Best Cars for Towing Caravans on Holiday

Taking in the great outdoors is an important holiday tradition for us Brits. However, whether you think you need a lux estate or a roomy SUV, there's no way you can test out towing capacity before buying. Luckily, experienced buyers can give you a fair idea of what to expect. Based on expert recommendations and testing, we've compiled a list of the best cars for towing caravans to make your buying decision that bit easier.

Red Nissan X trail

1. Nissan X-Trail

A family car through and through, the X-Trail has all the hallmarks of a great towing vehicle – hefty weight, strong engines and optional four-wheel drive. With a towing capacity of 2000kg, the X-Trail perfectly fits the bill. It’s a practical investment for day-to-day use too, with spacious interiors and seven-seater options. Plus, most trims come loaded with a host of safety features as standard. It even gets the highest-possible five-star Euro NCAP rating for safety. How’s that for peace of mind?

Silver Skoda Kodiaq

2. Skoda Kodiaq

With similar towing capacity to the Nissan, this 1.8-tonne car from Skoda can tow anything from a large family caravan to another car its own size. At a similar price point as the X-Trail, the Kodiaq stands out for its quality cockpit and tech features. The seven-seater is just 4cm longer than the Octavia estate, meaning that it not only smoothly glides on the streets but also manoeuvres easily. The 148 bhp, 2.0-litre diesel is the popular choice.

White Peugeot 3008

3. Peugeot 3008

The upmarket Peugeot 3008 is a pleasure to own as a family car. Its towing capacity falls in the 1300kg to 1500kg range, which is ideal for medium-size caravans. As an everyday car, the 3008 pampers you with luxurious interiors and a top-notch infotainment system. It’s available with a host of diesel engines ranging from 1.6 litres to 2.0 litres, all of which offer solid power and performance. The Advanced Grip Control feature allows you to adjust the traction based on the road surface conditions, which comes in handy when you want to traverse wet, grassy terrains.

Red Land Rover Discovery

4. Land Rover Discovery

Hailed as the big daddy of tow cars, the Land Rover Discovery is perhaps worthy of the top spot on this list thanks to an incredible 3-tonne towing capacity. This beast can take on seemingly any surface without breaking a sweat or making a whimper. It’s built first and foremost for off-roading and comes fitted with Land Rover’s incredibly powerful Terrain Response System. Also included is the Advanced Tow Assist technology, which makes tricky reversing manoeuvres a whole lot easier.

White Jaguar F pace on the road

5. Jaguar F-Pace

If you don’t want a big, bulky off-roader on your front lawn but still want all the luxury of the Land Rover, sister-brand Jaguar has you covered. Plus, with a kerb weight of 1884kg, the F-Pace gives you license to go scouting for a large caravan. This is a 4WD that can conquer quite a bit of rocky terrain without faltering, so you can afford to get a bit adventurous on your travels, too. Nothing short of a driver’s delight, the F-Pace feels so effortlessly smooth you’ll wonder if the caravan is still behind you (it is)!

White Volkswagen Passat GTE

6. Volkswagen Passat

Available in both saloon and estate variants, the Passat steadies at a solid 60 mph while towing a large caravan, and its towing capacity comes in at an excellent 2000kg. As an everyday vehicle, it’s frugal, safe and reliable, just as the VW badge would suggest. Incredible interior space means that four adults can fit comfortably, and medium-size families will have all the room they need. Importantly, the Passat has an excellent lane departure assist, making it that much easier to keep things nice and steady – even if you’re a new caravaner.

Blue Ford Focus estate

7. Ford Focus Estate

The 1.5-litre EcoBlue diesel variant of the Ford Focus Estate is a champion for mid-size caravaning. An economic option that checks all the boxes for comfort, space and practicality, the Focus is a reliable machine for everyday use. It can tow weights of up to 1400kg, and if you want a bit more pull, you can opt for the more powerful 2.0-litre diesel, with a rated capacity of 1800kg. Great looking, comfortable and quick, the Ford Focus is the only car of its class that makes this list.

Blue KIA Sorento

8. Kia Sorento

This full-size SUV comes with a towing capacity of 2500 kg. Enough said. It comes with a manufacturer’s seven-year, 100,000-mile warranty, plus a five-star Euro NCAP safety rating. Reliable and straightforward, the Sorento bares a no-frills attitude across its chest and is all about practicality, safety and comfort. When it comes to towing, or just choosing a car in general, that’s every box ticked.

Orange Ford Ranger

9. Ford Ranger

The Ford is a lone Ranger on this list, in that it’s the only pick-up truck we’ve included. Tow capacity stands at an unbeaten 3500kg, but there’s no surprises there – the Ranger is all classic American muscle. Despite the chunky looks, creature comforts are offered in spades, with a SYNC3 voice control and infotainment system, heated leather seats and alloy wheels. It also qualifies for a flat BIK rate – if you’re needing this for business purposes, savings are assured!

Black BMW 5 Series

10. BMW 5 Series Touring

The diesel 520d xDrive model of the 5 Series outshines any other car in the 1,700kg-1,899kg caravan weight class, thanks to the incredible value in terms of comfort and efficiency. Like any BMW, the 5 Series Touring is also serious fun to drive. It manages to stay firmly planted to the ground and shows remarkably high levels of stability, even in strong crosswinds. Refined engines, reasonable running costs and smart styling make this an all-round winner in the family-car category.

For maximum safety, always make sure that your caravan weighs below 85% of the kerb weight of the towing car. If you follow this rule to a T, you’ll have no problems riding out on many a caravanning adventure. Plus, with the safety specs, creature comforts and tech features of the models listed here, a serene ride awaits – with or without a load in tow. Simply search for listings in your area and see which caravan-companion suits your needs best.

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