IMPORTANT INFORMATION REGARDING BTC UPGRADES- LC200
Stage 1 Kit- Recommended for towing 3500kg-3700kg Apparatus.
Kit includes height adjustable fabricated tongue and Lovells All Terrain Haul Ace Coupling/Hitch system. This kit is however still rated at 4000kg braked towing capacity. (Ball weight must not exceed 350kg)
Not compatible with most weight distribution systems.
Stage 2 Kit- Recommended for towing 3500kg-4000kg Apparatus.
Kit includes height adjustable drop shank and Lovells All Terrain Haul Ace Coupling/Hitch system plus a Lovells 1200lb Weight Distribution Hitch system (WDH).
(Ball weight must not exceed 400kg)
Please note that the Lovells BTC Upgrade can only be complied if a Lovells GVM Upgrade is fitted to the vehicle.
Lovells BTC Upgrade tongue/hitch receiver/drop shank can only be attached to the Toyota OE Towbar and is not compliant for aftermarket tow bars.
WHO CAN FIT LOVELLS BTC UPGRADE KITS?
Because the Kit is approved on the basis of Lovells Automotive Systems being a Second Stage Manufacturer, and the responsibility ultimately lying with Lovells, only Lovells Springs Authorised Fitters (Production Facilities) are approved to fit these kits. All BTC Upgrade Kit’s are supplied with detailed fitting instructions and appropriate documentation.
WHO WOULD REQUIRE A BTC UPGRADE FOR THEIR VEHICLE?
This kit will suit any vehicle owner/operator who has a need to tow greater loads. This includes Government Departments, Mining Companies, Farmers, Tradesmen, large and small businesses, especially individuals loading their vans for travelling and touring.
WHAT DOCUMENTS ARE REQUIRED TO ENSURE YOU ARE COMPLYING WITH THE APPROVAL?
There is a specific BTC Upgrade Kit Order Form (Federal Compliance Order Form and State Compliance Order Form) which must be filled out by the specified Lovells Authorised Fitter or End User per vehicle to be modified. Lovells will cross check the vehicle VIN at point of BTC Upgrade Order to ensure we have DIT records of the vehicle being fitted and complied with a Lovells GVM Upgrade. If Lovells do not have records of the VIN, a BTC Upgrade cannot be supplied or fitted. On completion of the BTC Upgrade Kit being fitted by the Lovells Authorised Fitter, a Federal or State Compliance Check List must be filled out and retained by the Fitter and Lovells for future reference. Procedures such as these ensure requirements of Lovells being a second stage manufacturer are being fulfilled.
WHEN SHOULD A BTC UPGRADE KIT BE FITTED?
FEDERAL COMPLIANCE: New vehicles must be fitted prior to first registration. They are simply thenregistered with a revised BTC as per the new compliance plate.
The Towed apparatus does not need to be brand new, yet must be in roadworthy condition. Towed apparatus compliance to 4T is the customers responsibility, contact your Original Manufacturer to arrange towed apparatus increase compliance.
Vehicles which are already registered cannot be fitted with a kit under this Federal Approval.
STATE COMPLIANCE: BTC Upgrades can be fitted to already registered vehicles in most States and Territories. The registered will have to be inspected by a Lovells Endorsed State Engineering Signatory. Extra Cost for Inspection and documents will be incurred. Cost is dependent on State and the vehicle can only be complied/inspected in the State which it is registered.
Pre-registration GCM upgrades
A vehicle’s GCM is first nominated by the original manufacturer (OEM).
There are various organisations, known in the industry as ‘second stage manufacturers’ (SSMs), that are frequently engaged to upgrade vehicle capacity, prior to first registration. Some SSMs, like Lovells, update the GCM to reflect the change in capacity as a result of the upgrade.
Lovells believes that when there has been an upgrade to vehicle capacity pre-registration, it is important for any change to the vehicle’s GCM that has resulted from the upgrade to be noted. Lovells believes this is important for numerous reasons, including for accuracy and safety.
Lovells understands that an updated GCM may be specified by a manufacturer and believes it is good practice for manufacturers to do so.
Who is a manufacturer?
The term manufacturer has a clear definition in the Australian Design Rules (ADRs), in clause 3 of Vehicle Standard (Australian Design Rule - Definitions and Vehicle Categories) 2005.
The ADRs say that a manufacturer of a vehicle is the person who accepts responsibility for compliance with the ADRs in relation to that vehicle and is issued a compliance plate approval certificate for that vehicle.
The ADRs do not differentiate between OEMs and SSMs.
Based on the definition in the ADRs, Lovells will be considered to be a manufacturer of a vehicle if it accepts responsibility for compliance with the ADRs in relation to that vehicle and is issued a compliance plate approval certificate for that vehicle. Lovells accepts this responsibility as part of its GCM upgrade packages.
Has there been a recent change to the law regulating pre-registration GCM upgrades?
There has been no recent change to the law regulating pre-registration vehicle upgrades.
Lovells understands that the longstanding position for many years has been that while the Federal Department does not assess, endorse or approve GCM upgrades, it equally does not restrict or prohibit GCM upgrades. Lovells understands this longstanding position has not changed.
Importantly, this means that:
Vehicles that Lovells has previously modified are legal in all States and Territories.
Lovells is permitted to plate vehicles with gross vehicle mass (GVM) upgrades and towing capacity upgrades under the approved RVD (as stated in Lovells SSM approvals and as noted on current RVDs).
Lovells is permitted to modify GVM/GCM/towing capacity or variants of these modifications in all States and Territories prior to first registration.
What is the position regarding post-registration upgrades?
When a manufacturer modifies a vehicle that has already been registered, this modification is governed by the various State and Territory authorities and their individual Type Approvals or Modification Codes. Put simply, these upgrades are governed by State and Territory law.
Whether a particular type of modification is available post-registration, therefore depends on the position in the State or Territory in question. Some of the States and Territories have recently changed their position in relation to post-registration upgrades.
GCM upgrades post-registration
Lovells understands that the current position in relation to GCM upgrades in each State and Territory is as follows:
NSW, SA and VIC recognise a revised GCM specified by a SSM if endorsed by the inspecting engineering signatory. The signatory must be an endorsed engineer who has access to our Evidence Packages. Endorsed engineers’ contact details are available upon request
Tasmania recognises a revised GCM specified by a SSM.
Queensland no longer recognises a revised GCM above the GCM nominated by the OEM. However, on 22 January 2020, Queensland TMR released a statement to the industry that “TMR is exploring options for the issue of a new code that deals with GCM increases. TMR is working closely with Industry on this task, and in particular the Australian Automotive Aftermarket Association (AAAA). Whilst TMR’s priority remains on road safety and national consistency, it is optimistic that a technically sound and separate code-based solution for GCM re-rating can be developed”.
WA, ACT and NT no longer recognises a revised GCM above the GCM nominated by the OEM if the vehicle is modified after first registration.
Towing upgrades post-registration
NSW, SA and VIC recognise a revised towing capacity upgrade if endorsed by the inspecting engineering signatory. The signatory must be an endorsed engineer who has access to our Evidence Packages. Endorsed Signatories contact details are available upon request.
Queensland recognises a revised Towing Capacity Upgrade based on LS11/LS15/LX1 Modification Codes under the VSA (Vehicle Standards Approval System).
Tasmania, WA and NT no longer allow Towing Capacity over OEM nominated capacity.
How does Lovells ensure that any GCM it nominates is accurate?
Not every SSM can or does nominate a revised GCM.
Lovells does nominate revised GCM capacity figures as a SSM.
Lovells is committed to going above and beyond and believes it is the only SSM that has a full complement of test data and evidence packages to satisfy the December 2019 released GCM and Towing Upgrade Technical Working Group test regime.
This comprehensive new test regime is endorsed by the AAAA, exceeds OEM requirements, and includes the following tests:
Warranty – OE Components
Once the Lovells SSM compliance plate is fitted to the vehicle, then Lovells Springs bare full responsibility and will warrant any failure directly associated with the GVM and GCM increase. Please see excerpts from Lovells undertaking in all Overview Documents;
ADR35/05 Testing- Dynamic Braking performance, handbrake performance and gradient starts.
ADR88 ESC Performance Testing- Sine with Dwell.
Uprated Axle Assembly Testing- FEA (Finite Element Analysis), lab testing, material testing and CAD modelling.
SAE J2807 GCM Verification- Driveline and Power train thermal testing.
SAE J2807 Dynamic Stability testing as a combination. Utilising Lovells test trailer built to SAE standards. This is the only SAE test trailer in the country at present and features include, adjustable draw bar/axle position, adjustable centre of gravity, adjustable moment of inertia, load cells on all components, yaw sensors and data acquisition systems, adjustable aerodynamics and frontal area, adjustable weight distribution with rail slides and interchangeable suspension types.
SAE J266 Understeer testing as a combination.
VSB6 GCM verification calculations- Startability and Gradability.
Combination Vehicle and Trailer Braking test based on ADR35.
Towing Upgrade Chassis testing and ADR-62/02 testing.
Towing Upgrade Hitch receiver load testing and durability/cyclic frequency evidence by an independent DIRDC endorsed Test Facility.
ADR62/02 Evidence- Mechanical Connections between vehicles.
Laboratory Report ADR-62/02 - 1200lb Weight Distribution System.
Dynamic Strength Test Report - Lovells 5T Haul Ace All Terrain Hitch.
Laboratory Report ADR-62/02 - Static Test AS4177.1 -1200lb Weight Distribution System.
Laboratory Report ADR-62/02 - Static Strength Test.
Component Registration 47868 Lovells 5T Haul Ace All Terrain Hitch.
Component Registration 48275 Lovells 1200lb Weight Distribution System.
Component Registration 48274 Lovells Tow Bar/Drop Shank.
IS THE ORIGINAL EQUIPMENT WARRANTY AFFECTED WHEN FITTING A LOVELLS GVM UPGRADE?
As a SSM approval holder, Lovells takes full responsibility for the changes the revised GVM, GCM and the Rated Towing Capacity may have on the duty cycle of the vehicle systems and sub-systems (for example, Brakes, Automatic Transmission, Tow Coupling etc) and any follow on effect on warranty claims by vehicle owners.
‘Vehicle warranty is not affected when a GVM or BTC Upgrade (Rated Towing Capacity Upgrade) is fitted. Our testing and analysis procedures are stringent and undertaken by an accredited Automotive Engineering Consultants to ensure original equipment components are not compromised. Modifications and load limits are within theoretical service/safety factors to ensure the integrity and longevity of OE (Original Equipment) parts associated with increasing the vehicles load carrying capabilities. As Lovells are a Second Stage Manufacturer, it is our responsibility to document these tests and thus take responsibility for the GVM, GCM and Rated Towing Capacity Upgrades (BTC Upgrades) and their compliance.
Therefore, should an OE (Original Equipment) component fail and be directly attributed/caused by the vehicle carrying loads to a maximum GVM, GCM and Rated Towing Capacity or part failure associated with the GVM, GCM and Rated Towing Capacity Upgrade modification, Lovells will take full responsibility to cover warranty of any failed component after written proof and testing by an independent body has been lodged and confirmed the failure is due to the vehicles increased GVM, GCM and Rated Towing Capacity.
Warranty excludes any component or system which has been identified by the OEM as having a potential failure or problem.
Toyota Landcruiser LC70 variants: Toyota has identified an ongoing issue with potential front differential oil leaks on Toyota Landcruiser LC70 variants, (Toyota Technical News Flash TNF-79/19), Lovells SSM warranty excludes any gazetted failure of OEM components. This exclusion includes parts and labour.
Based on Lovells differential testing, CAD modelling and FEA analysis, there is no satisfactory correlation to the potential premature failure of the differential centre securing bolts loosening/breaking as a direct result of Lovells suspension upgrades.
Ford Ranger PX3 2.0 litre bi-turbo: Based on Ford Customer Service Bulletin released on 4/3/20, Lovells will not assume any warranty or responsibility for transmission failure on the Ford Ranger 2.0 litre engine variant.
CAN A LOVELLS BTC UPGRADE BE COMPLIED IF A COMPETITORS GVM UPGRADE IS FITTED TO THE VEHICLE?
No. The Lovells BTC Upgrade can only be complied if a Lovells GVM Upgrade is fitted to the vehicle. This is due to all test data, dynamic testing and ADR compliance has been gained with Lovells parts and design parameters.
CAN A LOVELLS BTC UPGRADE KIT BE FITTED TO AFTERMARKET TOW BARS / WHEEL CARRIER EXTENSIONS?
No. The Lovells BTC Upgrade tongue/hitch receiver/drop shank can only be attached to the Toyota OE Towbar on the LC200 and is not compliant for aftermarket tow bars. For the Prado, the Lovells BTC Upgrade Heavy Duty Tow Bar Assembly, tongue/hitch receiver/drop shank can only be utilized and is not compliant for aftermarket tow bars or non-Lovells brand Hitches.
CAN YOU USE ANOTHER BRAND HITCH RECEIVER / DROP SHANK / HITCH SYSTEM OR WEIGHT DISTRIBUTION SYSTEM OTHER THAN THE LOVELLS KIT PARTS?
No. The Lovells BTC Upgrade can only be complied if Lovells approved/sanctioned BTC Upgrade parts are utilized. This is due to all test data, load testing, dynamic testing and ADR compliance has been gained with Lovells parts and design parameters.
CAN YOU FIT A LOVELLS GVM UPGRADE AND LOVELLS BTC UPGRADE AND REPLACEMENT PARTS YOURSELF OR CAN YOUR LOCAL MECHANIC FIT THE KITS?
No. Both kits and replacement parts must be fitted and plated by a Lovells Authorised Fitter. A list of Lovells Authorised Fitters can be found at www.lovells.com.au
GVM Upgrade Fitters are registered as a Production Facility with the Federal Dept of Transport and Infrastructure and linked to our Approvals. They have supplied quality systems documents and are audited every 12 months. They all undergo intensive training for fitting and testing procedures and hold stock of parts to qualify for fitting status. They are signed into legally binding Fitters Agreements.
CAN THE LOVELLS GVM UPGRADE AND BTC UPGRADE KITS BE FITTED TO VEHICLES WITH KDSS?
Yes. Our Fitting Instructions come with full detail for our Fitters on how to adjust and reset KDSS. Some vehicles trim perfectly, whereas, some require trimming with D/S strut spacers. Height from D/S to P/S within 10-15mm is acceptable on KDSS equipped vehicles.
IS THE GVM AND BTC UPGRADE LEGAL IN ALL STATES AND TERRITORIES?
Yes. Rest assured, The Federal Dept of Transport have the final say on all Second Stage Manufacturers Approvals and we cover everything and more as required by the ADRs.
KEY ADVANTAGES OF FITTING A LOVELLS BTC UPGRADE
- The BTC Upgrade kit is Approved by the Department of Infrastructure, Transport, Regional Development and Local Government and comes complete with a secondary manufacturers compliance plate or State Transport Compliance.
Lovells BTC Upgrades can be complied prior to registration on Federal Compliance OR certified under State Compliance for already registered vehicles.
Keeping you legal- The Upgrade kit is legal in all States and Territories. Protects Business and Fleet Managers from claims and breaches of OH&S rules and employee negligence if towing beyond the vehicles limits.
Protects you from Insurance companies voiding payout if the vehicle is towing beyond approved Braked Towing Capacity.
Removes the possibility of fines or litigation if is vehicle operated beyond its legal Towing Limits.
Australian designed and made.
Easily hitched and disconnected, even on uneven ground.
Easy to operate. One person hitching.
Anti theft Hitch locking mechanism.
No tools needed to hitch or unhitch.
Automatic hitch locking feature.
Low maintenance and fully sealed from dust and dirt.
Designed for hardcore offroad use or highway use.
Hitch rated at 5 Tonnes
WDH Anti- Sway System rated at 544kg
Less than 2 hours to fit and comply
Authorised Fitters and Spares available nationwide