Electric cars (EVs) can tow a caravan, so long as they have been approved to do so. In fact, those that can tow a caravan are better suited to it than petrol or diesel cars (ICEs).
However, towing isn’t a priority for many electric cars and many aren't designed for it. As a result, most battery-powered models aren’t approved to tow caravans or trailers. But that doesn’t mean that you can’t own an electric car if towing is a priority for you. You just need to know which available models fit your needs.
Find out why they make good tow cars, how far you can tow a caravan with an electric car and more in this guide.
The three main qualities that make an EV a good towing option are:
Electric cars can apply their maximum torque from 0mph. This makes them ideal for towing caravans as they don’t struggle to get the caravan moving from a standing start.
On top of that, electric cars are heavier than ICEs. Many caravans are quite heavy, so the extra weight allows an electric car to tow a bigger caravan safely. However, there is a fine balance with the weight. If the vehicle is too heavy, the motor will have to dedicate more power to just move the car, let alone the caravan.
The process of regenerative braking is another factor why electric cars can tow a caravan so effectively. As soon as you lift your foot off the accelerator, your car begins to slow down. Unlike engine braking, which is quite gradual, regenerative braking feels more like you pressed the brake pedal. This all enhances your vehicle's ability to stop in an emergency, even while towing extra weight.
On the flip side, most EVs are not designed or approved for towing a caravan or trailer. Most manufacturers don’t bother getting their electric models approved because of the added cost and reduced efficiency.
It is also not a priority for many EV drivers. Most use their electric cars in urban areas, where a caravan is impractical. This means the volume of bad press surrounding reduced range figures isn’t worthwhile.
Towing a caravan greatly reduces the capacity and range of an electric car battery. Often, this means an EV can only travel 50% of its maximum range when towing a caravan.
We have calculated what this range looks like for selected electric cars approved for towing a caravan in the table below.
While there may not be many EV options for towing a caravan, here are the 5 we would recommend. We have also included some key information to help you compare cars and make an informed decision.
|Towing Capacity (KG)||
Price (Towbar enabled)
|Estimated Towing Range (50%)|
|Audi E-Tron||1,800||£62,635||126 miles|
|BMW i4||1,600||£55,470||183 miles|
|BMW iX||2,500||£70,900||125 miles|
|Kia EV6||1,600||£44,195||164 miles|
|Tesla Model X||2,268||£82,990||174 miles|
If you don’t like any of these options, you can also choose between the Audi Q4 E-Tron, Hyundai Ioniq 5, Mercedes-Benz EQA, Mercedes-Benz EQC, Polestar 2, Skoda Enyaq iV and the Volkswagen ID.4.
There are two figures used to calculate the towing capacity of a vehicle: braked & unbraked. Braked is when the caravan or trailer has brakes fitted, so the figure is usually higher. Unbraked means the caravan or trailer can’t brake itself. You shouldn't exceed the quoted figures for your vehicle as they are the heaviest mass you can safely tow.
You cannot tow a trailer or caravan that’s heavier than your car.
You must make sure that your electric car is certified for the trailer you’re after. Talk to a sales representative if you need help with this.
To ensure your safety, you should opt for a more capable vehicle than necessary. For example, if you’re looking to tow a caravan that weighs 1,500kg, your car should have a capacity of 1,600kg or higher.
The Maximum Technically Permissable Laden Mass (MTPLM) figure should be no more than 85% of the car’s total mass.
Anyone can tow a trailer that weighs up to 3,500kg without needing to pass a car and trailer test. If you passed your driving test before 1st January 1997, you can tow up to 8,250kg Maximum Authorised Mass (MAM).
As of July 2022, the only electric car certified for towing a trailer is the Tesla Model X. It has a maximum towing weight of 2,268kg as well as a ‘trailer mode’. This disables many of the car’s driver assistance features such as the cruise control while towing. This improves your safety and gives you greater control over your car and the caravan.
If you plan on towing a caravan long distances, you need to be able to plan your journey around public charging points. In this article, you will find out where you can charge your EV as well as how to find these charging points while on the go.
Electric cars take longer to charge than refuelling a petrol or diesel car. However, when you use a public fast-charging point, it’s not as long as you might think. Find out more by reading this article.
Refuelling an ICE can be quite expensive, especially if you own an SUV to tow a caravan regularly. Charging an electric car can be much cheaper, even for these larger vehicles. Find out more in this article.