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Old 11-13-2018, 06:43 AM   #1
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Best weight for a towed vehicle

My wife and I recently bought a 2005 Itasca 35A Suncruiser.


We are now looking for a flat down tow behind.


I don't need help figuring out what vehicles are flat down towable, but what I need is some help deciding what weight vehicle I should look for.


I really am not considering going with the "heaviest we can tow" .... I'm leaning towards making it as light as possible.


It does have to have an automatic transmission so are options are limited. I've been looking at Chevy Sonics .... and recently Chevy Malibus



But here's my real question ... do I really need to go with some super light weight?


I don't want to turn our RV into a dog that has a hard time going up hills or something that is real hard to stop .... or guzzles even more gas ....



Can someone with some towing experience give me some insight as to what I can expect with different weight tow vehicles on our RV.


The Itasca is a Workhorse 8.1L Vortec V8 ..... 340HP ..... Allison 1000 5 Speed Electronic Overdrive Transmission .... Chasis E .... 30,000 GCWR ..... 24,000 GVWR.


Thanks for any help
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Old 11-13-2018, 07:24 AM   #2
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We've always towed a CRV. We like Honda and its light enough to tow easy and it is big enough to hold extra "stuff" if needed. We just purchased a new Cambria and then the search began for a CRV. CRV's can be flat towed up to the 2014 model. Well... after searching we did find one at our local dealer (have purchased 11 Hondas thru them, lots of kids) and it was a fully loaded '14 with only 20,400 miles. Done deal! My husband says that we need the space for my shoes....that may be true, but I'll never admit it.
Whats nice about CRV's is the room in the back....backs eats fold down for flat larger space.
My advice for you and your tow....what are you comfortable with and how much room do you want.
Keep us posted on your decision.
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Old 11-13-2018, 08:13 AM   #3
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Thanks for the reply ....



What I am really looking for is not a recommendation for which car to tow .... but more about what different weight vehicles and what affect they will have on the driveability of our RV ....


Lets say we got with a Chevy Sonic ..... 2700+ pounds


Or maybe something that's 3000+ pounds ..... 3300+ ...... 3600+ ..... and so on


At what point will we will be "lugging up hills" or "having a hard time stopping"


Never having towed anything with the Suncruiser I'm really in the dark here.


We can make the Sonic work as a tow behind .... we aren't full timers and we still have our other "real vehicles" .... but if we can go a little bigger and it will be no big deal for performance then we likely look at other possibilities.





Fred
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Old 11-13-2018, 09:41 AM   #4
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I had my wife look at the Honda FIT. She did not feel safe and didn't even drive it. So if you want your wife to feel safe while getting you beer get a CRV. Just kidding ladies about the beer but driving around towns and country in unfamiliar surroundings increases the likelihood of something happening. So a little heavier vehicle (800 lbs) was needed for peace of mind. Breaking should not be a issue as it is required in most states to have supplemental braking on the towed vehicle.

https://airsafehitches.com/wp-conten...TowingLaws.pdf

As far as what lugs down the RV depends on a bunch of variables. We will be towing our CRV AWD this weekend and I'll let you know. The View has plenty of torque and heading to Paso Robles for wine tasting has some hills for us to tackle. Stay tuned!
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Old 11-13-2018, 09:51 AM   #5
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Fred-

I suspect you won't notice a difference between the lightest and heaviest vehicles you can tow.

You will notice a difference between not towing and towing.

You will install a braking system for the toad, so stopping it should not be a problem.

The Workhorse engine and Allison transmission are well-regarded.

As a rule, I encourage folks to consider towing at least 10 percent under the lowest towing limit. This allows for the vehicle being over the "nominal" curb weight, and also allows for some cargo to be carried in the vehicle. A margin of at least 20 percent would be better, in my opinion.

I hope this is enough to answer your question.
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Old 11-13-2018, 11:18 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by l1v3fr33ord1 View Post
Fred-

I suspect you won't notice a difference between the lightest and heaviest vehicles you can tow.

You will notice a difference between not towing and towing.

You will install a braking system for the toad, so stopping it should not be a problem.

The Workhorse engine and Allison transmission are well-regarded.

As a rule, I encourage folks to consider towing at least 10 percent under the lowest towing limit. This allows for the vehicle being over the "nominal" curb weight, and also allows for some cargo to be carried in the vehicle. A margin of at least 20 percent would be better, in my opinion.

I hope this is enough to answer your question.
I agree with Mark, and his percentage recommendations are a good guide.
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Old 11-13-2018, 12:58 PM   #7
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We're towing a Mini Cooper Roadster S. It goes about 2600lbs and is behind out 2010 32K with a Ford V10 - 5-speed. We've got the 5-Star tune installed and it does pretty well towing the Mini up hill. We went up Monarch Pass in Colorado at about 45 the entire way up (eastbound).
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Old 11-13-2018, 06:30 PM   #8
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Originally Posted by fredni View Post
But here's my real question ... do I really need to go with some super light weight?
Given that the Jeep Wrangler is one of the most popular toads, if not the most, my answer is, no, you don't need to go with super light weight.

Most of us aren't buying new vehicles to to so let's look at a 2015 Wrangler. Motorhome's 2015 Dinghy Guide lists the Wrangler at 3,785# and the Wrangler Unlimited at 4,075#. If this was an unwieldily weight to tow, I doubt it would be so popular.

To put it in perspective, lighter is going to be "better" including fuel consumption and hill climbing but the differences won't be so significant that you'd want to compromise on comfort, safety and functionality, including while it's being used around home.
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Old 11-14-2018, 10:29 AM   #9
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Thanks to everyone for all the great replies .....


We're kinda stucko buying "something" since neither of our vehicles are flat towable ....



Add to that ... it needs to be automatic


I've been trying to find the lightest I can ... even though it may not be the most desirable ... sounds like I can loosen up a little. I've looked at some low mileage 2014 Honda CR-Vs online ... found some local .... and we're gonna go look at one.


My wife may trade her RAV4 in and go for the CR-V ... we shall see.


Again .... THANKS .... Fred
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Old 11-16-2018, 09:54 AM   #10
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Here's the latest .... a friend of the family buys and sells used vehicles.


He has a 2008 Honda 4WD EX-L CR-V with 130,000 miles on it. He went over it top to bottom and has replaced anything needing replacement ....


I've never bought anything with that many miles on it .... he says CR-Vs that are cared for can easily go over 200,000. He says its in real good shape ... and I trust him.


This will only be a tow vehicle only .... what does everyone think?


BTW ... he's say he'll give it to me for what he has in it .... we're talking about low 7,000s
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Old 11-16-2018, 10:04 AM   #11
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I can't comment on price but it sounds good to me. Even though it's only going to be a toad, make sure you drive it fairly regularly to keep it in good shape.
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Old 11-18-2018, 05:22 PM   #12
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Tow vehicle

Which ever one you decide on, get a good supplemental brake system.
I've used Roadmaster products for over ten years. As far as I'm concerned,they are the best.
Don't let anyone talk you out of getting one no matter what brand.
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Old 11-18-2018, 05:53 PM   #13
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What your hitch or tow bar is capable of towing. Usually they are in the 5000 lb range and as others have said the less weight your toad is the less the drag on fuel etc is going to be. Three-4000 lbs seems to be the average weight people flat towJust make sure whatever you get it is capable of being flat towed. I have the Air Force one brake system and a roadmaster tow system. I really like the AF1 brake because it stays mounted below the dash and I just have one switch to turn to active it easy. Motorhome and trailer life magazines have an annual supplement that gives you some great ideas and cars to consider. Personally I went with a 2014 CRV as most of the others in our WIT group have. Makes it easy if you have a problem to get help.
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Old 11-18-2018, 05:55 PM   #14
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Our 2014 Honda CR-V EX-L weighs in at 3400lbs. litely loaded. It has ALL options. We tow it with the coach in our signature.
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