Here are some of the many pieces of feedback we've received from our customers all over Australia. Some have regained their passion for towing a caravan, some have had AL-KO ESC activate when needed and some have just got in touch to let us know how much they appreciate the additional piece of mind.
Use the “Contact Us” page to get in touch.
AL-KO ESC has made a big difference for us, I’m a strong believer in safety.
I also like my partner to be able to drive. It reacts automatically, where the average driver has to apply brakes manually.
It’s those split seconds that make the difference between having an accident and not having an accident. We have found the AL-KO ESC to be an excellent safety initiative for our van and changed our life on the road – confidence and safety are always paramount to us.
After retro-fitting the AL-KO ESC to our caravan in November 2012, I was looking forward to enjoying our next caravanning holiday with greater peace of mind brought about by this important safety enhancement.
Unfortunately with a variety of commitments the months rolled by and it was early July 2013 before my wife and I were able to get away.
Our intention was to visit Outback Queensland and so we finally took off on our next adventure, traveling initially on the Hume, Goulburn Valley and Newell Highways before detouring onto the major road leading to Griffith, Hillston and then to Cobar.
During this initial part of the journey, the caravan behaved impeccably obediently following behind our Land Rover Discovery. However, the biggest test for the ESC was to come a little later in our journey, when traveling between Cobar and Bourke.
This road is narrow but sealed, albeit similar to many rural areas needing maintenance. It was on this stretch of reasonably straight road that we encountered quite a few B doubles and the ESC was activated on several occasions.
In one particularly dangerous incident, I observed a road train heading towards us and I maneuvered the Land Rover as near as possible to the left hand edge of the road surface, but as passing the road train was imminent, I noticed immediately ahead of our tow vehicle that there was a large elongated pothole, approximately 15 centimetres deep, situated on the edge of our side of the road.
All that I was able to do was warn my wife, exclaiming ”HANG ON”, before firstly the Land Rover, then the caravan dropped into this pothole. Both of us were thrown around the vehicle cabin a little but I felt the caravan rock violently and then with relief I felt the ESC activate and the caravan was brought under immediate control. I am sure that without this important safety feature fitted to the caravan that we would have been involved in a serious accident with the caravan veering into the passing road train, or veering the
other way and dragging our tow vehicle towards a slight embankment to our left.
Our trip overall covered some 7,800 kilometres and the caravan always behaved impeccably, including the near miss as described.
My wife and I have greater confidence in the improved safety of the caravan, since fitting the A L-KO ESC.
Accordingly, I often encourage my caravanning friends and those other “Nomads” that we meet on our travels to seriously consider that they purchase a caravan fitted with ESC, or seek to have it retro-fitted to their current caravan. It is that good!
We own an Avan Eurostar 22 foot caravan (loaded weight around 2600Kg) which we bought in early 2012. We were then using our BMW X5 as our tug.
Generally the X5 was a terrific tow vehicle but despite being kitted out with a quality WHD, we inevitably experienced the odd terrifying moment in a cross wind or when a truck was overtaking, with an unexpected sway.
We first heard of the AL-KO ESC in mid 2012 and arranged to have it retro fitted in early 2013 as soon as retro fitting became available.
About a month later we took the van up to Goondawindi and across to Tweed and then back to Sydney.
On our second day’s traveling the van was towing beautifully and I was reflecting on what I would say if asked about the ESC.
I figured I couldn’t in fact say much because frankly nothing obvious had happened ……… and then it did.
We were approaching a LH bend at around 90kph when I noticed it had a badly deformed surface (from flood damage) AND there was a truck coming the
other way so we had no way of avoiding the problem.
The following happened: we hit the bad piece of road and the van immediately kicked sideways into what felt like the start of a nasty sway; then (and of course everything happened so quickly) we were around the bend and I pressed the accelerator and felt the van brakes release.
It was then that I realised that the ESC had in fact activated, sorted out the problem and still had the brakes gently applied to further slow us down.
It had all happened in the blink of an eye – just amazing.
Since then we have had a couple of minor sways from cross winds, trucks etc and with the same result.
The instant the sway was felt, it was already being resolved.
In my view AL-KO ESC is THE most important accessory you could fit to your caravan.
We wrote to you last year about our misadventure with our Prado and Coromal Princeton which were both totalled 15 kilometres from Nyngan while returning from a trip to Broome.
At that stage I was staring straight into deaths door from chronic heart failure. Given those circumstances we decided that it was unlikely that we would ever buy another caravan so I bought a Subaru Outback and resigned myself to staying around the city in motels.
Coincidentally a friend had bought me a new subscription to the magazine and on the inside cover was an ad for Sunliner Bambino caravans “capable of being towed by a Subaru Outback”.
They were being marketed by Australian motor homes at Bennetts Green about 20 minutes from home so I couldn’t resist going to have a sneaky look and when we got there they had a different model- the Carnie- (named after the owners daughter).
This one was 5metres long excluding the A-frame and had a shower and toilet and the secret was an electrically operated bed which lifted up into the roof when not in use. I fell in love with it on the spot and my pent up desire to hit the road took over. 10 minutes later I had paid a deposit and was a nomad again.
Marilyn had some reservations as did both my cardiologists and my GP but we decided that if I had a high probability of dropping off this mortal coil (1in3 was the odds the cardios gave me ) then I would rather it happen at Cardwell or all points north than sitting miserably in a chair waiting. I made one concession however I contacted AL-KO and got the details of their new electronic stability control unit.
It was not really available for retro-fitting yet but their NSW state manager, once he heard my pathetic story responded beautifully and arranged for us to take the van to the Melbourne head office in Dandenong where AL-KO would fit it so we had stage two underway.
The next step was to take the Subaru Outback to to have the tow bar fitted. In response to the service managers query about “what load do you plan on towing?” I replied “1600kg”. “Oh no you’re not” he said “1500kgs is the limit for this vehicle”.
I suddenly realised how much money you could lose on a 5 month old car. But alas, we nomads are nothing if not intrepid so I started researching small diesel SUV’s which could tow 2000kgs.
The answer surprised me. A Ssangyong Korando. Now I have had ML Mercedes both petrol and diesel, BMWs, Daihatsu, Holdens the Prado and a Ford and I have to say the only car I miss is the Prado, possibly because it saved my life.
When you look at the pictures it rolled and rolled and twisted and head firsted into a bank and we walked away barely scratched. However the Korando is a lovely little car which does everything I wanted So I want everybody to know that it will do the job for you if you are not over ambitious on caravan size.
So there we are… a new caravan, new car and just to make me confident enough to let Marilyn drive again, a new AL-KO Electronic Stability Control unit.
We have towed to Melbourne and back, going to Umina in February for two weeks and Port Douglas in May and June.
Does it get any better than this? I don’t think so. Now there are not too many Carnies on the road and I doubt the ones that are will be hooked up to a Korando so if you see one that is, It’s likely me so wave and flash your headlights As you pass and acknowledge that while we all are approaching that age but we’re keeping ahead of the reaper!
We feel AL-KO ESC could save lives, we are totally in favor of it and tell everyone about it. Everyone think this type of event happens to “other people”.
We thought we would send you a big thank you for the supply and installation of this wonderful product.
Having AL-KO ESC retrofitted to our caravan installed will undoubtedly improve our safety as we head off on future holidays.
Australia is the most challenging and unique environment on the planet, with a myriad of weather conditions from serenity to down right scary you are battling heat, water, wind, rain and very unfriendly terrain in various locations.
Spending lots of hours “ON THE ROAD” I come across dangerous situations and unfortunately see many accidents with Caravans and RV’S that I believe could have been prevented or had the impact reduced If they had a braking system that could control the Caravan being towed better and give the driver confidence that they will be able to drive through the situation safely.
Well after the release of the “AL-KO ESC” and driving it in some simulated tests in the rain and slippery road, I must say the “ESC” has delivered.
After watching others drive the course and swap lanes at 80km, throwing the caravan into all kinds of unsafe motions, I thought that if the “ESC” works in this situation it will SAVE LIVES and PREVENT A LOT OF BAD ACCIDENTS.
When it was my turn behind the wheel with the “ESC SYSTEM”, I approached the simulated road entrance again at 80 km, to say I was nervous was correct. I swerved sharply left into the other lane and immediately felt the “ESC” doing it’s job.
The caravan was pulled into line, the swaying stopped and I immediately got the feeling of great confidence that I was in complete control of the vehicle and caravan, not the vehicle and caravan in control of me.
This system is undoubtedly a major brace through in safer towing on our roads and I am sure that it will instil great confidence in all who use it for safer and more enjoyable towing – taking out the stress factor making a far more enjoyable holiday.
It also has a very good side benefit I think and that is it will encourage more people to purchase RV’S who probably would not have done so with out such a great system to make the towing experience enjoyable.
“Well done AL-KO!”
On The Road Magazine
Last Boxing day we were intending to travel to South Australia from Perth but just before we reached Southern Cross our van began to sway. It occurred almost immediately after we were overtaken by a car traveling at high speed. The sway increased to the point it dragged us along the road and as soon as the caravan hit the gravel side it rolled. We came to a stop ninety degrees across the road. Fortunately I did not slam on the breaks or it would have been much worse.
We have had AL-KO ESC fitted to our new caravan, and we have noticed a significant difference in our towing. I have felt a slight pulling back by the caravan when I was passed-by road trains rather than the usual wobbling. When other cars pass at speed now there is still movement but not as dramatic as before. We feel much safer with AL-KO ESC fitted and we recommend its use to everyone we meet.
I hope our experience will help others.
We recently had the new and innovative ALKO ESC retrofitted to our 2007 Jayco Sterling Outback Caravan. Being the Outback model, it is higher than your normal caravan and tended to be susceptible to the “wind” effect. But now with ESC, that is no longer a problem.
During a 4000km round tip a few weeks ago, we encountered some very strong sidewinds, which normally would make for very unpleasant towing. The ESC controlled any lateral movement and kept the Pajero and van nice and stable. We were able to maintain our speed and felt very confident.
The “buffeting” effect commonly experienced from passing semis, is also kept to a minimum, and since having ESC fitted, we can barely notice this anymore.
Overall, the extra confidence you gain from knowing that is ESC is there if you need it, is invaluable to caravanners. Lateral movement, whether from sidewinds or swerving to avoid an object or animal, is a constant part of caravanning. Now we have AL-KO ESC to control this, helps us feel re-assured and much safer.
We can highly recommend ALKO ESC to others.
The 10% discount from our insurance company is an added bonus!