Caravanning around Australia is a dream come true for many individuals. Adventure awaits when you pack up the caravan and head off the beaten track, and planning your trip can be half the fun. There’s so much to do in our great country, and its unique natural wonders leave many in awe.
Before you head off into the sunrise, there are a few things you need to understand about caravans, especially weights and towing. Shopping for a new or second hand caravan can be exciting. To help you make your decision, we’ve identified some of the different caravans under 2,500 kg ATM.
Caravan aggregate trailer mass
Caravan towing weights can get quite confusing if you’re trying to understand them for the first time. ATM, which stands for aggregate trailer mass, is the weight of the trailer and its full load when the trailer is not hooked to a vehicle. This number is one of the most important things you need to know before you head off on your trip.
This is different from the gross trailer mass (GTM), which will be less because the trailer is hooked to the tow vehicle. The GTM is the weight on a trailer’s axle when fully loaded and hooked to a vehicle.
Why does the ATM matter?
It’s important to understand that the ATM is the absolute maximum weight your caravan can be. When you load up your caravan with full water tanks, gas tanks, food, coolers, solar panels, travelling necessities, and all your belongings you plan to bring with you on your trip, your trailer cannot exceed this capacity.
Before you set off to purchase your new caravan, check your vehicle’s maximum towing capacity. Exceeding the manufacturer’s capacity limits can create difficulties and unnecessary risks while travelling. Some of these are:
Not only is it illegal to exceed a vehicle’s towing capacity, but it can also compromise the safety of your caravan and your passengers if you are in an accident. To avoid the dangers of over-towing, it is important for caravan owners to make sure that their tow capacity allows them enough space.
If the situation arises that you have to file a caravan insurance claim for any reason, your caravan will be inspected to ensure it is under the maximum ATM limit. Caravan insurers will not process a claim if the tow vehicle is towing an overweight caravan.
You will need to keep in mind what your vehicle is capable of towing. If your vehicle is incapable of towing the caravan you choose, you’ll have difficulties going down the road, and it could create unsafe road conditions for you and other travellers.
A smaller vehicle can pull a smaller caravan, like the CRV Esperance. But this smaller caravan has an ATM weight that is also lighter. You’ll have to keep that in mind while packing.
Minimise your risk of going over the weight limit by leaving yourself some wiggle room when packing. You can also stop by a scale and weigh your trailer before your trip.
In Western Australia, as in most of the country, fines can be imposed if the weight of the caravan is over the ATM weight that is recommended by the caravan manufacturers. Fines can be as low as $150 or as much as $1,500, depending on where you are in the country and how much your caravan is over the manufacturer’s ATM limit.
Finding the perfect caravan under 2,500 kg ATM
It’s not always easy to find your dream caravan. There are so many to choose from! But at Lewis RV, we have a wide variety of options from caravan manufacturer, Crusader Caravans that fit every lifestyle and every budget. These lighter-weight options all have a maximum ATM under 2,500 kg.
The CRV Range
Compact and weatherproof, this collection has it all. They have all the features you would hope for in a luxury caravan, including bathroom amenities, microwave, TV, fridge, and kitchen. Made with high-quality materials, the CRV range is ready for your trip, whether you’re cruising across the country or camping in the outback.
The CRV Esperance has 10 colour choices, a travel length of 5,950 mm, and a maximum ATM of 1,800 kg.
The Chameleon Range
Looking for the best off road caravan under 2500kg ATM? The chameleon range is a hardshell caravan, made for any lifestyle. Including a compact indoor kitchen and an outdoor kitchen, an ensuite, air conditioning, fans, and a wind-out awning, these pack-and-go trailers are ready when you are for your next trip.
The Liberty Action is small but mighty! Small caravans have many benefits. The Liberty Action has a convenient towing size and no additional towing mirrors are needed. The maximum ATM on this trailer is 1600 kg, which gives you plenty of weight to include your bikes, kayaks, and other outdoor gear.
The Musketeer Range
This spacious range of caravan now has new features in all 2020 and 2021 models. The single axle Porthos is compact yet spacious with a cafe dinette, ensuite, bathroom amenities, and even a washing machine, giving luxury caravans a whole new meaning.
The Warrior also boasts a reversing camera and rear door entry to allow more privacy for the bedroom in the front. Both models have electric brakes. They also have a designated ATM of 2,500 kg and adapt well to any lifestyle.
The Lifechanger Range
The Lifechanger series includes a variety of features including external speakers, a 3-way fridge, and remote-controlled LED lighting and more. This range boasts all the amenities at an affordable price. These caravans are lightweight and spacious. Some models offer bunk beds for the kids, making it a perfect family caravan. Powered by the sun, you can go anywhere with the Lifechanger.
The Pathway allows for a luxurious lifestyle while on your adventure. No need to give up the comforts of home.
The Pathway’s designated ATM is 2,200 kg with a travel length of 7,250 mm.
Shop for your new caravan under 2500kg ATM at Lewis RV
Looking for a caravan dealer? At Lewis RV, we specialise in helping people find a caravan that is perfect for their lifestyle and travel needs.
You don’t want to risk exceeding a vehicle’s towing capacity. We can help you understand aggregate trailer mass and towing capacity. Our staff is happy to answer any questions you may have regarding your caravan. Give our team a call at (08) 6555 7755 or drop in and visit when you’re in the area.
The aggregate trailer mass (ATM) is the maximum total weight that your caravan can safely reach when it is fully loaded. This includes the weight of the caravan itself, as well as any payload that you may be carrying inside it. The ATM will be specified by the manufacturer, and it is important not to exceed it to avoid damaging your caravan or putting yourself in danger while on the road.
Towing a lightweight caravan has a number of benefits. Firstly, it is much easier to manoeuvre than a larger caravan. This makes it ideal for exploring tighter streets and areas with restricted access. Secondly, you will use less fuel when towing a lighter caravan which will save you money on your travels. Finally, a lighter caravan can be towed by a wider range of vehicles so if you don't have a large 4x4 you can still enjoy the camping lifestyle. All in all, towing a lightweight caravan provides more freedom and flexibility on your travels whilst also saving you money - what's not to love!
There are a few factors you'll need to consider when trying to determine the ideal caravan weight for your needs. One is the capacity of your vehicle - make sure you know its maximum towing capacity before selecting a caravan. Other important considerations include the type of roads you'll be traveling on (are they smooth and traffic-free, or hilly and rugged?) and how many people will be using the caravan (will it just be for sleeping or will you be cooking and spending time inside?).