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Old 12-04-2013, 06:39 PM   #15
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If we're talking fantasy - I want a Chevy Nomad station wagon body with a 6 cyl Cummins and 8 speed transmission. I want it with all the modern conveniences and safety gear including GPS, backup camera, air bags, 3-point safety belts, air conditioning, etc.

In other words - I want the glory of the past with the modern conveniences of today in a package I can be proud of and park in a regular parking space :-)

Is that really so much to ask? :-)
Well yes, but if you are willing to compromise with something like the V6 diesel from the Grand Cherokee you might be able to make it work with lots and lots and lots of money.
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Old 12-04-2013, 06:50 PM   #16
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Well yes, but if you are willing to compromise with something like the V6 diesel from the Grand Cherokee you might be able to make it work with lots and lots and lots of money.
Oh - and I want it for less than $25k

The topic is fantasy TVs, right?

Or perhaps a Woody with all the modern shtuff :-)
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Old 12-04-2013, 06:57 PM   #17
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It was a busy day. I drove the Edge Limited. Tow words: Nice & Noisy. It drives very nice. This one had all the goodies you could want. It handles like a go cart, and sadly sounds like one. Ok, I am exaggerating a little. But it had more road noise than I would want to listen to for 5 hours. I placed in the "maybe" category.

I came across a new entry for my list: Buick LaCross with the Northstar V8. This thing had 20" 40 profile tires. Didn't drive it, but was amazed I had never heard of this car. Obviously, I am living in a shoe.

Tomorrow, I am going to drive a beautiful looking Chrysler 300 Hemi with 20,000 miles. The sales guy is bring in from a sister dealer. He says it was traded in from a little old lady because she couldn't take off from a light without peeling rubber. I dunno. It's in like-new cond.

SueMac- - - I did very briefly consider a hot-rod project. However, I don't have the chops for it, and hiring that work out is very expensive. I do know some hot rodders who could easily build a "Woody with the Goodies" - but I don't have $50Gs sitting around. I like your idea, however!
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Old 12-04-2013, 07:33 PM   #18
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tow vehicle for AS.

Don't know if you get Airstream Life magazine but in this latest issue there is a good article by Andy Thompson comparing the dodge/Chrysler 300 up against a Ford Excursion, and dodge 2500 4x4 and the 300 was the better TV..

i do not think there model they have is hemi but that is added bonus.
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Old 12-04-2013, 07:40 PM   #19
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Don't know if you get Airstream Life magazine but in this latest issue there is a good article by Andy Thompson comparing the dodge/Chrysler 300 up against a Ford Excursion, and dodge 2500 4x4 and the 300 was the better TV..

i do not think there model they have is hemi but that is added bonus.
Carl,
Indeed I do get Airstream Life and Andy's article set my imagination loose! HA HA. I read that, and sort of went into a manic phase of checking out these cars, and others I came up with based on my spreadsheet of data collected on some parameters. My whole frame of reference on this issue has changed.

BTW, last night I listened to Andy's interview on the Vintage Airstream Podcast. He did a one hour interview on hitches and towing. If anyone hasn't listened to it, I would highly recommend it. It is at the VAP.com web site. If nothing else, it is fun to hear. He has a good sense of humor as well as a lot of direct experience.
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Old 12-04-2013, 07:56 PM   #20
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"Woodie with the goodies"

That's either a perfect name for a band or the company who needs to make this tow vehicle! :-)

Love it!

Curious about the 300. Didn't they also make a station wagon on that platform? I'm stuck on station wagons as a TV possibility. My parents drove us 4 kids around in a 64 (?) Chevy BelAir wagon - red - vinyl seats - 3 on the tree...no doubt that could tow my 27FB Cloud....

Andy's article had me thinking too....
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Old 12-04-2013, 07:58 PM   #21
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What are the important criteria to a comfortable tow? It's arguable, but I think the list would include:
  • Sufficient horsepower and torque. Say, 250/275 or something in that range. But most important is a good power to weight ratio.
  • More than a 4-spd transmission. 6 and 8 speed preferred
  • Short overhang as a percentage of wheelbase. Get the ball as close to the rear axle as possible.
  • Medium to long wheelbase. Shorter will be easier to distribute weight, but not handle as well. Longer is reverse - harder to distribute weight, but better handling. 112 to 130 might be ideal?
  • Low center of gravity - good skid pad performance like .8G?
  • Independent rear suspension. Good handling!
  • Low profile sticky and stiff tires
  • High braking capacity. Large disc brakes on 4 wheels.
  • Good ergonomics - comfortable seating, climate control, vision, controls and all the goodies that make any kind of driving pleasurable.
  • Sufficient Load Capacity - this is a tricky one. If you carry a complete mechanic's tool chest, and a 5000W generator with 6 kids and 4 bicycles, you are in a different class than a couple with a toy poodle and a pair of pliers. For the purpose of this thread, I am purposely leaving out the "manufacturer's stated payload/towing" numbers. That's a unique argument unto its own. I am accepting all the empirical evidence that shows many cars work fine in spite of these low numbers. e.g. Odyssey and Edge and Dodge. The 'paint by numbers' solution is surely a fine choice, but for my argument it is only one of many choices.
Your criteria pretty much sum up my X5 (see avatar).
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Old 12-04-2013, 07:59 PM   #22
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Originally Posted by carl2591 View Post
Don't know if you get Airstream Life magazine but in this latest issue there is a good article by Andy Thompson comparing the dodge/Chrysler 300 up against a Ford Excursion, and dodge 2500 4x4 and the 300 was the better TV..

i do not think there model they have is hemi but that is added bonus.
The vehicles in the article were Chrysler 300 3.6L 8 speed with Airstream Classic 34 loaded, Ford Expedition with Airstream 30 Int'l loaded, and Dodge 2500 4x4 Crew Cab with Airstream 30 int'l loaded.

Interesting article called "Load Capacity: How important Is It?" A point he makes is load capacity is not something to totally ignore or exceed by a wild margin, but wouldn't exaggerate its importance.

It is unfair to the article to try to sum it up with bits and pieces, the whole article must be read in its context.
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Old 12-04-2013, 08:03 PM   #23
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"Woodie with the goodies"

That's either a perfect name for a band or the company who needs to make this tow vehicle! :-)

Love it!

Curious about the 300. Didn't they also make a station wagon on that platform? I'm stuck on station wagons as a TV possibility. My parents drove us 4 kids around in a 64 (?) Chevy BelAir wagon - red - vinyl seats - 3 on the tree...no doubt that could tow my 27FB Cloud....

Andy's article had me thinking too....
Yeah, they did make a wagon until 2012. They are rare. I have been looking but not seen one on the lots yet. I seen them on the street this week. Two of them. I too am a wagon lover. I had two Country Squires and loved them both. I have a Suburban, which is a big wagon. I am anxious to drive the Hemi. If it is nice, I will set out on a search for a HEMI wagon!
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Old 12-04-2013, 08:08 PM   #24
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our criteria pretty much sum up my X5 (see avatar).
===============
Indeed! Sadly, way above my budget. BMW, Mercedes and Land Rover and Jags and Porsche are over my head in both purchase price and maintenance cost. I want that "ride" in a cheaper wrapper!

I bet it is a real sweet TV. Thanks for mentioning it.
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Old 12-04-2013, 08:26 PM   #25
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For my current needs our Honda Odyssey is close to being the perfect vehicle. It sits low and wide and stable, turns easily, carries everything we need to carry with a wide margin available. We've got a Touring model which makes for a very nice daily driver.

When not towing it returns about 24mpg on the highway, when towing it still manages, on average, 14mpg. The engine develops 244hp, more than we could ever need.

If I'd change one thing, I'd have it with a diesel engine for added torque and range. Diesel is cheaper than gas up here in Canada, so the economics make sense.
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Old 12-04-2013, 08:37 PM   #26
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For my current needs our Honda Odyssey is close to being the perfect vehicle. It sits low and wide and stable, turns easily, carries everything we need to carry with a wide margin available. We've got a Touring model which makes for a very nice daily driver.

When not towing it returns about 24mpg on the highway, when towing it still manages, on average, 14mpg. The engine develops 244hp, more than we could ever need.

If I'd change one thing, I'd have it with a diesel engine for added torque and range. Diesel is cheaper than gas up here in Canada, so the economics make sense.
I was amazed at how big the Ody-Touring was. It was like a cavern with four wheels. The way all those seats worked was top notch. The whole thing was cool. But, way more than we need, and I would be paying a lot to get it. If we had kids to haul, that would be the hands down winner I think. I also very much liked the driving position.
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Old 12-04-2013, 08:43 PM   #27
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If we ever get a new ride it will be an Odyssey. I don't know if we will tow with it or not, but I might try it.
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Old 12-04-2013, 08:52 PM   #28
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I was amazed at how big the Ody-Touring was. It was like a cavern with four wheels. The way all those seats worked was top notch. The whole thing was cool. But, way more than we need, and I would be paying a lot to get it. If we had kids to haul, that would be the hands down winner I think. I also very much liked the driving position.
They're huge, for sure. We drove a Mercedes B-Class before we had kids and with kid #1. When the twins were on the way we got the van. It was quite a shock, after driving the Baby Benz for a couple of years. We got an excellent deal on a nanny-wagon. 3 years old, off lease, less than 30,000 miles on the clock in as-new condition - but for 1/2 it cost when it was new.

We keep the twins in the back row for now. I've removed the driver's side second row seat, so we have easy access to both the back and the 3 year old sitting in the remaining second row seat. Once they get older I'll be putting the seat back in.

When we bought the Ody we didn't know that we'd be buying an Airstream, but as sometimes happen in life things turned out to be serendipitous. CanAm fitted a custom hitch and added a transmission cooler. With the Hensley hitch, the Ody is a fantastically stable and capable tow vehicle.

I am contemplating a Mercedes GL350 Bluetec or the Jeep GC Diesel as our next car, in a couple of years. I like diesel engines, especially for their torque. I'd like to take a couple of months off the year after next and then take the family across Canada. A diesel would be most welcome in the mountains.

Also, this is a great idea for a thread.
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