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Old 10-17-2015, 08:32 PM   #1
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Towing vehicle

My husband and I are looking at buying an airstream. We love the 25fb. My question is.... We own a Lexus GX460, can we actually tow a 25fb with it? The gentleman at the dealership has lead us to believe we can but I guess I still have reservations??? Any advice would be appreciated
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Old 10-17-2015, 08:40 PM   #2
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I don't know, but never listen to a dealer on this subject.
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Old 10-22-2015, 01:48 PM   #3
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My husband and I are looking at buying an airstream. We love the 25fb. My question is.... We own a Lexus GX460, can we actually tow a 25fb with it? The gentleman at the dealership has lead us to believe we can but I guess I still have reservations??? Any advice would be appreciated
You should try it before buying a new tow vehicle. The GX has a V8 with greater than 300 HP. Max towing weight of a GX per Lexus' website is 6,500 lbs. 25' FCFB23 is listed at just north of 5,500 lbs. You'd be towing about 85% of the GX's recommended towing capacity which should be fine with a weight distribution system (pretty much required to tow a trailer this big). I have towed my 23' Intl Serenity with my Nissan Frontier (V6) and it's fine in flat Florida. I think a lot of us underestimate the towing ability of modern V6's and V8's when you think about what previous generations did with less horsepower and technology. Hope that helps!
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Old 10-27-2015, 08:14 PM   #4
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I towed our safari 25' with a 05 tundra with the 4.7 . Probably about the same horse power. The truck did pretty good for the most part. It struggled a bit with steeper grades. I traded up to a 2011 tundra with the 5.7 and am happier. I say try it, you will know after a few trips if you are happy or not.


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Old 10-30-2015, 09:38 PM   #5
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Look carefully at the cargo and towing capacity of the Lexus. I pulled up the brochure on the '15 and it has a maximum towing capacity of 6500 lbs. That is pushing it for a 25 footer. You should confirm the capacity for your specific vehicle. These maximum numbers in the brochures are rarely achieved in the actual vehicle.

Look in the driver's side door frame for the tire and load information placard. It will tell you what the cargo capacity is. That needs to include passengers, cargo, and trailer tongue weight. I can imagine you will be pushing this limit when you hang 850# on the back of the vehicle. You will need a class IV hitch and perhaps that is on your vehicle already, do not know.

As said by a friend, sometimes we must know more than the salesman. This is clear case of just that. You must advocate for yourself on this one. The sales folks want you to sign the sales agreement and will gladly tell you a rooster will pull a plow. When you are facing a new tow vehicle on top of the Twinkie, it gets expensive and causes prospective buyers to get less impulsive and think things through.

Good luck on your studies.
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Old 10-30-2015, 10:25 PM   #6
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Yea right, the "the gentleman" at the dealership is trying to make a sale, period. A few years back I was told my Yukon could easily pull a 36 ft box trailer, what he dident know was I also had GMC 3/4 ton home in my driveway that was my tow vehicle not my wife's Yukon he was looking at through the glass window at the dealership. I've pulled my new 25ft just over 3000 miles since July & it's a joy to tow with my RAM 1500. Here on this forum the tow information in real although controversial, at the dealership .........well, now you know.
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Old 10-31-2015, 06:43 AM   #7
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You will find there are a lot people here who wont do any towing without a Huge safety factor built in to their towing equation. Like if a 25' AS loads out at 5500 lbs they won't feel safe unless their TV is rated for 8500 - or more.
And.they need huge horsepower to be happy too. Like they plan to be passing everyone while going up and over the Ike tunnel west of Denver.
If your Lexus is rated for 6500 it will surely pull a 5500lb trailer.
You wont set any land speed records but it will be adequate plus 18%.
Set the speed records for your day job. Relax while you're on vacation.
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Old 10-31-2015, 07:41 AM   #8
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You will find there are a lot people here who wont do any towing without a Huge safety factor built in to their towing equation. Like if a 25' AS loads out at 5500 lbs they won't feel safe unless their TV is rated for 8500 - or more.

And.they need huge horsepower to be happy too. Like they plan to be passing everyone while going up and over the Ike tunnel west of Denver.

If your Lexus is rated for 6500 it will surely pull a 5500lb trailer.

You wont set any land speed records but it will be adequate plus 18%.

Set the speed records for your day job. Relax while you're on vacation.

I concur.

My half ton 315 HP does a great job pulling my trailer.

My opinion is if you get yourself a Hensley designed hitch to put between the two you will have a very nice combination that is as sure footed and steady as any combination with a 9,000 pound dooley in front.


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Old 10-31-2015, 08:15 AM   #9
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Not me

Your owners' manual shows a vehicle capacity of occupants and load of around 1300#. If you put the "best" hitch like a PPP or Hensley with that trailer you are going to be pushing 1000 tongue weight leaving you not much for passengers and stuff. I would not want to be so close to the limits, but that is just me. You don't need a diesel or a 3/4 ton pickup to pull that trailer, but I would hesitate to use a SUV designed mainly for passengers.

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Old 10-31-2015, 08:46 AM   #10
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I believe he already owns the Lexus. I'm not sure anyone is trying to sell him anything.


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Old 10-31-2015, 10:31 AM   #11
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I believe he already owns the Lexus. I'm not sure anyone is trying to sell him anything.


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Sorry if my post was unclear.

I fully understand they own the Lexus, but not sure what year.

Someone is trying to sell them an Airstream and telling them that the Lexus is fine. My point is one should look very carefully at the actual towing and cargo capacity numbers for yourself and if you are happy with where they land, okay. Just understand the brochures are typically overstated and the details of the actual vehicle are paramount.

The salesman who is selling the Twinkie in no way wants to tell the prospective buyer they also need a different tow vehicle.
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Old 10-31-2015, 12:16 PM   #12
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Greetings from the Florida Panhandle

First off, Welcome to the Forums. We're glad to have you with us.

As to your question, the answer is maybe yes, maybe no. We have had two 25FB's, a 2005 and a 2015, and have towed them about 140,000 miles. Our Airstream ready to camp weighs around 7,300#. We use a Hensley Arrow hitch, and our tongue weight is 940#.

Your success with your Lexus may depend on your intended use. The Lexus could probably handle it minimally loaded in the flatlands. Fully loaded with some grades to deal with, you may find it unsatisfactory.

Since you already have the Lexus, my suggestion would be to install a quality trailer brake controller in the Lexus, and give it a try. The brake controller could be moved to another vehicle in the future.

Also remember that some RV salespeople were selling furniture two weeks ago and have absolutely no idea what talking about when it comes to towing trailers.

Good luck in your pursuit.

Brian
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Old 11-01-2015, 08:45 AM   #13
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Thank you

Hi all!

I want to thank everyone for their comments about towing with a Lexus GX 460. We have a 2010 GX and we were hoping that we could keep that vehicle since we own it. We looked at all the weight requirements on both the TV and RV and know it will be close. The only people in the truck will be my husband and I and our dog (boxer). We live in Ohio and would be traveling through mountains to get south and out west. So I guess what I really wanted to know, is their anyone else that pulls a 25ft FB with a Lexus GX and if so, how does it perform? I would LOVE to get a full size truck BUT my husband seems to think we will be just fine.
We owned a tent camper years ago and owned a 4Runner, had a heck of a time pulling it thru West Virginia so we traded up to a sequoia which pulled perfectly. Sold our camper due to boys in sports and no time to travel. Sold the sequoia because of kids in sports and tight parking spots and I was afraid I would back over a small child(it didn't have back up cameras then). Bought the smaller Lexus with back up camera so I could see the small kids running behind me. Now our boys are older and seem to be busy with their own things. So how do we fix the feeling of empty nest? Buy an Airstream 😁

Thanks for the advise!
Jen
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Old 11-01-2015, 10:00 AM   #14
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It sounds like you are on the right track. Life is short; go for it.

I would like to make a couple of suggestions relative to your tow vehicle. First, you need to start researching the various systems and accessories to have the best shot at a achieving a satisfactory towing experience with your Airstream.

Take a look at the tires on your Lexus. They may passenger car (P rated) tires. Many times, these tires don't have the weight rating to handle the loads when you add an Airstream to the back end. This is important as tires pushed beyond their limits can catastrophically fail. Sufficient tires are absolutely essential for safe towing.

Research and shop the brands of trailer brake controllers. This is something that is absolutely necessary to tow any trailer with electric brakes. If you don't have a trailer brake controller, the brakes on your Airstream will not work at all.

You also need to start researching weight distribution/sway control hitch systems. This is also an accessory that is necessary for a satisfactory and safe Airstream towing experience. This is especially true when towing a heavy trailer with a tow vehicle that is at its limits.

When you start looking at these hitch systems, you will be bombarded with conflicting information. These systems can be expensive, but keep in mind how much an Airstream costs.

Remember that if you are not comfortable towing your Airatream, you will not want to take it anywhere. In this situation, you are very likely to end up with a very expensive piece of yard art.

Good luck.

Brian
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