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Tow bar cycle racks and tandems - what are the width restrictions ?

Phil Stubbington

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We’re waiting for our Rav4 Hybrid to arrive at the moment, and will be using the tow hook for a cycle rack for our tandem.

One thing that’s not every clear is what the regulations are regarding the width of anything you’re towing. Can you advise please? We can take the front wheel off the tandem, to reduce the width a little, but otherwise it’s about 2400mm.



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Believe in the UK, regardless of the size and power of the vehicle, the maximum width for any trailer or caravan is 2.55 metres. 

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Can you clarify what you want to do please. You refer to using the tow hook 'for a cycle rack' but then ask about the width for towing purposes. If you are fitting a cycle rack to the rear of the vehicle using the tow hook as a support  then you are not towing anything. If you are fitting a cycle rack for a tandem, I would take off the front wheel and then partially stand the frame to near vertical, in such a position that none of the frame overlaps the width of the vehicle. That way you won't catch it on anything you pass--hedges, etc.. At the same time check on the height when fitted, otherwise you might come a cropper if you forget when entering certain car parks with height barriers.

If you really have to overlap the width of the vehicle you will have to look up the Construction and Use Regulations . You are only allowed a certain overlap before you may need extra lights (sides, brakes and indicators.)  

As a last resort fit a Roof Rack and lay it flat on the top.


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