TowCar of the Year 2022

The SEAT Leon Estate FR 1.5TSI 150PS has won this year’s overall trophy and also triumphed in the Caravan Weight 1100 – 1200kg category in the 39th Caravan and Motorhome Club Towcar of the Year 2022 Competition.

The industry’s longest-standing towcar testing awards saw the Seat Leon impress the judges around UTAC’s Millbrook Proving Ground’s demanding and unique track.

Thirty two entrants were put into caravan weight categories – rather than being listed by price – to make it easier for buyers to know which cars could tow their caravans. Cars were entered into classes using their 85% kerbweight figure or by their towing limit, whichever was the lower. The competition had seven weight classes, two Family Towcar categories as well as Pick-Up, Electric and Plug-in Hybrid categories.

The complete TowCar of the Year 2022 winners’ line-up is as follows:

Caravan Weight Under 1100kg & Electric Vehicles:  

ŠKODA Enyaq iV 80 Lounge 82 kWh 204 PS DSG


Caravan Weight 1100 – 1200kg & Overall Winner: 

SEAT Leon Estate FR 1.5TSI 150PS


Caravan Weight 1200 – 1300kg:  

Volkswagen Golf R-Line 2.0 TDI 150PS DSG


Caravan Weight 1300–1400kg:  

TowCar of the Year 2022

Nissan Qashqai Tekna+ (Xtronic)


Caravan Weight 1400–1500kg:  

TowCar of the Year 2022

Volkswagen Arteon Shooting Brake R-Line 2.0 TDI 200PS DSG


Caravan Weight 1500–1700kg:  

TowCar of the Year 2022

Volvo XC40 Recharge pure electric AWD


Caravan Weight Over 1700kg:  

TowCar of the Year 2022

Porsche Cayenne E-Hybrid 8-Speed Tiptronic S


Plug-in Hybrid Vehicles:  

TowCar of the Year 2022

Volvo V60 Recharge plug-in hybrid T6 AWD


Family Towcar:  

TowCar of the Year 2022

Ford Kuga ST-Line X Diesel mhev


Large Family Towcar:  

TowCar of the Year 2022

Ford S-Max FHEV ST-Line


Pick-up:  

TowCar of the Year 2022

SsangYong P Musso Rhino Auto


The Seat Leon is a great all-round family estate. The judges loved the spritely, 1.5-litre TSi petrol engine, which worked well with the 7-speed auto gearbox. On the faster sections of the route, it remained calm and composed, while on hilly, twistier roads it felt agile, the engine coping really well with the inclines.  There’s plenty of room on offer and the cabin is comfortable. The decent-sized boot impressed the caravanability judges, accommodating all our touring equipment.

Nick Lomas, Director General of the Caravan and Motorhome Club said, “With the rise in popularity of the staycation, it’s more important than ever that the Club continues to provide qualified and unbiased information for it’s one million members to help them to find the right towcar for their needs. 

We’ve also been receiving an increasing number of enquiries about the technicalities and practicalities of towing with hybrid and electric vehicles so it’s fantastic  news we are seeing a boom in competition entrants and winners in these categories.”

Each car was put through its paces at the UTAC Millbrook Proving Ground near Bedford, which provides a variety of testing driving environments. Manufacturers were invited to submit for testing any vehicle that was capable of towing a trailer over 750kg and on sale on 1 October 2021.

The Club’s Scrutiny team thoroughly checked each vehicle before handing it over to the ‘caravanability’ and driving judges.

Caravanability judges tested whether a car’s boot could swallow the bulky accessories normally needed on a caravan trip. They also measured the towball height, both solo and hitched up, and checked the towing information provided in the manufacturer’s handbook.

The cars were then hitched up to caravans ballasted to 85% of their kerbweight or towing limit if lower. Using specialised apparatus the technical judges then measured the cars’ acceleration and braking capabilities. The car/caravan combinations were then passed over to the driving judges who set off around the UTAC Millbrook circuit to put the vehicles through their paces.

The cars were tested at speeds of up to 55mph on the ‘Alpine route’, which featured various gradients culminating in a 17% hill start and a 26% downhill brake test. The ability to join fast traffic from a standstill was also assessed.

Judges then took the vehicles to the high-speed bowl to further assess their capabilities at speeds in excess of UK legal limits.  In the safety of a controlled environment, the judges could induce some instability at 60mph to see how the cars reacted. The vehicles were also put through reversing examinations.  All-important issues of driver and passenger comfort and visibility were also assessed.

The results of the competition were announced at the Caravan and Motorhome Club Towcar of the Year Awards ceremony, held at the Royal Automobile Club in London on 17 September. The awards were presented by television presenter and Club member, Matt Allwright, who also spent time at Millbrook Proving Ground to see how the judging process was carried out.

Grenville Chamberlain OBE, Caravan and Motorhome Club Chairman, said:

“Our sincere congratulations go to all the worthy winners in the Caravan and Motorhome Club Towcar of the Year 2022.  The Club is delighted to be able to share the wealth of data and information about towing vehicles to help both our members and all those who tow.”

Members who own any of the Caravan and Motorhome Club category winners since 2015 are eligible for a 10% discount on the Club’s Car Insurance. Visit Car Insurance for more details.

Caravan and Motorhome Club Towcar of the Year 2022 Entry List

Caravan Weight under 1100kg

ŠKODA Enyaq iV 80 Lounge 82 kWh 204 PS DSG

Volkswagen ID.4 77kWh Pro Performance 204PS


Caravan Weight 1100kg – 1200kg

Renault All-New Captur S-Edition TCe 140

SEAT Leon Estate FR 1.5TSI 150PS

ŠKODA Octavia SE L Estate 1.5 TSi 150PS 6G Man


Caravan Weight 1200kg – 1300kg

CUPRA Formentor V2 1.5TSI 150PS

SsangYong P Korando 1.5 Ultimate Petrol

Subaru XV 2.0i SE Premium CVT e-BOXER

Volkswagen Golf R-Line 2.0 TDI 150PS DSG


Caravan Weight 1300kg – 1400kg

Nissan Qashqai Tekna+ (Xtronic)

ŠKODA Superb SE L Estate 2.0 TDI 150PS DSG


Caravan Weight 1400kg – 1500kg

Ford Kuga ST-Line X Diesel mhev

Subaru Forester 2.0i XE Premium e-BOXER Hybrid

Subaru Outback 2.5i Field

Volkswagen Arteon Shooting Brake R-Line 2.0 TDI 200PS DSG

Volkswagen Tiguan Elegance 2.0 TDI 4MOTION 150PS DSG
 


Caravan Weight 1500kg – 1700kg

Ford S-Max FHEV ST-Line

Kia Sorento 2.2 CRDi ‘3’

Mazda CX-5 2.2 184ps AWD Sport Auto Diesel

SEAT Tarraco FR Sport 2.0TDI 200PS 4Drive

Volvo XC40 Recharge plug-in hybrid T5 FWD

Volvo XC40 Recharge pure electric AWD


Caravan Weight over 1700kg

Isuzu D-Max V-Cross Automatic

Land Rover Defender 110 D300 MHEV

Land Rover Discovery HSE R-Dynamic D300

Porsche Cayenne E-Hybrid 8-Speed Tiptronic S

SsangYong P Musso Rhino Auto

SsangYong P Rexton 2.2 Diesel Ultimate Automatic

Volkswagen Commercial Vehicles Transporter Kombi 150PS

Volvo V60 Recharge plug-in hybrid T6 AWD

Volvo V90 Recharge plug-in hybrid T6 AWD

Volvo XC90 B5 (mild-hybrid diesel) AWD


Electric Vehicles

SKODA Enyaq iV 80 Lounge 82 kWh 204 PS DSG

Volkswagen ID.4 77kWh Pro Performance 204PS

Volvo XC40 Recharge pure electric AWD


Plug in Hybrids

Porsche Cayenne E-Hybrid 8-Speed Tiptronic S

Volvo V60 Recharge plug-in hybrid T6 AWD

Volvo V90 Recharge plug-in hybrid T6 AWD

Volvo XC40 Recharge plug-in hybrid T5 FWD


Family Cars

Ford Kuga ST-Line X Diesel mhev

Land Rover Defender 110 D300 MHEV

Mazda CX-5 2.2 184ps AWD Sport Auto Diesel

Porsche Cayenne E-Hybrid 8-Speed Tiptronic S

Subaru Forester 2.0i XE Premium e-BOXER Hybrid

Subaru Outback 2.5i Field

Volkswagen Arteon Shooting Brake R-Line 2.0 TDI 200PS DSG

Volkswagen Tiguan Elegance 2.0 TDI 4MOTION 150PS DSG

Volvo XC40 Recharge pure electric AWD

Volvo XC40 Recharge plug-in hybrid T5 FWD

Volkswagen Commercial Vehicles Transporter Kombi 150PS

Volvo V60 Recharge plug-in hybrid T6 AWD

Volvo V90 Recharge plug-in hybrid T6 AWD


Large Family Towcars

Ford S-Max FHEV ST-Line

Kia Sorento 2.2 CRDi ‘3’

Land Rover Discovery HSE R-Dynamic D300

SEAT Tarraco FR Sport 2.0TDI 4Drive

SsangYong Rexton

Volvo XC90 B5 (diesel) AWD


Pick Ups

Isuzu D-Max V-Cross Automatic

SsangYong P Musso Rhino Auto


For more information about the Caravan and Motorhome Club’s Towcar of the Year 2022 competition please visit https://www.camc.com/towcar/

For further information and details about the Caravan and Motorhome Club visit www.camc.com

To see the 2021 results click HERE.

Driving Judges: 

Deborah Black, Club Events Committee member;

Lesley Harris, motoring journalist;

Clare Kelly, editor, Warners Group Publications;

Andrew Ditton, specialist press journalist and vlogger;

Dan Cartwright, Caravan Times;

Greg Potter, Club Events Committee member;

Mark Sutcliffe, specialist press journalist.