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Old 04-09-2010, 10:02 AM   #1
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need a daily driver

I need to buy a daily driver that will also pull my airstream. I have a 73 int overlander at about 6000 pounds. I am a single mom with 3 kids and I cant afford two vehicles. Is there anything you guys would suggest that would get ok gas milage(Id drive a bike if I could Im very concerned about my carbon foot print)and isnt as big as an excersion? Is this possible or am I just screwed!?
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Old 04-09-2010, 10:15 AM   #2
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In my hunt for a TV before I found the 22 Argosy I found the newer model (2007) Ford Expedition was perfect, getting 20 mpg and towing 9,000 with the factory tow package, pricing was reasonable compared to other TV's. If I move up in size I'd get one in a heartbeat.
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Old 04-09-2010, 02:07 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by casitaplata View Post
I need to buy a daily driver that will also pull my airstream. I have a 73 int overlander at about 6000 pounds. I am a single mom with 3 kids and I cant afford two vehicles. Is there anything you guys would suggest that would get ok gas milage(Id drive a bike if I could Im very concerned about my carbon foot print)and isnt as big as an excersion? Is this possible or am I just screwed!?
Well, that's a loaded question...

More info is good. So far we know (1) you need seating for four, (2) you need a tow capacity of 6000 - 7500 lbs depending on what school your from and how much extra stuff your loading, (3) you'd like to get the same gas mileage as a bike .

Any preference on vehicle type?
Where you pullin' the trailer and how often?
What type of hitch do you have?
What is your budget?

Laura
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Old 04-09-2010, 04:08 PM   #4
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One word, Suburban.
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Old 04-09-2010, 04:19 PM   #5
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To add to Laura's list: how far do you drive daily? I'm seeing 15-30 minute trips to kid's events and shopping?

Rae
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Old 04-09-2010, 04:35 PM   #6
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Full size van. But you'll still need the bicycle to make up for the gas mileage.
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Old 04-09-2010, 04:45 PM   #7
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Yes... What type of vehicle do you prefer?

Truck, car, suv, import, domestic??? How much do you want to spend?
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Old 04-09-2010, 05:03 PM   #8
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Your profile says "05 2500 Dodge diesel" as tow vehicle... With some hutzpah that could be retailed off and a nice Suburban or other kid-friendly tow vehicle installed in its place - with the premium originally paid for the diesel intact and banked?
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Old 04-09-2010, 05:10 PM   #9
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A Tahoe/Yukon could do the towing job well, and get decent round town mileage, plus do all the domestic cartage.

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Old 04-09-2010, 05:41 PM   #10
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All good suggestions . . .

You haven't mentioned where you live & what type of towing conditions you would encounter, i.e. driving on the flats of Kansas or schlepping around your trailer over mountain passes. Do you need 4 x 4 capability for getting around in the winter? 4 x 4 is convenient & since it does add to the overall weight of the vehicle, it tends to decrease the mileage.
The Tahoe/Yukon is great for towing, provided it is the extended wheelbase model - this also gives you more cargo room behind the 3rd seat.
If you are towing over passes, then the 6.0L V8 engine would be the best. We have a friend who tows an 86 27' Airstream with a Denali XL equipped with the 6.0L - primary towing turf in California. He has no problem with hauling his rig up 10% grades with this combo & the city driving is very comfy. However, his mileage isn't that great.
We have friends who towed a 24' AS with a 1500 Suburban 5.7L engine, 4 x 4, again in California. After a year of this, they traded up to a 2500 Suburban (non 4 x 4) with the 7.4L engine. With this rig, they were able to get around 8.5 to 10 mpg towing through the mountains & desert.
Oh, though for the "good old days" - we, too, owned an Overlander in the early 80's - we towed it with a 1975 Ford Custom 500 powered by a small block 400 cid V8. For some reason, this vehicle was produced pre catalytic converters. What a road car! On the highway, we managed 20-22 mpg. Towing the trailer through the mountains, we recorded 15 mpg (this was in the days before the lower speed limits, too, which hubby took advantage of)
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Old 04-09-2010, 06:22 PM   #11
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Wow you guys and gals are the best! OK the Dodge 2500 left with the deadbeat! So its just me and the kids. I live in central Tx near Austin. It is very very very hot 9 months out of the year. I only take the airstream out about 4-6 times a year but will go more often now that its MY WAY on the Highway!!!haha. OK I drive quite a bit. I am a midwife so I do home visits and deliver babies(yes there are still midwives!) When i dont have to go far I ride my 1948 Monark bicycle. So the daily driver needs to get decent MPG. I would like to get an suv like a 4 runner but have been told thats not big enough. I would prefer not to get a truck but am not goingto part with my AS. I dont deal with any bad weather really(unless cooking an egg on your forehead counts) I dont really care if its domestic or foreign. Doesnt seem to really matter its all made in China anyway(dont get me started)Oh money is not a big issue I have a millionaire for a best friend and shes co sging. Although i have to pay it off so Id like to keep it below(well below)30,000
Ok I hope that cpvers most of the questions.
suggestions?
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Old 04-09-2010, 06:45 PM   #12
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"decent" mpg is in the eye of the beholder. To someone who drives a motorhome, my 14mpg pickup truck gets "decent" mileage. Might even say "awesome". So...define "decent".

If you want to stick within the realm of "conventional factory tow ratings="gospel"", its gonna be tough to stay <30k. Nor will there be anything that gets "decent" mileage, either. But used? well...pick a vehicle...adjust age to fit price.

You might consider a GMC Acadia...I think I've seen some "deals" advertised that are less than 30K, and it gets 24mpg for the other 360 days of the year. However, if you're stuck on factory ratings, it won't be acceptable...even though its bigger, more powerful, and has other "good tow vehicle" attributes that exceed other Chevy products that do have the "rating".
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Old 04-09-2010, 07:45 PM   #13
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Good call on the Acadia, my friend. Knowing what I know now, I'd have gotten one myself. (not that I'm unhappy with my Yukon)

So casitaplata, will you be buying new? if so, you will be happy with most any good sized SUV out there. If you are thinking old, may I interest you in a 1996 Buick wagon? It tows my 27' Overlander and my Argosy 22 just fine.

one question, can I see photos of your bike? old bikes are a hobby of mine.
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Old 04-09-2010, 08:12 PM   #14
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Good call on the Acadia, my friend. Knowing what I know now, I'd have gotten one myself. (not that I'm unhappy with my Yukon)
you think it would be "better"? you do know that some people disagree. Some might even call it...."stupid".
ANYway, I'd like to hear more of your thoughts on it. your Yukon...thats like a Tahoe, yes?

casitaplata, if you can get where you need to go most of the time on a bike, I don't think whatever you pick for a vehicle, no matter how bad the mileage is, is going to put much of a dent in the world's problems, one way or the other. Its one thing if you're going 40 miles each way to work, day in and day out, but if you're mostly "around town"...throw a solar panel up on the roof as penance, and "go with god".

An Airstreaming friend of mine once told me that he has gotten actual "grief" from people at the gas pump, when he fills up his 3/4ton Burb...till he informs them that, in spite of his large gas-guzzling vehicle, his carbon footprint is much smaller than most people's, because he lives in his airstream, and doesn't burn any 2000 gallons/year of home heating oil to heat a house, or a bazzillion coal-fired kilowatts of electricity to cool it in the summer.
"big picture"...
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