Gross Vehicle Weight

Gross Vehicle Weight (GVW), Gross Vehicle Weight Rating (GVWR), Gross Combined Weight Rating (GCWR), what does all this mean?

Your gross vehicle weight rating is extremely important. This basically states how much your vehicle is rated to tow. It is extremely important that the trailer you want to tow does not exceed this weight. It may cause issues to your transmission, engine and overall car condition. You do not want to put that stress on your vehicle and wear it out.

Gross Vehicle Weight (GVW)

The gross vehicle weight is how much your vehicle actually weighs including it’s payload.

Gross Vehicle Weight Rating (GVWR)

The Gross Vehicle weight rate is how much a vehicle weighs, including all cargo allowed in the vehicle at one time determined by the manufacture. This is taking into account the vehicle’s tires, suspension, axles and all other items the vehicle or trailer is built with.

Gross Combined Weight Rating (GCWR)

The Gross Combined Weight Rating is the entire weight of the vehicle, including all the items it can carry inside the vehicle, plus the maximum it can tow determined by the manufacture.

Gross Axle Weight Rating (GAWR)

The Gross Axle Weight Rating is the maximum weight that the vehicle’s front or rear axles can handle. Each axle has its own rating, the front rating is referred to as FR and the rear rating is referred to as RR. This rating includes all items that vehicle can carry, plus any passengers. It is never recommended to exceed these ratings as it can hurt the vehicle’s axles.

Tongue Weight (TW)

The Tongue Weight is basically how much pressure is being put onto your vehicle by the cargo the vehicle is carrying.

Unloaded Vehicle Weight (UVW)

The Unloaded Vehicle Weight is also called Dry Weight. This is the amount the vehicle weighs without any added cargo.


Payload is the amount of weight that your vehicle can haul. This amount is determined by the manufacture.

All of these ratings are determined by the manufacture and are not suggested to be exceeded, strictly for safety reasons.

Now that you’ve read all about what these abbreviations mean, check out the proper equipment needed to tow a trailer here.

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