What Car Q&A: February 10, 2009 - Towing advice

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Towing advice
I have recently bought a boat and trailer. The total towing weight is one tonne (braked). What would be the best new small car that's capable of towing such a heavy weight?

I'm happy to go for a diesel engine if necessary.

Paul Hammond


We don't advise you tow more than 100% of a car's kerbweight, even if the official towing capacity of the car is higher.

The new Volkswagen Golf is our small family car of the year, and all but the least-powerful 1.4-litre petrol version would be up to the job of towing your boat. The more-powerful 1.4 TSI is our favourite engine, although the low-down torque of the 2.0-litre diesel would make for a more relaxed towing experience.

Nissan's Qashqai is also worth a look. All versions are capable of towing your boat, and the best-value Qashqai is the 1.6-litre petrol in Visia trim. However, as with the Golf, you might want to consider a diesel engine because of the greater low-down pull on offer.

Have a look at our car review section for detailed reviews and prices of both models, as well as every other new car on the market.

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