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Old 01-11-2014, 10:27 PM   #21
Tom and Phyllis
 
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My thoughts on a trailer-tow vehicle like this is one I use in real life with different utility trailers. A road test.
Does the tow vehicle have the power to move the vehicle, even up a reasonable incline?
Can the tow vehicle stop the trailer within a safe distance?
When hooked up does the headlights still light up the highway or does it shine up into the trees? (this may take a night-time test) This lets you know if there is too much weight on the rear axle of the tow vehicle.
Remember a safety tip! If too much emphasis is put on balancing the load front to rear, then you may not have enough weight on your rear axle to prevent a jack-knife. When the rear axle is where loss of traction is during a panic stop, then a jack-knife condition is imminent. During a hard stop weight will shift to the front axle so keep the rear axle heavier.
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Old 01-29-2014, 05:02 PM   #22
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TV Vehicle

We tow our 2013 16' Bambi with a 2010 Jeep Liberty 4x4 with a posted 5000 pound tow rating.

We use the Prodigy 2 brake controller with a equalizer hitch and sway control bars. I suggust not towing with either.

The Jeep 3.7 has only 210 hp so it does ok on heavy grades so I assume you're BMW with more hp and torque should do even better.

Recently we stopped at a commercial weigh station and the Bambi with full LP tanks, half tank of fresh water and our stuff was just over 3,300 pounds.

We're upgrading to the Grand Cherokee with the new six so that should solve our lack of performance towing the AS.

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Old 01-29-2014, 06:32 PM   #23
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Jack, you are almost a ton under the Jeeps tow rating and you are towing one of the most towable trailers on the market. What seems to be the problem? Or do you think the Jeep is over rated??
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Old 01-29-2014, 07:10 PM   #24
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To be fair, JackDog going from the Liberty (which doesn't really handle that well and has a lump of an engine) to the Grand Cherokee (handles better, and the V6/8spd combo is very, very good at towing) seems to be a solid move forward.

I was very, very impressed at how well a 2014 GC V6 towed my 23' trailer. Not as fun as the Hemi/8spd or the EcoDiesel, both effortless towers, but very capable all the same.

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Old 01-30-2014, 12:51 PM   #25
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Jeep Liberty

The V6 in the Liberty isn't really the problem; the major hamstring is the antiquated 4 speed automatic. Even with the tow/haul button locking out the OD the transmission hunts and seeks and will overrev when pushed. I had my transmission guy install a trans cooler and a shift kit which has helped but he told me that he gets alot of these into his shop with blown seals and other maladies.

As far as handling with my hitch setup and the excellent road manners all AS's have I've been able to stay on the road even in extremely high cross winds when traveling through the Mojave desert when everthing else has had to pull over and wait out the winds.

I love everything else about my Jeep, looks, size, great foul weather / off road performance. I've even ecked out 15.5 mpg on several occasions.

It's sad that Jeep instead of upgrading this vehicle and making it better decided to go with a Fiat car based SUV with bizarre styling and minimum towing and off road capibilities; a Jeep in name only!

Hopefully this time next year I'll be able to tackle those pesty grades with the Grand Cherokee. I love the hemi and if I was towing one of the larger AS's I'd go with the V8 but the new Pentastar V6 should be more than enought to tow the Bambi. Oh by the way on my previous post I meant to say that I would not tow a trailer without the aid of sway bars and a equalizer hitch.

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Old 01-30-2014, 12:52 PM   #26
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The Jeep Liberty is actually a strong tow vehicle, but a gas hog, also.
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Old 01-30-2014, 01:35 PM   #27
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Liberty MPG

You are correct about the MPG on the Liberty. I'm a featherfoot driver and in regular driving w/o the trailer the best I've been able to do is 15 city / 21 hwy!

I think most people in this forum will agree when towing a trailer you can acutally get better MPG towing with a more powerful TV since your not overstressing the motor and constantly pushing the rpm levels up.

Maybe I should keep the Liberty and dropping a hemi drivetrain into it! Ummmm....


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Old 01-30-2014, 02:27 PM   #28
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You don't need all that much power to tow an Airstream.

I measured hp output (at the wheel) of my own vehicle (a Honda Odyssey) and the highest I could get it was 148hp when accelerating from a standing start up a sizeable hill. On an average day on the highway there are very few times when the rig demands more than 50-60hp to keep things moving at 60mph.

Average rpm at that speed are 2300, the Ody's engine is a V6, delivering a max of 240hp. Gas consumption is around 16mpg at that speed.

I tow a 1984 34' International, it weighs in at around 7000lbs.
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Old 01-30-2014, 02:46 PM   #29
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JackDog View Post

I think most people in this forum will agree when towing a trailer you can acutally get better MPG towing with a more powerful TV since your not overstressing the motor and constantly pushing the rpm levels up.



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That's not been my experience.

I average between 12 and 13 mpg over the year with my Toyota Sienna (3.5l 260hp) towing my 7,000 lb 28' International. From the reading I've done here that's pretty much the same for the majority of tow vehicles, regardless of their size.

Where smaller vehicles have the distinct advantage over their bigger cousins is when NOT towing.
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Old 01-30-2014, 04:42 PM   #30
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Old 01-30-2014, 05:06 PM   #31
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Quote:
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I think most people in this forum will agree when towing a trailer you can acutally get better MPG towing with a more powerful TV since your not overstressing the motor and constantly pushing the rpm levels up.
Not meaning to nit-pick, but that's not my experience. I don't disagree that as far as MPG is concerned, smaller displacement gas engines don't perform any better than larger displacement gas engines when it comes to towing duties.

The difference with a small displacement aspirated gas engine is that it needs to rev much higher than a larger displacement engine to achieve optimum torque. It has been my experience that anyone used to towing with large-displacement engines tend to get un-nerved when towing with small-displacement engines because they aren't used to hearing the engine at high RPM's and assume the engine is going to break and the gas mileage is going to pot.

The fact is that smaller-displacement engines ARE DESIGNED to run continuously at higher RPMS and can deliver essentially the same MPG as their larger displacement cousins. It's not intuitive, but that's what I have observed.
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Old 01-30-2014, 05:19 PM   #32
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Originally Posted by Lucky Tom View Post
. . . Remember a safety tip! If too much emphasis is put on balancing the load front to rear, then you may not have enough weight on your rear axle to prevent a jack-knife. When the rear axle is where loss of traction is during a panic stop, then a jack-knife condition is imminent. During a hard stop weight will shift to the front axle so keep the rear axle heavier.
That kind of goes against traditional weight distribution thinking of returning at least the original load to the front axles, and in some cases of heavy tongue weight maybe more.

During a panic stop I think the attached trailer will also shift weight forward keeping the truck's rear wheels on the ground. I've had a few of these stops using good weight distribution and everything stayed in line.
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Old 02-11-2014, 10:02 PM   #33
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sport 16 and vw touareg

we are very happy with the touareg as tv with our new 2014 sport 16. the tv is overkill and even use weight distribution.... tv with diesel doesn't know the trailer is behind regardless of hills, etc.
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Old 02-16-2014, 08:09 AM   #34
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Can't wait to hear how it turns out. I'm new here and we have yet to purchase a Bambi, but are hoping to pull it with our BMW X5 xdrive30i. Need to research how to get it done, as I really don't want to buy another car either!
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Old 02-16-2014, 12:43 PM   #35
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...hoping to pull it with our BMW X5 xdrive30i. Need to research how to get it done, as I really don't want to buy another car either!
You may want to check out xoutpost.com for BMW X5/X3 specific towing info, including various receivers and installation instructions. WDH info is more complete here.

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Old 02-16-2014, 04:37 PM   #36
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HELP! We just bought a 16' Bambi and it has sat in the driveway now without moving 1" for over 4 months and no hope in sight. We have a BMW X3 that should tow it fine, but....BMW says you can't use a weight distribution anit-sway system; the Bambi dealer says don't tow without it. I installed a tow package on the X3. Dealer told me that included trailer brake control...not true! So now I've bought a wireless trailer brake control box. Everything we do goes round and round and everyone we talk to tells us something different. DOES ANYONE TOW A 16' BAMBI WITH AN X3? From reading, I've learned a Rav and 4 Runner will. They must not have a unibody frame, but must have a solid frame? DOES ANYONE TOW WITHOUT THE ANTI-SWAY WEIGHT DISTRIBUTION? HAS ANYONE USED A WIRELESS BRAKE CONTROL? I don't know what to do! I'm looking at Tacomas and Ford 150s now but that expense was not factored in when I bought the Bambi. We're about ready to throw in the towel, forget the whole thing, and sell it. Any insight...anyone?
We have a 16' Bambi and tow with a Land Cruiser using a Reese weight distribution sway control hitch. I suppose you could say the LC is overkill but we just like the LC. kimball
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Old 02-16-2014, 04:59 PM   #37
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We will be towing our 2014 16' Sport with a 2013 Volvo XC70 T6 AWD. We feel that with the prodigy rf brake control and the fast way hitch setup that our AS dealer recommended that we should be able to tow without issue. Stay tuned!!
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Old 03-02-2014, 09:45 AM   #38
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Hi,

I have been keeping up on the thread but am still so confused. What is the smallest GVWR I should look for in a tow vehicle. I am looking at a Chevy Traverse (5,500 GVWR) but would like to go with an Equinox (3500 GVWR) if I can get away with it. It's just me, my husband, and 2 dogs.

Thanks so much for any help
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Old 03-02-2014, 06:24 PM   #39
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If the manufacturer says 3500 and you want to tow a 16' Bambi, you are within the limits I suppose. I could do 5000 with my FJ Cruiser, but I wouldn't. I do a 16' 3500# Bambi and really would not want any more in back of it, partially because the tranny is not really aligned for towing (rock crawling is more like it). But also because the weight to TV weight should make you think twice in a stopping situation.

Also as stated above the high RPM's do make me think twice as ultimately the number of RPM's will determine when engine components fail. Higher RPM, more revolutions, more wear, less mileage before rebuild (or failure).
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Old 03-03-2014, 08:39 AM   #40
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Also as stated above the high RPM's do make me think twice as ultimately the number of RPM's will determine when engine components fail. Higher RPM, more revolutions, more wear, less mileage before rebuild (or failure).
Nonsense, look in the Honda Ridgeline owners forum and you will find many of us with over 180k and not looking to rebuild anytime soon. Also look to see what engine is used in the Brickyard race.
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