides of the entire competition. All in all, an ideal car for caravanners.

Caravan Weight over 1700kg – Volkswagen Touareg R-Line Tech 3.0 V6 TDI SCR 4MOTION 286PS Tiptronic

The VW Touareg stormed to a category win thanks to a flawless performance. The fantastic 3.0-litre V6 engine is quiet and refined with great pulling power while the eight-speed Tiptronic gearbox never became flustered. Nicely weighted steering and a smooth, comfortable ride – coupled with great interior design – this is a brilliant towcar.

Pick-Up – Volkswagen Amarok Highline 3.0 V6 TDI 4MOTION 258PS Auto

VW’s impressive Amarok retained the ‘Pick-Up’ crown it won so convincingly last year. It’s well-deserved too – it put in a stonking performance, wowing the judges with its towing capabilities.  Reversing a caravan onto a pitch will be aided by great all-round visibility, whilst a good interior is the icing on a very tasty cake! 

Best Large Family Towcar – ŠKODA Kodiaq Edition 2.0TDI 190PS 4x4 DSG

The Kodiaq delivered a great drive and was supremely comfortable. Sliding rear seats offer easy access to the third-row of seats which boast enough head and leg room for teenagers and adults.  The Kodiaq remains a terrific all-round towcar. 

View all of the Towcar of the Year 2019 entrants

Caravan Weight Under 1100kg

Citroën C4 Space Tourer Flair PT 130
SEAT Arona 1.5 TSI FR 150PS
ŠKODA Octavia Hatch SEL 1.5TSI 150PS
Volkswagen Polo SEL 1.0 TSI 115PS DSG

Caravan Weight 1100kg - 1350kg

Jeep Compass Limited 4x4 2.0 MultiJet-II 140bhp
Mitsubishi Eclipse Cross 4 Auto
Peugeot 3008 Allure BlueHDi 180 EAT8
Peugeot 308 SW GT PT 225 EAT8
Peugeot 5008 GT BlueHDi 180 EAT8
ŠKODA Karoq SEL 2.0TDI 150PS 4x4 MAN
Volkswagen T-Roc SEL 2.0 TDI 4MOTION 150PS 

Caravan Weight 1350kg - 1500kg

Mazda 6 Tourer 2.5 194ps GT Sport Nav+ Automatic
Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV 5hs
Volvo XC40 D4 AWD First Edition
Volvo XC40 T5 AWD First Edition

Caravan Weight 1500kg - 1700kg

BMW 520d xDrive Touring
BMW X3 xDrive30d M Sport
Jaguar F-Pace Portfolio
Jaguar XF Sportbrake R-Sport
Land Rover Discovery Sport HSE Luxury
Mercedes-Benz E220d 4MATIC AMG Line Estate
Mercedes-Benz GLC 220d 4MATIC Sport
Mitsubishi L200 Warrior Auto
ŠKODA Kodiaq Edition 2.0TDI 190PS 4x4 DSG
SsangYong Korando ELX Manual
Volkswagen Tiguan Allspace SEL 2.0 TDI 4MOTION 190PS DSG
Volvo XC60 D5 PowerPulse AWD R-Design

Caravan Weight over 1700kg

Land Rover Discovery HSE Luxury
Mercedes-Benz GLE 350d 4MATIC Night Edition
Mercedes-Benz GLS 350d 4MATIC AMG Line
Range Rover Velar HSE
SsangYong Musso Saracen Auto
SsangYong Rexton ELX
Volkswagen Amarok Highline 3.0 V6 TDI 4MOTION 258PS Auto
Volkswagen Touareg R-Line Tech 3.0 V6 TDI SCR 4MOTION 286PS Tiptronic 

Family Car

BMW 520d xDrive Touring
BMW X3 xDrive30d M Sport
Jaguar F-Pace Portfolio
Jaguar XF Sportbrake R-Sport
Mercedes-Benz E220d 4MATIC AMG Line Estate
Mercedes-Benz GLC 220d 4MATIC Sport
Mercedes-Benz GLE 350d 4MATIC Night Edition
Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV 5hs
Range Rover Velar HSE
SsangYong Korando ELX Manual
Volkswagen Touareg R-Line Tech 3.0 V6 TDI SCR 4MOTION 286PS Tiptronic
Volvo XC40 D4 AWD First Edition
Volvo XC40 T5 AWD First Edition
Volvo XC60 D5 PowerPulse AWD R-Design 

Large Family Car

Land Rover Discovery HSE Luxury
Land Rover Discovery Sport HSE Luxury
Mercedes-Benz GLS 350d 4MATIC AMG Line
ŠKODA Kodiaq Edition 2.0TDI 190PS 4x4 DSG
SsangYong Rexton ELX
Volkswagen Tiguan Allspace SEL 2.0 TDI 4MOTION 190PS DSG 

Pick-Up

Mitsubishi L200 Warrior Auto
SsangYong Musso Saracen Auto
Volkswagen Amarok Highline 3.0 V6 TDI 4MOTION 258PS Auto

View all of the Towcar of the Year 2019 winners

Caravan Weight Under 1100kg

Volkswagen Polo SEL 1.0 TSI 115PS DSG

Caravan Weight 1100kg - 1350kg

Peugeot 3008 Allure BlueHDi 180 EAT8

Caravan Weight 1350kg - 1500kg

Volvo XC40 D4 AWD First Edition

Caravan Weight 1500kg - 1700kg

Volvo XC60 D5 PowerPulse AWD R-Design

Caravan Weight over 1700kg

Volkswagen Touareg R-Line Tech 3.0 V6 TDI SCR 4MOTION 286PS Tiptronic

Pick-Up

Volkswagen Amarok Highline 3.0 V6 TDI 4MOTION 258PS Auto

Best Family Towcar

Volvo XC60 D5 PowerPulse AWD R-Design

Best Large Family Towcar

ŠKODA Kodiaq Edition 2.0TDI 190PS 4x4 DSG

 

OVERALL WINNER

Caravan and Motorhome Club Towcar of the Year 2019

Volvo XC60 D5 PowerPulse AWD R-Design