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Old 07-18-2011, 02:36 AM   #113
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Originally Posted by OrangeKid View Post
The whole point of our search for a new tow vehicle was to find a single vehicle that could double as our tow vehicle as well as our every day auto, replacing both our large and ponderous Sequoia and our Honda CRV.
First of all - a F-150 is not a brute of a vehicle.

Second, if you desire to tow with ANY SUV out there, then the Touareg or Cayenne are two of the best SUV's for towing that are currently on the market.

If you are limited to a certain vehicle, then downsize your Airstream along with everything else.
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Old 07-18-2011, 09:00 AM   #114
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There are rumors of the diesel GC coming here for 2013. No idea how sure those rumors are though.

A Dodge Durango (shares the GC's platform) will also tow this trailer nicely; its V6 is rated to tow 6200 lbs but it will be fairly slow going. (The tongue weight on the V6 is rated at 620 lbs, but since the V8 uses the same hitch and is rated at 720 lbs and has less payload capacity, the tongue weight limitation seems to be a lazy "10% of towing weight" suggestion.)

Frankly, I think that with a discussion with Andy Thomson at CanAm, you could either figure out a strategy to get the tongue weight down (he did it with a 23' International to tow it with a Mustang) or to beef up the Touareg's hitch.

Tom
This is the first I have heard of the possibility of a GC with a diesel engine in 2013. Ill be listening for more. WRT lowering my tongue weight I think there is a good chance I could get it down to the 720-770 range, but to get it down to 616 would be a 30% reduction. I will be experimenting on my next trip to determine what tongue weight reduction is possible. I'll bring my Sherline tongue weight scale and measure my tongue weight under various l loading scenarios.
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Old 07-18-2011, 09:01 AM   #115
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Or you could find a nice used 2008 Grand Cherokee with the diesel. Not quite as nice as the new GC, but it gets you the diesel you want.

Tom
Interesting suggestion. I'll check it out.
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Old 07-18-2011, 09:17 AM   #116
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First of all - a F-150 is not a brute of a vehicle.

Second, if you desire to tow with ANY SUV out there, then the Touareg or Cayenne are two of the best SUV's for towing that are currently on the market.

If you are limited to a certain vehicle, then downsize your Airstream along with everything else.
As I state several times we really like the Touareg. But VW clearly states in the 2011 owner's manual that the vehicle was not designed to accommodate a weight distributing hitch. There have been several reports of bent or deformed hitches and bolts mentioned on this forum for Cayenne's and Touareg.

I already have a very good tow vehicle, the 2006 4WD Sequoia SR5 with 4.7 V-8. I have towed my Airstream over 20,000 miies including to Alaska and back.

But in a city like Portland with narrow streets and tight parking spaces the Sequoia is a "brute" of a vehicle. Its turning radius is too large to pull easily into many parking spaces. In Vegas the Sequoia was fine. I thought a mid-size SUV such as a Touareg, Jeep Grand Cherokee, Land Rover LR4 or something of similar length and width might be a better overall vehicle now that we live in Portland.

We now store our Sequoia when we are not towing and use our Honda CRV. However life would be simpler if we only had one vehicle that could serve both needs.

I did check out the next smaller Airstream, the 20' Flying Cloud, but its tongue weight still exceeds the limit on the Touareg.
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Old 07-18-2011, 09:37 AM   #117
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Just a note from the peanut gallery...

With my 2010 Touareg TDI (air suspension) I tow a 28' International (7300# with a tongue weight of 950#) using a ProPride hitch with weight distribution. Tows great and it's less filling.

I did my own research and decided that for my usage, I have the best setup for my lifestyle. I don't want to drive an F-250 daily and I don't want to make a $800+/month payment on a $50,000+ vehicle to have it waiting around in my driveway for my next roadtrip. I'm not morbidly obese and I don't travel with tons of extra toys.

With good guidance from this forum, I took my rig to Propride AND CanAM in April for the set up. Each did a great job.

VW does not recommend the weight distributing hitch because the factory receiver is attached to the unibody frame at the very end by four bolts on either side. Without reinforcement, the tension created by the weight distribution hitch given enough prolonged pressure on those two points of contact could act like a opener on a bottle top. To answer that, CanAM welded a reinforcing bar from the receiver box at the rear of the Touareg to the supports of the rear suspension to spread the load of the tongue (and the associated stress) to multiple points along the chassis. The reinforcement also minimizes, if not eliminates, any lateral twist at the receiver so the connection to the trailer remains solid.

The rest is driving skills and a healthy respect for the road. Unfortunately, you'll have to learn those on your own. For my part, I make good use of the transmission to slow the rig down hill and I know when and how to apply the disc brakes on both the trailer and the tow vehicle.

At the end of the day, everyone here does what makes sense to themselves. You should do what makes sense to you.

Enjoy your adventures,

Javier
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Old 07-18-2011, 09:59 AM   #118
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VW does not recommend the weight distributing hitch because the factory receiver is attached to the unibody frame at the very end by four bolts on either side.

The details matter. Neither did the 1960's car manuals recommend towing past XXX pounds with a bumper hitch. A proper hitch had to be built (for which diagrams were provided).
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Old 07-18-2011, 10:19 AM   #119
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Originally Posted by REDNAX View Post
VW does not recommend the weight distributing hitch because the factory receiver is attached to the unibody frame at the very end by four bolts on either side.

The details matter. Neither did the 1960's car manuals recommend towing past XXX pounds with a bumper hitch. A proper hitch had to be built (for which diagrams were provided).
Rednax has the good info...

In 1964 my dad towed a good sized TT with his unibody 1964 Dodge similar to the one below. Small 318V8 and a 3 speed auto tranny. The local welding shop custom built a hitch for the car and he used an Equalizer brand WDH.

If you were to compare the Dodge with the T-reg, without a doubt the T-reg would out perform the dodge with a large margin, any which way you would want to compare. Note the Dodge was an adequate TV in it's day.
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Old 07-18-2011, 11:41 AM   #120
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Originally Posted by REDNAX View Post
VW does not recommend the weight distributing hitch because the factory receiver is attached to the unibody frame at the very end by four bolts on either side.
VW did not recommend weight distributing hitches because they don't use them in Germany. Yes the hitch is attached to the unibody frame with four bolts as is with every other unibody vehicle. If you wish to contact VW regarding the outdated information in the manual and on your hitch you can request an updated sticker if that will make you feel better.
If you don't own a Touareg or have never towed with one then perhaps you don't really understand the vehicles capabilities.
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Old 07-18-2011, 12:21 PM   #121
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Originally Posted by REDNAX View Post
The details matter. Neither did the 1960's car manuals recommend towing past XXX pounds with a bumper hitch. A proper hitch had to be built (for which diagrams were provided).
I'm living proof of that. I towed a 19' International Bambi successfully from Miami to Maine (including the Blue Ridge Parkway) with a hitch fabricated from the owner's manual for my 1968 Imperial. Great way to see the country: top down.

At the end of the day, you have to claim responsibility for your own actions, and not let that stop you.
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Old 07-18-2011, 12:42 PM   #122
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Originally Posted by GolfStream View Post
Just a note from the peanut gallery...

With my 2010 Touareg TDI (air suspension) I tow a 28' International (7300# with a tongue weight of 950#) using a ProPride hitch with weight distribution. Tows great and it's less filling.

I did my own research and decided that for my usage, I have the best setup for my lifestyle. I don't want to drive an F-250 daily and I don't want to make a $800+/month payment on a $50,000+ vehicle to have it waiting around in my driveway for my next roadtrip. I'm not morbidly obese and I don't travel with tons of extra toys.

With good guidance from this forum, I took my rig to Propride AND CanAM in April for the set up. Each did a great job.

VW does not recommend the weight distributing hitch because the factory receiver is attached to the unibody frame at the very end by four bolts on either side. Without reinforcement, the tension created by the weight distribution hitch given enough prolonged pressure on those two points of contact could act like a opener on a bottle top. To answer that, CanAM welded a reinforcing bar from the receiver box at the rear of the Touareg to the supports of the rear suspension to spread the load of the tongue (and the associated stress) to multiple points along the chassis. The reinforcement also minimizes, if not eliminates, any lateral twist at the receiver so the connection to the trailer remains solid.

The rest is driving skills and a healthy respect for the road. Unfortunately, you'll have to learn those on your own. For my part, I make good use of the transmission to slow the rig down hill and I know when and how to apply the disc brakes on both the trailer and the tow vehicle.

At the end of the day, everyone here does what makes sense to themselves. You should do what makes sense to you.

Enjoy your adventures,

Javier
Each to their own. I can't see spending $50,000 for a tow vehicle that I have to extensively modify so that it can tow a rig within the tow ratings of the vehicle (7700 lbs).

My local Airstream dealer told me that adding a weight distributing hitch to a Touareg may void the warranty. He also told me they would not allow a test drive of an Airstream behind a Touareg. Finally he said they would not attach a brake controller on a Touareg. The dealer is Airstream Adventures Northwest, an exclusive Airstream dealer with locations in Portland and Seattle.

Up to that point I was ready to purchase a Touareg without any hesitation.
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Old 07-18-2011, 12:48 PM   #123
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VW did not recommend weight distributing hitches because they don't use them in Germany. Yes the hitch is attached to the unibody frame with four bolts as is with every other unibody vehicle. If you wish to contact VW regarding the outdated information in the manual and on your hitch you can request an updated sticker if that will make you feel better.
If you don't own a Touareg or have never towed with one then perhaps you don't really understand the vehicles capabilities.
If VW would update the sticker on the hitch as well as the statement in the owner's manual about not using weight distributing hitches I would feel a lot better.
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Old 07-18-2011, 11:43 PM   #124
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Originally Posted by GolfStream View Post
VW does not recommend the weight distributing hitch because the factory receiver is attached to the unibody frame at the very end by four bolts on either side. Without reinforcement, the tension created by the weight distribution hitch given enough prolonged pressure on those two points of contact could act like a opener on a bottle top. To answer that, CanAM welded a reinforcing bar from the receiver box at the rear of the Touareg to the supports of the rear suspension to spread the load of the tongue (and the associated stress) to multiple points along the chassis. The reinforcement also minimizes, if not eliminates, any lateral twist at the receiver so the connection to the trailer remains solid.

And that's how it's DONE!!!.

Could not have said it any better myself....
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Old 07-18-2011, 11:59 PM   #125
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Finally he said they would not attach a brake controller on a Touareg.
I have created detailed instructions with pictures and posted both on this site, Reenlist & the Touareg forums on the installation of a brake controller (Prodigy P2 & P3). Very easy to achieve, but needs to be done via my instructions, similar detailed proven instructions, or someone who has done this before on a VW/Porsche/Audi..
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Old 07-19-2011, 06:12 AM   #126
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Agreed that an owner (and a good shop) can outfit the Treg for towing. But it's a shame VW didn't bother making the Touareg more of a plug-and-play tow vehicle. Selling the factory hitch without a factory 7-pin connector on a vehicle that tows 7700 lbs seems silly.

Maybe VW expects you to only tow boat or car trailers with surge brakes...or that you're still in Europe towing travel trailers with surge brakes and no tongue weight.

Compared to this, something like a Jeep/Dodge/Chevy/GMC/Ford/Nissan/Toyota where you just plug in a brake controller and off you tow seems rather simple.

Tom
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