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Old 03-01-2004, 04:06 PM   #1
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Weight-to-Horsepower Ratio...

Just got the copy of our Owners manual from Secretarial Serives. Skimmed through and it is going to be very helpful in some ways and as some of you had mentioned - certain areas only give the basics.

So far - there is really nothing that is overly complicated - in fact the systems are quite simple - no wonder some of you ... when you read a "newbies" post .

Two things I found interesting.
1. The Vinyl -Asbestos - Floor - Yikes - but was put at ease by Rog's thread "Via Search" and Shari's great research as usual - bravo!! - so if we need to replace the floor we will follow very strict protocols. and;

2. The Airstream "Weight-to Horsepower - Ratio" I keyed this into the Search but nothing came up.

Having had a bit of concern at the begining with our Tow Vehicle (as we bought it well before our decision to buy an A/S - and was not prepared to nip out and buy another brand new TV )

We knew our choices in A/S were somewhat limited. The new A/S's seemed incredibly heavy not too mention incredibly expensive! our lifestyle did not suite the over 24's footers (not full timers yet but will no doubt upgrade when the time comes) and our luck at finding a 50's A/S in relatively great shape would be a long search) So when we came across the 69 Globe Trotter - it really fit perfectly into the specs we were looking at.

Getting back to the above ratio - is there a reason that this is not used anymore? Seems pretty logical to me. But then I am certainly no mechanic or really into the vroom vroom and ins and outs of the marvalled engine.

I realize there is the issue of Mountain driving - and possible overheating - but if well equipped with coolers and sensible speeds are maintained then it should not be a problem. - right?

There are also suggestions that the smaller engines V6 will not last - but if they are maintained well, and the OD is used correctly and excessive speeds and overloading are avoided then why should an engine fail any quicker?

Anyway we put the Kia Sorento through the ratio formula - and she falls within the 30- 40 WTH noted as very adequately powered empty and just 7 points over, loaded (adding an extra 1000# to the trailer and 550# to the Vehicle) but a respectable 13 points below the recommended upper limit of 60 WTH.

Airstreams comment of "with any lower ratio being a "Hot Rod" - (under 30 that is) .. brought a smile - and what I envisioned was a big Shinny Diesle Dually pulling our GT through the back roads of the Kawarthas. I'd just have to put her in drive and let her go - no foot on the gas - yeh ha!

Anyway it was just really interesting and seemed to make a lot of sense - as I have always thought trailering is all in the weight distribution system as well a bit of pepiness to pull with and of course exceptional brakes on the Trailer.

In the flats where it was safe to pull out and pass the slower traffic and push up to the 65-70 mark we were very impressed. The hills she also held her own without a struggle - so I'm sure that when it comes time to tackling a few mountains - with OD off and possibly using 2nd just prior to apex she will have the same pep but at a slower - safer speed for the condition. (You know Slow Traffic Keep Right )

On another note we finally got around to calculating our gas mileage from our trip - keeping in mind the vehicle was brand new - well just went passed the 800km break in perioed and safe to tow. Before we left we were barely getting 12mph - Highway or City. By the time we picked her up she travelled home at 14mpg (all up hill). And, much to our surprise unloaded she now gets just under double - around 24mpg highway for an SUV that is much heavier than any other in her class - that is pretty good. (we were warned that her mileage would be lower - but we wanted a heavier vehicle with a truck frame rather than a "unibody")

SPK
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Old 03-01-2004, 04:33 PM   #2
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SPK,

I have seen the horsepower ratio you speak of. The biggest issue I have with it is that it was written for it's time.

The late 60's was the start of the Unibody construction that now compromises 80% of the market today. Most cars had a frame. You mentioned that you wanted a frame on SUV, good choice since you are now using it to tow. Many of the chassis were over engineered in the 50's and 60's They did not have the benefit of todays structural design systems that allow the chassis and frame, or lack therof, to be designed for the task the car was built for, nothing more. The plus of this design is cars that are safer in an accident and get good mileage. The trade off is if I tried to pull your trailer with my Camry I could damage my car to the point of causing a structural failure.

In the 50's and 60's there was not a manufacturer weight rating for towing to my knowledge, so Airstream developed the formula. I think it is still a good rule of thumb when towing with a gas powered tow vehicle. Diesels are a completely different formula.
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Old 03-01-2004, 04:56 PM   #3
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Hi Brett;

We tow a pretty heavy boat around on a tandom trailer - and wanted something comparable to our Jeep but a little better and within our budget. We opted for the SUV because well the trucks just don't have the room we need without putting a cap on and putting the dogs in the back or getting an extended cab -which leaves no room for the luggage or short trips. The really nice big packages well I would have to mortgage my house to pay for the gas

Thanks for the history lesson Brett very interesting - I really do find all this facinating and love to listen to you guys who are so knowledgeable with the cars & trucks.

I have read up on all the weight ratings on the threads and at Airstream but is the Gross Combined Vehicle Weight Rating - suppose to be on the sticker inside the door? Cause all we have is the GVWR.

As many have found out with not just our make and model many of the brochures and even the owners manuals provide very conflicting and sometimes totally incorrect information about the towing capabilities or lack there of for the vehicles on the market to day.

If I were ever to buy a truck I think I would go for the Dodge Ram - just because everyone has GMC and Ford - and cause I like the hood ornament

Thanks again Brett for the info

SPK
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Old 03-01-2004, 05:06 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally posted by GT6921

I have read up on all the weight ratings on the threads and at Airstream but is the Gross Combined Vehicle Weight Rating - suppose to be on the sticker inside the door? Cause all we have is the GVWR.
GVWR

Definition: Maximum weight capacity of the Vehicle. this includes all the gear, dogs, doggie treats, people, gas and groceries that you can pack in it. AND the tongue weight of the trailer. The only real way to see what the trailer tongue weight is doing is to take the rig to a scale and weigh the KIA without a trailer. Front and rear axle. Then hook up like normal and do it again. This will tell you how much you are adding to the suspension of the KIA. This additional amount as well as the curb weight should be deducted from the GVWR. This will give you a UCC (usable carrying capacity). Doing the math may mean leaving a few doggie treats behind

Tow ratings are how much trailer weight sits on the tires of the trailer that you are going to pull. This in not normally listed on the door placard.
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