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-   -   VANS -which full size van to choose (http://www.airforums.com/forums/f238/vans-which-full-size-van-to-choose-171397.html)

Foiled Again 08-14-2017 10:43 AM

VANS -which full size van to choose
 
I seem to never be totally satisfied with my current tow vehicle. Getting a bit creaky in the joints but yoga is helping. I really don't want to throw $4K into self lowering running boards, a bed cap and a ladder or ramp system that will allow me better access to the bed.

I am therefore considering a full size van 3/4 or 1 ton. I also think that I should consider a gasser as well as diesel.

Sort of leaning toward a Ford Transit.
Let the debating commence!

Paula

overlander63 08-14-2017 10:58 AM

Our local Chevy dealer has some nice conversion vans. I didn't know they still made those.

slowmover 08-14-2017 11:06 AM

At least one thread on the Nissan NV 3500. With V8. Just not the hightop version.

You might consider a consult with Andrew Thomson. With your current thoughts and his, give yourself a range of vehicles.

uncle_bob 08-14-2017 11:09 AM

Hi

Consider that "big vans" are not something that every dealer wants to sell. You may have to go "a ways" to find a reasonable selection or a good deal on one.

As with *any* tow + stuff situation, realistically add up the weight of everything. Step back, look at that list and go over it again. Put in some margin and run the numbers. Head off and shop based on those numbers. If at all possible, check real numbers (door post) on real vehicles.

Bob

slowmover 08-14-2017 11:47 AM

Bumped two threads on the Nissan. One in tow vehicles, the other in On The Road subforums.

The competition is likely similar.

wildhorses 08-14-2017 01:19 PM

1 Attachment(s)
We tow with a van and love it, as with a truck get the 3/4 or 1 ton versions and you'll be happy. The truly nice part is you can throw a whole bunch of stuff in the van, close the doors and it'll stay dry. If you don't have windows on the van it'll generally stay secure and out of sight. Our last trip we had 4 bicycles, a kayak, 2 EZ-Ups and a large YETI cooler in the van and two rows of seats.

An added bonus is when we just want to go away for the weekend we'll toss our queen size mattress from the camper in the van, our bikes and a motorcycle on a small trailer and head out for an overnighter.

You know what they say "Once you go van you'll never go back!" LOL!

GM Airstream 08-14-2017 02:07 PM

You have to be kidding... the transit is having a hard time pulling itself... let alone a trailer... too small a engine.... so you will have to drop back a few years... to a body on frame van... and the only ones that ford made are the E350 series.. with the V10 engine... DON'T go with the diesel.. the 6.0 is plagued with problems... and never was engineered right... so saddly stick with gas if your going ford... best be checking the vans towablility... in weight.. remember its the van plus the trailer that you have to figure out now... been their done that... otherwise vans are a hidden secret for rv'n and TV...

uncle_bob 08-14-2017 02:10 PM

Hi

Something to investigate on a van:

Can you get a full tow package? If not, what's it lacking?

A trailer brake controller is essential as is a hitch receiver and 7 way connector.
Extendable (power is nice ...) towing mirrors would be pretty high on my list.
A modern rear camera setup for hitching up would be next for me.
Cool wiz bang "trailer integration" is cute if you can get it, no big deal if you can't.

None of this is stuff that can't be added. Just understand what is or is not there and plan accordingly.

Bob

NY24 08-14-2017 02:59 PM

Volvo 780.....



Get a REAL truck.

uncle_bob 08-14-2017 03:15 PM

Hi

For that matter, Airstream would be *happy* to sell you an Interstate to meet your tow vehicle needs :)

I've never looked to see how many of the "tow package" items get ticked off on an Interstate. Somehow I suspect I'd be underwhelmed ....

Bob

uraljohn 08-14-2017 05:14 PM

Van Towing
 
I tow with 2013 Ford E150 XLT Premium regular wheelbase van, Great tow vehicle. Mine has factory tow package (7000# tow rating), 5.4 engine and a 3.73 limited slip axle (Dana axle). GVW is 8600# which gives me a 2400# payload limit. TT is 2017 Intl Serenity 23D. Van scaled at 6200# with full fluids and 2 passengers. Almost perfect 50/50 front/rear axle split. TT weighs 5700# ready to go, hitch pin weight is right at 800#. 23d's have a much higher pin weight than 23FB. Plenty of power, averaged 12.4 MPG on 3k mile trip to UP Michigan. Ford Transit vans are NOT good to tow heavy loads with. No frame. they are unibody. Check the tow specs on even the best equipped Transit and I think it is 6500#. Van is great because you can put your extra stuff in a secured area. Happy Travels.

uraljohn 08-14-2017 05:22 PM

van towing
 
Couple more thoughts. My E150 XLT Premium came factory equipped with back up camera, rear back up sensors, and Nav system, It took me 6 months of looking to find this van as not many are equipped this way. Factory leather captains chairs plus bench in back. This is not a conversion. The XLT Premium Pkg has this equipment.

lkm4321 08-14-2017 05:35 PM

Towing with a Van.
 
We tow with a 2014 GMC 3500 12 passanget Duramax. We love the van for all its versitility. With a 10,000 lb towing capacity, really more vehicle then we need to pull our 27' FC. But as someone noted our local dealer was not interested in ordering the van we wanted, so an Internet search turned up the 3500 with 12,000 miles at a bargin price, though we had to go 400 miles to pick it up.

bibbs 08-14-2017 05:47 PM

I don't understand why so many people use pickup trucks? A van makes much more sense! Room to spare! I like the window van because you can see so much more around you.

slowmover 08-14-2017 06:09 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by bibbs (Post 1993964)
I don't understand why so many people use pickup trucks? A van makes much more sense! Room to spare! I like the window van because you can see so much more around you.

Not to mention better design with a lower center of gravity and short rear overhang (avoid vans with extended bodies).

uncle_bob 08-14-2017 06:24 PM

Hi

If I go shopping at the local dealer, finding a batch of pickup trucks to look at is pretty much a given. If I want to see a large van ... none to be found. My guess is that the dealers stock what Ford / Chevy / Dodge wants them to stock. Does that relate to feet milage in some weird way or to something else .... who knows. Pretty tough to buy something the company doesn't want to sell you.

Bob

slowmover 08-14-2017 06:27 PM

Every region has a dealership which handles fleet sales. Much the knowledgeable new vehicle department. Have to find which one (or location) does this work.

wildhorses 08-14-2017 07:11 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by slowmover (Post 1993984)
Every region has a dealership which handles fleet sales. Much the knowledgeable new vehicle department. Have to find which one (or location) does this work.

Exactly, there is one near here and they literally have 100's to choose from, the key is to find one that has what you want.

I have towed with everything available and Vans are definitely the best kept secret, plus you can usually get them for less than a comparable pickup truck.

uncle_bob 08-14-2017 08:14 PM

Hi

.... but, if you go into any one of the other couple hundred dealers in the region, they don't have a clue. With Joe Random walking into a dealer to find something, what's he more likely to run into first?

Bob

PeterH-Airstreamer 08-15-2017 05:25 AM

1 Attachment(s)
Quote:

Originally Posted by slowmover (Post 1993974)
Not to mention better design with a lower center of gravity and short rear overhang (avoid vans with extended bodies).

GMC's extended body vans use a longer wheelbase (155", versus 135" for regular) and are extremely stable and very strong tow vehicles.
I have used a G3500 extended van with 6.0l gas for many years as my trusted tow vehicle and have pulled a 34' and currently a 30' widebody. Foiled Again's 25' would be a breeze for that type of van.
In 2017 they discontinued the duramax diesel model.


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