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Old 11-23-2013, 10:02 AM   #1
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Smile Suggested Tow Vehicle (Given Limitations)

I am a new member of Air Forums. My wife and I are looking at Air Stream trailers. We live in a community that has a restriction against pickup trucks. We are looking for a tow vehicle that will tow a 27 or 28 ft Airstream safely. I read about the Suburban 3/4 ton which I think may have been a good option but from reading the posts it sounds like that vehicle has been discontinued. We currently own an Infinity QX 56 with a tow capacity of 8,500 lbs. are there other non pickup truck vehicles that we can consider with greater towing capacity than 8,500 lbs? What about diesels?
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Old 11-23-2013, 10:28 AM   #2
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Infiniti's

Great, another Infiniti owner. Many of us on the forum are using Infiniti's as TV's.
We use a Can Am set up G35 to tow our 23'. There is a Q45 towing a 28', and a number of Infiniti SUV's towing Airstream's. Lots of info using the search function.
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Old 11-23-2013, 10:36 AM   #3
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Perhaps your neighborhood covenants don't allow trailers as well.
You could pick up a nice used suburban as long as it has less than 100,000 miles. I have a Tahoe, which is a "shortbed" version and tows my Airstream beautifully.
Ford made a Excursion with a diesel that gets 20MPG, a big plus on a long road trip!
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Old 11-23-2013, 11:46 AM   #4
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Erik, thanks I'll look into the diesel Ford Excursion. Our neighborhood does not allow trailers either but I plan to store that off site. I want to use my TV as my car that's what presents the problem. I really wanted to buy a pickup truck as a TV.
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Old 11-23-2013, 11:55 AM   #5
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I find it interesting that a HOA can prohibit federally design approved and state licensed vehicles. I think that would provoke a interesting legal proceeding on the HOA getting to be the sole authority to determine what choice of vehicle you get to own.

Another power grab by some small dictators.
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Old 11-23-2013, 12:01 PM   #6
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HOA's also dictate which plants, paint colors, and other ridiculous things...
And there are sometimes dues...
Pay the man to tell me what I can drive ?
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Old 11-23-2013, 12:15 PM   #7
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http://m.trucktrend.com/features/con...uvs/index.html

Here's a pretty good review of options. As a reminder, my 27FB Flying Cloud has a max GVWR of 7200# but on the scales fully loaded for camping comes in at 5880. It also claims a sub-800# tongue but mine (with PP hitch) is over 1000#. The link above doesn't include numbers for max tongue weight, front, rear, combined gross weight or payload. You'd have to look at a more complete picture to know for sure but it would seem these SUVs with >7000# capacity could do the job.

While definitely overkill, I love my Chevy 2500 Duramax for towing. I absolutely hate it for commuting. I've never checked, but an old (1970s?) Mercedes diesel station wagon strikes me as an interesting multi purpose option :-)

Good luck!
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Old 11-23-2013, 12:53 PM   #8
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If you like what you got you might be able to stick with it. Below is a link that has the weights of AS Trailers. Most are below 8500 lbs. What is the tongue rating on your current car?

http://www.airstream.com/files/libra...c5c1005fbf.pdf

The VAP pod cast had the owner from Canam on two weeks ago. They discussed in length TVs and hitch set ups. It was a good show.
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Old 11-23-2013, 01:05 PM   #9
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No pickup problem.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Ed Brownfield View Post
are there other non pickup truck vehicles that we can consider with greater towing capacity than 8,500 lbs? What about diesels?
First, I would recommend you read all the towing articles written by Andy Thomsen of Can Am RV. You can find them all here. He also has a few very informative articles concerning towing and tow vehicles in Airstream Life magazine.
People have very strong opinions about tow vehicles and towing here on the forums. In the end, you have to decide what is best for you.
You could use an E-250/2500 van, if that suits you. The Excursion is the only mass produced big diesel SUV that comes to mind, but that would be in the used market only. You may desire to make some modifications to the vehicle you already own to better serve your towing needs, or buy a new/er/ish Suburban and have a installed. There are a lot of people towing newer 25'-30' Airstreams with SUVs such as Chevy Suburban/Tahoe, Ford Excursion, BMW X5, MB ML/GL 450, Infinity QX, Toyota Sequoia, Land Cruiser and many others. Some people tow with big cars like the Chrysler 300 and Dodge Magnum wagon.
If you have the finances, there are many, many choices for towing a bigger new Airstream without having an HD pickup. Good luck in your search!
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Old 11-23-2013, 04:06 PM   #10
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I tow a 2002 ASCL 31' with a 2001 BMW X5 (see my avatar); do a search on "withidl" for numerous posts.
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Old 11-23-2013, 04:34 PM   #11
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Old 12-03-2013, 11:56 AM   #12
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I use a Suburban 1500 5.3L for my 25FC. Tows great, very comfortable, roomy, and a nice daily driver. I would have no hesitation to use the same TV for a 27 or even 30. I think setting up the WD is important.

At 223" it still fits in a 2-car garage. A nice bonus.

The bad news is that non-towing mileage is 12 mpg at best. Otherwise, the 'Burb is a wonderful SUV.
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Old 12-03-2013, 02:38 PM   #13
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Erik, thanks I'll look into the diesel Ford Excursion.
The Ex's have numerous issues. Thinking your QX56 would be a better choice overall, assuming it is set up right.
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Old 12-03-2013, 04:48 PM   #14
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You already own the Infiniti QX56?
Run what you brung. Make it do!
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Old 12-03-2013, 06:04 PM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ed Brownfield View Post
I am a new member of Air Forums. My wife and I are looking at Air Stream trailers. We live in a community that has a restriction against pickup trucks. We are looking for a tow vehicle that will tow a 27 or 28 ft Airstream safely. I read about the Suburban 3/4 ton which I think may have been a good option but from reading the posts it sounds like that vehicle has been discontinued. We currently own an Infinity QX 56 with a tow capacity of 8,500 lbs. are there other non pickup truck vehicles that we can consider with greater towing capacity than 8,500 lbs? What about diesels?
Hi Ed
I think most other vehicles will not feel as luxurious or competent as your Infinity. Perhaps you may just be wanting a new vehicle? I agree with others who suggest the status quo. You have an excellent vehicle for your intended Airstream. Jim
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Old 12-06-2013, 10:07 AM   #16
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You already own the Infiniti QX56?
Run what you brung. Make it do!
Run what you brung! I recall that phrase from my drag racing days!
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Old 12-06-2013, 10:24 AM   #17
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There may be tow vehicles out there that do a better job than the one I've got, but I ain't got no money to buy it with-
I'm gonna make it do what it do-
I really don't have a problem towing with a half ton pickup with 32,000 miles...but he can't have no pickup in his neighborhood...
I still say stick with the Infiniti...
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Old 12-10-2013, 03:40 AM   #18
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The QX56 is a very capable tow vehicle and I prefer it to a 3/4 ton suburban. The double wishbone independent rear suspension gives a much better ride while still handling better than the stiffly sprung live axle on the Suburban. It is also a little more maneuverable. The 5.6 Litre V/8 with 32 valves is thirsty but has a wide power band.

The gear spacing on the 5 speed is not quite right for towing an Airstream. It runs at a higher RPM than necessary in 4th gear and does not quite hit the power curve in 5th gear. A slightly lower profile tire fixes that and further tightens up the handling. Other than the fuel use it is a pretty nice vehicle. I see the new one is called the QX80 and now has a 7 speed transmisison.

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Old 12-10-2013, 06:46 AM   #19
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QX80? The number used to designate engine size...
Surely this thing doesn't have an 8 litre...
or maybe they changed the naming system to mean it has an 8 cylinder...
I'm gonna Google it!
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Old 12-10-2013, 06:47 AM   #20
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I see- they renamed it QX80 because it seats 8 passengers...
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