This subject is very thorny and can seem confusing but it can be made easy with a few short explanations……
- You can always tow a little 750kg or less unbraked trailer. However this will not carry much so be careful it could easily be overloaded.
- For anything larger than a 750kg unbraked trailer The MAM of the car and the MAM of the trailer added together can not exceed 3500kg or 3.5 tons if you do not have B+E category on your license. The key here is that it isn’t about what weight you have in the trailer and car at that moment, but it is about what the car and trailer COULD weight!!
MAM is Maximum Authorised Mass and is stated on the VIN plate (see picture below) on the car and also on the trailer. It will be the top number in KG on each of them. So you need to forget what you have in the car or in the trailer for now and just add those numbers together. If they add up to more than 3500kg you will need B+E and have to come and do the course and a test sadly.
- Now, you have added these numbers together and the numbers don’t exceed 3500kg. Great! The next thing is to make sure that your car can tow the trailer. For example a small car may only have a MAM of 1250kg and you have a trailer that has a MAM of 2250kg . This is 3500KG so your license is covering this, however there is no way your little car will be able to tow the big trailer legally or safely more to the point. So you need to make sure that your car can tow the trailer. You can do this by looking in the car manual or using the VIN plate again. See what the second number down is, in KG and and minus the MAM from it. This number leaves you with what the car is legally allowed to tow. (see pic below)
Some Common Definitions Explained:
Maximum Gross Weight of your Vehicle / MAM
The gross weight of your vehicle or Maximum Authorised Mass is the total weight of your vehicle plus the load your vehicle can carry as authorised by the manufacturer. Gross weight or MAM is sometimes called “plated weight.” So simply it is the maximum your vehicle can EVER weight at any moment. This is always the top number on the VIN plate shown above
Gross Train Weight
The gross train weight is always the second number down on the VIN plate and is the total that your vehicle and trailer can ever weight all added together and attached. So the weight of your trailer, with load plus the maximum authorised mass of your vehicle as authorised by the manufacturer. This is how you can work out the maximum your car can tow. Take this number and minus the MAM of the car and the number left is what your car is allowed to tow.
If you are in any doubt what you are allowed to tow or if you can tow a particular combination of car and trailer just give us a call on 01273834245 or 07791694873 We are always happy to help.