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Old 01-12-2016, 09:50 AM   #1
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First Airstream and I don't want a truck (!)

Linda and I are so excited that we will be picking up our new-to-us 2014 23D International Serenity later this week. We are 99.99% sure that our trusty '96 Land Cruiser won't be satisfactory for the weight... sometimes it seemed to struggle a bit when pulling our Casita (~ 3,100 pounds on the road). The truth is that we don't want a truck, preferring a SUV. Right now, I'm thinking 2008~2012 Toyota Sequoia with the 5-point-something V8, six speed transmission and all the towing stuff. I've read a number of threads about this vehicle and all seemed pretty positive, but all I found were 'kinda old."

So, I thought that I'd post this question as to the suitability of the Sequoia with the 23D for current thought. We do like to travel frequently to the Rockies, if that matters, and it probably does.

Thanks so much,

Rob
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Old 01-12-2016, 10:08 AM   #2
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I'd for sure call Andy T. at CanAm and discuss your circumstance with him. He can give you some really good guidance as to what TV can be made to work quite well.
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Old 01-12-2016, 10:42 AM   #3
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Yes, give Andy a call. He can speak to your specific vehicle choice as well as recommend other options that would work for your trailer.
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Old 01-12-2016, 10:49 AM   #4
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Top here on AIRForums uses a Sequoia as one of the tow vehicles. It's not a fuel-economy champ but for a 23' trailer should do fine if properly equipped and set up. If memory serves he's had minor annoyances with the brakes, starting before he ever towed with it. Big heavy SUV that likes to warp the stock rotors, I think.
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Old 01-12-2016, 10:51 AM   #5
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Sequoia is pretty close to Tundra in size, shorter wheelbase and independent suspension which are very good for getting around and stability.

A little smaller SUV with a 5.7 engine (plenty) and 8-speed transmission that is less expensive and not as thirsty on fuel is a late model Dodge Durango, also independent suspension and rated to tow any mid-size Airstream.

There are three equally important elements in a great towing combination. Tow vehicle, trailer, and hitch, if any one is poor, the combination will be poor. Spend at least as much time researching the hitches as you do the other two elements, and get it set up by someone who knows what they are doing. Many dealers and customers treat the hitch as an afterthought, a make-do item.
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Old 01-12-2016, 10:57 AM   #6
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Also consider a Jeep Grand Cherokee, with the V8 or diesel.
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Old 01-12-2016, 11:23 AM   #7
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Another choice: Nissan Armada or Infiniti QX56
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Old 01-12-2016, 11:34 AM   #8
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Why not another Land Cruiser? It will last you another 20-25 years.
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Old 01-12-2016, 12:07 PM   #9
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Believe there is another thread with a similar question. The Toyota reliability reputation drives loyalty. However, there is a lot going for new, in place of older used. Travel breakdowns are a real distraction at a time that you need/want to enjoy the experience.

Towing is a unique type of driving. A tow vehicle performs better and is safer if it has a low center of gravity, long wheel base, short rear overhang, wide track, large tire contact patch, big disk brakes, similar mass to the trailer, reasonable torque, stiff chassis, and a payload that matches load and tongue weight conditions. The reduced oxygen at higher elevation gives an advantage to boosted induction engines.

The 23 matches well with a number of SUVs. However, it also matches up with minivans and cars, which can be less expensive and provide as much and often more economy and utility. They are worth your consideration.

Good Luck, Pat
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Old 01-12-2016, 12:59 PM   #10
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We ended up with a QX and really like the comfort and power. If you get a 56 make sure it is at least a 2011. Big change for better that year.
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Old 01-12-2016, 01:07 PM   #11
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I have a 2013 Armada 4WD with tow package, which has a tow rating of 9,000 lbs. I have towed a 25' and now a 28'. We love it.
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Old 01-12-2016, 01:13 PM   #12
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Another vote for a 2011 or later Durango or Cherokee.
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Old 01-12-2016, 01:38 PM   #13
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Get a newish Sequoia. You'll be happy. They make great tow vehicles. It would only be better if they offered it with the twin turbo diesel from the Land Cruiser.
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Old 01-12-2016, 03:03 PM   #14
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I guess I should add the twin turbo diesel is from the LC that is available worldwide minus North America.
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Old 01-12-2016, 07:04 PM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RFP View Post
Linda and I are so excited that we will be picking up our new-to-us 2014 23D International Serenity later this week. We are 99.99% sure that our trusty '96 Land Cruiser won't be satisfactory for the weight... sometimes it seemed to struggle a bit when pulling our Casita (~ 3,100 pounds on the road). The truth is that we don't want a truck, preferring a SUV. Right now, I'm thinking 2008~2012 Toyota Sequoia with the 5-point-something V8, six speed transmission and all the towing stuff. I've read a number of threads about this vehicle and all seemed pretty positive, but all I found were 'kinda old."

So, I thought that I'd post this question as to the suitability of the Sequoia with the 23D for current thought. We do like to travel frequently to the Rockies, if that matters, and it probably does.

Thanks so much,

Rob
We tow ours with a 2004 4Runner. It has a smaller 4.7L V8 but it has a 7,000 lb. towing capacity. The early Sequoias also had the 4.7L. If you can get the 5.7 you can upsize the trailer later on with the bigger engine but the 4.7 does nicely with the 23' size. I think Toyota kept the 4.7L in the 4runners through about 2007 but the '04 models have the larger fuel tank.

Just a thought.
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Old 01-12-2016, 07:50 PM   #16
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I happily tow my 23 with a 2011 Jeep GC Overland Hemi. I had an F-150 and decided it was overkill.
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Old 01-13-2016, 10:22 AM   #17
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A friend of mine has a gorgeous Porsche Cayenne SUV that pulls his large boat --- If you want style and can afford one he says it's fantastic.
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Old 01-13-2016, 10:29 AM   #18
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We have towed our current A/S with a 2010 Nissan Armada SE over 65,000 miles with NO adverse issues. Since the Armada has a 9,100# tow limit, we carefully keep the A/S to no more than 8,500# and get 10-13 mpg depending on topography as we keep speeds under 65 mph.

The Sequoia is also a very good tow vehicle. Good luck with your A/S and finding the tow vehicle which best suits your needs!!
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Old 01-13-2016, 10:40 AM   #19
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True story - we were visiting an Airstream dealership about a year ago in the southwest. A couple was admiring the Bambi which was on the floor in the Airstream store. They asked a sales person several questions and it seemed to be going along very well at least until they asked if their Subaru could tow the trailer. I loved the response - "sure it will - one time". Subaru products are awesome and I've owned a few myself but this was a honest answer and it was the right answer. I agree with you on the pick up truck part, no desire to drive a truck as a TV and through the year. The input above is all great and, for me, we have had such great luck with Chevrolet. The full frame V8 Tahoe & the Suburban remain the lead choices for me in a quickly narrowing field of options for a sturdy and capable non-pick up tow vehicle.
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Old 01-13-2016, 10:41 AM   #20
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Diesel is the answer, no matter what the question about tow vehicles. Among SUVs, try the Mercedes GL (or ML, for a 23') or Jeep Grand Cherokee.
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