Towing as part of the running-in process - Chevron Man
Just had the (formerly !) trusty R reg Xantia 2.1TD checked over prior to a month in France with the caravan, departing on the 19th.

Turns out that the heater matrix has gone, there's an as yet undiganosed fault on the engine management system and the a/c needs re-gassing. It's only done 105k, but main dealer is quoting a sum adjacent to £1k for fixing it.

So, I'm looking at getting a new C5 2.2HDi SX Estate, at almost £5k off list.

Assuming that I can get it next week I'll be able to put _some_ running-in miles on it (perhaps a thousand) prior to starting to tow with it. The 'van will be around 1100kgs laden (C5 limit @1400) and the car will be 3-up but not heavily laden, nowhere near max train weight that's for sure.

Is this a complete "no-no" ?

There are a couple of used examples in the region with 3k miles on which could be a better bet (but not necessarily any cheaper!). Depends who, and how, the 3k miles was done I suppose....

Assuming that I use the gearbox properly, not letting the engine labour or over-rev will I be doing any significant long term harm? I'll be looking to keep the car for six years. (When the kids have all finished @ Uni!)

I'll be using motorways to Dover, then auto-routes to Geneva & beyond, about a thousand miles to the Alps which the Xantia does 90% in 5th. Then we usually have about 1000 miles running around, and another thousand home. Nicely run in when I get back, or not!

Thoughts, please, gentlemen.

Cheers 'n Beers


Towing as part of the running-in process - Altea Ego
This may be carp but these are my thoughts.

Engine Wise, as long as you stick to the guidelines for running in (revs, undue labouring etc) I would see no difference towing or not. On the other hand will it be running hotter and will this matter? I would avoid big hills and mountain passes.

Other Factors would be

a: Clutch, will this have bedded in ok?
b: Brakes, will they have bedded in in time?
c: drivetrain and gearbox - any thoughts there?
Towing as part of the running-in process - DavidHM
I can't really help on the towing question, but I'm sceptical that you need to spend £1k to fix your car.

Looking at the parts

£31+VAT for a heater matrix from - branches nationwide
£80 for a regas from a specialist
£100 tops for a used ECU from
£200 + VAT for 5 hours' labour from an independent (and possibly half that or less)

Total £450ish.

Look at for a list of recommended garages in your area.

Of course, replacing a six year old car with 105k on it for a new one is not at all unreasonable. If you spend that £450 though, plus another £40 or so on getting it through an MoT, the car will easily sell privately for £2k or more. How much are you being offered as a p/x?
Towing as part of the running-in process - Chevron Man
Fair comment, I quoted main dealer costs because I know they can get the work done in time. My local Citroen independant seem to be on holiday himself.....

I'm also worrying about the (original) clutch. Of the 105k, I've towed 15k and it was used as a towcar before I got it.....

I ain't planning on px-ing the Xantia, I may well have it patched up at my leisure after the hols, then do as you suggest & flog it privately.

Cheers 'n' Beers

Towing as part of the running-in process - Bob the builder
Sounds like you didn't know about the "faults" on your Xantia till you had it checked over. If that's the case, can't you live with them to take you through your hols ? Even if you can't, why not get over there and have them repaired in France - it'll be far cheaper. I certainly wouldn't shell out on a new motor and run it in with a fully loaded caravan. I've been towing abroad for over thirty years and am due to go to Italy with camping gear plus motorbike and scooter the day before you ! Towing's biggest effect is by far and away on the clutch. It takes a heck of a strain. Not the greatest idea to prolong clutch life. Bon chance !
Towing as part of the running-in process - jud
I've towed from as little as 500 miles from as new, but with a petrol engine, when running in I've found the oil temp tends to get slightly higher than normal, as it does when towing also. However the mileage i towed was only about 300 miles round trip, i see no problems with this.
With the miles you will be doing i would recommend that more frequent stops be made to allow the engine to cool.
Just my thoughts however.

Value my car