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Old 01-04-2014, 11:50 AM   #1
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Need Help From Other Avenue Owner

Hi,

I've got a deposit on a used 2011 Avenue. The problem is that I'm a bit far from the dealer... I'm in Taiwan and the dealer is in the USA.

I'm planning to tow a travel trailer with the Avenue and need to find out what the payload capacity is so I can figure out how much tongue weight I can carry.

The dealer tells me 4000lbs. Which is correct - for a Chevy 3500 cargo van. But the Airstream has some stuff in it already. I looked at the manual and it says Net Carrying Capacity (NCC) is 1525 lbs. NCC is the factory estimate. The manual says I need to check the sticker on the passenger door to determine my actual Cargo Carrying Capacity (CCC).

If any Avenue owners will be passing by their truck, could you please look for the Cargo Carrying Capacity (CCC) sticker on your truck and note the number for me?

I'm looking at buying a Lounge version, but weight should be close enough on all three versions for figuring out how much tongue weight I can carry.

Thank you in advance,
rvHippo
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Old 01-04-2014, 12:22 PM   #2
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If you can find out curb weight of the Avenue, empty weight of the van by itself, and GCVWR, you should be able to determine what weight trailer you can tow.
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Old 01-04-2014, 01:31 PM   #3
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Google AS Avenue. Towing 8000 pounds cargo cap 1500.
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Old 01-04-2014, 02:53 PM   #4
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2011 Avenue Owners Manual

Assume you have the 2011 Avenue Owners Manual?

If not get it here:
Airstream, Inc :: Owners Manuals

Page J-1 has the Capacities/Weight Ratings data.

CAPACITIES/WEIGHT RATINGS
GVWR (lbs.) 9600
GCWR (lbs.) 16,000
TWR, Maximum (lbs.) 400
GTW (lbs.) 4,000
GAWR-FRONT (lbs.) 4,300
GAWR-REAR (lbs.) 6,084
NCC (lbs.) 1525
UBW (lbs.) 8075
Towing Weight Capacity Hitch/Towing (lbs.) 400/4000
Towing Weight Capacity Hitch/Towing (lbs.) With Distribution Bars 1000/10000

Abbreviation Definations
Gross Vehicle Weight Rating (GVWR) is the maximum permissible weight of the motorhome.
Gross Combination Weight Rating (GCWR) means the maximum allowable loaded weight of this motorhome and any towed trailer or towed vehicle.
Tongue Weight Rating (TWR) is the maximum permissible weight of the trailer tongue on the hitch.
Gross Trailer Weight (GTW) is a maximum permissible trailer weight to be towed.

Warning: The towing vehicle’s braking system is rated for operation at GVWR (GROSS VEHICLE WEIGHT RATING), NOT at the GCWR (GROSS COMBINED WEIGHT RATING). A separate functioning brake system is required for any towed vehicles or trailers weighing more than 1000 lbs. (450 kg) when fully loaded. NEVER exceed the GVWR (GROSS VEHICLE WEIGHT RATING), or the GAWR (GROSS AXLE WEIGHT RATING) specified on a motorhome certification label.
Warning: Do not exceed the Gross Axle Weight Ratings, the Gross Vehicle Weight Rating , or the Gross Combined Weight Rating when loading your vehicle and/or towing a trailer. Failure to heed any part of this warning could result in loss of control of the motorhome and towed

(GAWR): is the value specified as the load carrying capacity of a single axle system, as measured at the tire-ground interfaces
Net Carrying Capacity (NCC) is equal to GVWR minus UBW.
Unit Base Weight (UBW) is the dry weight of the base unit with full fuel and w/o options or fluids.
NOTE: The Unit Base Weight (UBW) and the Net Carrying Capacity (NCC) is not the same as the Unloaded Vehicle Weight (UVW) and the Cargo Carrying Capacity (CCC) shown on the Motorhome Weight Information tag in your vehicle. The UBW and NCC weights are for the base unit with no options and fluids except for fuel on motorhomes.
The UVW and CCC on the Cargo Carrying Capacity tag are weights for the individual vehicle as built with its options and certain water capacities.
==============================

Based on this data you can easily tow a 4000 lb. trailer with the Avenue. More than that and you will need to use a weight distribution hitch set-up.

With a fully loaded van at 9,600 GVWR you could still tow 6,400 lbs on a weight distribution hitch and stay within the GCVWR of 16,000 lbs.
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Old 01-04-2014, 08:17 PM   #5
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Thanks for the replies. It'd be nice to get an actual CCC rating, in case it differs wildly from the NCC in the manual. Some manufacturers give published numbers that have nothing to do with reality. I'm not sure how accurate Airstream is with their numbers.

I know the options list was not extensive with the Avenue series, so hopefully, published weights and actual weights are very similar.

I figure a fully loaded 6400 lbs. trailer with an 11% tongue weight of 704 lbs. gives me 821 lbs. of payload left on the Avenue itself (1525-704=821). Subtracting the WD-hitch, all the luggage in the trailer, my planned 4-passenger payload, 100 lbs. of water in the van and I'm just about at GVWR and GVCWR. Any smaller trailer will give me even more leeway with the limits (I wonder how accurate the trailer manufacturers are with their published weights).

Worst case, I buy everything and take it to the weigh station and am slightly over GVWR but am still within GAWR-Front, GAWR-Rear, GCVWR and my tires. I don't have tire info, but I've never seen a GM vehicle under-tired in relation to GAWR. If I'm over GAWR, then I've got to figure out how to return the trailer.

It'd be nice to get an actual CCC but I think there might be only two or three Avenue owners here and I'm not sure if they're still active.

Again, thanks for your help gentlemen.
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Old 02-03-2014, 11:09 AM   #6
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rvhippo,
I just read your thread and here is my reply. My 2011 Avenue has a yellow sticker on the passenger door jab that states Occupant and Cargo Carrying Capacity should not exceed 1359#. I haven't towed any trailers with my Avenue however I have towed a car using a tow dolly. The car with cargo weighed approximately 3600 lbs and the dolly had hydraulic surge brakes. We drove from the west coast to the east coast with no problems. As a matter of fact, it felt like we had enough power to tow something bigger maybe 2k or 3k more. The owners manual also states using brakes on anything over 1000#. As Boxster1971 posted, a WD hitch is good for anything over 4k. I would also add brakes for additional safety. I hope this helps. Good luck and have a safe trip! Brad
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Old 02-06-2014, 09:35 PM   #7
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Brad,

Thanks for your reply. I'm planning on towing about 5000 lbs, so your experience makes me feel much more confident.

Is your Avenue a wardrobe model? I'm just guessing because I got a couple "yellow sticker" weights (which are much lower than claimed NCC).

Lounge: 1330 lbs CCC
Suite: 1382 lbs CCC

It seems the captains chairs are really heavy!
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Old 02-07-2014, 06:54 AM   #8
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rvhippo,
Our Airstream is the convertible lounge model. Based on what you pointed out, the lounge's captains chairs adds a few more pounds to the Avenue however it is well worth it they are so comfortable. Enjoy your Avenue and trip! Brad
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Old 02-07-2014, 08:11 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rvhippo View Post
Brad,

Thanks for your reply. I'm planning on towing about 5000 lbs, so your experience makes me feel much more confident.

Is your Avenue a wardrobe model? I'm just guessing because I got a couple "yellow sticker" weights (which are much lower than claimed NCC).

Lounge: 1330 lbs CCC
Suite: 1382 lbs CCC

It seems the captains chairs are really heavy!
rvhippo;

I had an Avenue Suite 2012. Your CCC stands for cargo carrying capacity. Our 2012 on a 3500 chassis was rated to tow 7,000lbs.
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Old 02-07-2014, 08:20 PM   #10
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Quote:
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rvhippo;

I had an Avenue Suite 2012. Your CCC stands for cargo carrying capacity. Our 2012 on a 3500 chassis was rated to tow 7,000lbs.
Cargo carrying capacity refers to the amount of water,personal belongings, etc. you may load onto the vehicle safely. An Avenue can safely tow a sizeable trailer.
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Old 02-15-2014, 12:08 AM   #11
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Brad and RRR,

Thanks for your replies. Going to pick up the van mid-March. I feel much more confident after your advice.

Thanks!
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