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Old 08-28-2008, 03:37 PM   #1
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2009 28' Flying Cloud
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Mercedes G500

I am interested in a 2009 28' Flying Cloud( net 5500, gross 7300) and want to know if I have enough tow vehichle. I have a 2002 Mercedes G500 with a tow rating of 7000 pounds ( 7700 everywhere but the US )and of course the salesman says to pull it dry and we should have no problem. Imagine that?! I would like to hear from someone who doesnt stand to make a commision as to how close to the net weight a trailer is in a " real life" situation. I want to belive the Airstream dealer so bad. Can I do this safely?

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Old 08-28-2008, 03:45 PM   #2
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Seems to me that the margain for error is small here. Can you trully pull the camper "empty"? What about luggage, food, etc? With that said I have seen people pulling 34 footers with Cadillacs, Lincolns, and Mercedes using a Hensley hitch. Being that close to the rating would make me uneasy. I'm sure someone on the forum will have better info and or advice on this matter.

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Old 08-28-2008, 03:49 PM   #3
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First of all welkom to the forum.
gross of the trailer should be <80% of tow rating of the TV.
Plus that a G500 has a short wheelbase and a high center of gavity.
just a few day's ago I towed my 32 ft with a SWB landrover.
It was just for 5 miles and I did not dare to go above 30 mph.
Even at that low speed I could realy feel the trailer stearing the car.
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Old 08-28-2008, 04:06 PM   #4
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I pull a 20' Safari, (5,000 lb) with an ML500 with no problem. But that''s 8 feet shorter than yours and I think you might have a shorter wheelbase than myn ML. YMMV.
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Old 08-28-2008, 04:16 PM   #5
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My opinion is simply when you get into the 27 or 28 foot market you are leaving the Half ton tow vehicle spectrum example 27 or 28 footer you could tow with a dodge 1500 ford f150 or chevy 1500 You can check wheel base difference between your vehicle and the one I mentioned. Now saying that you will get people on these forums that tow 31 footers with a 1/2 ton. I did but new it wasnt safe. You are at a threshold with a 27 or 28 ft trailer. less than 25 you might be fine for average terrain and climate. Good Luck with your choice. owe and welcome to the forums
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Old 08-28-2008, 04:24 PM   #6
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Not to mention, that your car will be running "hot" on the slightest grade and you're probably not going to be able to use your AC during the summer let alone on hills during the summer. I've mentioned before, I had a 2005 dodge Dakota quade cab with a 4.7L V8, 3.55 rear end and suppose to tow 7000 lbs. My trailer - 25 ft Safari at 5860 lbs dry weight, then you ad water, propane, supplies, people etc. it was very unpleasant worrying if the truck was going to overheat.

BTW, my airstream dealer said when I asked him if the truck could pull the AS......"come here, see that (V8) logo?" Yea I could tow it, yea the truck was heavy enough but to tow a 27 ft or more.... It was outof the question.

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Old 08-28-2008, 04:25 PM   #7
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Thats a good lookin vehicle Big Jim. It would look bad towing a 23 footer I think, and probably be fine. I Just read 7000 lbs to max.
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Old 08-28-2008, 04:26 PM   #8
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It does have a nice, short, rear over hang.

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Old 08-28-2008, 04:43 PM   #9
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This is great information. I was told that sway bars might help as well. What if we put our supplies in the TV? Is that just wishful thinking. I ordered the trailer a few weeks ago, I hope our first trip isnt to the Ford dealer to pick up a F350! The good news is if I trade in the Mercedes I should have alot more gas money, wich it looks like I may need!
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Old 08-28-2008, 05:12 PM   #10
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By your own admission, the G500 has a tow rating of 7000 and you have an Airstream with a GVWR of 7300lbs loaded. Add fuel to your G500 and tha weight gets deducted from the tow rating. Passengers and driver in the G500? Yup, deducted from the tow capacity too. Any cargo in the G500, spare tires, jacks, guessed it, all deducted from the tow rating.

Besides it not having enough wheelbase it's a poor choice for towing something this large, even though it is a fantastic vehicle in general.

I would think about 20' might be the largest I'd tow with something that short on wheelbase.
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Old 08-28-2008, 05:27 PM   #11
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Originally Posted by Big Jim View Post
...I have a 2002 Mercedes G500 with a tow rating of 7000 pounds... Can I do this safely?
hi jim and WELCOME to the forums!

here are the 2 relevant threads with many useful links inside on this issue.

imo the g wagen is a poor choice, given what is at stake. especially from the older chassis.

while the f-250 is built EXACTLY for this purpose and with capacity for MORE should you go larger in a year or 2...

and RIGHT off the lot with mirrors, receiver, and integrated brake controller that do the job.

regardless of how we play with the ratings to make the merc/air combo feasible,

it will be WAY OVER PAYLOAD even if you carry only the bare essentials for camping.

all of the true things that i am about to tell you are shameless lies. l.b.j.

we are here on earth to fart around. don't let anybody tell you any different. k.v.
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Old 08-28-2008, 07:28 PM   #12
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I tow my 29' Ambassador with my Chevy 5.3 liter crew cab 1/2 ton, and have never had an issue. I would think the cedes would be a little light for towing what you want.
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Old 08-28-2008, 08:04 PM   #13
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F250 Crew would do just great. We tow wiff a F350 Crew/ 8ft/7.3 liter /. IT will pull our 27ft Overlander anywhere we want and I can load the bed wiff what ever I want.
U will do Fine I'm sure Cause U got the rite altitude SAFETY SAFETY SAFETY BOTTOM LINE
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Old 08-28-2008, 08:28 PM   #14
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3/4 ton diesel

Hey Jim, it looks like you live around a couple "hills". I'm traveling in the mountains north of you and am very glad I invested in a 3/4 ton diesel for our 34 footer. Granted, our trailer is a little bigger than what you've ordered. However, in the last week we crossed the Big Horns west of Buffalo, WY (almost 10,000' elevation) and didn't even think about turning off the air going up hill. Going down hill on those grades wasn't much of a problem either with the heavy duty transmission with tow command allowing me to keep the speed very comfortable without having to use the brakes all the time.

Then we hit Worland, WY and the temps were in the high 90s and low 100s yet the water and transmission temps hadn't budged from normal.

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