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Old 11-23-2014, 03:10 PM   #15
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1978 31' Sovereign
Springfield , Missouri
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Back in the pre 1980s, we towed trailers with big Buicks and Mercurys. The cars then were more user friendly than trucks. All the cars had big V8s, automatic transmissions and as, A/C became more standardized we got that too.

Then, in the 1970s we discovered International Travelalls and towed our trailers with them. I seem to think 345 V8s, auto trans, A/C, either barn doors or tailgates. We'd get them all optioned out.

Then, in the 1980s, we went over to Suburbans, both 1/2 and 3/4 ton. The 1/2 were all right for small trailers but the 3/4 tons with the big block were made for towing.

I still tow with a 1999 3/4 2WD suburban..... I love it.

I've been towing trailers since the early 1970s and my father in law since before then. I would be nervous towing a trailer with a front wheel drive vehicle.

And from experience, don't tow a trailer with a hardtop or a convertible (The Long Trailer notwithstanding)...... frames twisted.
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Old 11-23-2014, 03:44 PM   #16
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1964 22' Safari
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towing with BMW

I have had great results towing my 3000# Globetrotter with my Toyota 4Runner. It is rated at 500# max. I don't think that I would attempt to tow with the BMW given the specs on that car. The newer 19 footers probably would have a tongue weight of 350# and that far exceeds the specs on the BMW.
Regards, Larry
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Old 11-23-2014, 03:56 PM   #17
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There is an annual tow vehicle guide published on the Internet. Check out the tow vehicle guide for the year of the vehicle that you are interested in. I am towing a 20 foot 2007 Airstream Safari, with a tow weight of 5000 pounds, and using a 2014 Jeep Grand Cherokee and with a tow rating of 6500 pounds. You need a full-sized 2 inch hitch receiver and a hitch with sway control bars to spread the stress of the trailer and stabilize the ride.
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Old 11-23-2014, 03:58 PM   #18
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Sounds like I need to consider another tow vehicle. I will probably want to bring my Vespa along as well. It only weighs 236 pounds. Would it make sense to store it in the Airstream or in the back of the tow vehicle?
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Old 11-23-2014, 04:04 PM   #19
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If you can carry it in the back of your tow vehicle, so much the better. I recently posted an inquiry about what's the best way to carry bicycles, and got many great responses. I have ordered some fork mounts for my bicycles to make a stand to go inside the airstream, but have not put that together yet.
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Old 11-23-2014, 04:13 PM   #20
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Perhaps I need to scale to entire operation back, waaaaaaay back!Click image for larger version

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Old 11-23-2014, 04:14 PM   #21
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Cool picture!
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Old 11-23-2014, 05:04 PM   #22
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For years people happily towed with the family car. Only in the last few years has it become popular to have dedicated large tow vehicles. Personally I believe that many are over kill and that some could get along with less. I have been thru several different vehicles in search of a good compromise for me. Gone from to underpowered to way too much truck to plenty of power and load capability. Happy right now with my current combination, a 2011 Jeep Grand Cherokee Overland w/5.7 Hemi and the Safari 23. Everything is a compromise, if there was the perfect trailer/TV combination everyone would have the same rig. That would be so boring!
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Old 11-23-2014, 05:41 PM   #23
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Just a note about AS towing with an SUV. We tow our FC19 with our Highlander with OEM Tow Package. It is about as wonderful a combination as we hoped for, up hills and down, a big criteria or us (power and braking safety).

I want to conclude this with a comment that might help you, in the event you feel you must go "bigger," but want to stay in the non-pickup mode.

We had a lighter and smaller Jayco Swift 16 ft. that we purchased to see how well we liked small trailer camping, "before we invest in an AS". It weighed 2,250 lbs. dry. To our astonishment, our loaded FC tows notably easier than the box trailer. Our gas mileage is better, and wind affects are now almost non-existent.

We also use the Highlander as our "shopping" and 3-row grandkid hauler." We don't have a separate towing only vehicle, as practical matters continue to complicate our lives! Although, Nancy drives a 2-seat sports car ... Ha! How practical is that?!

Our experiment in camping went well, the Jayco was a fun little trailer with lots to compliment it, actually. And, it was $45,000 less in cost than the FC. It served our needs well for a summer. We made the mistaken error of thinking that heavier would be a problem. Today, you could not get us to ever go back.

Buy a bigger car-towing vehicle, if you feel the need. But, base it on your AS and go from there. That's our advice and humble opinion. Dave
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Old 11-23-2014, 05:42 PM   #24
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People tend to forget that the big cars in the 50's and 60's had a real frame most all of today's cars and lite duty suv's are unibody, thus no frame...
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Old 11-23-2014, 05:57 PM   #25
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Tow Vehicles

[QUOTE=megster;1544600]I am considering purchasing a small, new Airstream (newbe here) and am clueless about tow vehicles. It appears that most use an actual pickup truck, but are there not other options? I initially thought I could just install a hitch on my BMW sedan but I don't know it that would be wise or safe. What say you?[/QUOTE

For me a most important factor is the vehicle weight and the trailer weight. In Europe there is a fairly standard law, tow vehicles must weigh a minimum of 15% more than the trailer. This law makes good sense as a trailer heavier than it's tow vehicle can easily cause severe handling problems on the road. Once this requirement is addressed many other factors apply. My first thought to the question was ....super cars, BMW's but most models are not designed to tow things. I strongly suggest you ask your dealer. If your car is not a good match buy the Airstream and a nice truck.😊


We tow our 23' Flying Cloud with a Ford 250 with a 6.7L Diesel engine. Overkill perhaps but really safe and easy. Good luck.
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Old 11-23-2014, 06:15 PM   #26
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Quote:
Originally Posted by megster View Post
I am considering purchasing a small, new Airstream (newbe here) and am clueless about tow vehicles. It appears that most use an actual pickup truck, but are there not other options? I initially thought I could just install a hitch on my BMW sedan but I don't know it that would be wise or safe. What say you?
Which BMW do you own?

The 5-series is typically rated for 2000 kg/4400 lbs in Europe.
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Old 11-23-2014, 06:33 PM   #27
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I will second that with 125,000/ year in Abigail truck..... 31' as with a 07 dodge 6.7 85000 miles and no problems....
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Old 11-23-2014, 06:45 PM   #28
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We have a 2011 3 series and a 2008 5 series BMW
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