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Old 04-15-2013, 09:54 AM   #1
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1972 31' Sovereign
Charleston , South Carolina
Join Date: Apr 2013
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Family tow vehicle for 31' Sovereign (1972)

So sorry to create a new thread on a topic which I know there are countless threads on topic already established. I have a new to me '31 sovreign and no vehicle to tow it yet. We are a family of 5 (5 yr old twin boys, 8 yr old daughter) and 3 dogs - one of which is a Great Dane. We cannot do a pick-up truck as I won't put my dogs in the open truck bed for transport. I need a car/SUV/or van that will seat at least 5 people and have cargo room for 3 dogs. I would prefer a diesel but that is certainly not a deal-breaker. Also, do not want to buy anything new... Any and all suggestions appreciated! Thanks!!

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Old 04-15-2013, 10:11 AM   #2
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1976 Argosy 28
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Great Dane? That sounds like excuse enough to find a diesel Excursion. If you can find a well-cared-for 7.3l and do the suspension and brake upgrades that are available in the aftermarket it would be workable. If you're not set on diesel, there are Suburbans and Expedition XLs that aren't quite in that dreadnaught class of the Excursion.

Another option might be a truck with a cap and a pass-through or a vents you can have open while driving in warm weather.

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Old 04-15-2013, 11:00 AM   #3
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1981 31' Excella II
New Market , Alabama
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I have a V10 Excursion and it has no problems pulling my 31ft Excella II. I like it. Slow Mover will chime in and start dogging on the Excursion.

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Old 04-15-2013, 11:15 AM   #4
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1974 31' Sovereign
Yukon , Oklahoma
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We are a family of four, often an extra kid, two dogs and '31 sovereign. We have an 01 f-350 with a camper shell. We have the sliding windows for both so we can have access while driving. Dogs can stick head in but can't climb through. Also put ice chest there for easy access. We have a second trailer plug from previous fifth wheel so with adapter I can run 12v heat or cool if needed. With their cushion and blankets I have happy pups.
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Old 04-15-2013, 12:21 PM   #5
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1977 31' Sovereign
1963 26' Overlander
1989 34' Excella
Johnsburg , Illinois
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We had a Ford 460 window van for many years. It worked well with our kids while pulling our 31 footer. Climbed hills nicely and had good brake capacity. If you can find a used one or another full size window van you should be OK.
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Old 04-15-2013, 12:56 PM   #6
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1966 26' Overlander
Woodstock , Georgia
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I also have had two 31' a Sovereign and an Excella model, pulled both with a 2000 V10 Excursion. Seat 8 with lots of room behind the seats.
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Old 04-15-2013, 01:18 PM   #7
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Greetings from the Florida Panhandle

First off, welcome to the Forums. We're glad to have you with us.

We have tow our 2005 25FB (7,400#) with a couple of 3/4 ton Suburbans. They did the job adequately with lots of cargo and passenger space. These had gas engines. As to SUV's with diesel engines, your choices are Suburbans through 1999 or Excursions through 2005. There could be some good one out there, but they are getting old and hard to find.

We went went to a Duramax pick-up in 2011, and I would be very hesitant to ever go back to a gasoline powered tow vehicle. A crew cab pick-up with a camper shell is pretty much a Suburban. You can weather proof the shell to the truck cab and have an open pass-through.

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Old 04-15-2013, 03:33 PM   #8
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South of the river , Minnesota
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You have three choices each of them from a variety of vendors:

1) You can use a full-size passenger van. Lots of space, reasonably good as tow vehicles, main drawback is no 4wd. Dodge, Ford, Chevrolet all make them.

2) You can use a full-size SUV. The only one in production right now is the Chevrolet Suburban. If you're looking at used, you can also consider the Ford Excursion, which was similar, and which was available with a diesel engine.

3) You can look at the larger mid-size SUVs. Nissan Armada, Ford Expedition, Chevrolet Tahoe. Be careful as these are all borderline for the weight you're hauling and towing.

I have been extremely happy with my Suburban and am in largely the same situation you are.
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Old 04-16-2013, 09:56 PM   #9
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Corpus Christi , Texas
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It's waaay too many critters. So do it right the first time.

I normally argue that the TT is the important vehicle to choose first. In your case, it is the TV. Your TT is not that heavy nor long, but your pax & payload requirements are quite high.

Excursion has too many (serious) faults, and Suburban lacks the cubic cargo capacity.

Ford or GM van. 1T spec. Pullrite hitch.

A roof air can also be added for greater capacity (I see this all the time in the oilfield). But I'd avoid the 15-pax sized vans (handling/braking concerns).

Avoid Ford diesels of 6.0L and 6.4L displacement altogether. The gas motors are fine. The GM DURAMAX may be a good choice, but the 6.0L gas motor is great.

1990 35' Silver Streak Sterling; 9k GVWR.
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Old 04-17-2013, 04:00 AM   #10
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1975 31' Sovereign
1980 31' Excella II
Sprung Leak , North Carolina
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Van or crew cab pickup with a nice shell. I have a 1996 F350 Crew cab dually with the 7.3 PSD. Almost overkill for our 1975 Sovereign but we don't have the larger family or menagerie that you do. We do tow ours with my bride's 2003 F150 if we are going to the coast for the weekends.

Haven't seen a decent Suburban in several years.


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