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Old 05-29-2006, 08:41 AM   #1
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Retired and have '02 Jeep Grand Cherokee V8 and would like to gather info on Airstream Models I can tow. Currently have Class III hitch. Living in Tampa Bay, Florida with children in NH. and California. Plan to live in trailer for 2-3 months annually and then use locally in Florida for the balance of the year.
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Old 05-29-2006, 09:02 AM   #2
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With that short of a wheel base, you are probably limited to a 16 or 19' Bambi. You did not say if you were looking for new or used. JD Sanders, in Alachua, Florida, (Exit 399, I-75) as a few of the smaller units in stock. Otherwise, check our classifieds on this site, and the Vintage Airstream site, as well as Ebay, for used units. Good luck and welcome to the forums!
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Old 05-29-2006, 09:17 AM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by brodjeaw
Retired and have '02 Jeep Grand Cherokee V8 and would like to gather info on Airstream Models I can tow. Currently have Class III hitch. Living in Tampa Bay, Florida with children in NH. and California. Plan to live in trailer for 2-3 months annually and then use locally in Florida for the balance of the year.
Jeep optomistically rated a 2002 V8 powered Grand Cherokee to tow 6,500 lbs (assuming it has the factory tow package). I would reduce this by AT LEAST 1,000 lbs to allow for people and cargo in the Jeep then start my search. This probably limits you to nothing larger than a 22' International or a 23' Safari.

Keep in mind that your Jeep only has a 106" wheelbase and will need a very well set-up hitch or a Hensley in order to manage any Airstream.
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Old 05-29-2006, 09:20 AM   #4
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Anyway you go, you'll most likely need to upgrade the hitch to a Class 4/5. Class 3 might not be enough for nearly every Airstream or Argosy trailer. I think some class 3s are good for up to 3500 lbs. Most RVs, minus a popup will exceed 3500lbs.

I would agree with Pick that a 16' or 19' is all you should consider with that short of a wheelbase. Additionally, there was a Chrysler engineer on the forum that said that the GC holds heat more than the Durango counterpart. With that short wheelbase, I'd take the 6000+ tow rating with a grain of salt. We took our 25' with our 118" wheelbase car and it was rated at 7500 lbs (after gear upgrades). The wind would really move us around, and that was with a much lower center of gravity than the GC. With our 19', the 118" wasn't an issue.
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Old 05-29-2006, 11:27 AM   #5
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Hi brodjeaw--For about $5K and your '02 Jeep Grand Cherokee V8, you can get a '02 Suburban, which will do the job. A 1/2 ton would be good for up to a 27' A/S, and a 3/4 ton would handle anything larger. You will not be satisfied with your current Jeep towing any A/S, as the real life tow rating is too low, wheelbase is too short, and engine cooling in FL and CA will be a problem.--Frank S
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Old 05-29-2006, 11:36 AM   #6
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Originally Posted by Frank S
Hi brodjeaw--For about $5K and your '02 Jeep Grand Cherokee V8, you can get a '02 Suburban, which will do the job. A 1/2 ton would be good for up to a 27' A/S, and a 3/4 ton would handle anything larger. You will not be satisfied with your current Jeep towing any A/S, as the real life tow rating is too low, wheelbase is too short, and engine cooling in FL and CA will be a problem.--Frank S
Greetings brodjeaw,
Please heed Frank S' advice. A Jeep Grand Cherokee will be a marginal tow vehicle for anything above 19.' I would decide what kind of Airstream meets my needs first, and buy most adequate tow vehicle. See my post on the "Towing in the Mountains" thread for more info. Generally, the tail shouldn't wag the dog; on your decision on what trailer to purchase, or while towing.
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