Towing with an electric car

Towing with an electric car

Towing with an electric car? It's possible, but you need to choose an approved electric vehicle. In this article, discover our list of the best electric vehicles suitable for towing, by weight category.

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The 3 most powerful electric SUVs for towing in 2022

Tesla is the benchmark for electric vehicles. The American company is a forerunner in many fields, includingautonomy, performance and self-driving.

But what's less well known is that even when it comes to towing trailers, she's also a leader. 

In reality, this is not a priority for manufacturers, who prefer to focus their R&D efforts on other parameters, and in particular on range. And, in this respect, a trailer represents an additional weight, necessarily reducing range.

Nevertheless, Tesla has also invested in this area, and already offers its Model Y, capable of towing no less than 1600 kg. Quite a performance when you consider that the average weight of a caravan is around 1400 kg.

The new KIA EV6 and Ioniq 5, available very soon, will also offer the same towing capacity?

Towing with an electric car? It's possible, but you need to choose an approved electric vehicle. 

The vehicles listed have towing capacities ranging from a few hundred kilos to over two tons.

Why are so few electric cars type-approved?

At first glance, one might think that battery-powered vehicles are not powerful enough to tow.

In fact, the problem is not technological, but economic. 

An electric car is heavier than a combustion-powered car, as it has to support the weight of the battery and protect it from impact. 

Offering towing capacity therefore implies a development to reinforce the vehicle's structure.

Preferring to optimize their development resources, towing is not a priority for manufacturers, especially for city cars and SUV/compacts. 

Indeed, in this segment, the number of motorists with a real need for towing is very limited, so they prefer to concentrate their efforts on other matters.

Up to 300 kg

We start with the models with the smallest towing capacity.

The Hyundai Kona Electric and the Kia e-Soul, two Korean SUV models, can be fitted with a hitch capable of towing a maximum load of 300 kg. 

It may not be much, but it's enough for transporting luggage, furniture or bulky items to the garbage dump.
Note: approval applies only to vehicles with a 64 kWh battery and marketed from 2021 onwards.

Up to 400 kg

Renault Kangoo MAXI ZE utility: one of the oldest electric vehicles on the market, it can tow between 322 and 374 kg, depending on version. With its limited maximum mass, it's a pleasant and practical choice for professionals.

All the more so as there's over 650 kg of payload available in the cabin.

Up to 500 kg

The Nissan e-NV200 as an approved 460 kg van. 

The 5-seater wagon version (Evalia) is limited to just 150kg: doubtless insufficient for a trailer, but interesting for a large bike rack or trunk extension.

Simply compare and find the vehicle that's right for you Find your vehicle

Up to 750 kg

There are almost eight vehicles in this category.

The law limits the load above which a trailer equipped with its own brakes must be towed to 750 kg.

In addition, above 750 kg, the gross vehicle weight of the vehicle and trailer must never exceed 3500 kg, and a B96 or BE license is required for heavier hitches.

There are 4 SUVs: 

And 4 utilities: 

Up to 1,000 kg

This group mainly includes utilities: 

Note that the IV 50 version does not mention any towing capacity on its technical data sheet.

Finally, there's the famous Tesla Model 3.

It can only tow if the towing option is selected at the time of purchase. 

Surprising for Tesla, but the reality is that the ball cannot be retrofitted. Available since May 2019, it should however be noted that this option suddenly disappeared from the configurator in April 2021.
Yet it is indeed available. To order it, please contact one of our advisors.

Have your future electric car delivered in the New Year!

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Up to 1,500 kg

Vehicles in this category can tow a load that is starting to get really heavy, and can easily compete with their combustion-powered predecessors:

These two electric SUVs can tow up to 1,500 kg, equivalent to the weight of a large 6-bed caravan.
Just like a combustion-powered car, an electric vehicle consumes much more fuel.

It is therefore advisable to pay attention to autonomy when towing heavy loads.

It's difficult to calculate this loss of independence precisely, as several factors come into play. 

For longer journeys, we advise you to use smaller roads wherever possible, and not to exceed 90km/h on freeways.
You will also need to take into account access to charging stations, as there is rarely enough space to park a vehicle with its hitch, with the exception of certain stations such as Fasned or Tesla. 

In all cases, good travel planning is advisable.

Up to 1,800 kg

Approved to tow up to 1,800kg, these are some rather high-end vehicles:

Both vehicles currently rank second in the ranking of electric vehicles with the highest towing capacity.

Up to 2,000 kg

Would you like to tow a boat, a large caravan or even another vehicle?

The Tesla Model X is the only electric vehicle today capable of meeting your needs.
Capable of towing up to 2268 kg, Tesla demonstrates with this model its lead over its competitors in this field.

However, the choice is set to widen over the next few years, as more electric vehicles with comparable towing capacity become available.

It's worth noting that the installation of a towbar does not have to be carried out by a dealer of the vehicle brand (except for Tesla, as mentioned above). Other professionals can do the job.

Be sure to choose approved models, otherwise you may lose your vehicle's warranty and run into problems with your insurance.   

Record-breaking 100% electric pick-ups in the works 

In the United States, pick-ups account for a large share of the market,

Indeed, the three best-selling models in the country are pick-ups, making them particularly profitable.

By the end of 2021, the Rivian R1T will be on American roads.
The first 100% electric pickup, it offers a towing capacity of up to 4990 kg for certain versions.

In spring 2022, the best-selling American Ford F-150 Lightning will tow up to 4,500 kg and carry a payload of almost 900 kg.

We'll have to wait until early 2023 for the release of the Tesla Cybertruck, considered to be the most powerful car for towing.
The "monster" will be able to tow 6350 kg in its best-equipped version.
Note that you'll still need a B2 license to drive it. 

Supply grows at the same pace as demand

By 2022, it is estimated that over 500 electric vehicles will be available on the market. 

Among them, new models capable of towing are eagerly awaited.
It should be remembered that the increase in the number of electric models marketed is attributed essentially to three factors: 

  • Economic support at the time of purchase, 
  • The CAFE standard, which imposes onerous regulations on vehicle manufacturers and 
  • Traffic restrictions in towns and cities (see our article on ZFE).
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Picture of Anaëlle Babled
Anaëlle Babled

By writing articles, I aim to help private individuals and professionals make the switch to electric vehicles and promote the development of soft mobility.

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