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Old 07-28-2015, 10:08 PM   #1
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2012 30' Classic Tow Recommendations!

Hello! I am currently looking to buy my first airstream! I am getting a 30' classic 2012. Is a 2500hd Chevy gas going to be good enough? I am going to be going across canada and down through the states eventually. Currently own a F150 5.4L and am thinking its not big enough.... anyone know what I should have?

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Old 07-29-2015, 04:19 AM   #2
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The 2500hd will be perfect, but you still need a quality, well setup weight distribution hitch.


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Old 07-29-2015, 04:37 AM   #3
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Your choice of AS model is to be commended. the 2500 HD will work great. If it was diesel it would be even better in my opinion.

2015 GMC Denali 2500, 4x4, Duramax diesel, Topper, Pro Pride 3 P, Sendel 16" with Michelin LTs, one Yellow Labrador Retriever (AS security)
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Old 07-29-2015, 07:01 PM   #4
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the 2500hd is a hoose for sure .. if you are looking at the 6.1L or the duramax diesel either will be adequate. the diesel will be stronger pulling and have the exhaust braking feature the gas will not have.

gas is less upfront for sure and deals for new/used trucks are just around the corner with '16 hitting showroom floors in sept.
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2-24-16 got a 2005 Classic 31D
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Old 07-29-2015, 07:34 PM   #5
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Your ford should be able to pull it with much problem. I use a 2004 suburban with a 5.3 v8. My only issue is I have a 4 speed transmission. If your 150 is newer I wouldn't spend the money on a 2500 unless of course you use the excuse that you need a new truck to pull the Airstream, if you know what I mean.
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Old 07-29-2015, 07:58 PM   #6
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I'm not a GM kind of person but if I had to choose between a F-150 vs. a 2500HD I would by all means go with the HD. Too much is better than not enough.
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Old 07-30-2015, 10:25 AM   #7
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Not sure what engine and axle are in your Chevy, but I'm pulling my 30' Classic slide out with a GMC 2500 Savana van. I equipped it with the 6.0 liter gas and 4.10 rear axle. Going with the 6.0 liter engine also gave me a HD transmission which is capable of towing in overdrive. The tow rating is 9,900 lbs. I know I approach 9,100 if I tow with a full fresh water tank (60 gallons).

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'04 Classic 30' S.O.,'03 GMC Savana 2500,'14 Honda CTX 700
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Old 07-30-2015, 10:33 AM   #8
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More than enough truck.
I have a Tundra and a 30' Classic. It is at or exceeding payload.
The 2500HD will have a little more leeway on towing capacity and payload.
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Old 07-30-2015, 11:04 AM   #9
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Tow Vehicle

I am pleased that you have selected a GM 2500 HD but if you have not yet purchased I highly recommend the 2500 HD diesel over gas. The difference is unbelievable as far as power and downhill decent.
I have a 30' Classic and also drive a 2007 GMC diesel 4X4 crew cab and love it for the handling, hold back and power.
Nothing wrong from looking at some used models?
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Old 07-30-2015, 11:39 AM   #10
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I have the same trailer and I pull it with a silverado 2500 diesel. Fantastic tow vehicle and my wife likes to drive it as well. Hitch setup is very important.
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Old 07-30-2015, 01:06 PM   #11
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I tow a 28' Classic with a 2013 2500HD diesel and love it. Exhaust brake works really well and is particularly helpful if you will be in much hilly terrain.
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Old 07-30-2015, 03:09 PM   #12
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As you can see from most of the folks who have posted, there IS a lot to recommend the 2500. I can attest to the value of a diesel, not only for the massive torque -- mine has 840 lbs -- but the engine braking is a huge safety factor if you've got up to 10,000 pounds of trailer behind you on a 6-7% grade coming DOWN through the mountains. From personal experience, I can tell you that I have yet to meet a downhill grade where I relied much on either TV or trailer brakes. A mild touch is about all you need. Oh, and there is something kind of neat about going UP a mountain and going AROUND a "Voltage" or a "Predator" or a 45 foot motorhome with 6 slides....
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Old 07-31-2015, 09:06 AM   #13
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have been towing AS since 2005 with diesel Excursion 2005 6L. first towed 30' excella, since 2011 34' classic. torque power is the way to go. transmission breaking is excellent. live in SW fla. have been to Ks thru Ar and ozarks, N Ga mountains, thru the allegheny's, appaliachians, adirondaks, maine, up into the canadian maritimes 7% & 12% grades. uphill acceleration no problem, pass the gassers, downhill transmission braking is very nice feature. would not tow with out it after experiencing it.
Just read an article on 2015 duramax, user stated it is not engine breaking ie. jake break but transmission breaking, they are very different. engine will rev higher with transmission breaking going down very long steep grades.

enjoy your 30' mine was a great one until it was rear ended on I 10 after I stopped for an accident ahead of me. took it to west kansas and pheasant hunted dec 09 thru jan 10. 10 degree wind chill outside on occasion my brother and I stayed warm inside. was the trip of a life time.!!!!
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Old 07-31-2015, 09:51 AM   #14
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Here's the real world towing comparison using the big 3 all towing the same 5th wheel.


2008 F-250 4X4 Lariat V-10
2002 Airstream Classic 30' w/SO #2074
2007 Kubota 900 RTV
1996 Ford Bronco
2007 Lincoln LT
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