Originally Posted by brican
We have a 2016 Via and want to tow a 2019 Jeep Wrangler JL behind the Via. We are wondering if there are any issues since the Jeep is getting close to the 5000 pound towing limit for the Via and it's little 6 cylinder 185hp diesel.
I am not an expert on this but this is my understanding.
The tow rating of the hitch may not be the actual amount you can tow. Your hitch is probably rated at 5000 pounds (the one in our Fuse is), but the vehicle may not be rated for the same amount as the hitch. The actual weight you can tow is the minimum of the two values [the hitch rating] and [the vehicle rating].
The theoretical vehicle rating you can tow, given a fully loaded RV, is the difference between the GCWR and GVWR values in your Via's specs. Since Winnebago no longer lists the full specs of the Via on their web page I do not know what that value is, but I am reasonably sure it is less than 5000 pounds. You can probably find those values in your Via manual and they may also be listed on a tag on your chassis driver's side door jam. If you can not find them you can always get them by calling the tech support line at Winnebago. I did that for our Fuse.
You can compute the actual tow weight by finding the difference between the GCWR value of the coach and the actual loaded weight of your RV and the best way to determine that is to load your RV as you normally would and then take it to a truck stop to be weighed. I know that sounds like a pain but we just set out for a trip and stopped at the local Love's gas station that had facilities for weighing a truck. It cost us $10, took about 10 minutes and I left knowing what the actual loaded weight (and hence the weight I could tow) of our Fuse.
I think your Via uses the MB chassis and diesel so your allowable tow weight is probably higher than ours (the Fuse is on a Ford chassis with the Ford diesel). Our spec values are GCWR = 13,500 pounds, GVWR = 10,360 and the actual loaded weight = 10,070 pounds. Thus, for us, our theoretical max tow weight given a fully loaded Fuse is 3140 pounds (13,500 - 10,360) and the actual tow weight is 3430 pounds (13,500 - 10,070). As I said, our hitch is rated at 5000 pounds, but we can only tow about 3400 pounds.
The current Winnebago specs for the Vita (which is a MB chassis and diesel) and may be the same as your Via gives a GCWR value of 15,250 and a GVWR of 11,030 with a difference of 4220 pounds (if my math is correct).
Some of the Jeeps that are flat towable weigh less than that but you may want to check on the weight of the Jeep you are interested in. We wanted to get a 2 door Wrangler to tow but it weighed more than the Fuse could tow so we ended up with a Honda Fit. The Jeep was lighter than the hitch rating but more than the weight the vehicle itself could actually tow.
Hope this is some help.