Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread Display Modes
 
Old 09-20-2016, 11:08 PM   #1
2 Rivet Member
 
txntravlr's Avatar
 
2017 Interstate Grand Tour Ext
Small Town TX & CO , Colorado
Join Date: Sep 2016
Posts: 64
Tow vehicles (RV dinghy)

I'd like opinions on vehicles any of you use as dinghy's behind your Sprinters and any mods/equipment it required. How bad is the MPG when towing?

I'm due for a new car (SUV) soon and would love to get something that will be tow-friendly.
__________________

__________________
txntravlr is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-21-2016, 05:24 AM   #2
Rivet Master
 
Currently Looking...
Nowhere , Somewhere
Join Date: Jul 2005
Posts: 6,253
Check owners manual for gcwr and max tow rating for sprinter. Others have done this and it seems to work. Protagonist on here tows a toad but he's not as active as he was, health problems. He will be back.
__________________

__________________
avionstream is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-21-2016, 06:06 AM   #3
3 Rivet Member
 
Dalwyn's Avatar

 
2015 Interstate Grand Tour
Southaven , Mississippi
Join Date: Apr 2015
Posts: 229
Don't know if you are aware of this or not, it may help.

http://www.motorhome.com/download-dinghy-guides/
__________________
Dalwyn
2015 Interstate Grand Tour
Dalwyn is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-21-2016, 06:37 AM   #4
2 Rivet Member
 
2014 Interstate Ext. Coach
melrose , Massachusetts
Join Date: Aug 2013
Posts: 78
we tow a mini cooper and very happy with our decision. blue ox tow bar set up and patriot brake system. we still get 17-18 mpg while towing.
__________________
jennian is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-21-2016, 12:29 PM   #5
Figment of My Imagination
 
Protagonist's Avatar
 
2012 Interstate Coach
From All Over , More Than Anywhere Else
Join Date: Dec 2011
Posts: 9,935
I tow a 2013 Honda Fit Sport Navi hatchback behind my Interstate, using a Roadmaster Sterling towbar and Roadmaster Invisibrake supplemental brakes. GVWR is 3500 pounds, curb weight is 2700 pounds.

I only take about a 1mpg hit on fuel economy compared to traveling at the same speed on the same highway without towing. On a particular stretch of I-10 between New Orleans and Gulfport, for example (a route I regularly take to visit my Airstream dealer), I get 19mpg not towing, and 18 mpg towing the Honda.

For determining if a vehicle can be towed 4-down, the vehicle owner's manual is the final authority. And since you can often download the manual before you buy the car, that's the safest way to check.

Motorhome Magazine's "Dinghy Towing Guide" is a good resource, but with one drawback— you have to use the guide for the model year of the vehicle in question; vehicles towable for the 2016 model year may not be towable for the 2017 model year, for instance.

And the major towbar baseplate manufacturers are also a good resource. If Roadmaster, Blue Ox, and/or Stowaway makes custom baseplates for your model that replace the stock bumper (stock bumpers aren't designed for pulling, only for pushing), then there's a good chance the vehicle is towable 4-down.

The ideal situation, of course, is if all these named sources agree.
__________________
WBCCI #1105
TAC LA-4

My Google-Fu is strong today.
Protagonist is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 09-21-2016, 08:26 PM   #6
1 Rivet Member
 
2014 Interstate Ext. Coach
Sanibel , Florida
Join Date: Apr 2016
Posts: 17
I agree 100% with the analysis of Protagonist on this subject. I too tow a Honda, but mine is a 2008 CRV. This is heavier and I do feel it behind the AI. My wife who often rides on the rear lounge notices it and doesn't like the jerking. We make 4 trips annually between Naples and St Louis but don't tow on these trips. Our towing is limited to the State of FL for meetings where we park in a campground for several days while attending a conference and softball trips for our grandkids. The extra car comes in handy. Mileage suffers about 2 mpg. Good luck making the most out of your AI. We have made ours handicap accessible and love every mile we drive!
__________________
markc12v30 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-21-2016, 09:14 PM   #7
Newbie
 
joemikeb's Avatar
 
2013 Interstate Coach
Fort Worth , Texas
Join Date: May 2013
Posts: 289
My Toad is a VW Golf on a tow dolly. I take it from the flat lands of North Texas at 620 feet above sea level to a favorite camp site in Southern Colorado at 9,500 feet and some of the passes en route are well over 10,000 feet. The Toad is barely noticeable in normal driving, but it does cost about 1.5 to 2 mpg. I sometimes compensate for the decreased mileage by setting the cruise control on 65 rather than at the 75 mph speed limit. but at either setting the AI has no trouble holding the speed. It could not quite hold the speed limit going over Slumgullion pass at 11,530 feet, but I wasn't all that comfortable at the speed limit there anyway.

Some learnings from towing are:
  • The ride in the lounge is much better with a vehicle in tow than without
  • Plan your approach to and exit from stops and parking carefully before you get into trouble, not after. Filling stations can be a challenge.
  • Don't go anywhere you might have to back up — it does not work with a tow dolly
  • check everything to do with the tow often and when you check it check it twice
  • choose your route conservatively when you have a vehicle in tow. I will take my AI on some pretty primitive roads but not when I am towing
  • the Airstream Interstate is a surprisingly good tow vehicle
__________________
Make errors — otherwise the Great Spirit realizes
you have finished your purpose on earth.

— Navajo saying
joemikeb is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-23-2016, 07:36 PM   #8
4 Rivet Member
 
Currently Looking...
Rockwell , North Carolina
Join Date: Sep 2014
Posts: 308
Quote:
Originally Posted by txntravlr View Post
I'd like opinions on vehicles any of you use as dinghy's behind your Sprinters and any mods/equipment it required. How bad is the MPG when towing?

I'm due for a new car (SUV) soon and would love to get something that will be tow-friendly.
We towed a Fiat Abarth behind our AI and barely knew it was there. May not work for you as you mention you want an SUV. If you want to flat tow your new vehicle, this link will give you an idea of what needs to be done to prepare the tow car:

http://www.airforums.com/forums/f240...re-133686.html

You don't have to do anything to the AI other than buy an appropriate draw bar for your hitch.
jerhofer is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-24-2016, 09:19 AM   #9
Figment of My Imagination
 
Protagonist's Avatar
 
2012 Interstate Coach
From All Over , More Than Anywhere Else
Join Date: Dec 2011
Posts: 9,935
Quote:
Originally Posted by jerhofer View Post
You don't have to do anything to the AI other than buy an appropriate draw bar for your hitch.
That depends on your choice of supplemental brakes. My toad's supplemental brakes activate by the van's brake lights, so no brake controller required.
__________________
WBCCI #1105
TAC LA-4

My Google-Fu is strong today.
Protagonist is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 09-25-2016, 12:50 PM   #10
4 Rivet Member
 
PSchw's Avatar
 
2005 39' Skydeck 390 SD
Livingston , Texas
Join Date: Mar 2013
Posts: 476
Images: 4
I tow a 2007 Honda Element which I really like as it is roomy and good accessible with wide open doors.
The Interstate has no problem towing special mine which is a non ext model an can pull about 7,000 lbs.
2 mile on the mpg is about what the Toad cost me.
I have a airforce 1 build in brake system which I love as it has not to be removed when using the car.
Peter
__________________
PSchw is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-19-2017, 07:34 PM   #11
Rivet Master
 
Pahaska's Avatar
 
2014 Interstate Ext. Coach
Hays County , Texas
Join Date: Jun 2002
Posts: 5,779
Images: 3
I bought a used (Car2Go) 2014 Smart ForTwo for a toad. I'm waiting for the base plate and tow bar right now. Only 15000 miles on the Smart and great shape.

The Smart is a ball to drive.
__________________
John W. Irwin
2014.5 Touring Coach, "Sabre-Dog IV"
WBCCI #9632
Pahaska is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 04-19-2017, 08:37 PM   #12
Rivet Master
 
Mollysdad's Avatar
 
2017 26' Flying Cloud
Tampa , Florida
Join Date: Feb 2017
Posts: 1,364
Quote:
Originally Posted by PSchw View Post
I tow a 2007 Honda Element which I really like as it is roomy and good accessible with wide open doors.
That's interesting because the Element is not approved by Honda for flat towing. I had one. I loved it. I looked into towing using the Remco lube pump, but Remco said, "We are not aware of any reason to prohibit flat towing the element." So, it was a standoff.

Let me back up. Cars are either approved or not based on if the transmission is lubed by the wheels turning or the engine turning. Some of those lubed by the engine can be retrofitted with a lube pump that runs while the car is being towed. It is powered from the tow vehicle. Some just need the engine started and run for five minutes every 200 miles.

Personally, I'd get a Smart to flat tow.
__________________
Mollysdad is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-20-2017, 06:35 AM   #13
4 Rivet Member
 
toskeysam's Avatar
 
2013 Interstate Coach
Townsend , Tennessee
Join Date: Nov 2013
Posts: 463
Supposed to take my AI to dealer today to pair-up with my 2017 Smart. They installed the Roadmaster baseplate this week.....now the fun begins.
__________________
FMCA # 436814
toskeysam is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 04-20-2017, 07:09 AM   #14
Rivet Master
 
Pahaska's Avatar
 
2014 Interstate Ext. Coach
Hays County , Texas
Join Date: Jun 2002
Posts: 5,779
Images: 3
I have a Blue Ox base plate ordered for my 2014 Smart. It is timed to get here about the end of the month. I want to have the Smart ready to tow for a rally 5/17.

I have been studying the Blue Ox installation instructions and plan to install the base plate myself. I intend to use a Ready Brake and wireless lights. I can install the Ready Brake cable while the Smart's nose is removed for base plate installation.
__________________

__________________
John W. Irwin
2014.5 Touring Coach, "Sabre-Dog IV"
WBCCI #9632
Pahaska is online now   Reply With Quote
Reply


Currently Active Users Viewing This Thread: 1 (0 members and 1 guests)
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Dinghy Towing (Toad) crazeevw General Motorhome Topics 5 12-17-2015 03:40 PM
Dinghy Towing unhooker Our Community 2 06-15-2013 04:53 AM
Dinghy Towing CarlGeo Land Yacht/Legacy Motorhomes 7 05-31-2008 01:01 PM
dinghy towing xqbee Classic Motorhomes 6 07-02-2006 08:16 PM
Dinghy alternate/motorcycle balloonman On The Road... 1 01-07-2003 11:12 AM


Virginia Campgrounds

Reviews provided by




Copyright 2002- Social Knowledge, LLC All Rights Reserved.

All times are GMT -6. The time now is 12:33 PM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 1
Copyright ©2000 - 2017, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.

Airstream is a registered trademark of Airstream Inc. All rights reserved. Airstream trademark used under license to Social Knowledge LLC.