Volkswagen Passat Estate Alltrack crowned The Caravan Club Towcar of the year 2017
Volkswagen’s Passat Estate Alltrack lifted this year’s overall trophy, and also scooped class and category wins in The Caravan Club Towcar of the Year Competition. The competition’s 47 entrants, which were split into seven price classes and two weight categories, saw winning vehicles from Volkswagen, Citroën, Peugeot, Škoda, Mercedes-Benz and BMW.
However, it was the Volkswagen Passat Estate Alltrack that took the overall victory. It was described as “one of the classiest mid-range cars by a mile”.
Each towcar was thoroughly tested – being judged not only on its towing performance over the testing circuit at the Millbrook Proving Ground in Bedfordshire, but also for ‘caravanability’. Caravanability evaluates how well the car caters for caravanner’s needs – how much typical holiday gear and caravan essentials it can accommodate, how easily it can be hitched up to a caravan and the quality of towing information available in its handbook. Also added to the marking equation was the towcar’s value for money.
Seven driving judges evaluated each car for its dynamic abilities and ergonomic qualities – the test route included tight and twisty ‘country lanes’, 17% hill stops and starts, as well as circuits of a high-speed bowl. They were also put through rigorous reversing examinations. These four days of rigorous evaluation highlighted that every vehicle could be considered a respectable towcar, so long as it was properly matched to its caravan.
Price class awards in the competition went to: the Citroën C4 Cactus Rip Curl BlueHDi 100; Peugeot 308 SW Active BlueHDi 120; Škoda Superb SE L Executive 2.0TDI 150PS; Volkswagen Golf Estate Alltrack 2.0TDI 4MOTION 150 PS; Volkswagen Passat Estate Alltrack 2.0TDI SCR 4MOTION 150 PS; Mercedes-Benz E220d AMG Line Saloon; and the BMW X5 xDrive40d M Sport.
All-wheel drive vehicles competed in two additional weight categories; ‘Under 1800kg’ and ‘Over 1800kg’. The BMW X5 xDrive40d took the ‘Over 1800kg’ prize, while the Volkswagen Passat Estate Alltrack took first place in the ‘Under 1800kg’ category before going on to win the overall title.
The results of the competition were announced at The Caravan Club Towcar of the Year Awards ceremony, held at the Royal Automobile Club in London on 22 September. The awards were presented by Olympic athlete, Roger Black MBE.
Grenville Chamberlain, The Caravan Club Chairman, said: “It was a thrill to see such a great choice of vehicles being put through their paces during the Competition – the winning manufacturers should feel very proud of their achievements. These vehicles will enable our Caravan Club members to have wonderful holidays and effortless towing experiences.”