Towbar help

Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by Piff, Oct 6, 2008.

  1. Piff

    Piff Hardcore MB Enthusiast

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    With the ML due in a couple of weeks, I need to source a towbar. It will probably be the flange type as I would like to fit a ball & pin.

    As the car has parktronic, will there be a problem with sensors "seeing" the towball?

    Also, are there any preferred brands? or any brands best avoided?

    Thanks for any advice.
     
  2. A210AMG

    A210AMG MB Club Veteran

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    Hello

    I have a westfalia towbar, I'm pretty sure this would have been OEM, which is fully detachable / hidden when not in use and with twin drop down electrics. No problem with parking sensors.

    When I had a freelander that had a fixed towbar the fitter said the only thing that can get in the way of the sensors can be a reversing bracket fitted in front of the towbar.

    I just prefer the look when its not there, and saves you catching you leg loading the boot :)
     
  3. Bobby Dazzler

    Bobby Dazzler MB Club Veteran

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    If you're having it professionally fitted, they'll ask if you have a rear mounted spare wheel and/or rear parking sensors so they can make the appropriate adjustments. IMHO a detachable is the way to go.
     
  4. bouncer

    bouncer Hardcore MB Enthusiast

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    I dont think there is a Flange type bar available for the ML.
    Detachable and sawn neck type here.

    /www.catalogue.bosal.com/pages/tow_carspecnr_list.php?query_nr=2&make=MERCEDES&model=M-Class

    sTeVe
     
  5. WLeg

    WLeg Hardcore MB Enthusiast

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    Last edited: Oct 7, 2008
  6. OP
    OP
    Piff

    Piff Hardcore MB Enthusiast

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    I was talking to a trailer man today who mentioned a "new 13 pin" electrics socket.
    I thought the electrics were either single (7 pin) or double, for powering caravan electrics.
    Anyone know what the "new 13 pin" socket is about?

    Thanks for the links so far to Bosal & Witter. From what I see so far most ML tow bar kits require cutting the rear bumper. Is that normally the case?
     
  7. BTB 500

    BTB 500 MB Club Veteran

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    7-pin towing electrics (either single or double) have been the standard in the UK for years, but they are switching to the continental standard ... which is a single 13-pin socket to cover everything. Most 'factory' towing electrics now come with 13-pin, and new UK caravans have a 13-pin connector fitted as of earlier this year. You can buy converters to run either single or double 7-pin off a 13-pin car socket.
     
  8. A210AMG

    A210AMG MB Club Veteran

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    Hello

    If you have a fixed towbar fitted then yes a small cut will have to be made..

    Here is mine and my father in laws

    [​IMG]

    His on the left (fixed) mine on the right (detachable)



    Then mine with cover in place and towbar removed, hard to spot anything..

    [​IMG]
     
  9. BTB 500

    BTB 500 MB Club Veteran

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    Yup, back end of our Vito (before debadging ;)) - there's just a slight bulge where the cover goes over the 13-pin socket

    [​IMG]
     
  10. OP
    OP
    Piff

    Piff Hardcore MB Enthusiast

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    I've been looking at various websites tonight & can't make my mind up. Removable - doesn't interfere with parktronic & no catching of legs
    Fixed flange - possible interference with parktronic but cheaper & options of bumper guard.
    Also been looking at wiring options.There seem to be dedicated systems available (at extra cost) which better integrate with vehicle electrics - direct plug in to socket in boot?
     
  11. A210AMG

    A210AMG MB Club Veteran

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    Hello


    I know my cars a jeep type thing so not as bothered if the towbar is on show but I prefer it out of site.

    Mine fitted, with bypass relay, twin electrics was £300 and the chap fited it in my drive.

    I would not worry about the parktronic as if towing and you move to R then it beeps anyway (unless you can over ride the sensors)

    If I were fitting it myself, then plug and play sounds good :) too be honest I wouldn't trust myself hence I paid someone that knows.

    I guess a fixed bar is around half price 2/3rds

    Also are you sure there is no towbar already? have you removed the flap to see? you maybe in luck?
     
  12. OP
    OP
    Piff

    Piff Hardcore MB Enthusiast

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    I will not see the car again until 18/10 and had hoped to have the tow bar ready to fit. It may be worth the wait, but I think it's unlikely - 3 previous owners 1st I believe it was a demo or pre-registered, next 2 owners listed as ladies.
     
  13. BTB 500

    BTB 500 MB Club Veteran

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    Proper M-B towing electrics disable the rear parktronic sensors when you are hitched up.

    I have my own bumper guard which I made years ago ... a square piece of ribbed rubber matting, with wooden battens stuck on with contact adhesive. Open the tailgate and lay it over the edge so it hangs down over the bumper behind the towbar (wooden battens running horizontally, rubber side in contact with the car). Took 10 mins to make and works brilliantly, can post a pic. if not clear.
     
  14. OP
    OP
    Piff

    Piff Hardcore MB Enthusiast

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    I'm more concerned that a fixed tow bar will affect the parking sensors when not hitched up. Do I have to have a removable swan neck type?
     
  15. BTB 500

    BTB 500 MB Club Veteran

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    It shouldn't do. The parktronic on my Vito is OK with the towbar fitted and nothing hitched up.
     
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