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Old 07-07-2017, 08:46 PM   #1
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2017 22' Sport
Fort Worth , Texas
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Smile Best TV for 22' Sport??

I'm a newly single gal with a lifelong dream to own an Airstream. My ex and I bought a FC 25', took it on one trip, and then a few months later it went on the chopping block with everything else in the fallout.
I've decided that I am going to continue with my Airstream dream and get my own - a 2017 22' Sport! Now, my dilemma. I have to sell my current vehicle to get a TV and am unsure of exactly what I need. The Sport weights 3651 dry. I'm thinking I need a tow rating of at least 5000 lbs. Do I need 4WD or can I get by with RWD? I currently live in Texas but when I retire, which could be any day, I want to go Everywhere! I'm not planning on being in blizzard country in January but I might see a few flakes up in Colorado. I was thinking a Toyota 4Runner, but those are pricey. I'm thinking pre-owned. I need reliability, since it's just me. And I'm more of a city girl, so an SUV would suit me more than a pickup truck.
I'm sure there's a lot of great advice on this forum so I'll just throw it out there! Thank you for your assistance!!
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Old 07-07-2017, 09:51 PM   #2
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Hi

The whole idea of the Sport is that you can tow it with a somewhat less fancy tow vehicle. The fully loaded weight of the 22 maxes out at 4,500 lb. That is "in bounds" for a number of relatively light weight SUV's. The payload numbers on some SUV's may not be reasonable so you can't just look at a single number.

2WD vs 4x4 is an exciting topic. Like it or not, a 2WD will tow better than a 4x4. A 2WD with a electronic lock on the rear axle likely will out do a non-locker 4x4 in a number of odd conditions.

Whatever you get, you will want a tow package on it. The factory does a number of tweaks as part of those packages. Doing all of them from scratch doesn't pay.

So what will work:

A F-150 or 1500 series pickup certainly will work.
Any of the large SUV's will work
A Honda Pilot mid sized SUV will work.

You may be back to a modest amount of passengers and cargo with the small SUV. That might be fine. You probably would want to do a custom order to maximize the payload.

No simple decisions ...

My suggestion would be to go for the large SUV or the 1500 series pickup. My guess is that the payload will get you eventually on the small(er) SUV.

Bob
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Old 07-07-2017, 10:01 PM   #3
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"best?" Impossible to answer but have you considered a Jeep Grand Cherokee with either a diesel or Hemi V-8. I happily tow a 23 Safari with a Hemi powered JGC. A good 2 or 3 year old one can be found at pretty good pricing. I would recommend 4WD. You may not need it very often but when you do you will be happy you have it.
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Old 07-07-2017, 10:09 PM   #4
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If I were in your shoes I would probably take a hard look at something like a diesel VW Toureg TDI. Medium size SUV, but 7700 towing capacity, lots of torque from the diesel (and good mpg too), very reliable, can be had for $20-30k. Another thought would be a Grand Cherokee.

I DO think 4x4 is worth it. You never know when you'll be on some slick grass trying to pull into or out of a spot and flipping a switch will make all the difference.
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Old 07-08-2017, 11:03 AM   #5
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Hi

I have lived my entire life in "snow country". Back in my younger days, doing silly things on "unimproved surfaces" made a lot more sense than it does today. Driving on snow pack has been pretty routine every year more or less forever. Loose snow up to a foot or more is not quite as common, it does happen. It all can be navigated with 2WD (or 4WD in 2WD mode) and some care... been there done that.

Yes, this gets a bit technical .... sorry about that.

With a simple "two wheel drive" on a very bad surface, one wheel will spin and the other one will go pretty much nowhere. You are stuck and no matter how much gas you give it, that wheel just spins faster.

With a simple "four wheel drive" on a bad surface, *two* wheels will spin and the other two will go pretty much nowhere. You are just as stuck and you now get to listen to two tires spinning. (I do have *lots* of data on all of this ....we had this driveway ...).

The answer is what's called a locking axle. They come in automatic and manual versions. Many of the automatic ones are useless. With the manual ones, you hit a button. Something goes "clunk" and you now move all the driven wheels at once. No more spinning tires. You either get out or you spin *all* the wheels. In my experience, you get out every time unless there is no weight on the driven wheels. (sand / gravel bags in the back in winter ...).

With a tow, you have weight on the rear wheels. You *do* have traction back there. Lock up the rear axle (clunk) and you will get out of any normal situation. It will also get you out of a lot of "unusual" ones that will trap any number of 4x4 rigs.

Yes, this could go on and on digging into which manufacturer does this or that which way. We also could spend a few thousand posts about experiences with this and that system as implemented in this or that year. I have yet to see anybody mess up a manual locking axle. Various manufacturers *do* routinely mess up 4WD setups.

For the "ultimate" setup, go with a 4x4 with full lockup capability. Lock the front axle, lock the rear axle, and lock the transfer case. Up the 90 degree slope you go Just remember to turn all that off once you are back on road. You will shred the tires and the handling on road will be awful when set up that way. Better yet, get an off road buggy and use something else to tow ....They are lots more fun

Bob
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Old 07-08-2017, 12:42 PM   #6
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We tow our 22 ft Sport with a Jeep Grand Cherokee diesel. It has more than enough power and handles well. It is a great vehicle for every day use as well. The hemi V8 is also a good option.
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Old 07-08-2017, 12:53 PM   #7
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Take a look at the GMC Canyon with the 2.8L diesel. It is a mid size truck. Also, the Ford F150 is due to get a 3.0L diesel for the 2018 model. Any mid sized SUV with a v-6 should also be able to pull it.
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Old 07-08-2017, 01:38 PM   #8
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4 Runner

My 2011 4 Runner 4 wheel drive has been a great TV for our 19' Bambi ..weight 3700 lbs....20000 miles at 14 mpg...equalizer hitch..no problems but a little slow on steep hills.
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Old 07-08-2017, 01:39 PM   #9
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Since we already own one, We tow our 22 Sport with a 2WD 2003 Toyota Tundra 4.7L V8 fully loaded including gear, kayaks and bikes with no problem.
I found Toyota to be a very reliable truck with minimal maintenance.
If I were replacing my 2003 I would opt for a newer model Tundra With a larger V8 and more creature comforts.
Since gas mileage is about the same go for the 4WD.
The AS 22 sport is a great size for just about any boon docking site.
Enjoy
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Old 07-08-2017, 01:52 PM   #10
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I seem to be the only one on the forum that has spoken in favor of a used Volvo XC 90 with a V-8 engine. I've been pulling a 16 ft International ( a little lighter than the 22 Sport but heavier than the 16 Sport) through the mountains of Colorado for the past few years with little trouble. I'm getting 15-16 mpg consistently, it's AWD, and it makes a great all purpose vehicle. It's rated for 5,000 lbs. You're going to love your new Airstream!
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Old 07-08-2017, 02:03 PM   #11
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I tow my 22FB with a Tundra. More TV then needed but it is reliable and safe. I really like this combination. Although it can get pricy....but good value in the long run. Tundras are now made in Texas, USA if that is an issue. Any of the 5.7 liter V8s from Toyota are pretty much the same in regards to towing. It's your choice on which model you prefer.
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Old 07-08-2017, 02:04 PM   #12
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2016 22' Sport
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TV for 22'Sport

We have a 2016 22' Sport and tow it with a used Mercedes ML 350 which has a towing capacity of 7200 lbs. Works great. Have not tried in in snow but have tried it in the mountains. No problem. Good luck!


Quote:
Originally Posted by sjski View Post
I'm a newly single gal with a lifelong dream to own an Airstream. My ex and I bought a FC 25', took it on one trip, and then a few months later it went on the chopping block with everything else in the fallout.
I've decided that I am going to continue with my Airstream dream and get my own - a 2017 22' Sport! Now, my dilemma. I have to sell my current vehicle to get a TV and am unsure of exactly what I need. The Sport weights 3651 dry. I'm thinking I need a tow rating of at least 5000 lbs. Do I need 4WD or can I get by with RWD? I currently live in Texas but when I retire, which could be any day, I want to go Everywhere! I'm not planning on being in blizzard country in January but I might see a few flakes up in Colorado. I was thinking a Toyota 4Runner, but those are pricey. I'm thinking pre-owned. I need reliability, since it's just me. And I'm more of a city girl, so an SUV would suit me more than a pickup truck.
I'm sure there's a lot of great advice on this forum so I'll just throw it out there! Thank you for your assistance!!
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Old 07-08-2017, 02:46 PM   #13
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Port Angeles , Washington
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I have a 2015 Tacoma with tow package and Blue Ox 750# bars and the 2017 22 tows great. I've used the 4wd more than once!
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Old 07-08-2017, 04:03 PM   #14
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A TV needs to be low, long wheelbase, short rear overhang, good brakes, capacity sufficient for your travel plan and affordable for your budget both to purchase and operate. The 4x4 SUVs and trucks are not low. The small SUVs mostly don't have 4500# capacity and are short wheelbase. The minivans are low, have good brakes, but only about 3500# capacity. What to do?

You need tow capacity, tongue weight capacity and payload for your travel style. You need to match your driving ability to the tow vehicle. Firm believer that the older we get, the smaller the vehicle we drive should be. But the concept goes a bit counter to what makes a good tow vehicle. So a careful balance in choice is required.

Also, vehicle maintenance can push one to getting value from new and low priced as opposed to older and unknown condition. Certified used with an extended warranty can be a great solution, but is often a bit pricey too.

Consider/investigate -

Dodge Durango - good WB, available with Hemi & V-6, first built in 2011
Jeep Grand Cherokee is similar - older version not as good as late models
Honda Passport and Pilot seem to have 4500 tow capacity in 4 wheel drive
Ford Flex with factory tow package - good WB, low CG, brakes ...
The Toyota Highlander and 4-runner look possible (but people keep them)

Spend time on the CanAm website. Look at Andy's Hitch hints. That is another view of towing. Spend some time reading the tow vehicle discussion threads here. That will give you an understanding of decisions that other folks have made. Then go to a Ford, Dodge and Chevy truck dealership and drive some of the the lower priced versions. You may be surprised what will work for a determined city girl.

You will figure it out. good luck. Pat
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