It is time to go for a summer road trip! Follow this guide to make sure your car is ready to handle your cargo safely.
When you go on vacation, you usually need to bring many things with you, whether you are going to a cabin in the Laurentians or to the beach. Not all vehicles have the same load capacity. How do you know your vehicle load capacity? The load capacity of a vehicle is the maximum amount of weight it has been designed to handle safely. It is calculated by subtracting the empty weight of the car (curb weight) from the maximum weight it can carry (GVWR for Gross Vehicle Weight Rating). Do not forget that the load capacity includes passengers and cargo!
As an example, in the premium compact SUV market a 2015 BMW X3 gives you a maximum load of 920lbs while a 2015 Audi Q5 allows you to carry up to 1145lbs.
5 tips to safely pack your vehicle:
1. The heaviest items should be placed up front
In order to keep the balance of your car as neutral as possible, you have to make sure you place the heavy items towards the center of the vehicle and as low as you can, especially in SUV’s. Too much weight at the back will shift weight off your front wheels which might have a negative impact on your steering and braking. Vehicles with a high clearance such as SUV’s will have a better handling and less chance of a rollover if heavy objects are properly distributed on the floor.
2. Because flying objects can be hazardous, secure loose items
Even if a vacation road trip is less stressful than you daily commute to Laval or Montreal, you have to be prepared for a sudden stop or an emergency braking. While doing so, you do not want your cargo flying around in the car. Securing your cargo section with straps or a cargo net and packing smaller items in boxes will prevent them to become dangerous projectiles that could hit passengers in case of a crash.
3. Keep as much rear visibility as possible
Even if you rely a lot on your side mirrors, it is way harder to drive without rear visibility. You should avoid stacking your stuff so high that you can’t see what is behind your car. Especially if you have to reverse. Even with a backup camera, you can’t see everything!
4. Keep your essential items accessible
While packing, you should always keep in mind that you might need to use some items during your trip. It is handy to have those objects ready when you need them. It could be a map, a cell phone charger or a cooler! Your roadside emergency kit has to be accessible quickly, just in case. Don’t forget that you might need to access your spare tire which is located ….. under the cargo area!
5. Don’t forget to prepare your vehicle!
To avoid ruining your road trip, make sure your car is prepared for it. Since your vehicle will carry more load, you need to check your tires for damages. Also verify that the tires are properly inflated. If you do not know the right pressure, look on the driver’s side doorjamb or in your owner’s manual.
Depending of the length of your trip, you also might consider an oil change and an A/C maintenance. Call our service departement at Audi Lauzon in Laval, we will be happy to assist you.
If you need more cargo space, you might consider the purchase of a roof box. We have a large selection of Roof Racks, Roof Boxes and Bike Racks to extand to capabilities of your Audi. Contact our part specialists at Audi Lauzon, to know more about our genuine Audi Accessories and our promotions in the Greater Montreal.