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Old 06-02-2014, 12:34 AM   #1
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tow vehicle advice needed for 2006 19' Bambi

We're back! After selling our 2003 25' Classic, we spent the next 4.5 years with a wonderful 2003 36' Foretravel diesel pusher. We had a great opportunity to sell and that happened a few days ago. Out of the blue, we had an opporunity today to purchase (and we did!) a 2006 19' Bambi SE 75th Anniversary, looking like it came off the showroom floor.

We have a winter home in Arizona, and plan to spend the summers in a rental home north of Seattle. Basically, the Bambi is a rolling motel room (ok, suite!) to get us between AZ and WA... with some short-term camping opportunities here and there. No more 9,000+ mile summers in the DP towing our 2009 Honda CRV.

So, here's the question. The CRV has the world's most uncomfortable seats for any trips beyond an hour. And it is clearly too small to tow the Bambi (at 4500lb GVWR).

We need to come up with a used, mid-size, well-rated/reliable/comfortable SUV to tow our new baby... and we would appreciate any suggestions. The Bambi will be delivered to us tomorrow, and our HOA will give us about a week before we need to move it off the driveway!

We would be very grateful for any advice on an appropriate tow vehicle that is NOT a truck! Thanks in advance,

Pat and George

PS We'll change our avatar soon... that was our former 2003 25' Classic!
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Old 06-03-2014, 03:50 AM   #2
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Since it is your money, and I want to spend it, try this bad-boy on for size:

Toyota Land Cruiser 2014 | Luxury SUV
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Old 06-03-2014, 05:29 AM   #3
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VW Touareg, Mercedes 350 Bluetec, Jeep GC diesel would be my own three top choices.
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Old 06-03-2014, 08:33 AM   #4
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Ford F-150, can't go wrong.
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Old 06-03-2014, 08:52 AM   #5
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Ford F-150, can't go wrong.
NOT a truck was a specific requirement

(Not a slight on the F150)
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Old 06-03-2014, 08:54 AM   #6
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Well gosh, it's a no brainer, go for a Chrysler 300.
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Old 06-03-2014, 08:57 AM   #7
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Adding to the vehicles already mentioned: Audi Q7 TDI
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Old 06-03-2014, 12:32 PM   #8
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Thank you all for your advice and thoughts... we're leaning heavily toward the Jeep Grand Cherokee, Andy.

We hadn't thought about it... but, actually, we owned a Jeep Cherokee back in the early 90s to tow our Com-Pac 16 sailboat when we lived in North Carolina. It was a great TV, until George had a head-on collision. Someone crossed the center median and ran into him, while he was towing the sailboat. The boat fared better than the accordion-folded Jeep - which George walked away from, thanks to the airbag! It was quite interesting to see a half dozen firefighters physically pick up the sailboat and lift it onto a trailer to tow from the accident scene!

Pat (and George)
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Old 06-03-2014, 02:02 PM   #9
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Quote:
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Ford F-150, can't go wrong.
I agree, but the 2015 with all the aluminum in it would be a great choice to tow an Airstream.
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Old 06-03-2014, 02:36 PM   #10
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I drove all of the above (except the 300), test towing with the Jeep GC EcoDiesel and ML350 BlueTec. The ML350 was the hands down winner. While I don't know if it would be a issue with the 19' potential overheating was a serious issue with our 25'.
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Old 06-03-2014, 11:20 PM   #11
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Welcome back to the Airstream fold! I have already chimed in through your email inquiry about tow vehicles, but i didn't realize that you didn't want a truck...sorry! Just glad you're back! And now we have a "twin" in Tucson!
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Old 06-03-2014, 11:27 PM   #12
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We have towed our 2002 19' Bambi with the last three versions of the Jeep Grand Cherokee, all with V-8 gas engines. All towed with ease and the vehicles were most comfortable. Our latest is a 2011 Jeep Grand Cherokee with tow package, air suspension, and the 5.7 liter "Hemi" V-8. It is by far the best one yet and gets the best gas mileage, both towing and solo.

Tim
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Old 06-04-2014, 06:38 AM   #13
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I love my Ford Flex!
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Old 06-10-2014, 02:28 PM   #14
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too bad you aren't considering trucks - my club cab silverado is like a tahoe with a bed to store stuff
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Old 06-10-2014, 03:10 PM   #15
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The new Jeep diesel is an awesome tow vehicle and is substantially less money than the beautiful Mercedes or any of the other superbly engineered German SUVs. The downside of the Jeep compared to the Mercedes or any of the others is the lack of experience at the dealership with diesels. Attachment 213988
The new Jeep is better than the Mercedes based 2007 / 08 Jeep and that Jeep was better than previousJeeps. Jim
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Old 06-10-2014, 03:13 PM   #16
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Old 06-10-2014, 04:20 PM   #17
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Almost any good sized mini-suv. Rear wheel drive is preferable since you are hauling a bit over two tons. Trailblazer comes to mind, Explorer, Tahoe, Silverado 1500...possibly Jeep Grand Cherokee...anything along these lines would be great IMHO.
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Old 06-10-2014, 06:31 PM   #18
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The Jeep GC Diesel has a potential overheating issue. I experienced this first hand towing my 25' up an extended grade in 30F ambient. Others have reported similar results. The GC was my first choice but moved on to the ML350 after the GC test drive. There is no way I would even run a remote risk of my TV overheating. Been there done that. The ML350 temp gauge never moves more than half the width of the hash mark. The peace of mind is worth every extra dollar, to me anyways.


Quote:
Originally Posted by Jim Flower View Post
The new Jeep diesel is an awesome tow vehicle and is substantially less money than the beautiful Mercedes or any of the other superbly engineered German SUVs. The downside of the Jeep compared to the Mercedes or any of the others is the lack of experience at the dealership with diesels. Attachment 213988
The new Jeep is better than the Mercedes based 2007 / 08 Jeep and that Jeep was better than previousJeeps. Jim
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Old 06-10-2014, 07:05 PM   #19
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Mini towing Airstream
Check out this video from Can Am RV that shows you can safely tow a Bambi with a very wide range of vehicles and also consider that most of the driving will most likely be non-towing. Jim
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