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Old 12-30-2020, 08:20 PM   #1061
jcl
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Originally Posted by Airstreamspw View Post
Hi,

New to the group. What a wonderful source of information.

I have a 2015 CT with PASM (air suspension). Tow capacity spec is 7,716 lbs and tongue weight max of 617 lbs. We pulled a 22' caravel quite happily last summer.

We've ordered a 25' FCFBT with a GVWR of 7300 lbs and a hitch weight of 837 lbs.

I really want to use the CT as my TV for the reasons that everyone on this thread already appreciates. My only concern is the max tongue weight. If I can use a WD hitch without damaging the PASM or any other component of the car then I feel that is the solution.

I'd be grateful for any feedback.

Thanks in advance
Welcome!

Don’t trust the published trailer tongue weight figure.

You are in Ontario, and the widely acknowledged North American industry experts in setting up similar tow vehicles are located close by to you. Call CanAm in London. They have done similar setups many times.

Or you can listen to the heavy duty truck folks. They will tell you to buy a 3/4 ton pickup. Or a one ton. Even thought the manufacturers of those vehicles do not provide the sort of guarantees that some demand of others.
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Old 12-30-2020, 09:00 PM   #1062
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There's a good plan. Ignore the best authority about the vehicle, the manufacture. Don't trust them, instead assume they are wrong about the vehicle they designed, they built and they sell. Assume they don't know what they are doing or that they want to drive potential sales to their competitors that publish more accurate towing limits. Assume they messed up when they specified a hitch way less capable than the vehicle they designed because they forgot or didn't care to match them up. Accept the just so stories about how detached the manufacturers marketing team is, or how the manufacturer wants to be overly conservative even if it hurts sales. Then blissfully join the group of people who tow beyond what the manufacturer says the vehicle is capable of safely towing without any hard evidence the overloaded combination is going to remain in control if or when you need it.
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Old 12-30-2020, 09:10 PM   #1063
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There's a good plan. Ignore the best authority about the vehicle, the manufacture. Don't trust them, instead assume they are wrong about the vehicle they designed, they built and they sell. Assume they don't know what they are doing or that they want to drive potential sales to their competitors that publish more accurate towing limits. Assume they messed up when they specified a hitch way less capable than the vehicle they designed because they forgot or didn't care to match them up. Accept the just so stories about how detached the manufacturers marketing team is, or how the manufacturer wants to be overly conservative even if it hurts sales. Then blissfully join the group of people who tow beyond what the manufacturer says the vehicle is capable of safely towing without any hard evidence the overloaded combination is going to remain in control if or when you need it.
The confusion is that the best authority about the vehicle itself isn’t the same as the best authority about towing a North American trailer with the vehicle, especially using weight distribution. That is probably why Porsche NA hired CanAm to set up a combination. A combination very similar to the one being asked about by the poster.
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Old 12-30-2020, 09:42 PM   #1064
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You said you were a fan of logic. Where have you established that Porsche Engineers understand suspension performance, cornering and control system stability less so than non-engineers who sell trailers and hitches? Where have you established that it was lack of expertise and skills in automotive and mechanical engineering that led Porsche to allegedly do such a thing? Where have you established the objectives Porsche had for doing what you claim they did? Finally how does this diminish or invalidate the guidance they continue to give to this day, and why did they not change the guidance having been properly schooled by the hitch installers? These just so stories seem like they are on a foundation of quick sand.
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Old 12-30-2020, 09:46 PM   #1065
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... Even thought the manufacturers of those vehicles do not provide the sort of guarantees that some demand of others.
Wow. Looking for guarantees? Yeah, not going to find any.

The manufacturers clearly state that towing over the limits is not safe. They make no explicit representations about under the limits. Implied is that it is safe, but as you and others have pointed out it is easy to take an under all limits combination, load it improperly and roll it. One of many ways to fail while towing.

The limits are in place for the protection of all involved (including the manufacturer). Enforcement is somewhere between lax and non-existent. So in the US at least you can do as you please. My only suggestion is that everyone get educated as much as possible about the risk factors of their rig and drive accordingly.

A good example is the post above. The well intentioned newbie is quoting towing capacity thinking that this is how big a trailer the mfg is saying he can tow when it is really how much it can pull. Education people! Then if someone wants to tow overweight or have their vehicle modified at least they will understand what the risks are. Choosing to accept those risks is a personal choice. You want to do it, go for it. If one does not know what the risks are, well, it's no longer a choice, just a dangerously uninformed decision.
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Old 12-31-2020, 12:51 AM   #1066
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You said you were a fan of logic. Where have you established that Porsche Engineers understand suspension performance, cornering and control system stability less so than non-engineers who sell trailers and hitches? Where have you established that it was lack of expertise and skills in automotive and mechanical engineering that led Porsche to allegedly do such a thing? Where have you established the objectives Porsche had for doing what you claim they did? Finally how does this diminish or invalidate the guidance they continue to give to this day, and why did they not change the guidance having been properly schooled by the hitch installers? These just so stories seem like they are on a foundation of quick sand.
Gotta love fans of heavy pickups.

So here you are in a thread with over 1000 posts, just about towing with VW/Porsche/Audi SUVs, and you think this is something new? Just read the thread. It has all been said.
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Old 12-31-2020, 04:36 AM   #1067
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I'm a fan of any combination that is capable and safe. Others seem to relish rationalizing to others why it's okay to risk lives and property, both their own and others. Yet again a new person enters the thread and asks the same basic question; if it's okay to ignore the manufacturer guidance and overload the combination. Things never change, overloaded combinations will continue to account for RV crashes in proportions much greater than those conforming to manufacturers guidelines. Vehicle combinations set up by installers are no exception.

You'l note that throughout this entire thread nobody establishes that the examples of overloaded combinations are inherently stability, because nobody performs the kind of test that would reveal instabilities, instead they tend to diminish the value and purpose of testing.
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Old 12-31-2020, 07:03 AM   #1068
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Mr Biker here might be right look at the extreme instability of these three rigs as they pass a flat front diesel pusher at 75 MPH. Actually there is an unsubstantiated rumor that black tow vehicle was doing well north of that

https://youtu.be/wVu5aYWbPLU
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Old 12-31-2020, 07:30 AM   #1069
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The Society of Automotive Engineers wouldn't endorse driving on long straight highways while smoothly passing vehicles and making gentle lane changes as a valid or effective way to test for sway or oversteer instabilities. Lack of movement while traveling straight is evidence the trailers are loaded and set up correctly but says very little about the vehicles capability to manage sway or oversteer and maintain control in adverse situations. I appreciate support for my point that only the manufacturers seem willing to test overloaded combinations to see how they respond to sway and oversteer. I think I know why that is.
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Old 12-31-2020, 07:35 AM   #1070
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Andrew T View Post
Mr Biker here might be right look at the extreme instability of these three rigs as they pass a flat front diesel pusher at 75 MPH. Actually there is an unsubstantiated rumor that black tow vehicle was doing well north of that

https://youtu.be/wVu5aYWbPLU
Good one Andy! Now, throw in some wind, a mountain pass say 8%, some heavy traffic, an unforeseen swerve or two with heavy braking needed, and perhaps those 30+ foot AS's would be wagging the dog on the side of the road...I said "perhaps". I would surely feel safer with a heavier TV then those in this video...but thats just me. As you know, an AS can be shown towed by pretty much any vehicle on a flat surface...I have seen a smaller TT towed by a motorcycle while in Germany few years back on a mountain road...think the goal should be safe and don't push your limits outside your vehicles capability, what ever you do when towing!
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Old 12-31-2020, 09:21 AM   #1071
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Mr Biker implied that a German SUV despite having amazing handling towing on a race track would somehow become unstable at higher speeds. So I posted a video of three vehicles passing a very un aerodynamic flat front pusher which would give a substantial sideways push to a trailer passing.

As you can see all three are rock solid stable. Now were back to they can't handle an evasive maneuver, which is it?

Again pick any handling test you think is best, bring a 2500 truck and I'll bring a Cayenne and I will clean its clock.

Three of the vehicles in our fleet made by the same company so you would think they would have the same test criteria. The Jeep Cherokee has a 4500 tow recommendation 106.9" wheelbase but a short overhang with a good suspension tune and 18" low profile tires. It tows an aerodynamic stable trailer quite well. two years ago I picked up a 27' Airstream in Kelowna BC did the Oregon and California coast and then returned home with it.

Our Dodge Caravan is a considerably more capable tow vehicle however and it has spent most of its life towing tall gangly box trailers that I would never connect the Jeep to. Its tow rating is actually less at 3500 pounds.

Our Chrysler 300 which will wipe the floor with either of the above is rated for 1000 pounds. However you can buy pickup trucks rated for 7000 pounds that are far less capable than the Jeep.

Over the last 50 years setting up tens of thousands of combinations we have seen hundreds of examples of tow ratings that are in no way related to towing ability. After millions of miles of towing and again tens of thousands of combinations we have learned to look at the specs and properties of the vehicle as a much better indicator of handling and safety. After that we test them.

In 1987 the first front drive GM sedan we put a hitch on was for a GM engineer to tow his 31' Airstream. We have installed hitches for many vehicle engineers but I'm not going to ask them to compromise their career by posting here.

On this thread here many owners of German SUV's who are very happy. They are much safer on the road than 98% of the RV combinations out there. Solo miles which are usually much higher exposure they are considerably safer than 100% of trucks.

Yet those who have never driven one seem to think they know more. An engineer who would decide what is best without a test is a poor engineer. It's those engineers that make my 24 service bays necessary.

Andy
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Old 12-31-2020, 09:30 AM   #1072
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One other item I would add.

A few years ago a person was always on line giving towing advice and he said he owned an Airstream and was from here. Most of his advise was actually ok other parts quite strange. We know most Airstream owners in Ontario but could never figure out who he was. Eventually he let it slip. He did in fact own an Airstream which we had delivered to a site for him and he had never actually towed it. On line though he could be the expert.

You know who I am you can see what we have done. Be careful of those who claim expertise but you know nothing about. When the border opens feel free to drop in and test drive one our combinations.
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Old 12-31-2020, 10:31 AM   #1073
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Mr Biker implied that a German SUV despite having amazing handling towing on a race track would somehow become unstable at higher speeds. So I posted a video of three vehicles passing a very un aerodynamic flat front pusher which would give a substantial sideways push to a trailer passing.
No you changed the words and meaning to something more easily addressed. Handling performance is not the same as dynamic and static instability, neither of which can be detected driving straight and fast. When towing a 30' Airstream down that pretty highway at speed, give the steering wheel a 180 degree snap turn and we will quickly learn how stable the combination is.

My wife owns a European performance SUV. In their element, they do very nicely.
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Old 01-01-2021, 12:32 PM   #1074
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Airstreamspw View Post
Hi,

New to the group. What a wonderful source of information.

I have a 2015 CT with PASM (air suspension). Tow capacity spec is 7,716 lbs and tongue weight max of 617 lbs. We pulled a 22' caravel quite happily last summer.

We've ordered a 25' FCFBT with a GVWR of 7300 lbs and a hitch weight of 837 lbs.

I really want to use the CT as my TV for the reasons that everyone on this thread already appreciates. My only concern is the max tongue weight. If I can use a WD hitch without damaging the PASM or any other component of the car then I feel that is the solution.

I'd be grateful for any feedback.

Thanks in advance
SPW -

While other models of the Cayenne have had the HW rated at 770 lbs to match 10% of 7716 lbs GTW rating - for some reason they're putting the lower 617 lbs HW on some - which I've thought in a prior post may have been due to using the lower rated factory hitch/receiver meant for the Cay-Hybrid & PHEV due to their heavier battery packs & H-EV units cutting into it's useful load ratings (both net inside & towing) - same as with the longer & heavier Q7 cousin.

I'd suggest that you get with your local P-dealer tech/mgr to look up what the actual correct trailer, hitch & combined vehicle ratings are for your `15 CT from the actual Factory Service Manuals - to see if it's actually supposed to be 770#.

Oddly enough - Porsche appears to have applied different numbers at the hitch decals, owner's manuals & tech/service documents for various years of the 958 - which is just odd.

I think that's what jcl was meaning by not trusting them, and certainly the typical sales or service writer at any P-dealer knows nothing about the ratings, & often gives the wrong info - as can be seen since the start in this now very long thread.

However, your 837# HW is still well over 770# - & that doesn't include the weight of a good WD/AS hitch, & probably not the LP tanks & other tanks/stuff for a fully "wet & loaded" AS ready to camp/travel.

Since you have the CT & the AS on the way - invest in a Sherline Hitch Wt. Scale, then see if you can load & tank the AS in such a way as to reduce the HW by putting more weight aft in the trailer. If you can't get it into the 617 or 770 HW range - then you'll need a higher rated TV.

Also, getting with Andy T at CanAm who chimed in with the videos above for the upgrades/stiffening work on your CT's hitch, as well as if the new AS can be loaded/adjusted to tow safely with your CT. You're lucky that he's close & the expert on setting up such "smaller than a big-A truck" TV.

Another option depending upon your AS order - would be to switch your order to another model with HW & TW withing your CT's ratings.

Also - if you have the Porsche-CPO on your `15 CT, then you would have warranty coverage issues & denials if you tow beyond the rated limits.

Cheers!
Tom
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Old 01-02-2021, 06:46 AM   #1075
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Quote:
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I have a 2015 CT with PASM (air suspension).

If I can use a WD hitch without damaging the PASM or any other component of the car then I feel that is the solution.
Just an FYI,

PASM=Porsche Active Suspension Management. You're referring to Adaptive Air Suspension. They work together but not the same thing.

(The more you know, ya know?)
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Old 01-02-2021, 07:17 AM   #1076
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Thanks all for the many informative responses.

Here’s to things opening up in 2021 so we can actually have these conversations live around a campfire instead of just online.

Now I’m off to another thread in search of the best waterfront camping east of the Manitoba / Ontario border.
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Old 01-02-2021, 09:58 AM   #1077
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Experience share: denied warranty service or claims?

Throughout this informative thread, many of us have warned that towing vehicles that exceed the mfr's suggested tow limits or hitch weights, or modifications to the frame or suspension may void warranties.

Has this every happened to anyone? Please share your experience (not opinion or theory or hypothesis of what may happen).

Here is my experience:

I have had warranty service done on my 2015 Q5 TDI by at least five different Audi dealers around the country since we had our hitch installed and reinforced by CanAm. Not one has refused warranty service. This included:
  • Service done at SLC Audi dealer whose service manager is a contributor to this thread.
  • Bakersfield Audi dealer where I limped in with AS in tow and a broken high pressure fuel pump. Q5 was out of warranty but Audi covered all of the parts and labor.
  • Littleton CO Audi who did the dieselgate recall work
  • Discount Tire in Reno NV who warranty replaced all four of my Q5 tires when I came in with the AS in tow.
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Old 01-02-2021, 07:01 PM   #1078
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Asking for anecdotal evidence to support your argument is a logical fallacy. So is use of your experience with warranty work and the one-off reports of great experiences towing with overloaded vehicles. It's also a category error to cite dealerships who are not the warrantor.

Insurance and NTHSA data indicates towing beyond the combination capability more than doubles risk of serious accidents. This is not theory or hypothesis or anecdotal stories, this is the real data, based on recorded contributing causes.

So that I answer the question asked, As a child I was a passenger in a trailer accident involving a vehicle towing over its capability and here on this site in the last year I have seen posts or received messages from eight people involving combinations that were over safe capability.
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Old 01-02-2021, 07:14 PM   #1079
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There are far too many "arm chair experts" in this forum making comment without solid facts.

pls listen to real people that have real long term expertise vs,
many that just make comments that feel like "i think or "i feel" or "hearsay" or "i had this problem" is like extrapolating from one point on a graph

IMHO, trust those :
  • that are vendors who have been in business for along time
  • do not sell TV vehicles.
  • have 100-1000's of happy and returning customers
  • no vested interest in misleading people
  • have given solid concrete details, evidence and factual statements
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Old 01-02-2021, 08:17 PM   #1080
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What reason to you have to distrust the vehicle manufacture, the people who far and away know the vehicle design, performance objectives and actual capability more than any one else. They are the only group of people that test vehicles to failure to understand and validate performance limits.

Also bullet one and bullet 4 are contradictory to each other.
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