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Old 10-30-2003, 09:57 AM   #1
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Trailer size for a 2003 Land Rover Discovery

My wife and I will soon be purchasing an Airstream Travel Trailer, the question now is about size. I drive a 2003 Land Rover Discovery and I would like to use that as the tow vehicle; however, the trailer that I am interested in, well more accurately that my wife is interested in, is the new International CCD 25. The specs on this trailer have the factory weight at 5270 and the tongue weight at 750. My vehicle is rated for 5500 and 550 respectfully. Is there anyway that this could be done or do I need to look into a different tow vehicle?

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Darich
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Old 10-30-2003, 11:27 AM   #2
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Darich,

Many of the members here express the 80% rule, the tow vehicle should have 20% more towing cap than the trailer.

So in saying this, I feel you're going to need something with a larger tow cap.

Good luck!
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Old 10-30-2003, 11:40 AM   #3
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Not only would that trailer, totally empty with no water or propane, put that tow vehicle well over its weight capacities, but the 100" wheelbase is good at most for about a 19' trailer. Forget it. You'd want at least 122" wheelbase with a 25'11" trailer.

Even a 22' CCD would be pushing it with this tow vehicle.
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Old 10-30-2003, 06:27 PM   #4
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This is pretty much what I feared; therefore, I will either have to pick a different tow vehicle or get a Land Yacht and tow my Discovery! Is there a written or un-written rule for determining the required wheelbase for a specific size trailer?

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Darich
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Old 10-30-2003, 07:28 PM   #5
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Yep,

Bigger is always better when it comes to tow vehicles.
A little overkill is better yet.
You're on the right track though.
You're in the right part of the internet to to get the info you need.
Keep reading in here via the search function. There's a lot of information on this topic here.
And ask as you go. These folks know their stuff.
Sorry about the Rover.
They're great vehicles but they will limit you to smaller trailers.
Keep looking though.
It took me a couple of years to get both halves.
But Airstreams are worth it.
Ask anyone here...
Jerry
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Old 10-30-2003, 10:09 PM   #6
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There are two rules of thumb I've read.

The most common, and most conservative, says you need 110" of wheelbase for a 20' trailer and 4" additional wheelbase for every additional foot of trailer. That says I need 170" for my 34'11" trailer, or a crew cab/long bed.

Another is from one of the RV driving schools, which I forget, but I consider it a bit optimistic. It says the tow vehicle wheelbase should be at least half the distance from the center of the trailer's ball coupler to the center of its rearmost axle. That says I need 140", or an extended cab short bed.

Splitting the difference, I need 155", which is a crew cab/short bed or extended cab/long bed.

I think a good compromise is to take the former, and use 110" for 23' plus the 4" for each additional foot of trailer. That comes out right at the 158" of my extended cab/long bed.

These are based on a normal rear overhang, which is shorter these days than it was years ago, and not something like an extended van with huge overhang.

The longer the overhang, the more leverage sway has to act on the tow vehicle, and vice versa. The longer the wheelbase, the less leverage sway has to act on the tow vehicle, and vice versa.

Look at the trailer's GVWR, not it's unloaded weight, and expect tongue weight to be about 10% of that. The tow vehicle's actual wet and loaded weight (passengers and cargo) plus the GVWR of the trailer, shouldn't exceed the tow vehicle's GCWR. The less it is than that, the easier time the rig will have in the mountains.

The tow vehicle's wet and loaded weight, plus the tongue weight shouldn't exceed the tow vehicle's GVWR.

Forget tow ratings. All they are is the GCWR minus the dry, unloaded weight of the tow vehicle, sometimes with one very light driver. They don't even consider tongue weight.

Here's all the info you need about Fords EXCEPT the actual weight of the vehicle you're considering, with all its options, and the people and cargo you'll put in it. Make a stop by the nearest CAT scale part of the test drive. Others can give you the links to Chevy and Dodge.
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