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Old 09-02-2014, 03:44 PM   #1
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1966 22' Safari
Sonoma Valley , California
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1966 Safari & 2003 Ford Explorer LXT V8 4WD - good match?

Hello all - just a newbie here so here's my newbie type of question...

At this time, and until the youngest is out of college, I have a 2003 Ford Explorer XLT V8 4WD with a tow package. I love my Explorer and would like to tow our 1966 Safari, weight of 3360, with the Explorer because it's easier to drive. The tow capacity on the Explorer is 7000 pounds.

We also have a 1994 Chevy Z71 which is less comfortable to drive and maneuver in general, rated to tow the same 7000 pounds.

Both have high mileage, and we are looking at driving fairly short distances, maybe 6 hours tops. Will the Explorer work, or should I upgrade to something newer and more reliable? That starts another question, I know, of what to buy but for now it's the two choices: Explorer or Chevy Truck.

Advice appreciated, as always! Thanks, Corinne


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Old 09-02-2014, 04:18 PM   #2
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The same thing that makes the Explorer easier to drive and maneuver is the same thing that makes it a poor choice in tow vehicles. It has a high center of gravity and a short wheelbase.
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Old 09-02-2014, 08:37 PM   #3
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1966 22' Safari
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Interesting response....any other opinions?


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Old 09-02-2014, 08:49 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by overlander63 View Post
The same thing that makes the Explorer easier to drive and maneuver is the same thing that makes it a poor choice in tow vehicles. It has a high center of gravity and a short wheelbase.
Ditto !!!
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Old 09-03-2014, 09:10 AM   #5
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Go for it!
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Old 09-03-2014, 05:26 PM   #6
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Is a full-sized pickup truck generally considered the best tow vehicle for a travel trailer by RVers in the USA? Absolutely. Is your trailer, towed by the medium-sized SUV you describe, a reasonable match: Yes.

I've towed a 26ft 4400lb white box trailer, and a 22ft 3400lb Airstream with a 2003 Ford Explorer, with factory Class III/IV tow package (3.73 rear end) and the 4.6L V8. Ford published a tow rating of 7200lbs. The 2002-2010 model Explorers were body on frame truck-like designs, sometimes described as "F-150 lite," and notably better tow vehicles than the 1990-2001 series based on the Ranger small pickup. The only thing I didn't like about it as a tow vehicle was the 10-11 MPG gas mileage.

With a medium-sized SUV, a weight distribution hitch and sway control are a must, of course.
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Old 09-03-2014, 05:54 PM   #7
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1972 25' Tradewind
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1966 Safari & 2003 Ford Explorer LXT V8 4WD - good match?

You will be fine. Get a WD hitch with sway control, and a brake controller and you will be just fine. I have lots of towing experience, and I just towed our 25' Trade Wind Land Yacht 5 hours each direction with a 2002 Jeep Grand Cherokee with a V8. The power is there and with your hitch set up properly, you will not have issues. It was a very easy trip for us and completely worry free, never felt unsafe. I did average 10.5 MPG, but thats no worse than a half-ton will get.

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Old 09-04-2014, 12:08 AM   #8
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1966 22' Safari
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Thank you for your advice! I do love my Explorer and the V8 engine is strong. I've used it to pull and launch our ski boat for years....even when the launch ramp is low at the end of summer using the 4WD. The newer models don't offer the V8 engine or the truck chassis. I'm adding the brake controller, and a WD hitch with sway control. Good to go! Thanks again, Corinne
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