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Old 05-10-2015, 03:44 PM   #1
Knuff's Avatar
2015 25' FB International
Menlo Park , California
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Porsche Cayenne, VW Touareg, Audi Q7 owners

I thought that I start a new Thread just with getting some information on different kind of setups and how people are feeling about their equipment. This is not for judging specific hitch setups, but just for gathering information about possible setups.

Let's start with our setup. We have been towing our 2014 20ft Flying Cloud with a 2014 Cayenne Diesel, equipped with an Equal-i-zer 10K. 15K miles in the last 18 months. We have no special hitch reinforcement.

We just traded our FC up to a 2015 International Signature 25FB and plan to use the same setup.

Towing so far is no big issue, plenty of power, never have the feeling that the Cayenne is/was too weak for the 20ft airstream - I have not had an uphill situation where I could not accelerate and this includes Tioga Pass in Yosemite and several other long inclines in CA and UT. Temp on the Pepper is usually 220-230 but can go up to 250 (rarely over) on long inclines. I usually drive it in Sport mode and switch to manual in mountainous terrain. Consumption is 18 MPG without paying attention to speed and with having fun on uphill climbs. 22 MPG is possible with attention.

Please tell me your experiences fellow VW, Porsche and Audi owners. I picked these three because Touareg/Cayenne is principally the same chassis and engine and the Q7 is closely related as well.

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Old 05-10-2015, 08:00 PM   #2
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2015 27' FB International
Howard , Ohio
Join Date: Dec 2014
Posts: 226
Cayenne Diesel


I'm also towing with a Cayenne Diesel / 27FB. I get about 17 mpg on moderately hilly terrain at 65. I do not have a good value for mpg on the flat but expect 1 or 2 more. I got 15 mpg on a recent quick run from DC to Ohio over some moderately hilly terrain at 70+ (I have upgraded to LT tires and 16" wheels). Unhitched I get mid 20s in town and close to 30 at highway speeds.

It pulls very nicely even with 7000+ lbs back there, can accelerate handily up hills and pulls strongly from a standing start if the need arises. Having said that, unhitched after a stint of towing it feels like a go-cart .

Brakes (as you will know) at over 14" on the front with 6 piston calipers are fantastic. Bigger than many 3/4 and 1 tons. I use a Tekonsha P3 set at 6V and Boost 2. That seems to be the sweet spot for me. 6V is about a high as I can go without locking up if I do a (practice) emergency stop on a clear road from 40mph or so.

Engine oil temp as you note will go up a bit especially if left in auto. Normal for me is around 215. I have seen in the 230's often, 245 once or twice on longish climbs. Manually shifting to a lower gear quickly brings it down (higher oil pressure, more flow, less resident time in the hot areas). I have driven in Sport mode a bit but have decided Auto is fine except when in an extended climb where I feel a lower gear would be better.

I have done a Can-Am style hitch mod and also did reduce the tongue weight from 900lbs from the factory to about 650lbs by moving the batteries to the rear and removing the AS spare. I use a ProPride but did tow for a while with an Eaz-lift and 2 x Husky friction sway control units which was a nice setup.

ProPride setup is with an inverted stinger, 2 holes at the top and 4 washers. WD is either 5.5 or 6" depending on load in the AS and TV.

I have run the setup over a CAT scale several times with a loaded trailer but no passengers. All looks good.

I tow with 2 passengers and a dog, most all of the cargo is in the AS.

Can't believe I was 50 / 50 on the Cayenne or a 2500 GMC. The Cayenne is by far the better choice for me. A truck would have been a big mistake....for me.

2015 27FB International Signature "Danielle"
ProPride / 16" wheels / 600W solar / 864 AHr Lithium
Victron MultiPlus Inverter / BlueSolar / ColorControlGX / BMV 702
Porsche Cayenne Diesel
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Old 05-11-2015, 11:42 PM   #3
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2015 25' FB International
Menlo Park , California
Join Date: Oct 2013
Posts: 168
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Thank you for sharing Ohiobrits. Looks like you are having lots of fun with your setup. How did you move the batteries? To the compartment under the bed? Also, without the spare tire, what do you do when you would need one?

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Old 05-12-2015, 03:43 AM   #4
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2015 30' International
2009 27' FB International
2007 25' Safari
Greensboro , North Carolina
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My experience with a 2005 Cayenne Turbo was no towing issues, but 11 mpg in a time when we had a shortage of fuel and premium was difficult to find created a huge problem. As I remember I pulled a 2007 International 25 D, possibly my 2009 Int 27FB.

Because it would shift up and down on the Interstate at 60 mph, the fuel mileage, and no place for a large generator I could handle, I sold it and bought a Dodge/Cummins which has on it now 85,000 miles and is a great TV.

I would say that as to performance, the Cayenne Turbo...there is no substitute. Still have my 996 Cab for that, however.

And your fuel mileage with the diesel Wow!

Ms. Tommie Lauer
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Old 05-12-2015, 11:25 AM   #5
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2015 23' FB Flying Cloud
Vancouver , British Columbia
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VW Touareg 2014

We are towing a 2015 23FB with a 2014 VW Touareg TDi and loving it. No problems on hills, be they long or short/curvy. On our drive from Vancouver, BC to the SF Bay Area and back in March we averaged about 15 miles/US gal (14.9 l/100 km).

You are right the Cayenne and Touareg are pretty much the same, except for sticker price. One of us drives a Carrera and we thought it would it would be fun if the other drove a Cayenne, but we couldn't find a used one that would do the trick.
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Old 05-12-2015, 11:36 AM   #6
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2015 25' FB International
North Kingstown , Rhode Island
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This thread is great to hear about other VW & Porsche setups.
We bout a new 22’ Sport late last year and then purchased a 14 Touareg TDI as our tow vehicle.
I was anxious about the whole setup , especially with VW stating no weight distribution bars in the manual.
Earlier posts were a lot of help knowing that others had gone through the same questions.
One phone call to Can Am settled it that the Touareg would be more than adequate.
We have WD bars added to our factory hitch and we barley know the Sport is behind us.
After our first trip we now are thinking of either a 23FB or 25 at the end of the season(it figures) .
I called Can Am and inquired about the hitch reinforcement and advice . They quickly sent me photo’s showing a added strut from the hitch around the tank to the rear axle , dispersing the weight.
All of this makes sense, My question is do you need the additional brace for the 23? The hitch weight is still below the VW limit. I do think the 25 would require additional support .
Also, performance towing the 25 ? Does the whole rig feel sluggish? Some earlier posts suggested the trailer would be too long for the VW to tow comfortably.
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Old 05-12-2015, 11:52 AM   #7
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1996 25' Excella
Tillsonburg , Ontario
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You may be OK with the 20' but keep a careful eye on the hitch receiver and make note of the clearances around it and the mounting points to watch for movement or distortion. My receiver on my Dakota bent up when I first started towing because the take-up on the equalizers was stressing the after market hitch.
We use CanAM as our hook-up expert and they always over build in my experience, which is a good thing.
I believe that with anything heavier than your 20' you will need to add the brace. I have noted in other posts on this subject that I saw a new Touareg pulling a 30 foot AS at the CanAm shop. Customers were new to AS and actually purchased the Touareg to replace an older 1/2 ton. They drove away after 20 minutes of test drive; and with a standard equalizer set-up ...not a Hensley. If you have any questions about a bigger trailer, call Andy.

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Old 05-12-2015, 11:58 AM   #8
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2014 20' Flying Cloud
Mohnton , Pennsylvania
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Porsche Cayenne, VW Touareg, Audi Q7 owners

We tow our 2014 Airstream FC 20' FB with new to us 2011 Touareg Sport and Equalizer Hitch setup.
Coming up on our 1st year anniversary of ownership with over 120 nights camped, 10,000 + miles and typical mileage is 15-17 mpg driving 55-62 mph. Our experience has included many 7-15% grades and we really enjoy our setup.
On the other hand, everyone stops by our campsite and typically comments ....."so you pull your little Airstream with this VW"!
We're thinking about getting a sign for the Touareg to mount - "yes I really tow this little Airstream".
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Old 05-12-2015, 12:04 PM   #9
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Wondering if anyone has had any experience towing with the V-6 gasser ?
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Old 05-12-2015, 02:40 PM   #10
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Madison , Wisconsin
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great reading about euro auto Tow V.

I have been towing with a MB 350 Diesel since we got our 23 ft. Safari six years ago, close to 100,000 miles of travel and just love it. The numbers end up similar to the vehicles you mention. We typically get 14-16 with the trailer (Interstate driving cruise set at 68), and pretty much 30 highway empty (Interstate cruise set at 72). Most of the time almost forget about having the trailer back there, except when we get a cornering cross wind. I laugh when I pull into places and see the guys with semi rigs pulling their trailers. If it makes them feel good, guess it is ok. Particularly for the Airstream, the trailer is designed to ride behind an auto, no need to overbuild or oversize your tow vehicle. Glad to see more and more of us towing with SUV's and other options. Nice thread, and makes me want to pull out the add I got from Porsche the other day and take another look. Keep the shinny side up.
"Honor those who serve by listening to them and caring. Parades end, caring needs to be there every day."
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Old 05-12-2015, 04:33 PM   #11
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2012 28' International
Savannah , Georgia
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VW Touareg 204

I have a 2004 VW Touareg six-cylinder gas, and pull a 2012 foot airstream. We traveled over 7000 miles from Michigan through Rocky Mountain national Park to an elevation of 14,000+ and back to Georgia in the great circle. We found no problem whatsoever we do have a Hinsley hitch an average of about 14 miles per gallon.
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Old 05-12-2015, 04:42 PM   #12
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I've had a 2007 Touareg V8 and towed with it for several years. Saturday, I traded it in (126K miles) for a 2012 Touareg TDI (diesel). I'm looking forward to seeing how it does Thursday when I head out for the first time since the switch. I expect I will love it as much (or more!) than my 2007. Hefty enough for our '56 Safari and not "too big" or "truck-like" for my everyday driver between outings.

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Old 05-12-2015, 05:53 PM   #13
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2013 23' FB Flying Cloud
TALENT , Oregon
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We have a 2011 Touareg TDI towing our 2013 Flying Cloud 23' FB. We live in Talent, Oregon so travel frequently to Pacific coast, Great Basin and inland mountains. We have a Hensley Arrow weight distributing and anti sway hitch. We have no problems so far after two years of trips on interstate and county roads. The only issue we have recently faced was an "Add Blue" crisis after travellling on BLM dirt roads. It snuck up on us without warning messages and we ended up at Clear Lake State Park in CA with a final warning message that if we turned off the ingintion we would not be able to restart, even if we added more "Blue". It necessitated calls to VW Dealers to schedule an end of the day emergency appointment to have the software reset. It was a 160 mile round trip to VW Dealer in Santa Rosa. We now carry "Blue" as part of our emergency kit and check "Blue" levels daily.

We also had a round and round with VW after we bought the Touareg in 2011 because the sticker on the hitch set both conventional and weight distributing limits. This contradicted the information in the owner's manual which stated not to use weight distributing hitches. VW was supposed to send us new stickers, which I understand they attach to newer model Touareg hitches which do not include the weight distribution limits. We also ran into a couple of Canadian engineers who have done more detailed study on the hitch and unibody construcition of the Touaregs. Neither of them used the weight distributing hitches. We take some comfort in knowing that the Flying Cloud 23' FB is well under the 7,700 - 700 towing limits.

It is interesting to see how many others tow with VW Touareg derivites. Has anyone with Prosche, Audi or Mercedes had issues with the use of weight distributing hitches? Has anyone else with TDI had issues with "Add Blue" problems?
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Old 05-12-2015, 08:37 PM   #14
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2015 27' FB International
Howard , Ohio
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Originally Posted by Knuff View Post
Thank you for sharing Ohiobrits. Looks like you are having lots of fun with your setup. How did you move the batteries? To the compartment under the bed? Also, without the spare tire, what do you do when you would need one?
Knuff, I moved the batteries to the storage area under the dinette together with the inverter which is located in the front storage locker on FB's. Mod is documented on the thread below. This is a modification that Can-Am does from time to time (for FB models) for folks who have payload challenged TV's.

On the AS spare delete, I upgraded from the 65mph rated 15" Goodyear Marathon tires and installed 16" wheels with Michelin LT tires. These appear to be much more robustly constructed and less likely to have issues so the need for a spare (in my opinion) is less important. Flat tires can still happen of course, if the worst happens I have CoachNet to bale me out. I do carry a full size spare for my TV in the rear of my AS. I figure the tire size and rating on the Porsche would be more difficult to replace if I have a major issue. On the other hand, the tires on the AS being Light Truck tires should be readily available across the country should I have a flat which results in the need to replace the tire rather than fix it.

By the way, great post. Was thinking about starting a similar thread myself.

2015 27FB International Signature "Danielle"
ProPride / 16" wheels / 600W solar / 864 AHr Lithium
Victron MultiPlus Inverter / BlueSolar / ColorControlGX / BMV 702
Porsche Cayenne Diesel
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