Towing Vehicle Weight and Distribution

What Weight Can I Tow?

22nd March, 2021 by rvSafe Team
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Do you already have a tow vehicle but are unsure of what you are able to tow?

There are several key specifications you will need to find out about your vehicle. These should be listed in your owner’s manual and can easily be searched online and found in the manufacturer’s specification sheets.

The first specification to consider is the ‘unbraked’ and ‘braked’ towing capacity. The ‘unbraked’ capacity means you can tow a trailer that does not have brakes up to that limit, for example 750kg. The ‘braked’ capacity is the capacity you can tow with a trailer that has brakes fitted, for example 3500kg.

The towing capacity is the total loaded weight of the trailer that you can tow.

It is important to consider the Gross Combination Mass (GCM), which is also specified by the manufacturer. This is the total a vehicle and trailer can weigh combined. Quite often, the vehicle’s towing capacity is affected by the payload (weight in the vehicle) or vice versa. Remember, the heavier the trailer, the less weight you can carry in your tow vehicle. For more information, read our article on Payload.

You also need to consider the rating of your tow bar which is stamped onto the tow bar. You cannot exceed the tow bar’s limit. For example, if your tow bar has a rating of 2500kg and your car has a towing capacity of 3000kg, you can only tow up to 2500kg. Alternatively, if your car has a towing capacity of 3000kg and the towbar has a capacity of 3500kg, you will only be able to tow up to 3000kg – the lower number.

When you have your tow combination selected, we recommend taking it to a weighbridge or mobile weight station – fully loaded with gear and passengers, to make sure you are within legal limits.

Below are some common vehicle weights limits. Please note, these are indicative only and you will need to do your own research for your vehicle.

Vehicle Braked GVM GCM Kerb Weight Payload without towing Payload towing at braked capacity
Toyota LandCruiser 200 Series GXL 3500 3350 6850 2740 610 610
Nissan Patrol Ti 3500 3500 7000 2812 688 688
Ford Ranger XLS 3500 3200 6000 2209 991 291
Mazda BT-50 Dual Cab 3500 3100 5950 2010 1090 440
Toyota HiLux SR5 3500 3050 5850 2055 995 295
VW Amarok Core V6 3500 3080 6000 2091 989 409
Isuzu D-Max SX 3500 3100 5950 1910 1190 540
RAM 1500 Laramie V8 4500 3450 7237 2650 800 87
Ford Everest Trend 3000 3100 5800 2408 692 392
Isuzu MUX LS-U 3000 2750 5750 2142 608 608
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