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Index : Towing and Towcars : Caravan Club Towcar of the Year 2007  - by UKCampsite.co.uk

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Caravan Club Towcar of the Year 2007

The Volvo V50 D5 Sport has been awarded the title Caravan Club Towcar of the Year 2007

One of caravanning’s most supportive car makers, Volvo, has won the 24th Caravan Club Towcar of the Year Competition with its V50 D5 Sport. The Competition took place at the Millbrook Proving Ground in Bedfordshire and included very comprehensive towing tests and an assessment for ‘caravanability’.

Forty-two cars were put rigorously through their paces over an intensive four-day period. An independent panel of six driving judges assessed handling, stability, the cars’ attitude when hitched, acceleration and braking. ‘Caravanability’ judges also appraised the cars on their ability to accommodate large, bulky loads such as water carriers and awning bags and checked for ease of access to electrics sockets

The vehicles were divided into six price Classes and two All Wheel Drive categories: Under 1800kg and Over 1800kg. Vehicles are split into Classes to enable The Caravan Club’s 900,000 members, and consumers in general, to make an informed choice regarding their car purchase depending upon their ideal spending figure. These results are important not only to caravanners but to any car driver who tows; boat and horsebox owners have an equally keen interest in these awards.

The results of the Competition were announced at the annual Caravan Club Towcar of the Year Awards ceremony held at the Royal Automobile Club in London on 26th September. Special guest, Mark Blundell, who is a former Formula 1 driver and current F1 race pundit, joined the judges and Competition organisers at Millbrook and then presented the coveted Class awards to representatives from the winning manufacturers at the RAC. Mark Blundell commented, “It was an eye-opening experience to visit Millbrook and see how the cars are tested so rigorously and professionally. I am delighted to be involved with The Caravan Club Towcar of the Year event as caravanning is hugely popular with motorsport fans. Thousands of fans each year travel from circuit to circuit with their caravans as they provide the perfect accommodation solution for a race weekend.”

Bob Black MBE, Caravan Club Chairman, commented, “The Volvo V50 D5 Sport displayed poise and elegance, its modern good looks will turn heads and Volvo maintains its reputation for quality and safety. The V50 is a pleasure to drive and it really is a superb towcar. This vehicle is sure to be popular with our members, both as a new and used car in future years"

More about the winning vehicles…

Under £13,500 Class
Winner: Kia Rio 1.5 CRDi – Kia’s little Rio showed you don’t need to spend a fortune to buy a useful towcar. The 1.5-litre diesel Rio always felt in control and left the driver feeling confident even when crosswinds gave it a good buffeting. The gearbox is well sorted, the hill start was easy and the handbrake held car and caravan rock steady.

£13,501 To £16,500 Class

Winner: Fiat Sedici 1.9 MultiJet Eleganza – One of the great surprises in this year’s Competition, the little Sedici’s one of those cars you want to drive enthusiastically, and it pays off. The Fiat stormed up the test track’s long 14% gradient in the third of its six gears, braked nicely and handled a 17% stop and restart with no problem.

£16,501 To £20,000 Class

Winner: Mazda 6 Diesel Estate TS2 2.0litre 143PS Manual – The Mazda 6 gets on with the job. It made a mighty fine job of towing a caravan with faultless stability, one of the best handbrakes in this year’s Competition and a gearbox with six well-chosen ratios and a nice action that makes you want to make the most of them. A sensible shape, with plenty of carrying capacity and a decent noseweight limit makes this a great towcar.

£20,001 To £25,000 Class & All Wheel Drive Under 1800KG Class
Winner: Subaru Impreza WRX 2.5 – Four-wheel drive ensures there is always plenty of grip, the five-speed gearbox has a lovely action and is superbly mated to an engine with power and torque to spare; and a firm suspension means nice flat cornering. The Impreza will not disappoint as a towcar.

£25,001 To £33,000 Class & Overall Winner

Winner: Volvo V50 D5 Sport – Crisp acceleration thanks to a willing diesel engine and smooth-shifting five-speed automatic transmission, confident brakes, exceptionally easy to use handbrake and fantastic stability – this car really has the whole, perfect package. Plus, clothed in modern-looking estate car style that Volvo calls ‘Sportwagon’, this really is a head-turning car. And if all that wasn’t enough to convince you, low operating costs and great load carrying space really do add the finishing touches to this superb towcar. Volvo has always had a strong reputation in the field of towing, as well as build quality and safety; the V50 carries on the tradition in fine style.

Over £33,000 Class

Winner: Mercedes-Benz E320 CDI Estate – The seven-speed automatic gearbox is a dream – you have to watch the rev-counter to detect when it is changing up and down. But for its huge torque – 540lb ft from only 1600rpm – you would never guess the E320’s V6 engine was diesel-fuelled, it is so quiet and refined.

All Wheel Drive Over 1800KG Class

Winner: Kia Sorento 2.5 CRDi XE Manual – Caravan Club members will know the Sorento was last year’s Towcar of the Year. This year the returning champ was just beaten into second place in its price class, putting it out of contention for the main prize, but it took a category award for All Wheel drive cars over 1800kg. It is still a great towcar, not only because of its towing attributes but because it feels like a quality package. Offering a comfortable ride, the 2.5-litre diesel engine is refined and the selectable four-wheel drive is easy to engage when you need it


Index : Towing and Towcars : Caravan Club Towcar of the Year 2007  - by UKCampsite.co.uk



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