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Can I tow with an electric car?

Posted on August 31st 2018 by Towbar2U

Electric cars

In theory, the majority of electric cars are are capable of towing a trailer. Alongside their energy and cost efficiency, electric cars still pack a punch when it comes to power. Unfortunately, however, answering the question of ‘can I tow with an electric car?’ is not all that simple. In this article we’ll be definitively exploring this question, so you can feel confident in knowing whether you’re okay to tow with an electric vehicle.

Can I tow with an electric car?

Whether something is ‘capable’ of towing isn’t the same as asking ‘can I’ tow. While most electric cars likely have the capacity to be able to safely tow a trailer, the majority of electric vehicle manufacturers have not sought approval from European authorities to legally certify their vehicle as safe for towing. To determine whether a vehicle is safe for towing, it must pass a number of tests to prove that the vehicle can safely tow a trailer in various situations. It is illegal for any vehicle to tow without this approval, and doing so can earn you a substantial fine – or even lead to prosecution.

Why aren’t many electric cars tow-approved?

The main reason for many electric cars not being tow-approved is simply because they are not designed to fit that function. The electric car was not created with the idea of towing in mind, and purchasers of electric cars are not seen to be interested in getting an electric car for the purpose of towing. To get an electric car tow-approved is seen simply as a matter of unneeded hassle by the manufacturer and therefore isn’t usually sought after. In addition, a greater amount of energy consumption would be needed to obtain the extra power required to tow a trailer. Being an energy-efficient car, including such a feature would render the main USP of the electric vehicle redundant. It therefore would seem counterproductive to many electric vehicle manufacturers to approve the capability of towing.

With that being said, there are in fact some electric vehicles that have been approved for towing. If you are particularly interested in purchasing an electric vehicle for this specific purpose, take a look at the following:

Tesla X

Not only is the luxury Tesla X approved for towing, it also features a ‘trailer-mode’, implemented specifically to utilise its towing capabilities. The Tesla X is the only battery electric vehicle (as opposed to hybrid electric vehicles and plug-in hybrid electric vehicles) capable of towing – but boy does it fly the flag well for electric vehicle technology. The Tesla X has been showcased to tow a Boeing 787 commercial aircraft all on its own. The Tesla broke the Guinness World record for electric towing by pulling the 287,000lb aircraft.

Hybrid electric vehicles and plug-in hybrid electric vehicles

Hybrid electric vehicles and plug-in hybrid electric vehicles are vehicles that combine a conventional internal combustion engine with an electric propulsion system. So while not entirely electric like the Tesla, both these classes of vehicles will combine electric functions, alongside specific ‘electric driving modes’ to help reduce their carbon emissions.

Many of these cars are tow-approved, including:

  • Volvo XC90 T8
  • Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV
  • BMW X5 xDrive40e
  • Volkswagen Golf GTE
  • Audi A3 e-tron
  • Audi Q7 e-tron

At Towbar2U we fit towbars for all types of car. Whether battery, hybrid electric, or fuel, we offer the highest quality service on all our towbar fittings. For more information about any of products or services, give our expert team a call today.

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