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Old 04-20-2021, 02:49 PM   #1
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Question US Towing Experts

We have an Audi Q7 and want to use it to pull a FC 27FB. Can anyone recommend towing experts in the US, ideally in the midwest, who might be able to help us with reinforcing the hitch receiver?

We had planned to go to Can-Am to get it set up, and Andy has been very kind with some excellent advice, but the border closing order has just been extended again, and it looks like it will not be lifted until July or August at the earliest, and may go on until fall.
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Old 04-20-2021, 03:35 PM   #2
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As you'll soon find out, everyone on the forums is a towing expert.
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Old 04-20-2021, 03:48 PM   #3
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As you'll soon find out, everyone on the forums is a towing expert.
Point taken. But are they handy with a welder?
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Old 04-20-2021, 05:28 PM   #4
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What year is your Audi? We have towed our 27FB 10s of thousands of miles with a 2008 Cayenne and have had no issues at all. We have our WD properly set up, which is key. The Cayenne and Audi Q7 are virtually the same platform, and I believe they have the same hitch receiver.

I have thought about getting the hitch reinforced, but based on our experience, while desirable, we do not find it necessary.

If you have not already found this thread, you may find some useful info regarding towing with your Audi.

https://www.airforums.com/forums/f46...rs-134917.html
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Old 04-20-2021, 05:42 PM   #5
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Originally Posted by thewarden View Post
What year is your Audi? We have towed our 27FB 10s of thousands of miles with a 2008 Cayenne and have had no issues at all. We have our WD properly set up, which is key. The Cayenne and Audi Q7 are virtually the same platform, and I believe they have the same hitch receiver.
Our Audi Q7 is a 2018 w/ towing package. We're basing the need for reinforcement on advice from Andy (from Can-Am), and on accounts from others with Q7's with similar-sized trailers, who have said they had their hitch receiver reinforced (some I think on the Cayenne/Touareg/Q7 thread that you linked ).

We would certainly like to not have to reinforce, if it's not necessary. What WD hitch are you using? And does your Cayenne have air suspension? (Our Q7 does not.)
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Old 04-21-2021, 10:43 AM   #6
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Yes, I have air suspension, but that is not really relative to the strength of the hitch receiver and/or whether it needs to be reinforced.

We are careful about loading and applying the proper WD so that the rear axle is within weight ratings. That means transferring all the weight back to the front axle. You need to know that reinforced or not, you will be at your vehicle's cargo capacity with this trailer. That said, we have towed many miles with ours. I carefully examine the hitch and receiver frequently during a trip, and there has been zero movement on the receiver. My receiver is the factory-installed, Westfalia receiver. By many accounts, they are underrated and over-engineered. Although, I am sure that is the case with all receiver manufacturers for liability reasons.

If I lived anywhere near Can-AM, would I get my hitch reinforced? Probably, as an extra measure of strength. But, is it necessary? I am not the expert, but my own experience, and that of many others I have encountered on the road with a similar setup, I do not think so.

We use a Reese Strait-Line hitch with a short Weight Distributing Shank

https://www.reeseprod.com/product/66...d-sway-control
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Old 04-21-2021, 11:46 AM   #7
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Originally Posted by thewarden View Post
Yes, I have air suspension, but that is not really relative to the strength of the hitch receiver and/or whether it needs to be reinforced.

We use a Reese Strait-Line hitch with a short Weight Distributing Shank
https://www.reeseprod.com/product/66...d-sway-control
I don't doubt you're right about air suspension not directly correlating with the strength of the hitch receiver, but my impression has been that air suspension can affect how much the WD hitch has to work to transfer weight to the front axle, which in turn may affect how much torque the hitch puts on the receiver. (Also, there is the question of whether a 2018 receiver is as robust as the 2008 version; there seems to have been an annoying shift toward reduced weight at the cost of strength in many cars in recent years.)

Anyway, thank you for the details on your hitch. While reinforcement may not be strictly necessary, I'd still prefer to go belt+suspenders, but so far no luck finding anyone in our area willing & able to do the work, so I'm not sure what we're going to do.
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Old 04-21-2021, 11:54 AM   #8
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Originally Posted by ealmasy View Post

Anyway, thank you for the details on your hitch. While reinforcement may not be strictly necessary, I'd still prefer to go belt+suspenders, but so far no luck finding anyone in our area willing & able to do the work, so I'm not sure what we're going to do.
The reason you won't find any reputable welder near you to do this is most likely due to liability. That car was rated at 4400lbs tow capacity, which puts you around a 19' Bambi/Flying Cloud. It can easily be welded, as has been proven, but those welds and reinforcements do not change the fact that the car has a too short of a wheelbase (117.9 vs the needed 130 or longer for a trailer that length) and a factory rating that you will exceed by more than 2x. I mean, if you were close, I'd feel differently, but your not even in the ballpark. If you did find someone to do this and you get into a wreck, that welder will no doubt be named in a suit.

My suggestion would be to either get a smaller Airstream or a vehicle that has a factory rating of 8,000-9,000lbs tow rating. The Cayenne that was mentioned I found a tow rating of over 7700lbs, which is far closer than the Q7:

https://www.google.com/search?q=2008...client=gws-wiz
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Old 04-21-2021, 12:25 PM   #9
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Originally Posted by panamerican View Post
The reason you won't find any reputable welder near you to do this is most likely due to liability. That car was rated at 4400lbs tow capacity, which puts you around a 19' Bambi/Flying Cloud.
The Audi Q7 actually has a towing capacity of 7,700 lbs like the Cayenne, and a similar wheelbase. In many ways, they're almost identical.

https://www.edmunds.com/audi/q7/2018/features-specs/
https://www.edmunds.com/porsche/caye...eatures-specs/
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Old 04-21-2021, 01:17 PM   #10
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Originally Posted by ealmasy View Post
The Audi Q7 actually has a towing capacity of 7,700 lbs like the Cayenne, and a similar wheelbase. In many ways, they're almost identical.

https://www.edmunds.com/audi/q7/2018/features-specs/
https://www.edmunds.com/porsche/caye...eatures-specs/

According to the Audi site the 2021 A7 does not have a 7700lb rating:

https://www.audiusa.com/us/web/en/mo..._techdata.html

Perhaps older models had different tow ratings or Edumunds info is not accurate. I would verify with Audi. That's a pretty big jump down from 7700 to 4400 in 3 years.

Regardless, you will have some searching to do to find a reputable welder who would be willing to modify as mentioned earlier.
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Old 04-21-2021, 01:32 PM   #11
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I’m no expert, though you are going to be close. Your just under 6k lbs empty...no cargo, persons etc. 7,700 isn’t going to go very far. Your biggest concern is the 791lb hitch weight. My 25FB was always 100+lbs heavier due to the loading and external compartment locations. My 30bunk, actually comes in a little lower due to loading. I have a Hensley on my F-150 with 1,400lb bars to lift my soft rear. The leverage these WDH’s place on a frame is a lot. I had a Cayenne S back in 2003, it pulled my 6,600 lb boat like a freight train...more than enough power. Though my hitch weight was only 300lbs. I towed it on the ball. ...just don’t know!
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Old 04-21-2021, 01:39 PM   #12
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Originally Posted by panamerican View Post
According to the Audi site the 2021 Q7 does not have a 7700lb rating:
https://www.audiusa.com/us/web/en/mo..._techdata.html
That's the scaled-back 2.0L four-cylinder version of the Q7. Here's the 2021 Audi equivalent to what I (and, I'm guessing, thewarden) have:
https://pdf.audi.com/audicode/ANX4CSW7
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Old 04-21-2021, 02:01 PM   #13
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Iím no expert, though you are going to be close. Your just under 6k lbs empty...no cargo, persons etc. 7,700 isnít going to go very far. Your biggest concern is the 791lb hitch weight.
Yeah, the tongue weight is definitely the main concern. With the Power Plus (lithium) package on the trailer, on paper it's possibly actually under the 10% threshold for the Q7, but in practice it's likely to be at least somewhat over, and bumping right up against limits is never ideal when towing. Thankfully a WD hitch can help a lot.
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Old 04-21-2021, 02:10 PM   #14
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Much better. Looking at the specs that trailer, empty has a 900lb hitch weight +/-. It's gonna need weight distribution and you are right to get welded if that is your choice, if you can find someone other than Andy. Typically 10% of the trailer weight is hitch weight, so say the current setup is set to handle 770lbs dead hitch weight and we all know here that the stated hitch weights are woefully low, my guess is the hitch weight will be about 1000lbs.

I agree with Andy from CanAm that the German cars do have better handling than say my 3/4 ton Burb, still, I know I can throw almost 1500 lbs on that beast without modifying it, but if you are going to do this with that car, Andy is right, I'd be reluctant to put that kind of weight back there without doing something. Not my first choice but life is about choices and knowing how close you are, it could be done, not sure I'd do it, but as s1000pre says, and I agree, yer right up there....after passengers, cargo, fuel, etc, but far better than you were when I saw 4400!
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Old 04-21-2021, 02:24 PM   #15
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If you can pull this off with weight distribution. I highly recommend either a Hensley or ProPride. I just upgrade my WDH with the Hensley Arrow...it nothing short of amazing and well worth the investment. You have a short wheelbase and this completely eliminates any future trailer sway.
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Old 04-21-2021, 02:42 PM   #16
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If you can pull this off with weight distribution. I highly recommend either a Hensley or ProPride. I just upgrade my WDH with the Hensley Arrow...it nothing short of amazing and well worth the investment. You have a short wheelbase and this completely eliminates any future trailer sway.
Excellent hitches, both. But they add significantly more weight on the ball than most other conventional style WD systems. When you are already bumping past the receiver hitch weight rating and nearing the rear axle weight rating, they are not the best choice.

When you are using tow vehicles like the OP, it becomes all about compromise.
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Old 04-21-2021, 02:52 PM   #17
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Excellent hitches, both. But they add significantly more weight on the ball than most other conventional style WD systems.
Exactly this. I love the idea of the ProPride and Hensley, but then discovered that the ProPride 3P itself weighs somewhere in the neighborhood of 200 lbs.
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Old 04-23-2021, 04:09 AM   #18
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Originally Posted by ealmasy View Post
We have an Audi Q7 and want to use it to pull a FC 27FB. Can anyone recommend towing experts in the US, ideally in the midwest, who might be able to help us with reinforcing the hitch receiver?

We had planned to go to Can-Am to get it set up, and Andy has been very kind with some excellent advice, but the border closing order has just been extended again, and it looks like it will not be lifted until July or August at the earliest, and may go on until fall.
Can you cross the border for service? I know itís not completely closed
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Old 04-23-2021, 06:07 AM   #19
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Can you cross the border for service? I know itís not completely closed
I don't think so Ė you have to have written proof that your reason for crossing is not optional. And even if you can convince them to let you across, a 14-day quarantine period is required once you're there, and you have to present a documented plan for that quarantine when crossing. From everything I've read and heard, they're being pretty hardcore about it. (Understandable, but pretty frustrating, given that we really just want to get our car (not people) across, and only for a relatively brief period.)
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Old 04-24-2021, 04:07 AM   #20
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That’s ridiculous. I’ll just go to Jackson Center.
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