Record Number of Entries for 2014 Tow Car Competition - From a Fiat 500L to the new Range Rover Sport

  • Testing for 2014 Tow Car Awards takes place this week at MIRA proving ground
  • Record number of cars (55+) to go through series of dynamic tests by experts from The Camping and Caravanning Club, Practical Caravan and What Car? magazines
  • Cars entered range from a Fiat 500L up to a Range Rover Sport, including engines as small as 1.0-litre, plug-in hybrids and last year’s overall winner: Skoda Octavia
  • Cars judged in five weight classes with special awards for Best Budget 4x4, Best Green Tow Car and Best Lightweight Tow Car
  • Results to be announced on 12 June 2014

This week, over 55 new cars, ranging from the humble Fiat 500L to the new Range Rover Sport, will be put through a series of punishing tests at the MIRA proving ground in Warwickshire for the judging of the 2014 Tow Car Awards by experts from The Camping and Caravanning Club and Practical Caravan and What Car? Magazines.

To make it fair, the cars will be split into five different weight groups and matched with a trailer or caravan loaded to its recommended, safe towing weight (85 per cent of the car’s kerbweight), or its maximum permitted towing weight, if lower.

To reflect car-buying trends, and to prove you don’t have to have a 4x4 for safe towing, the competition includes special award categories, such as Best Green Tow Car, Best Ultra-light Tow Car and Best Budget 4x4.

Choosing a good car for towing is critical for road safety, and using the renowned MIRA private proving ground provides the judges with a safe but extremely demanding venue to push the cars through a series of dynamic tests, including high speed stability, emergency braking and hill starts on a variety of road types and surfaces that they couldn’t safely do on public roads. The judging criteria also includes scores for practical features such as boot space and running costs.

Commenting on the 2014 Tow Car Awards, Julia Bradbury, the TV presenter and President of the Camping and Caravanning Club said: “I don’t think people realise how tough and comprehensive the testing is for this competition, so for everyone’s safety, it’s really brilliant to have such a record number of cars entered this year – wow!’

David Motton, Tow Car Editor of Practical Caravan magazine added: “We are having a very busy week, and an impressive list of entries, from small cars and small engines, to 4x4s and hybrids. Our testing is extremely comprehensive and is bound to deliver some interesting results, so stay tuned for further details.”

For a greater insight into the competition and the thorough testing that’s involved, take a look at the video of last year’s event: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1Ik-Bn1pFAw

The competition uses a fleet of caravans provided by The Swift Group, with any standard stability devices disabled so the judges can always feel any responses from the trailer during the tests.

The full results of the 2014 Tow Car Awards will be announced at a ceremony on 12 June 2014, but in the meantime, for all the latest updates follow @Tow_Car_Awards on Twitter.

Ends

Notes to editors:

  • The Camping and Caravanning Club is the world’s oldest Club for all forms of camping. It has over 100 sites across the UK and over 500,000 members. www.campingandcaravanningclub.co.uk
  • Practical Caravan is the UK’s best-selling caravan magazine featuring tow car and touring caravan reviews, travel stories and top tips. www.practicalcaravan.com
  • What Car? is Britain’s biggest and best car buyers’ guide. For over 40 years it has provided advice, news and reviews of all the latest cars. www.whatcar.com
  • The Swift Group, which supplies the caravans used for the competition, is the UK’s largest caravan, motorhome and holiday home manufacturer. www.swiftgroup.co.uk
  • Media are invited to attend the competition to see the dynamic testing taking place and to interview the judges by prior arrangement.


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