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Old 07-21-2020, 04:13 PM   #1
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2020 Caravel 22FB Towing with Acura MDX - Bad Idea?

Hi, new to the forum. First post.
I'm planning on purchasing a new 2020 Airstream Caravel 22FB and have put down a deposit and was planning on picking it up this weekend.

Before buying, I wanted to get this forum's input on my current towing setup. "
I have a 2018 Acura v6 MDX AWD - and I'm getting the 5,000lb dealer installed towing hitch installed in a few days - and new all weather tires.

The Specs say that the Caravel 22FB unit base weight is 4,000lbs. My Acura says it should tow 5,000lbs. So, is the weight going to be an issue? Am I ok here?

Also, the trailer is 21'11" and that's longer than the Acura MDX - and the MDX only weighs 4200 lbs. So they Acura and Airstream are going to weigh nearly the same.

I am planning on installing an Equalizer stabilizer bar.

But, I'm wondering if I should just go with an 2021 Airstream Caravel 19/20 for September delivery vs buying a new 2020 that happens to be available now - based on the Acura MDX I'd tow it with.

Thoughts?
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Old 07-21-2020, 04:28 PM   #2
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ok.... welcome. check the GVWR, not the base weight (useless info only for manufacturer) 22' Caravel weights more than 5000# when fully loaded. I am sorry but my Explorer can only tow up to 5,000 lbs as well but I can only tow any 16', 19' GVWR is 4,500 lbs. it is not really comfortably safe to tow the 19'. Just get a bigger TV to be safe in braking, going downhill, and towing uphill.

I just saw the specifications of 19', 20', and 22' 2021 Caravels they have the exactly same GVWR 5,000 lbs something is wrong here. found it in Airstream.com I believe its an error try to compare 4 campers in Airstream website for weight specifications and you can see that its not possible.
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Old 07-21-2020, 09:21 PM   #3
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Halford, speaks from experience!

There are some owners that are pulling trailers with Acuras I am also running near the top of my maximums with my Honda Ridgeline.

We went with a 2019 Sport 22FB with same floor plan as the Caravel 22FB but quite a bit lighter at 3634 lbs empty and 4500 max axle capacity. But the biggest difference is the tongue weight that the 2020's have has gone up with the addition of a second battery.

On our Honda we have a maximum tongue weight of 600 lbs. and with my tongue scale I have weighed between 475 to 500 lbs. The published tongue weight from Airstream is very light and you could expect to see a tongue weight of ~600 to 650 lbs on the Caravel. This means that you lose that much in cargo capacity. So now you can only have 2 people in the Acura and a small bit of cargo ~400 to 500 lbs. It doesn't take long to max out the numbers.

Then you will be out camping and need to drive somewhere to dump the 300 lbs from your tanks and carry fresh water to your campsite. With all the tanks full, you could see an additional 500 lbs.

The weight really piles on.

So the best thing to do is review the upper limit of Cargo, Combination, Axles, Towing and Tongue loads that come from Acura and work with that. Remember that the tongue loads will go up from what ever is written and the GVW of the trailer is always a possibility so consider using that rather than the Unloaded Weight.

There is lots of homework but it you can make it work, you will most likely enjoy your trailer for a long time.

I think user "SteveandDebbie" have an Acura and could share their experiences with you and what they did to make their MDX work for them. Try searching for them and/or the Acura.
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Old 07-21-2020, 10:07 PM   #4
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Yes. The Bambi is 500 lbs lighter. Good choice
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Old 07-22-2020, 08:17 AM   #5
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Thank you all.

I've been emailing / talking to the dealer and confirming.

That said, I think that given your input on the the size (it's longer, taller, and almost as heavy as my Acura MDC), the weight being near max, and the hitch weights being 525 and my hitch only rated for 500lbs, I passed on this specific Airstream.

I'll probably roll down to a 19 - and skip the 22 and 20 lengths.

I'm searching for "steveanddebbie" posts also.

Thank you for jumping in and giving some guidance, here. Much appreciated.
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Old 07-22-2020, 08:32 AM   #6
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For some strange reason, the 22FB appears lighter at the tongue (500 lbs) than the shorter Bambis. The main reason for the jump from 2019 to 2020 is the second AGM battery that they added. If you planned a Lithium upgrade you could knock ~60 to 70 lbs off the 2020 tongue weight.

Ours being a 2019 22FB is 422 lbs. (only one battery) so so if you pack light and leave the fresh water this one could work.
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Old 07-22-2020, 08:40 AM   #7
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Havsumhope, check out this thread which talks about a Honda Pilot:

https://www.airforums.com/forums/f23...it-210981.html
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Old 07-22-2020, 09:48 AM   #8
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The tongue weight is usually higher than the published one. My 23FB has a published tongue weight of 439, but with a normal load it is 524.
Just get the Airstream you want and then get a Tow Vehicle that is adequate.
Also, do NOT believe anything the dealer says about tow weights. All they want to do is sell you the product.
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Old 07-22-2020, 09:54 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by B17drvr View Post
The tongue weight is usually higher than the published one. My 23FB has a published tongue weight of 439, but with a normal load it is 524.
Just get the Airstream you want and then get a Tow Vehicle that is adequate.
Also, do NOT believe anything the dealer says about tow weights. All they want to do is sell you the product.
I am seeing about the same percentage increase of about 18 percent up from the published number as you are getting.

It is pretty tough to filter through all the numbers especially if the dealers don't help. Then there are the real world numbers that owners have to share which make this even more challenging to find a good match.
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Old 07-22-2020, 03:57 PM   #10
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2020 Caravel 22FB Towing with Acura MDX - Bad Idea?

Maybe this will help. This was posted by Andy Thompson on the MDX Towing Thread:

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Old 07-22-2020, 04:00 PM   #11
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Old 07-22-2020, 04:02 PM   #12
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Old 07-22-2020, 04:05 PM   #13
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Sorry, "SteveNdebbie" not "SteveandDebbie". I knew you guys would chime in!
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Old 07-22-2020, 04:15 PM   #14
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