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Old 10-24-2020, 09:20 AM   #1
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2012 25' FB Eddie Bauer
Vintage Kin Owner
Virginia Beach , Virginia
Join Date: Sep 2004
Posts: 7,306
Tow Vehicle selection thoughts

I want my next tow vehicle to.be my last. I do NOT want to repeat any past mistakes. Do have a wish list to get things that should be on tow vehicles but may be hard to find. I hope newbies and anyone shopping for a tow vehicle can benefit from these thinking points.

I actually took.several Salesmanship Classes which always assert "People buy emotionally, then back up that decision with logic." I Thought I was the exception to that rule, at least on major purchases, but then reality check... a Lexus called my name. After 6 months, most "new cars" that thrilled you turn into "transportation". The Lexus is good for 9 to 12 months.

PREPARE before you go shopping and have a firm list of "deal killers" so that even if you can "save" $3000 if you take the truck that is on the lot, you will simply say, no thanks, don't want to hate it 6 months from now.

New or used, buy only where they service your brand on site. Mega-dealers may sell 10 brands, but if their GMC showroom and maintenance facility is 30 miles away, free oil changes and even same day service is a nightmare.

AVOID - White or Black tow vehicles. They look beautiful all clean and new, but an hour of towing in bug season - yuck! You CAN spend big bucks putting a ceramic coating on and you can wash it every time you drive it and wax it 6 times a year... but many many other colors are much more dirt friendly, especially mid tones like silver, metallic light blues and greens. Washing a vehicle after a long day of towing is not fun.

AVOID sun roofs. Stupidest option ever invented. If you have one it, you will remember it only when it starts to leak. They are also prone to rusting out!

Television in the back seats - fine if you transport children, but with every kid having a computer now rather obsolete.

GPS - if you buy used make sure you get the latest release on maps. This can be surprisingly expensive.
TMS - trash management system. With a built in wet/dry vacuum and a small trash can that carries a roll of.trash bags. OK, slightly silly, but could really aid in keeping.messes from.growing into monster messes. Bag up the stir sticks, candy wrappers, kleenex, pine straw and grass clippings in a minute every other day and keep it neat.
Coin sorter. Less needed with electronic toll booths, but handy. Ashtray replacement module.

MUST HAVE - Tow Mirrors that can be electrically adjusted from the driver's seat, and electrically fold flat against the side of the car. Rear view needs change between interstates and curve back roads. When not towing parallel parking and parking garages are difficult if the mirrors protrude. Backing and parking is much easier/safer when the mirrors can be pointed at the trailer's tires. This expensive option will make you happy every time you drive your tow vehicle.

What is on your list?
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Old 10-24-2020, 09:33 AM   #2
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Evergreen , Colorado
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I think your list is good, and I definitely agree with you on tow mirrors. They make a big difference. I’d also add that it’s nice to buy a vehicle with an integrated trailer brake controller, and any other optional tow packages that make the job easier. I think that probably goes without saying, but I’m saying it anyway. I’d also add a quality, lockable tonneau cover or bed topper if your chosen vehicle is a truck. Finally, I’d make sure to buy a vehicle that’s capable of towing the trailer that you own or plan to buy.
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Old 10-24-2020, 09:48 AM   #3
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Lexington , Kentucky
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I always get the towing package if it's available, even if I'm not going to tow with the van, car, truck. I might change my mind.

GPS - I don't want the in-dash GPS, upgrades are too expensive. My Garmin and smart phone go with me when I leave the TV.

Floor mats - I got the Catch-All floor mats for my TV when it was new. They are carpeted and the color matches OEM carpet. They are a perfect fit for front, back and cargo areas. Now 17 years old, still look great. https://www.lundinternational.com/floor-mats/catch-all

Stereo - The top of the line stereo available. If I'm going to spend hours in the truck, I want the best sound

4WD - I know 2WD will tow a little more and there's more maintenance with 4WD (mine is really full-time 4WD, can't disengage it) but I love the way it grips the road in wet and snowy weather.

V8 - I went through some V6s, all that was offered in the vehicles I could afford. I have a V8 and love the low end torque, great for the AS and my boat trailer.

Strong suspension - My 4Runner had the option for X-Reas suspension. Fluid is shifted across the vehicle from one side to the other, wherever more suspension is needed. Handles great on cornering. If I couldn't get this I'd want to know if there was any kind of upgrade on suspension

Inverter - I got the inverter on my TV, great for charging the cell phones or running a laptop. It's a low cost option and very handy.
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Old 10-24-2020, 09:58 AM   #4
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Trent Woods , North Carolina
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You also gotta look at how you are going to get into the truck and the bed. Lot's of different options, some from OEM, some aftermarket. It should not be an afterthought and some of the OEM options are best ordered with a truck rather than at a later time.
Make sure the vehicle has the entertainment system that will link with Car Play or Google Drive. That is the only way to avoid obsolete NAV and/or music options, along with weather, etc.

Larry
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Old 10-24-2020, 09:59 AM   #5
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Evergreen , Colorado
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Personally, I like the OE navigation system in my truck. It works very well. I just updated the maps to the most current version, and it wasn’t terribly expensive. I like having the ability to plan a trip on my phone or computer, and then send the trip directly to the truck’s navigation system. When I get in the truck, the nav system is already programmed and ready to go. But I agree, Apple CarPlay is really nice. We have it, but I don’t use it much.

I think another thing to consider if you tow quite a bit is the seats in your tow vehicle. My truck has multiple lumbar adjustments, heated and cooled seats, etc. These features are nice for long drives.
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Old 10-24-2020, 11:12 AM   #6
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2004 25' International CCD
Vancouver Island , British Columbia
Join Date: Apr 2018
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Well since I am driving my "LAST" ever truck I too got what I wanted.
  1. Max Tow Package
  2. Power tow mirrors that extend and lay flat
  3. Payload package
  4. Off Road Package
  5. Intergrated Brake Controller
  6. Back-up Camera
  7. I do like the sun roof (no leaks in 7 years)
  8. I do like the GPS
  9. 4WD 3.71 rear end with lock (2WD for towing)
  10. Tow Haul Gearing
  11. Interior is leather
  12. F-150 FX4 3.5 Ecoboost great towing power, great daily driver, great gas milage
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Old 10-24-2020, 11:33 AM   #7
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2021 25' Globetrotter
Hudson, , Wi
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Tow vehicle

I am going to order a 2021 GMC Yukon 3.1 diesel 4WD as a tow vehicle for my 2021 Airstream 25 foot globetrotter. Gross towing recommendation from GMC is 8100# Will this be a good tow vehicle as I want to have at least a 5 passenger vehicle. Chuck
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Old 10-24-2020, 11:43 AM   #8
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2000 30' Excella
GTA , Ontario
Join Date: Feb 2019
Posts: 383
Quote:
Originally Posted by Foiled Again View Post
I want my next tow vehicle to.be my last. I do NOT want to repeat any past mistakes. Do have a wish list to get things that should be on tow vehicles but may be hard to find. I hope newbies and anyone shopping for a tow vehicle can benefit from these thinking points.

I actually took.several Salesmanship Classes which always assert "People buy emotionally, then back up that decision with logic." I Thought I was the exception to that rule, at least on major purchases, but then reality check... a Lexus called my name. After 6 months, most "new cars" that thrilled you turn into "transportation". The Lexus is good for 9 to 12 months.

PREPARE before you go shopping and have a firm list of "deal killers" so that even if you can "save" $3000 if you take the truck that is on the lot, you will simply say, no thanks, don't want to hate it 6 months from now.

New or used, buy only where they service your brand on site. Mega-dealers may sell 10 brands, but if their GMC showroom and maintenance facility is 30 miles away, free oil changes and even same day service is a nightmare.

AVOID - White or Black tow vehicles. They look beautiful all clean and new, but an hour of towing in bug season - yuck! You CAN spend big bucks putting a ceramic coating on and you can wash it every time you drive it and wax it 6 times a year... but many many other colors are much more dirt friendly, especially mid tones like silver, metallic light blues and greens. Washing a vehicle after a long day of towing is not fun.

AVOID sun roofs. Stupidest option ever invented. If you have one it, you will remember it only when it starts to leak. They are also prone to rusting out!

Television in the back seats - fine if you transport children, but with every kid having a computer now rather obsolete.

GPS - if you buy used make sure you get the latest release on maps. This can be surprisingly expensive.
TMS - trash management system. With a built in wet/dry vacuum and a small trash can that carries a roll of.trash bags. OK, slightly silly, but could really aid in keeping.messes from.growing into monster messes. Bag up the stir sticks, candy wrappers, kleenex, pine straw and grass clippings in a minute every other day and keep it neat.
Coin sorter. Less needed with electronic toll booths, but handy. Ashtray replacement module.

MUST HAVE - Tow Mirrors that can be electrically adjusted from the driver's seat, and electrically fold flat against the side of the car. Rear view needs change between interstates and curve back roads. When not towing parallel parking and parking garages are difficult if the mirrors protrude. Backing and parking is much easier/safer when the mirrors can be pointed at the trailer's tires. This expensive option will make you happy every time you drive your tow vehicle.

What is on your list?
Back up Camera is excellent for hitching solo, Power adjustable towing mirrors a must, like you said I can adjust them down to follow my line backing into "The Spot" or to get out of a gas station and know I will clear the curb. Also I can adjust them to always see my spotter backing into a site. Leather seats easy to keep clean...sounds backwards but after 3 kids and 2 Golden retrievers ask me how I know this.
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Stella the 2000 30ft Excella/Classic - Tow Vehicle - 2012 Mercedes Benz GL350d - CanAmRv.ca Reinforcement and EZ-Lift WD with 2 Anti Sway Bars. Back Up tow vehicle 2005 Ford F150 Lariat 367,000Kms 5.4L
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Old 10-24-2020, 11:47 AM   #9
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2000 30' Excella
GTA , Ontario
Join Date: Feb 2019
Posts: 383
Quote:
Originally Posted by lsbrodsky View Post
You also gotta look at how you are going to get into the truck and the bed. Lot's of different options, some from OEM, some aftermarket. It should not be an afterthought and some of the OEM options are best ordered with a truck rather than at a later time.
Make sure the vehicle has the entertainment system that will link with Car Play or Google Drive. That is the only way to avoid obsolete NAV and/or music options, along with weather, etc.

Larry
I think the Google Play NAV is ok now as data charges are getting cheaper, but in Canada a year ago you couldn't afford to use data while in the car for 6 hours streaming music, using maps etc....
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Stella the 2000 30ft Excella/Classic - Tow Vehicle - 2012 Mercedes Benz GL350d - CanAmRv.ca Reinforcement and EZ-Lift WD with 2 Anti Sway Bars. Back Up tow vehicle 2005 Ford F150 Lariat 367,000Kms 5.4L
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Old 10-24-2020, 11:48 AM   #10
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2000 30' Excella
GTA , Ontario
Join Date: Feb 2019
Posts: 383
Quote:
Originally Posted by drbrick View Post
Well since I am driving my "LAST" ever truck I too got what I wanted.
  1. Max Tow Package
  2. Power tow mirrors that extend and lay flat
  3. Payload package
  4. Off Road Package
  5. Intergrated Brake Controller
  6. Back-up Camera
  7. I do like the sun roof (no leaks in 7 years)
  8. I do like the GPS
  9. 4WD 3.71 rear end with lock (2WD for towing)
  10. Tow Haul Gearing
  11. Interior is leather
  12. F-150 FX4 3.5 Ecoboost great towing power, great daily driver, great gas milage
Yup the F-150 holy grail....
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Stella the 2000 30ft Excella/Classic - Tow Vehicle - 2012 Mercedes Benz GL350d - CanAmRv.ca Reinforcement and EZ-Lift WD with 2 Anti Sway Bars. Back Up tow vehicle 2005 Ford F150 Lariat 367,000Kms 5.4L
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Old 10-24-2020, 12:09 PM   #11
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Posts: 3
Quote:
Originally Posted by Foiled Again View Post
I want my next tow vehicle to.be my last. I do NOT want to repeat any past mistakes. Do have a wish list to get things that should be on tow vehicles but may be hard to find.
What is on your list?
I never understood the 'hard to find' part. I'm newly retired but I already got an F150 Lariat 4x4 to tow what I hope will be a 23D/CB one of these days. But I always expect my vehicles to last a long time, since I don't put a ton of miles on them. Generally I expect ten years. So, if I'm gonna keep a vehicle ten years, I want it to have everything I want and nothing else. Therefore, why wouldn't you just order it from the factory?

That's even more important when we are talking about a TV since we all have certain goals for payload, right? Dealers can tell you exactly what every option will cost you in payload. For me, I love sunroofs, never had a problem with any of them. I know that costs me payload. So I'll make up for it by skipping the tailgate step and the power running boards. I ended up with 1680 lbs payload.

Denton
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Old 10-24-2020, 12:29 PM   #12
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2021 23' Globetrotter
Jefferson City , Missouri
Join Date: Apr 2018
Posts: 28
TV Shopping List

Most of the folks above have noted great additions to the list. I would add to the "OEM" tow package - please study the various tow packages available. A simple "does it have a tow package" doesn't suffice. I learned that Ford had 3 versions. However, the MAX tow package was the only one that was needed. Thus, I suggest asking what tow packages are available and studying the specs of each.
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Old 10-24-2020, 12:31 PM   #13
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2012 25' Flying Cloud
Bellevue , Washington
Join Date: Feb 2012
Posts: 3
Tow vehicle comments

Quote:
Originally Posted by Foiled Again View Post
I want my next tow vehicle to.be my last. I do NOT want to repeat any past mistakes. Do have a wish list to get things that should be on tow vehicles but may be hard to find. I hope newbies and anyone shopping for a tow vehicle can benefit from these thinking points.

I actually took.several Salesmanship Classes which always assert "People buy emotionally, then back up that decision with logic." I Thought I was the exception to that rule, at least on major purchases, but then reality check... a Lexus called my name. After 6 months, most "new cars" that thrilled you turn into "transportation". The Lexus is good for 9 to 12 months.

PREPARE before you go shopping and have a firm list of "deal killers" so that even if you can "save" $3000 if you take the truck that is on the lot, you will simply say, no thanks, don't want to hate it 6 months from now.

New or used, buy only where they service your brand on site. Mega-dealers may sell 10 brands, but if their GMC showroom and maintenance facility is 30 miles away, free oil changes and even same day service is a nightmare.

AVOID - White or Black tow vehicles. They look beautiful all clean and new, but an hour of towing in bug season - yuck! You CAN spend big bucks putting a ceramic coating on and you can wash it every time you drive it and wax it 6 times a year... but many many other colors are much more dirt friendly, especially mid tones like silver, metallic light blues and greens. Washing a vehicle after a long day of towing is not fun.

AVOID sun roofs. Stupidest option ever invented. If you have one it, you will remember it only when it starts to leak. They are also prone to rusting out!

Television in the back seats - fine if you transport children, but with every kid having a computer now rather obsolete.

GPS - if you buy used make sure you get the latest release on maps. This can be surprisingly expensive.
TMS - trash management system. With a built in wet/dry vacuum and a small trash can that carries a roll of.trash bags. OK, slightly silly, but could really aid in keeping.messes from.growing into monster messes. Bag up the stir sticks, candy wrappers, kleenex, pine straw and grass clippings in a minute every other day and keep it neat.
Coin sorter. Less needed with electronic toll booths, but handy. Ashtray replacement module.

MUST HAVE - Tow Mirrors that can be electrically adjusted from the driver's seat, and electrically fold flat against the side of the car. Rear view needs change between interstates and curve back roads. When not towing parallel parking and parking garages are difficult if the mirrors protrude. Backing and parking is much easier/safer when the mirrors can be pointed at the trailer's tires. This expensive option will make you happy every time you drive your tow vehicle.

What is on your list?




I am currently looking for a replacement tow vehicle for my 2011 F150 ecoboost. It has gotten to the point where a lot of repairs have been needed for the truck which is now roughly 100.000 miles. The new F150 have a good tiow payload but the truck was noisy. Perhaps it was the aluminum body, since mine is one of the last steel bodies. I tow a 27 flying cloud and was hoping to get better mileage by switching to a diesel. My problem is that the smaller diesels from Chewy have a 9300 lb capability and the Ram 1500 are around the same. Hence I have been looking at Ram 2500 with a Cummins diesel, probably overkill but I thought its better to have more power than not enough. As far as features we do happen to like sunroofs on a nice day and havenít experienced any leaks . ( knock on wood) I also want a tow appropriate rear axel like a 3.73 , blind spot detection. I am open to hear suggestions from the Streamer community. Thanks, Mike
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Old 10-24-2020, 02:24 PM   #14
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2006 34' Classic S/O
Fort Worth , Texas
Join Date: Feb 2007
Posts: 1,334
Here is my '07 3/4 Duramax Alison 4x4 list with 130,000 miles. The extras are pretty well amortized. I hate to start over all over even with a new Denali, it takes a lot of time to get a new one up running the way you like it.
Banks Engine Brake
Full Air Ride suspension
Raised suspension up 1 1/2”
DirectLink Controler
80 gal. Reserve
All synthetic fluids
Michelin Defenders
Wilson Cel booster
Kenwood/Garmin GPS w/ Backup Camera on truck & trailer
ARE Camper shell
ProPressure TPMS for the TT
AMP Research Automatic Running boards
Inkay Mud flaps
Direct Link Brake controller
6300 Yamaha EF EIS generator
Portable Lithium battery booster
guskmg
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Old 10-24-2020, 03:24 PM   #15
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2019 27' Globetrotter
McHenry , Illinois
Join Date: Apr 2018
Posts: 1,055
Blog Entries: 4
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mike Lip View Post
I am currently looking for a replacement tow vehicle for my 2011 F150 ecoboost. It has gotten to the point where a lot of repairs have been needed for the truck which is now roughly 100.000 miles. The new F150 have a good tiow payload but the truck was noisy. Perhaps it was the aluminum body, since mine is one of the last steel bodies. I tow a 27 flying cloud and was hoping to get better mileage by switching to a diesel. My problem is that the smaller diesels from Chewy have a 9300 lb capability and the Ram 1500 are around the same. Hence I have been looking at Ram 2500 with a Cummins diesel, probably overkill but I thought its better to have more power than not enough. As far as features we do happen to like sunroofs on a nice day and havenít experienced any leaks . ( knock on wood) I also want a tow appropriate rear axel like a 3.73 , blind spot detection. I am open to hear suggestions from the Streamer community. Thanks, Mike
Mike, take a look at the Tow Technology and Safety Group options. They may have changed the names from 2019 but mine included the power folding mirrors + power spot mirrors which is really handy. Adaptive cruise with autonomous braking, 360 cameras are super too. It automatically sets the radar distance to the max when you hook up the trailer - just sit back and steer.

Good luck with your quest!
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2018 FC23FB
2019 Ram 2500 6.4 Hemi Laramie Blue Ox 1000#
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Old 10-24-2020, 09:04 PM   #16
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2019 27' Tommy Bahama
Cutler Bay , FL
Join Date: Apr 2018
Posts: 35
Quote:
Originally Posted by Foiled Again View Post
I want my next tow vehicle to.be my last. I do NOT want to repeat any past mistakes. Do have a wish list to get things that should be on tow vehicles but may be hard to find. I hope newbies and anyone shopping for a tow vehicle can benefit from these thinking points.

I actually took.several Salesmanship Classes which always assert "People buy emotionally, then back up that decision with logic." I Thought I was the exception to that rule, at least on major purchases, but then reality check... a Lexus called my name. After 6 months, most "new cars" that thrilled you turn into "transportation". The Lexus is good for 9 to 12 months.

PREPARE before you go shopping and have a firm list of "deal killers" so that even if you can "save" $3000 if you take the truck that is on the lot, you will simply say, no thanks, don't want to hate it 6 months from now.

New or used, buy only where they service your brand on site. Mega-dealers may sell 10 brands, but if their GMC showroom and maintenance facility is 30 miles away, free oil changes and even same day service is a nightmare.

AVOID - White or Black tow vehicles. They look beautiful all clean and new, but an hour of towing in bug season - yuck! You CAN spend big bucks putting a ceramic coating on and you can wash it every time you drive it and wax it 6 times a year... but many many other colors are much more dirt friendly, especially mid tones like silver, metallic light blues and greens. Washing a vehicle after a long day of towing is not fun.

AVOID sun roofs. Stupidest option ever invented. If you have one it, you will remember it only when it starts to leak. They are also prone to rusting out!

Television in the back seats - fine if you transport children, but with every kid having a computer now rather obsolete.

GPS - if you buy used make sure you get the latest release on maps. This can be surprisingly expensive.
TMS - trash management system. With a built in wet/dry vacuum and a small trash can that carries a roll of.trash bags. OK, slightly silly, but could really aid in keeping.messes from.growing into monster messes. Bag up the stir sticks, candy wrappers, kleenex, pine straw and grass clippings in a minute every other day and keep it neat.
Coin sorter. Less needed with electronic toll booths, but handy. Ashtray replacement module.

MUST HAVE - Tow Mirrors that can be electrically adjusted from the driver's seat, and electrically fold flat against the side of the car. Rear view needs change between interstates and curve back roads. When not towing parallel parking and parking garages are difficult if the mirrors protrude. Backing and parking is much easier/safer when the mirrors can be pointed at the trailer's tires. This expensive option will make you happy every time you drive your tow vehicle.

What is on your list?
Wife and I bought a 2019 2500 Limited Cummins Ram. We are on our third airstream and with this TV it doesn't matter what we buy in the future. Has every thing you liked above and disliked {sun roof] insurance dropped with this truck versus the Ford eco-boost F150 we traded in. My point is I never have to worry about my TV capacity again!!
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Old 10-25-2020, 06:55 AM   #17
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2012 19' International
Southeastern MI , Michigan
Join Date: Aug 2016
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This is my second white truck, the last one looked good for years. If you take care of them like I do the color is not important.

I bought enough truck that I didn’t even have to look at the payload sticker. I was looking at the new half ton Duramax and it was tempting but for a 27’ it was closer than I wanted to be without airbags or other stuff.

The most important options for me were a good sound system, good power tow mirrors, and the Diesel engine option. My Ram Cummins was also a nice truck but try one first. The mirrors on that were terrible when not in the towing position.
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Michelin 16Ē tires
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Old 10-25-2020, 07:29 AM   #18
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2021 33FB Classic
Cumming , Georgia
Join Date: Sep 2020
Posts: 85
Iíve owned a F250 King Ranch (long bed), Toyota Tundra & RAM 1500 Longhorn. I currently have a Silver 2019 RAM 2500 Limited (Cummins Diesel). Itís by far my favorite vehicle. The interior is incredible and it drives great. I like the sunroof and back window open whenever possible. I highly recommend this truck for driving & pulling. Only negative is the turn radius but I usually back in every parking spot or park far out & pull through. Keeps the Lacrosse momís from dinging my door anyway. Safe travels everyone!
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Old 10-25-2020, 08:10 AM   #19
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2021 25' Globetrotter
Jamestown , Rhode Island
Join Date: Mar 2012
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AnnaBelle33 View Post
Iíve owned a F250 King Ranch (long bed), Toyota Tundra & RAM 1500 Longhorn. I currently have a Silver 2019 RAM 2500 Limited (Cummins Diesel). Itís by far my favorite vehicle. The interior is incredible and it drives great. I like the sunroof and back window open whenever possible. I highly recommend this truck for driving & pulling. Only negative is the turn radius but I usually back in every parking spot or park far out & pull through. Keeps the Lacrosse momís from dinging my door anyway. Safe travels everyone!
My Ď16 Ram 2500 turned on a dime compared to my current GMC.
I believe that the turning diameter of the Ram is a good 7 or 8 feet smaller! The Ram interior is awesome too. The GMC ďdrivesĒ better though, I believe that the independent front suspension is behind that and the difference is startling. Then there is the 10 speed transmission... that is simply something you must experience to appreciate. I did not mind the Ram 6 speed but it certainly did feel mushy...
Finally, the GMC mirrors are simply far, far better than those in the Ram. Both folded at the touch of a button and both have a power adjustment for one of the two mirrors on each side but the Ram was simply difficult to get right when not towing. It took me a year before I got comfortable with them.
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Patiently waiting for our Globetrotter 25 to be built and shopping for the next tow vehicle breaking in our new GMC 2500 Sierra Denali Duramax.
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Old 10-25-2020, 09:02 AM   #20
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Thoughts on a F350 with a Tremor package towing a GT 27FB? Is that too much 4x4? Itís rated to tow 15,000 lbs.
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