Mark Gutridge, managing director of Thule Towing Systems, has advised motorists thinking of purchasing a new or second-hand small car to be aware that certain models on the South African market are categorised as non-towing cars, and cannot legally pull a trailer.
This has become an issue in the weeks leading up to the festive season, with a number of unsuspecting potential customers requesting tow bar fitment, only to find out that there is no provision for this on the vehicle they own.
“A number of models on sale in South Africa cannot be fitted with a tow bar, either because of structural or cooling limitations. These include the likes of the new Toyota Yaris, the latest Chevrolet Spark, Ford Ka, Suzuki Alto, most hybrids and the Citroen C1, Peugeot 107 and Toyota Aygo – three small cars based on the same design. If you own one of these, and have purchased a light trailer, then you’ve wasted your money – unless you’re prepared to get a tow bar made up in someone’s back yard.
“The bottom line with these cars is that they have been categorised as non-towing vehicles for a good reason and attempting to tow with them – assuming you can cobble together some sort of tow bar, which is not impossible in our poorly-regulated market – could result in you regretting the decision,” concludes Gutridge.