Retrofitting a trailer hitch: rigid, detachable or pivoting?

Proud owners of new cars are often faced with the problem that the new car does not have a trailer hitch, but this is absolutely necessary for attaching a camper, for example. However, the range of car couplings of different types and manufacturers is usually incredibly large, so choosing the right accessories may not be easy.

Different types of towbars

There are three types of towbars: the starethe detachable as well as the pivoting trailer hitch. The former is characterized by the fact that the ball rod of the coupling is permanently attached to the vehicle. In contrast, one can detachable clutch, as the name suggests, can be easily attached and detached. The detachable towbars also include the automatic systems, the mechanism and operation of which has been further refined and sophisticated. Such a system is not only a lot more exclusive, but also a whole lot more expensive – the comparatively high price pays off in practice due to the even easier handling. The most luxurious system is the pivoting trailer hitch. When not in use, it can be rotated under the bumper. Complicated and time-consuming dismantling of this accessory is not necessary and no storage space in the basement or trunk is required. The swiveling trailer hitch is therefore definitely the most convenient solution. Simple, rigid towbars are available online from just under 40 euros. Well-known manufacturers sometimes charge almost 400 euros for a trailer hitch, for example for a Golf VII.

Which trailer hitch is the right one?

The decision for a type of trailer hitch essentially depends on three factors: the frequency and duration of its use, the available budget and the vehicle on which the system is to be installed.

Due to its permanent installation, the rigid towbar is particularly suitable and practical, if the trailer is used particularly frequently. This system is also the cheapest and therefore also suitable for a smaller budget. The detachable trailer hitch is also a comparatively inexpensive model and is particularly recommended if it is not permanent, but only temporarily in use is, such as for the annual camping holiday. The already mentioned automatic system, on the other hand, is in a higher price segment. The swiveling hitch is the luxury version of a towbar. Because it can be folded and unfolded quickly and easily, it is recommended for both long-term users and occasional use. Your biggest advantage is definitely that annoying and time-consuming (dis)assembly of the system is not necessary. Due to its exclusivity, the swiveling coupling is also one of the most expensive models.

Last but not least, it should of course be noted that not every coupling can be fitted to every vehicle. The best way to do this is to get expert advice from a local dealer or in specialized online shops such as kupplung.de.

Photo: Volkswagen

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