Free 7 Day Trial RV GPS App RV Trip Planner Campground Reviews RV Maintenance Free 7 Day Trial ×
 


Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread Display Modes
 
Old 01-05-2021, 12:30 PM   #21
3 Rivet Member
 
2021 16' Caravel
Kirkland , Washington
Join Date: May 2020
Posts: 126
Quote:
Originally Posted by Crandell5 View Post
I have a 2016 X5 35I. I have the third row seats which includes air suspension in the rear.

I was considering adding a hitch and purchasing a airstream trailer. I have looked at the Caravel models as well as the 23FB Flying Cloud. Well the smaller Caravel models are attractive for their lower price and lower weight I think the 23 foot flying cloud is more desirable. I also noticed that the tongue weight of the 23 foot flying cloud is actually less than a 22 foot Caravel!

According to the information I have found on a stealth hitch / invisihitch - it should allow my ex 5 to 4 7700 pounds with a max tongue weight of 600 pounds. I have also read however that Iím not supposed to use any kind of weight distribution hitch with this set up.

Iím curious what your thoughts are as to whether my BMW would be sufficient to safely pull this?

I looked at the sticker inside my door and my maximum payload capacity in my X5 is 1350 pounds. If you deduct out the just under 500 pounds for the tongue weight that still leaves me at this amount of weight to put in the car.

According to airstream the 23 foot flying cloud fully loaded is still only 6000 pounds.

Iím not planning any long cross country trips mostly short local trips to national parks and the beach in Southern California with myself my wife and a few small kids and camping gear. If I eventually do any big cross country trips itíll be in the future when I have upgraded my tow vehicle.

Iíve been on the BMW forums but there simply isnít a ton of information over there specific to the airstream so I thought I would hit you people up here and see if you had information specific to the X5 like mine and this particular airstream.

Thx!!
Looks like you are going through almost exactly same series of questions I asked here a few months ago, my TV is similar to yours spec wise - a ML350, with similar European hitch - I was told this kind of hitch only have 2 contact points with frame, left and right so they can't sustain force WD system put on them in order to lift the rear wheels and put that weight on front. ML350 has also has painted hitch rise/drop limit right next to the hitch receiver, just a couple of inches both way. I assume yours would be similar. so you need to be careful when you buy hitch ball assembly.

That been said, you can always send your car to a good hitch installer to have it reinforced with a steel cross bar.

Good luck!
hovr is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-05-2021, 12:31 PM   #22
jcl
Rivet Master
 
Currently Looking...
Vancouver , British Columbia
Join Date: Oct 2012
Posts: 2,940
Quote:
Originally Posted by BayouBiker View Post
X5 brakes are quite capable of stopping a 23' airstream combination should the trailer brakes fail.

As far as comparing stopping capability compared to a 3/4 ton truck, like anything there is much more to it than just a single parameter like sweep area. When you put it all together a typical 3/4 ton has about 1.4 times the overall braking capability as does the typically equipped X5. However as noted the 3/4 ton weighs more. When paired with a 23' airstream considering TCW loaded for camping the 3/4 has 1.23 times the effective braking capacity. As the trailers get larger the 3/4 just keeps looking better. This notion that European SUVs have "better braking capacity" than a HD truck is nonsense. However, again the X5's brakes are more than up to the job.
I think the discussion was more around the SUV braking performance, not capacity. Perhaps capability. I think of capacity in terms of volume or production amount. Better performance would be evidenced by shorter stopping distances.

By capacity, are you referring to thermal limits?
jcl is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-05-2021, 12:56 PM   #23
Rivet Master
 
2018 25' International
Slidell , Louisiana
Join Date: Sep 2017
Posts: 3,477
Mr_D introduced the topic by asking if an X5 has "the braking capacity to stop a 23' ..." No hint of stopping distance which is almost entirely a function of tire grip and only very minimally dependent on brake capability or capacity for nearly all modern vehicles. Just whether the combination could be stopped. It was DCPAS who changed the context to a question of distance.

Thermal capacity is a component, certainly. Again like nearly all vehicle systems, braking systems are far more complex than a couple parameters and certainly more so than this forum is willing to entertain. The X5 can stop a 23' trailer with failed brakes.

As I mentioned before, the primary issue when asking about the maximum towing capacity is the risk tolerance of all those with a vested interest. Those interested should read post #14.
__________________
Brian
BayouBiker is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-05-2021, 01:27 PM   #24
Rivet Master
 
Dennis C's Avatar
 
2020 23' International
Evergreen , Colorado
Join Date: Aug 2020
Posts: 1,140
I frequently visit a sports car forum in addition to these forums. On the sports car forms, it is generally accepted that there are several key attributes that you can have in your sports car. The top three are: Fast, Reliable, Inexpensive. You only get to pick two of these attributes. In other words, if your car is fast and reliable, then it won't be inexpensive. If it's fast and inexpensive, then it won't be reliable. If it's reliable and inexpensive, then it won't be fast.

If we apply similar logic to tow vehicles, I see three top attributes that people seem to want: Tows safely, fun to drive, and heavy towing/hauling capability. Again, you only get to pick two. If you choose a tow vehicle that tows safely and has heavy towing/hauling capability, then chances are that vehicle won't be very fun to drive. If you choose a vehicle that is fun to drive (4 x 4 for off-roading, sporty SUV or car, etc.) and one that tows safely, then you can't have heavy towing and hauling capability. If you choose a tow vehicle that is fun to drive and you choose a heavy towing/hauling application, then you give up towing safety.

I'm sure that can be refined a little bit and I know that it's subjective, but that's the way that I see it.

__________________
Dennis

2020 International Serenity 23 FB "Sparkle Plenty"
2018 GMC Denali 1500 Crew Cab 4x4
Airstream Club International #2805
Dennis C is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 01-05-2021, 02:06 PM   #25
Rivet Master
 
SilverWind's Avatar
 
2017 25' International
1968 17' Caravel
Los Osos , California
Join Date: Nov 2013
Posts: 519
All wishful thinking and calculating aside, the proof is in the actual towing. Having the power to go up hill is not the same as having sufficient stability going downhill or under emergency braking.

We towed our 23D for three years with a RAM 1500 Hemi. It was sufficient truck for the job. Downhill stability was reasonable, especially with an Equalizer WSD.

When we decided to take the 23D to Alaska we upgraded to a RAM 2500. It was an entirely different towing experience. It's huge cargo capacity, power and stability was in some people's mind overkill but for us made the trip much more comfortable. We knew that we'd probably upgrade to a heavier 25FB when we got back to California.

Frankly, I can't imagine towing a 23FB with a BMW X5. Recently, we camped next to a couple with new Caravel 16 behind a mid-sized BMW SUV. He said it towed well on the 101 from LA north to the park. She was nervous about going down hill as they continued on to Oregon. Confidence in your tow vehicle is everything. Lack of total confidence can make for an unpleasant journey.
SilverWind is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-05-2021, 03:43 PM   #26
Rivet Master
 
2018 25' International
Slidell , Louisiana
Join Date: Sep 2017
Posts: 3,477
Silverwind, the biggest problem about finding a vehicle's towing capacity is that the proof is not in the actual towing experience. Most people drive less than 0.5% of the average accumulated mileage for even one serious accident, nowhere near enough to conclude the combination genuinely has the ability to avoid a situation had it arisen. You'd have to find 500-1000 people reporting good experience about the same combination to make any informed conclusion about safety. Vehicle manufacturers on the other hand, test their vehicles to the point of instability and failure before setting a limit so it's odd that many people discount the guidance.

Despite all the consternation, manufacturers numbers are by far the best indication of safe limits. Those who choose to exceed them should know they are choosing more risk than the manufacturers think is wise.
__________________
Brian
BayouBiker is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-05-2021, 03:58 PM   #27
CLOUDSPLITTER "Tahawus"
 
ROBERT CROSS's Avatar

 
2003 25' Classic
Zanadude Nebula , Milky Way
Join Date: Jun 2007
Posts: 18,071
Images: 1
Quote:
Originally Posted by Dennis C View Post
If we apply similar logic to tow vehicles, I see three top attributes that people seem to want: Tows safely, fun to drive, and heavy towing/hauling capability. Again, you only get to pick two. If you choose a tow vehicle that tows safely and has heavy towing/hauling capability, then chances are that vehicle won't be very fun to drive. If you choose a vehicle that is fun to drive (4 x 4 for off-roading, sporty SUV or car, etc.) and one that tows safely, then you can't have heavy towing and hauling capability. If you choose a tow vehicle that is fun to drive and you choose a heavy towing/hauling application, then you give up towing safety.

I'm sure that can be refined a little bit and I know that it's subjective, but that's the way that I see it.

Bullpucky....Ours is fun to drive 'cuz Cloudsplitter is behind it, and carries everything we need and some we don't. 😂
If you don't have all three you don't have a TV worth a poop.

Bob
🇺🇸
Attached Thumbnails
Click image for larger version

Name:	E678E8D2-0075-490A-9C33-85A901295397.jpg
Views:	11
Size:	313.8 KB
ID:	386294  
__________________
Tahawus

Love for the Adirondacks

"It is more wiser to ponder all things with diligent suspicion, than follow with blind assumption."
RLC
ROBERT CROSS is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-05-2021, 04:16 PM   #28
jcl
Rivet Master
 
Currently Looking...
Vancouver , British Columbia
Join Date: Oct 2012
Posts: 2,940
Quote:
Originally Posted by BayouBiker View Post
Vehicle manufacturers on the other hand, test their vehicles to the point of instability and failure before setting a limit so it's odd that many people discount the guidance.

Despite all the consternation, manufacturers numbers are by far the best indication of safe limits. Those who choose to exceed them should know they are choosing more risk than the manufacturers think is wise.
To quote Bob, above, bullpucky.

It would be good to see those published tests. What we regularly see are the results of tests that the vehicle passed, and then only a note that it passed. What we would learn far more from are the details and results of the tests that the vehicle and combination failed. For example, if a vehicle combination was tested at 5000, 6000, and 7,000 lbs trailer weight on the same test, to the point of reaching a demonstrated limit, then the limit could more clearly be determined, at least for the standard test combination.

As it is, all we know is that the tow vehicle manufacturer (who does their own testing, as it isn't independently verified) claims that the vehicle towed x lbs on a standard test. Nothing about that process establishes a maximum, and it beggars belief that the engine cooling, transmission cooling, vehicle braking, and combination stability actual limits (plus all the other things covered in the test standard) all occur at the exact same trailer weight. It is far more likely that a specific item or area caused the limit to be achieved. We can speculate about what caused that limit to be reached (if in fact the limit was reached).

We don't know that stability is the limiting factor. Given that the trailers used are not representative of travel trailers, and that no crosswind testing is including, it seems that the most likely ceiling that the manufacturer hits first is the powertrain load on the simulated hill climb. This is further confirmed by the manufacturers publishing different tow ratings for different engines, transmissions, and final drive ratios, all for the same truck platform. How can you claim with a straight face that the defining limit for all those different vehicles is in fact towing stability?

None of this is to say that tow ratings don't have some value. A good example of potential value of the standard tow ratings is if two otherwise similar vehicles have different tow ratings due to a change in the cooling system or final drive ratio, and one is planning to tow near that rating, as in that case the higher rated vehicle provides a potential safety margin or cushion. The ratings are relative, not absolute, in that sense. They can't be absolute because the test standard doesn't cover the type of trailer being towed by most here. But they can have value if used for comparison purposes. And that was the stated reason for them to be developed, per the SAE. Not to establish a limit, but to compare two alternatives.

To me, the bottom line is just that it doesn't help anyone to overstate the manufacturer tow rating significance. Industry experts point out that they don't correspond very well to actual towing capability. The most significant risk is that a new reader will over rely on the published tow rating, in the mistaken belief that the rating itself is providing a degree of safety.
jcl is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-05-2021, 04:30 PM   #29
3 Rivet Member
 
Lafitte's Avatar
 
2019 25' Flying Cloud
Bullard , Texas
Join Date: Oct 2017
Posts: 173
No

Get a proper tow vehicle , your choice. If you hit me on the highway, you WILL be speaking to my attorneys.
__________________
I always keep a supply of stimulant handy in case I see a snake ......which I also keep handy
Lafitte is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-05-2021, 05:02 PM   #30
Rivet Master
 
2018 25' International
Slidell , Louisiana
Join Date: Sep 2017
Posts: 3,477
I'll have a friend or two provide some test results as soon as you get an installer or two to perform and release stability tests for some of the overloaded combinations they set up.

In this thread the issue with the X5 is tongue weight limit. Perhaps you can explain how that might relate to drivetrain performance. The rest of your post is similar diversion and obfuscation, including your sudden concern that the guidance may not be conservative enough.

Anytime one exceeds manufacturers limits, they are accepting increased risk, in the case of the X5 and nearly all other European Sport SUV's the risk being accepted is that the trailer overpowers the tow vehicle and it goes out of control if the driver allows the combination to drift outside the rather narrow stability profile they have created for themselves.

I note that in the crash data I've reviewed, "Overloading" is very commonly cited as the cause of a crash. "Improper loading" is cited but much less often and "Poor Setup" is not cited.
__________________
Brian
BayouBiker is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-05-2021, 06:22 PM   #31
Rivet Master
 
Dennis C's Avatar
 
2020 23' International
Evergreen , Colorado
Join Date: Aug 2020
Posts: 1,140
Quote:
Originally Posted by ROBERT CROSS View Post
Bullpucky....Ours is fun to drive 'cuz Cloudsplitter is behind it, and carries everything we need and some we don't. ��
If you don't have all three you don't have a TV worth a poop.

Bob
����
I actually like driving my truck too, and it's plenty of fun... but there are some out there who are dead set against it. Maybe another attribute is more appropriate? Easy to park? I don't know. I was just trying to simplify the tradeoffs....
__________________
Dennis

2020 International Serenity 23 FB "Sparkle Plenty"
2018 GMC Denali 1500 Crew Cab 4x4
Airstream Club International #2805
Dennis C is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 01-06-2021, 08:22 AM   #32
2 Rivet Member
 
2012 23' FB Flying Cloud
San Diego , California
Join Date: Oct 2017
Posts: 23
Quote:
Originally Posted by B. Cole View Post
Brian- Exactly.As soon as the tow vehicle starts being driven by the trailer, all the careful calculations go out the window, and the crashes/ rollovers/carnage/ etc start.
Murphys law, as most mechanics know, is always looming....
I completely agree about Murphy's Law. 2 years ago we were towing a utility trailer across country and noticed the electric brake safety wire was frayed. I figure it would require 3 failures to be an issue and would fix it when we arrived at a hotel later that afternoon. About an hour later we hit a massive bump in a bridge, broke the hitch in a way that popped the ball off the hitch. The crossed chains failed once we got the truck down to about 20 mph, then the trailer went off the road and impacted a culvert at 15 mph, causing the trailer to be totaled and losing 1/3 of the contents. If I had fixed the brake wire immediately we likely would not have suffered the loss.
Taco Joe is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-10-2021, 09:36 AM   #33
2 Rivet Member
 
Sarasota , Florida
Join Date: Nov 2013
Posts: 23
We have towed our 2014 FC 23' FB (which we now have for sale on Airstream Classifieds) with an ML350 without any problems at all, including in the mountains. We use an Equalizer hitch. Good luck.
jmeyer is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-10-2021, 10:12 AM   #34
2 Rivet Member
 
2021 20' Caravel
Indianapolis , Indiana
Join Date: Apr 2010
Posts: 33
Bmwx5

I faced the same question as we have a 20 foot Caravel on order. I believe that will pull the Airstream very well. I am experienced with bigger airstreams, we had a 27 foot that we towed with a diesel Touareg but traded that in when VW offered us a ton of money. Wish I hadnít. So we have an X5 35I and a ad at a traditional receiver rated at 6000 pounds 600 pound tongue weight. I intend to put a weight distribution system on. I also ordered a Kurt echo brake controller. I had BMW Install the wiring harness, pricey but gave me peace of mind. I know Iím right on the edge with tongue weight but itís just myself and my wife and I donít believe will be overloading the trailer for a long stays. We went with the 20 foot versus the 22 foot Caravel because my wife loves to cook and it has the best kitchen set up. However the 22 foot was actually a lower tongue weight. Our Caravelle is being manufactured end of February and we plan to head out to warmer weather.
amckibbe is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-10-2021, 10:20 AM   #35
1 Rivet Member
 
Brandon , Mississippi
Join Date: Apr 2015
Posts: 13
You seriously need a different tow vehicle than a BMW! No kidding. No offense.
epsudduth is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-10-2021, 10:28 AM   #36
3 Rivet Member
 
2014 25' Flying Cloud
Temple , Texas
Join Date: Apr 2016
Posts: 240
Blog Entries: 1
Quote:
Originally Posted by epsudduth View Post
You seriously need a different tow vehicle than a BMW! No kidding. No offense.
Best advice so far -
__________________
2014 Flying Cloud 25FB
2018 Ram 2500; Cummins
Blue Ox WDH
RamRider is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-10-2021, 12:25 PM   #37
New Member
 
2014 25' Flying Cloud
Reading , Pennsylvania
Join Date: Oct 2020
Posts: 1
I have been towing a CF 25 with a 2012 X5 3.5d. The power, braking and stability are excellent. Importantly, BMW offered a factory brake controller setup. The biggest drawback for me was load space since I took a full size spare tire with me.
PeterRye is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-10-2021, 12:40 PM   #38
4 Rivet Member
 
TerraYacht's Avatar

 
2005 30' Land Yacht 30 SL
Castro Valley , California
Join Date: Jun 2008
Posts: 398
No mention here about maximum weight on those rear tires. Adding the tongue weight and the people and stuff inside the X5 could exceed the tire limits, then...booom.
I have a hitch on my 2012 X5d but have only towed a utility trailer, prefer to use our TerraYacht and a MINI toad so weight/braking not an issue.
__________________
Cliff & Andrea,
two snowshoe cats, have not been camping yet
TerraYacht is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-10-2021, 12:41 PM   #39
jcl
Rivet Master
 
Currently Looking...
Vancouver , British Columbia
Join Date: Oct 2012
Posts: 2,940
Quote:
Originally Posted by epsudduth View Post
You seriously need a different tow vehicle than a BMW! No kidding. No offense.
No offense, but that is abject nonsense. Try towing with one, properly set up. Having towed with an X5, an X3, and many trucks (F100 to F350, and E450), I would never pick a truck to tow a 23. Many trucks can do it, if properly configured, but unless I needed to carry large cargo at the same time (eg hay bales) there are far better options.

Quote:
Originally Posted by RamRider View Post
Best advice so far -
Based on?
jcl is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-10-2021, 12:45 PM   #40
jcl
Rivet Master
 
Currently Looking...
Vancouver , British Columbia
Join Date: Oct 2012
Posts: 2,940
Quote:
Originally Posted by TerraYacht View Post
No mention here about maximum weight on those rear tires. Adding the tongue weight and the people and stuff inside the X5 could exceed the tire limits, then...booom.
I have a hitch on my 2012 X5d but have only towed a utility trailer, prefer to use our TerraYacht and a MINI toad so weight/braking not an issue.
I towed different trailers with a BMW 3 series (X3). It had 150 lbs more payload capacity, and mor rear axle capacity, than a friend's RAM 1500 ecodiesel. He towed a 27. I wasn't the one with concerns about rear axle loading. I also had AWD, more power, better brakes, and less rear overhang. 6 speed manual transmission. No comparison in terms of towing.

But I couldn't carry sheets of plywood inside the vehicle. Darn.
jcl is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply


Currently Active Users Viewing This Thread: 1 (0 members and 1 guests)
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Audi Q8 to tow Flying Cloud 23FB Imdakine1 Towing, Tow Vehicles & Hitches 39 01-29-2021 08:17 PM
Toilet in 2016 23FB Flying Cloud BulldogX5 Sinks, Showers & Toilets 3 04-11-2020 04:38 AM
23FB Flying Cloud 2016 owners BulldogX5 2016 - Current Flying Cloud 24 01-27-2019 10:05 AM
Solar Power for 2016 Airstream Flying Cloud 23FB Tdiver Electrical - Systems, Generators, Batteries & Solar 12 09-17-2015 12:28 PM
Using a 4Runner to tow a Flying Cloud 23FB tschabarum Towing, Tow Vehicles & Hitches 32 03-04-2013 06:08 PM


Featured Campgrounds

Reviews provided by

Disclaimer:

This website is not affiliated with or endorsed by the Airstream, Inc. or any of its affiliates. Airstream is a registered trademark of Airstream Inc. All rights reserved. Airstream trademark used under license to Social Knowledge LLC.



All times are GMT -6. The time now is 09:38 PM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 1
Copyright ©2000 - 2021, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.