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Old 02-27-2004, 05:54 AM   #85
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Quote:
Originally posted by mandolindave
From what I understand, the reason that Land Rover prohibited
weight distribution was because of the air bag suspension.
If VW has the same type of suspension then what is good for the goose is good for gander.
I towed a '67 Caravel (17', ~ #2,500/#300 hitch weight) 3,000 miles last summer thru NM, CO, WY, MT, ID, UT, etc) with my '01 Land Rover Discovery SE w/o air suspension. It was a miserable experience. I am a LR enthusiast, mind you. I did not use WD in accordance with the LR manual - WD is not recommended for any LR suspension. There was no sag in the LR's rear end with the standard suspension nor were there any sway problems. But, towing is beyond the scope of the LR's abilities unless you are pulling a 16' or 19' level at sea level. It is simply underpowered, IMHO. Yes, I know that LR beefed up their engine in '03 - I have used one or two as loaners. I admit it is a noticeable improvement but not near enough, IMO. Still, it might be a very good off-roader. I can't recommend towing much with one. I suspect that LR "builds in" reasons to keep the tow payload low because of the power issue as much as anything else... My manual said it would tow something like #7000. What they don't make clear is that this number is in low-range.

Sold the '67 last fall in favor of the 22' CCD... (I would never dream of tying a 22' on the LR). The Caravel would sure turn heads though!

The Touareg is incredibly more powerful and handles like a dream. It is like driving a rocket in comparison to the LR. They are completely different vehicles in almost every respect.



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Old 02-27-2004, 06:48 AM   #86
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Quote:
Originally posted by Xray


I towed a '67 Caravel (17', ~ #2,500/#300 hitch weight) 3,000 miles last summer thru NM, CO, WY, MT, ID, UT, etc) with my '01 Land Rover Discovery SE w/o air suspension. It was a miserable experience. I am a LR enthusiast, mind you. I did not use WD in accordance with the LR manual - WD is not recommended for any LR suspension. There was no sag in the LR's rear end with the standard suspension nor were there any sway problems. But, towing is beyond the scope of the LR's abilities unless you are pulling a 16' or 19' level at sea level. It is simply underpowered, IMHO. Yes, I know that LR beefed up their engine in '03 - I have used one or two as loaners. I admit it is a noticeable improvement but not near enough, IMO. Still, it might be a very good off-roader. I can't recommend towing much with one. I suspect that LR "builds in" reasons to keep the tow payload low because of the power issue as much as anything else... My manual said it would tow something like #7000. What they don't make clear is that this number is in low-range.


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Interesting comments re: the LR Disco. A few years ago, I had a '61 Bambi 16' that I had towed with an AWD Astro van; no sway control and no WD. It was a miserable tow, now I think mostly because of the flex of the tall and soft sidewalls of the cheap tires that were installed on it before I bought it. I didn't know any better, despite having Airstreams for years!

Anyway, I sold my '61 Bambi to a woman from the Seattle area. She had never towed before. She drove her brand new '00 Disco to Iowa. I didn't know anything about LR then (not having had the luxury of the info here) and had her order a light WD dual-cam Reese setup delivered to my door. I didn't want her to have the same issues I did. I set it up for her and she towed the Bambi back to Seattle from Iowa 'without a hitch' (pun intended... ) I don't know whether she had air-suspension or not, but the receiver was dealer-installed. The only problem I had was that the Reece hitch head bar had to be ground down some to get it to fit the receiver! The tolerances were much closer on the LR receiver than U.S. receivers; I think that the corners of the receiver weren't square. The brake controller had also been dealer installed, but I don't recall which one she had.

Anyway, she made it back and raved about how well it towed.

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Old 02-27-2004, 10:30 AM   #87
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Hey Congrats X-Ray,

I have been admiring the Toureg since it came out. I think it is a sweet ride and after all your research, it sounds like a perfect match for your trailer. It going to be a fun car to zip around in after unhooking at the campground. Can't wait to hear about your towing impressions. Enjoy!
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Old 02-27-2004, 10:35 AM   #88
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How about a Cayenne with a Classic 30 ? Just kidding ...
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Old 02-27-2004, 10:36 AM   #89
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Thanks all for the kind words of support!

I know its an educated risk but as I review Bluvalley's comments and failure with the 'Egg and after talking to numerous dealers and authors, I realized there probably was more here than meets the eye. We'll just hafta see...

I didn't have many other options but I think this is a good one - maybe the best one.

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Old 02-27-2004, 11:19 AM   #90
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I've been following this thread and figured I might as well throw in my 2cents. One issue I haven't seen addressed is loss of power due to altitude. We have a 26' Overlander and tow with a '03 F250 with gas V10, automatic and 3.73 gears. Here in Texas it pulls the trailer with ease, 70-75 in overdrive is no problem. However we frequently go into the mountains of Colorado where we encounter some mountain passes like Slumgullion Pass coming out of Lake City at 11,361' elev or Monarch Pass at close to the same elevation. In second gear we max out at 30-35 mph. I figure that at that altitude we've probably lost 1/2 the power of the engine. The max allowable trailer weight for the truck is 10,500 lb, if we have lost half the power wouldn't it suffice to say that the truck would only be good for a 5,200 lb trailer at that elevation? How would the VW fare when it is already so close to it's 7,700 lb max trailer weight? I realize that elevations that extreme are not everywhere, but I know from personal experience that when you leave Texas and go west, it's all uphill

Just a thought.
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Old 02-27-2004, 12:02 PM   #91
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The Cayenne has huge brakes and great power, but I don't know about the suspension.
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Old 02-27-2004, 12:47 PM   #92
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Hey X-Ray. I think you will find the Toureg more than enough to pull your new rig. I've been working on VWs for 30+ years and towing trailers for 20. We finally have something in this country that will tow something more than fishing boats and small pop-ups. To all the nay-sayers, drive then decide. Granted, I wouldn't want to pull a 30 footer but in this situation it's a good choice. One thing. There have been some software issues with the trailer lighting control module but we had a fix last month. Keep us updated. Good luck, Tom.
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Old 02-27-2004, 01:01 PM   #93
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I just don't see the problem with going "30-35 mph" on the steepest passes in the country. 35 mph actually seems fast to me when going up such passes.
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Old 02-27-2004, 02:50 PM   #94
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I've heard/read that power loss is about 3% per 1000 feet in altitude. Don't know if it's right or wrong but it makes sense. Heck, even my Harley showed signs of oxygen deprivation the last time I drove it through the Eisenhower Tunnel.

The 22' CCD is about #4000 dry. The dealer I'm buying from said he has sold several that have been towed by Touaregs and Cayennes (Southern California)... There should be enough power to manage where I am going, though.

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Old 02-27-2004, 03:21 PM   #95
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The answer to altitude is a turbocharger. Especially when it's on a diesel

Altitude loss isn't as bad with an EFI that adjusts the mixture... maybe 3-5% compared to a carb's 5-7%. The constant velocity carb Harley uses is somewhat altitude compensating in the midrange, although not at idle or WOT. Better than an S&S or Mikuni at altitude. The old Edlebrock Quicksilver was also supposed to be somewhat altitude-compensating.
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Old 02-27-2004, 04:21 PM   #96
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Hey X-RAY,
We tow our '67 Globetrotter with an '03 Discovery. We live in Colorado, and have travelled I-70 east-to-west.(including over 11,000 ft high passes) The 4.6 liter engine does make a diffence as you have tested on the "loaners". Our slowest speed up the steepest side on I-70 was 53-54 mph with 3300 lb A/S.
Per Land Rover, you can use a load levelling hitch IF you don't have the active rear air springs. Reason is, you can't turn it off. Air springs would be fighting the WD hitch. If you have coils, your good to go.
We use the Equalizerhitch brand hitch (600 lb RATED ONE)
We had a '99 Range Rover with the 4 liter engine and it wouldn't pull the hat off your head, like you said. But with full airsprings and an "lock position" button, you can maintain a continual ride height.

NOW ONTO VW: I am very surprised that RV Lifestyles has given a BIG thumbs up to the Touareg and an even larger A/S than was tested earlier in the news and VW commercials. Our local Beetle dealer and I have gone around on this. I can't even get the VW customer service people at 1-800-822-8987 (Touareg dept) to answer the question. Can you or can't you use WD on a Touareg?
They all say, "you don't need one, you can't use one, and if you do, it will VOID the warranty! I tried to pull the Globetrotter and Disco without the bars just around town. Rover's rear does drop a bit, so the bars are useful and they almost eliminate porpoiseing.
VW won't answer my towing questions, so WHO DO YOU TRUST.
By the way, wait until your Touareg needs parts. Plan on having a good, long wait, that's if you can keep it out of the shop long enough to have something else break.
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Old 02-27-2004, 06:44 PM   #97
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Coloradobus,

A BIG thumbs up? It is a HUGE thumbs up backed by testing and "on the road" experience! And, the 'Egg won best SUV of the year again for '04...

I talked to my VW dealer and was told the same thing that the RV Lifestyle magazine reported. My AS dealer repeated it again. I spoke to an owner who tows, I subscribe to the Touareg forums, I found the author of the RV Lifestyles Magazine article and talked to him. I have done the research and continue to do so.

Yes, I agree, the latest Disco's are an improvement in performance. I've owned three LR's starting in 1999. Dealer coverage is very spotty, parts are hard to get, and problems are frequent - very frequent. You have to love the brand just to be involved (and have a large wallet).

I emptied my glove box on the Land Rover last night as I prepared to hand over the keys. My stack of receipts and work orders was nearly 1" thick! I had one problem repaired 7 times. I know reliability when I see it. I didn't add it up but I will say, unless you are affluent, you probably cannot afford a LR that is out of warranty. Plus, the depreciation on the LR is horrible. One other thing, I called my insurance agent this morning to put coverage on the 'Egg. Good news! My premium dropped 25% with the Touareg and it is a much more expensive vehicle than the Disco. Insurance premiums reflect two things; cost to repair and safety.

Email me for Garth Cane's phone number. Do the due diligence. Then make your decision on which tow vehicle to own.

I wish you the best with your 'Rover.

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Old 02-27-2004, 08:23 PM   #98
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X-Ray,

Thanks for the info, if I were to leave it to our local VW dealer, I wouldn't consider the Touareg.
I know what you mean about repairs. Our '99 Range Rover, which was thought to be a good deal, ended up being a 12 month nightmare of repair and breakdowns. 9200 miles in 12 months, 12 loaner cars, 3 times towed.
Our Discovery is flawless. Only problem we have had is burned up front brakes from our "dinghy braking system" being installed wrong. We drag Rover behind a SOB motorhome. Even then LR overnighted rotors and pads from England. The local tow shop who did the install paid for the repair with Blue Ox(our systems Mfg.)
Rover being a towee and tow-er, everything fine tuned, its a keeper. However, we are looking for a '02 Chevy/GMC, Duramax for the A/S. Get Rover back to single duty.

Oh, Rover dealers maybe few and far between as you say, but YOU sure can't squawk about their customer service. Very up market!!
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