GVM upgrades are not always the answer to your towing weight issues

Power Curve Automotive are the Sunshine Coast local installers of Lovells GVM and GCM upgrades.  Upgrading your vehicle to suit a law is often very confusing for a lot of people.  It can seem that planning a trip around Australia with your caravan in tow requires a mechanics degree to understand all of the requirements.  One of the biggest misconceptions the Power Curve Automotive GVM team see is people doing GVM upgrades on their 4wd to improve towing. 

GVM does not improve what you can tow.

Your vehicles GVM stands for gross vehicle mass.  This is your vehicle, all of your equipment and people that ride in the vehicle as a constant rate.  If the transport or police pull you up to weigh the vehicle they do just that.  Weigh it as it pulls up, full of fuel, occupants and the kitchen sink if this is what you carry on the vehicle.  A GVM upgrade is best suited for the stereotypical 79 series tourer.  A vehicle that is set up with all items on the vehicle its self.  When you take this in to relation to GCM this is where people get confused.

Why a GVM will not help increase towing.


As stated GVM is the vehicle mass not the combined mass. To keep the maths simple we will use low numbers and the common situation people approach the Power Curve Automotive GVM team for assistance with. 

The couple buys a 200 series Toyota Landcruiser and a caravan to travel around Australia.  So for small numbers, we will make the vehicle GCM 10.  When the vehicle is purchased its GVM is “5”, the tow ball weight is 1 and the caravan is 4.  These are the units of weight.  Now the caravan is not big enough as the couple really wants to have a toilet and shower so they go and buy a caravan that is now rated at a 5.  This brings the GCM to an 11.  We are now over GCM by one unit. 

This is the point that people start to search forums and read and get confused.  We receive a lot of phone calls asking for a GVM upgrade to assist with towing.  However, like this example couple, no change of weight has been added to the vehicle.  By adding a GVM upgrade to the vehicle it is going to have the opposite effect.  Increasing the GVM lets say by one unit again taking the 200 to a 6.  This just adds more weight to the GCM and takes it from a 10 to an 11 to a 12.  They don’t need to add to their GVM they have a GCM issue with their towing. 

Where is the GVM confusion from?

The thought process is understandable due to the different laws.  For a large range of vehicles Lovells offer a pre registration federal SSM upgrade to vehicles that increases both their GVM and GCM.  Due to the fact the car is designed to carry more consistent load it means they are often more ridged if not consistently carrying this rate.  However with the GVM increase we are on these vehicles able to increase the GCM so yest you can tow more.  In many states and in our state of Queensland currently registered QLD vehicles can not have a GCM upgrade.  So increasing the GVM to improve what you are towing is as our video shows just over filling an already full cup.  The only option if the toilet and shower is a necessity it to go to a larger vehicle with a bigger GCM.

If you are not sure on your weights we offer inhouse weights of vehicles and caravans to assist you with your planning for GVM and or GCM upgrades.  The Power Curve Automotive team are happy to work with you on your path to the right upgrades for your towing and touring 4wd needs.