Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread Display Modes
 
Old 08-16-2005, 04:13 PM   #1
2 Rivet Member
 
outerbanksdeb's Avatar
 
Kill Devil Hills , North Carolina
Join Date: Feb 2004
Posts: 54
Images: 5
Can I tow my Argosy with a '82 Mercedes diesel?

argosy is about 3800lbs. and since Mark is into biodiesel we are trying to trade in our van for a diesel tow vehicle. we are looking at a V6 mecedes diesel sedan. 1982 any thoughts?
__________________

__________________
THANKS a bunch! OBX Deb
outerbanksdeb is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-16-2005, 04:27 PM   #2
Rivet Master
 
TomW's Avatar
 
1967 26' Overlander
Huntsville , Alabama
Join Date: Dec 2003
Posts: 2,918
Images: 2
Uhh, a little more info on the Mercedes is needed. My first thought is "No".

Tom
__________________

TomW is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-16-2005, 04:36 PM   #3
Aluminut
 
Silvertwinkie's Avatar
 
2004 25' Safari
. , Illinois
Join Date: Feb 2003
Posts: 10,334
Merecedes did not make a V-6 diesel sedan in the US in 1982. It was an inline 5 and if it was above a 240D, it was turbocharged.

The answer to your question however is beyond question no. We owned 2 300Ds. A 1975 and a 1982 (the first year of the turbo). The 75 has the same inline 5, but not turbo charged. It had a small boat hitch on it and my father decided he wasn't going to play musical cars to get the real tow vehicle out to move the 18' RV (non Airstream- similar weight to what you're talking about). He decided to hook it to the Mercedes. It didn't like it at all and it was only moving a few feet. Bad, bad idea. I haven't heard a car creak that way ever before, and never since.

In the late 80's or early 90's Mercedes came out with the inline six. 3.5L and 3.0L. The 3.5L had connector rod issues, and though it had more horses, it too wasn't designed to tow a 3800+ LB coach. There are other factors as to why it's a bad idea beyond it simply being a strong diesel.

Do yourself a favor....just don't do it....don't even consider it as an option. I know this car you speak of from years of exp with it. It's not a good choice. Great car, don't get me wrong, but it's clearly not a tow vehicle for what you're thinking about-- no question about it at all.
__________________
Computers manufactured by companies such as IBM, Compaq and millions of others are by far the most popular with about 70 million machines in use worldwide. Macintosh fans note that cockroaches are far more numerous than humans and that numbers alone do not denote a higher life form. -NY Times 11/91
Silvertwinkie is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-16-2005, 07:02 PM   #4
2 Rivet Member
 
outerbanksdeb's Avatar
 
Kill Devil Hills , North Carolina
Join Date: Feb 2004
Posts: 54
Images: 5
THANK you! can you think of a diesel that might do the job that isn't a truck?
I know they have those extended cabs and all but I would prefer a station wagon or (dare I say it) SUV. It just has to be diesel. And we are looking for a used one. The sea spray on the outerbanks in North carolina just kills anything new so its not worth the extra to get a new car here.
__________________
THANKS a bunch! OBX Deb
outerbanksdeb is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-16-2005, 07:14 PM   #5
Rivet Master
 
TomW's Avatar
 
1967 26' Overlander
Huntsville , Alabama
Join Date: Dec 2003
Posts: 2,918
Images: 2
Quote:
Originally Posted by outerbanksdeb collage
... since Mark is into biodiesel ... It just has to be diesel. And we are looking for a used one....
I understand your desire.

What you need is a suspension system capable of acommodating a travel trailer. This will be found in either a truck, or an earlier model (read as BIG) sedan.

General Motors produced a diesel, full sized sedan many years ago. You may wish to research earlier model ('70s - '80s) models Oldsmobiles.

Tom
TomW is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-16-2005, 07:22 PM   #6
Well Preserved

 
1993 21' Sovereign
Colfax , North Carolina
Join Date: Jun 2003
Posts: 20,193
Rivet Lincoln, with a BMW diesel

Quote:
Originally Posted by outerbanksdeb
THANK you! can you think of a diesel that might do the job that isn't a truck?
I know they have those extended cabs and all but I would prefer a station wagon or (dare I say it) SUV. It just has to be diesel. And we are looking for a used one. The sea spray on the outerbanks in North carolina just kills anything new so its not worth the extra to get a new car here.
Back in the '80's Ford experimented with Lincoln Continentals and, it was rumored, Town Cars with BMW inline 6 cylinder diesel engines. The car would be capable of towing the trailer, and the engines were great, although I am not sure they would be up to the task of moving the trailer at highway speeds. I briefly had one, and it got 26 mpg, never needed anything other than maintenance.
Oldsmobile made an ersatz V8 diesel (converted 350 gas engine), that was a disaster. About the time they got most of the bugs worked out, they quit making them.
These are the only two that come to mind, I would not use the Olds, if I could find one, and the diesel Lincoln is exceedingly rare.
Another diesel you may want to consider is the old GM 6.2 V8. It can be found in full-sized vans, and we use a full-size van to tow our 6000 pound Overlander. If you can find one, the newer version of this, the 6.5, would probably be the better choice. The vans could be had in a 3/4 ton version that was more a 1/2 ton than the Ford 3/4 ton van, which also could be had with a diesesl. The Chevy 3/4 ton van rides very smoothly, and parts are readily available. These were used by conversion van manufacturers, so you may be able to find a diesel conversion van, that would be more car-like than truck-like.
That about sums up the diesel non-pickup truck diesels that have been manufactured, if there are others they are so rare that I would be afraid to use them, because of impossibility to find parts for them.
__________________
Meddle not in the affairs of dragons, for you are crunchy, and taste good with ketchup.
Terry
overlander63 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-16-2005, 07:23 PM   #7
Rivet Monster
 
wahoonc's Avatar

 
1975 31' Sovereign
1980 31' Excella II
Sprung Leak , North Carolina
Join Date: Jun 2003
Posts: 7,174
Images: 40
deb,
Not sure what the length on your Argy is...but Jeep has been offering the Liberty in a diesel version. It supposedly will get about 27mpg on the highway. It is rated for towing 5000# and from what I have read in the reviews it is probably capable of more, but is limited because of it's short wheelbase. I have yet to see one in person, but the engine is an Italian design being built by Detroit Diesel. It has been offered for several years in Europe. Doubt their are any on the used market yet. Another possiblity is the Izuzu Trooper, I know a few of the diesel versions made into to the country back in the early 80's but not sure how easy they are going to be to come by, I have never seen one for sale.

Aaron
__________________
....so many Airstreams....so little time...
WBCCI #XXXX AIR #2495
Why are we in this basket...and where are we going
wahoonc is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-16-2005, 07:34 PM   #8
3 Rivet Member
 
LowellN's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2004
Posts: 119
Images: 1
My Grandfather had a big boat of a Cadillac in the later part of the 1980's that had a diesel. This might also work.
Volvo also had a diesel station wagon/sedan in the 1980's, but I don't know if it would have the tow rating you need.
Lowell
__________________
"For my part, I travel not to go anywhere, but to go. I travel for travel's sake. The great affair is to move."

Robert Louis Stevenson
LowellN is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-16-2005, 09:12 PM   #9
Aluminut
 
Silvertwinkie's Avatar
 
2004 25' Safari
. , Illinois
Join Date: Feb 2003
Posts: 10,334
The problem with the 80's GM full size was that it was a converted 350 block that was thrown together. There were more problems with the GM diesel of the early to mid 80s due to several engineering failures and oversights.

I would stay away from the GM diesels that were in the full size cars of that time. If you ask around, folks that had them, over 50% had the diesel yanked and GM put in a gasser in it's place sometimes under warranty, other times not.

I'm not sure what smaller car (with a diesel) that would tow what yer looking for. I know the later model Suburbans with the 6.2L was a far better engine than what was in the full size cars and there are lots of them around. I agree that a diesel Suburban is a bit overkill, but it does fit the requirements (as it's a diesel and just a bigger station wagon). Matter of fact, Illinois states our 2004 Suburban as a "Sport Wagon" body style.

Best of luck on the hunt.
__________________
Computers manufactured by companies such as IBM, Compaq and millions of others are by far the most popular with about 70 million machines in use worldwide. Macintosh fans note that cockroaches are far more numerous than humans and that numbers alone do not denote a higher life form. -NY Times 11/91
Silvertwinkie is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-16-2005, 09:26 PM   #10
Rivet Master
 
Join Date: Mar 2002
Posts: 1,482
Images: 19
It would be interesting to know if any of the GM diesel sedans are still running after all these years. Few did for long, even when new.

The 6.2 diesel, the later 6.5, and the still later turbocharged 6.5 (which is still the engine that comes with the Humvee) was offered in pickups, vans, step vans, and the Suburban from the mid or late 80's up to the 2000 model year, or thereabouts. One hears of the old 6.2 'Burbs getting up to 25 mpg when equiped with a 3.73 rear end. Slowly, of course.

Another interesting possibility, again depending upon the size of your Argosy, would be a Mercedes 2.5 turbodiesel van - sold for a couple of years under the Freightliner badge, and for the last two or three with a Dodge nameplate. This is the basis for a couple of Airstream B or B+ motorhomes.

Since most of these are purchased for commercial use it may be hard to find one with less than a gazillion miles, but you never know.

Mark
__________________
'85 Sovereign, 25'
j54mark is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-16-2005, 09:56 PM   #11
Remember Burma Shave!
 
driftwood's Avatar
 
2006 19' Safari
2000 25' Safari
1985 25' Sovereign
Fort Myers , SW.Florida
Join Date: Sep 2003
Posts: 510
Images: 35
Question

Quote:
Originally Posted by Silvertwinkie
Do yourself a favor....just don't do it....don't even consider it as an option. I know this car you speak of from years of exp with it. It's not a good choice. ... it's clearly not a tow vehicle for what you're thinking about-- no question about it at all.
I'd like to know how you really feel about this!
__________________
NORM #3305

"... there is nothing you can't fix yourself ...
... if you're handy ...
... with a check book! ..."
driftwood is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-16-2005, 10:25 PM   #12
_
 
. , .
Join Date: Dec 2004
Posts: 8,812
mercedes = unibody= poor towing....especially old rusty unibodies......but

SURE ya can towing with the merc........i mean you can tow an airstream with a bicycle right?

the question is can ya stop it.......the trailer/car/bicycle combo......going down hill......or at a stop sign or when ya really need it to stop......

you may not realize this but while it's possible to tow an as with a bike......they never show pictures of the cyclist stopping the trailer........hmmmmmmm.

i even think fred flintstone towed a a rockstream with the family sedan in bedrock.


lastly it's interesting we hear all of those stories (over and over) about towing in the good ol'e days with cars..............IT's OVER EXAGERATED.

look at any of the books on caravaning or airsteam rallies and you will see LOTS of trucks/wagons/suburbans in those photos.


sure there are some olds,caddies, mopar, and studie's but mostly TRUCKS.


cheers
2air'
__________________
2airishuman is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-16-2006, 04:30 AM   #13
Ledbehind
 
2018 16' Sport
Great Falls , Virginia
Join Date: Jun 2006
Posts: 54
Images: 2
Jeep Liberty Diesel

Actually if you keep to 1800 - 2000 rpm you can expect to get 30 - 33 mpg . I do and there is LOTS of torque.

I'll let you know how it tows because I pick up my "new" 1961 24' tradewind on Sunday.

I've been told a couple of things now....the owners manual claims a 25' & 5000# limit on the trailer and I momentarily forget the max tongue wght but it is higher that the 350# or so on the TradeWind. They also recommend a weight dist hitch to relieve that "single weight point" on the hitchball

the wheelbase is short so it may not be too comfortable to tow with this

antisway and a top-o-the-line Brake controller like a prodigy will be a BIG help

There are a couple of "rule of thumb" in rvtowingtips.com - the combo passes the second one

I should spend the money I saved on the '61 and get a more appropriate tow vehicle.

We'll see now, won't we? Who is the correctest and truthiest

Henry
__________________
henrydahm is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-16-2006, 04:57 AM   #14
3 Rivet Member
 
Join Date: Apr 2004
Posts: 117
Put one together-

I know the older Mercedes and Volvos and other diesel cars were mostly European imports- and US diesel cars were initially a disaster- the GM conversions. I had a Toronado for about a week- rough week...

The last one that I remember being a Euro success that made it here before the obvious Sprinters and now the Liberty- was that great BMW 524TD from the mid 80's. I have a 1995 525TDS Touring now, and would never consider towing my TW with it. I like the car too much to punish it like that.

Peugeot had a diesel too. What about a V-10 TDI Touareg? They pump them up to 500HP in Europe.

I was looking at an old Travelall- beautiful selection to tow a trailer with, but I'm spoiled by my diesels. I asked around, and in Phoenix, San Diego, even Miami- I found specialists- and usually guys with European trained technicians- who take diesels and custom install them in whatever you want- space providing, of course. The place in Miami quoted me a 1998 Dodge Cummins with a 5 speed, installed for $5K- with computers and all the required goodies, and a 1 year warranty on the installation, letting me know they had confidence- engine was 90 days, and came from a wreck that they ran and tested.

I snoozed and lost on the Travelall, but the idea was good and I may end up doing it. Find someone who does this, beef the springs up in what you want to put it in, and give it a shot! A Jeep Grand Wagoneer would be very comfortable driving "car like" tow vehicle that can handle the trailer, and converting it to a biodiesel burning Woody classic is a really economical way to travel in style!

Good luck!
__________________

__________________
millionairstream is offline   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
Van Conversion/Small Motorhome as tow vehicle? TG2500 Tow Vehicles 0 10-16-2011 07:07 PM
05 Airstream Westfalia, Mercedes Diesel, Gen, Shower eBay Watch Airstreams on eBay 0 05-15-2011 08:40 PM
2011 Airstream Interstate Mercedes Diesel RV eBay Watch Airstreams on eBay 0 05-07-2011 10:40 AM
05 Airstream Westfalia, Mercedes Diesel, Gen, Shower eBay Watch Airstreams on eBay 0 04-27-2011 08:50 PM
05 Airstream Westfalia, Mercedes Diesel, Gen, Shower eBay Watch Airstreams on eBay 0 04-26-2011 11:20 PM


Virginia Campgrounds

Reviews provided by




Copyright 2002- Social Knowledge, LLC All Rights Reserved.

All times are GMT -6. The time now is 12:34 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.