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Old 01-04-2013, 09:53 PM   #15
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Originally Posted by SafariSS View Post
Are you referring to the GL or ML? The GL states in the owners manual it can handle 700 lbs.

The new 13 model GL has 455 lb ft of torque, same as my suburban 3/4 ton 8.1 which is more than adequate towing my Safari 30.
Yes, I'm referring to the GL.

And 600 was the number the tech at MB USA gave me. She specified tongue weight.

Mine is a 2010 GL. Maybe the newer hitch has higher specs.

I'd advise giving them a call and find out for yourself.
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Old 01-16-2013, 10:00 PM   #16
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I tow with a 2007 R class MB with the v6 diesel. It has a 7 speed tranny and the a/s is a 30 foot classic of 2000 vintage. I have currently towed it from London Ontario to LA and through Arizona twice. Fuel mileage has ranged from a low of 12.5 to 18.5 mph. The low number was in Az with winds gusting to 50 mph according to the weather reports. The wind was noticeable of course but the rig tracked straight even when the 18 wheelers blew by.
When the rig was set up I measured the clearance between the tires and fenders on all four wheels before and after hookup. There was adrop of one half inch at every corner. L do have a weight distribution hitch as well as a hensley installed. To say the least I am pleased and impressed with the way this hookup works for me.
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Old 02-09-2013, 07:13 AM   #17
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Well, we Did it!

Found a 2007 25 FB CCD in Florida this week at Bates RV and made arrangements to buy it on the spot. It will be a few weeks before I can drive there to pick it up so in the mean time I'll drive up to CanAm and have Andy reinforce the hitch on the ML350. He is also going to modify the Reese WD hitch that came with the unit. By the way, I got an email from Andy and he stated that the ML is actually a little better tow vehicle than the GL due to its stiffer suspension. In his opinion it will handle as much weight as the GL.
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Old 02-09-2013, 07:21 AM   #18
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Vonzellen,

How much does the 27 weigh?

I am getting my GL ready to tow, doing the trailer brake electrical now.

Show pics of the hitch beef up....

Oh...I bought my Safari 30 new at Bates back in 06..
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Old 02-09-2013, 05:54 PM   #19
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Here is my GL, wiring it up via factory green plug for trailer brakes. Can't wait to try it towing.
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Old 02-09-2013, 11:40 PM   #20
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The ML350 is GAS

After reading all these posts again I've concluded that with CanAm beefing up the hitch the ML350 can handle the tongue weight of the 25FB, but now I'm a little worried that I may be a little low on the torque with the gas engine??? I love my ML350 and hate to think of something else. . .

By the way, for a brake controller I used a wireless model so I wouldn't have to put screw holes in the dash of my car. It works great. The module screws to the tongue of the trailer and the remote just plugs into the cigarette lighter. I've used it a number of times.

What do you think---ML 350 going to be under powered? I'll be towing mostly on the East Coast.
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Old 02-10-2013, 05:50 AM   #21
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SafariSS View Post
Here is my GL, wiring it up via factory green plug for trailer brakes. Can't wait to try it towing.
Very nice...picked up our new GL350 this past week. Have made the obligatory phone call to Andy for peace of mind. We have a 28 ft International and using a 3P. Will get to the CAT scales this week, trying to make sure I don't overload either axle (or tires) because with the GL's very capable air suspension and 1400 pound bars I can do just that and everything still look great. Pics to follow....
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Old 02-10-2013, 10:05 AM   #22
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The ML 350 gas engine is no powerhouse as compared to the diesel version.

When I took the nearly loaded 2013 25FB International across the scales (vs the new empty trailer coming home) there was a different sound from the engine department and it was working harder. The fuel mileage display usually shows around 28 mpg car only. It dropped from the displayed 17/18 when the trailer was empty to 13/14 mpg when loaded. I think the gas engine will be running at much higher rpms all the time to move on the level and will be challenged even by the low mountains on the east coast. There is a good chance the mpg would drop into the single digits.

At the dealership before even hitching the trailer to the car, the tongue weight was 1,150 pounds vs the literature weight of 833 pounds. About 140 pounds of the increase was the Hensley hitch head. The added street side awning, rear awning, solar panel and power cords and other associated "new gear" from the dealership were in the front storage area.

My wife and I were in the car with about 60 pounds of stuff in the rear. The fresh water tank was full in the trailer and there was lots of stuff in the coach. The scales reported that the front axle was overloaded by 54 pounds and the GVW was exceeded by 180 pounds. There was about 200 pounds of capacity left on the rear axle.

The big issue was that the dealer service manager stressed that the towing capacity of the 2007 ML 320 CDI was 5,000 pounds. I figured the 25FB was close to 7,000 pounds. The newer model MLs have a higher tow rating closer to 7,000 pounds.

Thus, I decided that too heavy of a towing load by a wide margin and exceeding GVW and the front axle rating would put me into an indefensible legal position if there were ever an incident.

The ML will stay in my driving stable for years to come as it is one of the most comfortable driving vehicles I have ever owned. I can safely tow the single rail motorcycle trailer with my Gold Wing aboard for service locally.

I acquired an end of year 2012 Dodge 2500 Cummins diesel pickup (no urea tank to contend with) that has the correct numbers to tow even a 31' Airstream plus equipment in the bed of the truck. I removed the factory receiver and installed a 2,550 pound rated receiver with a side benefit of the receiver opening being only about 4" above the Hensley hitch opening (a drop of over 9" from the stock configuration). The steel springs were removed front and rear and replaced with a Kelderman self leveling air suspension system which significantly softened the ride and it will always be level regardless of the load. The under bed fuel tank was changed from 34 gallons to a 56 gallon tank.

And it fits in my garage in the same bay in which the ML 320 was parked.

YMMV
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Old 02-10-2013, 11:44 AM   #23
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Switz-It is a tight fit in our garage, but it is hard to beat that 2500 Cummins for torque and ease of towing ... the tow / haul mode is really nice with the compression brake when descending the steep mountain passes... no tail wagging the dog.
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Old 02-10-2013, 12:27 PM   #24
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Are there any legal ramifications from using undersized TV's. Just curious as I have towed with undersized TV but was never in an accident. Was I just lucky?

My concern now is:

1. Will my insurance cover my liability if I am using an under sized TV?

2. Will the officer notice or ask about the TV and is it possible I would be faulted even if it was not my fault?
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Old 02-10-2013, 07:16 PM   #25
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I know if there is a serious accident or god forbid a fatality a accident claim lawyer would have a field day trying a case like that.
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Old 02-10-2013, 11:52 PM   #26
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Vote Now Please

So, just a reminder, I'm the guy that started this post trying to figure out whether or not I could tow a 25FB with my 2012 ML 350 (gas). Those of you with the Mercedes diesel have said you think it would be underpowered. The 2012 ML 350 has 302 hp at 6500 rpm and 273 ft. lbs. of torque at 3500 rpms.

Should I keep this and give it a shot (beefing up the hitch at CanAm)?
Get the diesel version of the Mercedes ML?
Get a diesel truck?
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Old 02-11-2013, 12:44 AM   #27
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From memory as the car and books are a long ways away, the 2007 ML 320 CDI had about 395 ft pounds of torque from 1600 to 2600 rpm and the Horsepower was reached before 3000 rpm. Normal driving rpm at 75 was about 2200 rpm, right in the middle of the power band. 55 mph was about 1850 rpm in 7th.

When towing the empty Airstream home from the dealership at 55 mph, I did shift down to fifth on some steeper climbs coming East out of Los Angeles on I-10 so as to not lug the engine and transmission.

Horsepower comes into play at higher speeds, but the torque is what gets the rig moving and going up hills.

The referenced Mercedes gas engine speeds above tell me that you will have to select much lower gears out of the seven speed transmission with higher engine rpms in order to have the power necessary to move down the road or through hilly terrain.

If you are close to CanAM, then try the hitch modification for around $500 plus. I drove 4,400 miles round trip to find out I needed more payload after connecting the trailer to the car.

The 25FB has most of the storage under the front bed which makes loading an issue. That is just the logical place for the AC power cords, misc small tools, water hoses, wheel chocks, etc.

I was told to not load up the back end of the trailer trying to counterbalance the stuff under the bed as the frame lacks the strength to pull that off very well.

I am not a lawyer, but I think a term called criminal negligence comes to mind when a person knowingly operates a (fill in the blank) outside of it's design parameters and injuries could be reasonably be foreseen if there were an accident caused by the deviation from the vehicle specifications either in the short term or long term.

I would strongly suggest posing a hypothetical question to your vehicle insurance carrier representative about their coverage if your vehicle is intentionally operated in an overloaded condition or is considered by the main stream to be undersized for the job.

Just because the smaller vehicle can get the rig moving does not mean that the smaller brakes can stop the rig if the trailer brake controller decides to quit during a steep hill descent.

YMMV
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Old 02-11-2013, 12:49 AM   #28
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It also has a 7 speed transmission which gives you plenty of gears to keep the revs up. While I have not towed with it I did have anearlier version of the ML with the 3.2 . I found there was plenty of power and lots of torque. It surprised many sportier vehicles. Having said that, the deisel has a lot more low end grunt. The question is do you want to pay the extra money for a new one as your vehicle is relatively new. I would suggest you speak to Andy about it. Either bring yout trailer or borrow one from Can Am and tow it up and down some of the larger hills in the London area. I'm sure he would have no problem with this. You can then get a feel for the rig and see how it behaves.
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