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Old 04-27-2012, 04:54 PM   #1
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2WD vs 4WD

Looking at going with a 5th wheeler and a sales person told me toll capability of a 2WD was superior to a 4WD. Comments please
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Old 04-27-2012, 05:07 PM   #2
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Originally Posted by Godtomley View Post
Looking at going with a 5th wheeler and a sales person told me toll capability of a 2WD was superior to a 4WD. Comments please
If all other parameters are the same, you can tow more with 2WD. The difference is the weight of the 4WD system. Probably not the most important consideration, though.
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Old 04-27-2012, 06:30 PM   #3
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If you are going to stay in/on properly prepped roads or campgrounds a 2wd is fine. If you plan on going off the beaten path or boon docking you may want to look at a 4wd.
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Old 04-27-2012, 06:36 PM   #4
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Depends where you're located and where you'll be towing. I've towed with 2WD duallies since 1996 and have never had any problems. 2WD has some real advantages for towing if you don't need the capabilities of 4WD.

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Old 04-27-2012, 06:41 PM   #5
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Depends where you're located and where you'll be towing. I've towed with 2WD duallies since 1996 and have never had any problems. 2WD has some real advantages for towing if you don't need the capabilities of 4WD.

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Rusty, WOULD YOU GIVE ME SOME OF THE REAL ADVANTAGES IN TOWING
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Old 04-27-2012, 06:57 PM   #6
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Any given size and style of truck will have something called a "Maximum combined vehicle weight rating" (CGVW) It is very likely the same for both 2 and 4 wd models.

However the 4WD has the added pig, drive axle and transfer case making it quite a bit heaver than the 2wd model.. This extra weight comes off the top of the towing capacity.


At least that is often the case.. Offsetting that is the LOW RANGE in 4WD, and they may beef up the 4WD a bit at the factory to offset this.

Bottom line.. READ THE VEHICLE SPECIFICATION sheet before you sign on the line. Some of them are surprising.

Option two (Tim Taylor Option) BIGGER AND MORE POWERFUL!!!!!!

Like the guy on another forum who's sig said "There's no replacement for displacment" and included a picture of his tow vehicle.. A PeterBuilt if I recall correctly.
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Old 04-27-2012, 06:57 PM   #7
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The 2WD is lower; therefore, obtaining sufficient 5th wheel to bedrail clearance is less of a problem. The lower truck and trailer height offer less wind resistance (and lower rolling resistance) for better fuel economy and result in a lower center of gravity for better handling as well as easier entry/exit. The 2WD truck has independent front suspension - death wobble isn't a problem as it can be with solid front axles, and it rides substantially better. The 2WD truck costs less to purchase and maintain - stuff that isn't there can't break and doesn't require maintenance or repairs.

Again, if you need 4WD, by all means buy it, but if you don't need 4WD, there are real advantages to 2WD.

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Old 04-27-2012, 07:55 PM   #8
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Originally Posted by RustyJC
The 2WD is lower; therefore, obtaining sufficient 5th wheel to bedrail clearance is less of a problem. The lower truck and trailer height offer less wind resistance (and lower rolling resistance) for better fuel economy and result in a lower center of gravity for better handling as well as easier entry/exit. The 2WD truck has independent front suspension - death wobble isn't a problem as it can be with solid front axles, and it rides substantially better. The 2WD truck costs less to purchase and maintain - stuff that isn't there can't break and doesn't require maintenance or repairs.

Again, if you need 4WD, by all means buy it, but if you don't need 4WD, there are real advantages to 2WD.

Rusty
Thanks Rusty and to everyone for their thoughts. Big help. I have a lot to think about
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Old 04-27-2012, 08:04 PM   #9
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If you ever plan on launching a boat, 4wd is preferred
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Old 04-28-2012, 07:46 AM   #10
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We run 4x4's and the main reason is resale. We live in NW Kansas farm country and finding a heavy duty 3/4-1 ton truck that isn't abused is kinda hard. When Dad ordered his 2011 F350 he was going to go back to 2x4. We have a great relationship with our Ford dealer and he just flat out told Dad to get the 4x4, as he has a customer that orders 2x4's and trades on a reg basis, and even though the trucks are clean, they sit on the lot forever. Dad traded a 2006 F350 4x4 XLT SC Diesel w/36K for the 2011 F350 4x4 Lariat CC Diesel. Last year I traded my 2008 F150 4x4 Lariat CC w16K for a used 2009 F350 4x4 Lariat CC. With the excellent condition of our trucks, the dealer offers us top dollar and they sit on the lot maybe a week at most! If you live in an area where the markets better for 2x4, I agree, save your money and enjoy alittle better fuel mileage too! We do have a use for 4x4, but I don't speand that kinda money on a nice truck to have it in the snow/mud/salt anyways...i have a cherry '95 F150 for that.
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Old 04-28-2012, 08:21 AM   #11
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I bought my first new car in 1961. I bought my first RV trailer in 1968. I've lived in snow country of Maine, Nebraska and Colorado most of my working years. And I've never had or needed 4x4. Of course, you have to know how to drive, and have the right tires mounted, to get around in the slick stuff with 4x2. One advantage to 4x4 I can understand is the use of 4x4 low range to pull a heavy boat up a steep slick ramp, or to back a heavy trailer up a grade without burning up the tranny.

Using the Ford F-250 as an example, 4x4 adds about 400 pounds to the weight of the truck. GVWR is limited, so that extra 400 pounds of road-hugging weight comes off the payload available for hitch weight. Hitch weight is almost always the limiter for a pickup with single rear wheels (SRW), so it gets critical in a hurry.

My '99.5 F-250 CrewCab diesel 4x2 had a GVWR of 8,800 pounds. Wet and loaded for the road before tying on the 5er, it weighed almost 8,000 pounds. That left only 800 pounds for max hitch weight without being overloaded. If it were 4x4, that would have left only 400 pounds for max hitch weight.

Newer F-250s have more GVWR and they weight more, but a wet and loaded 4x4 CrewCab diesel will still be limited to about 1,200 pounds hitch weight, whereas a 4x2 would have 1,600 pounds available for hitch weight. That's the difference in a 7,000 pound 5er compared to a 9,500 pound 5er as the biggest trailer you can tow without being overloaded. You won't find any decent 5ers with GVWR of only 7,000 pounds, so if you buy a 4x4, you have to go up a notch to an F-350 SRW if you don't want to be overloaded when towing a 5er.

Or forget the 5er and buy a travel trailer (TT) instead. The TTs have about 12% hitch weight compared to about 17% for the 5ers. So if hitch weight limited by GVWR of the tow vehicle is your limiter, you can tow a heavier TT than 5er without being overloaded. With 1,200 pounds max hitch weight, you could tow a TT that weighs 10,000 pounds without being overloaded. A 10,000-pound TT is a roomy, nice RV.
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Old 04-29-2012, 10:14 PM   #12
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Looking at going with a 5th wheeler and a sales person told me toll capability of a 2WD was superior to a 4WD. Comments please
Yes, axle weight capacity and therefore GVWR and GCWR is always higher on 2WD models vs 4WD models. This is likely due to a combination of the weight of the 4WD components as well as the fact that modern IFS on many 4WD vehicles is very weak compared to a non-driven front axle. Also, years ago 4x4 pick ups came with solid Dana 60 front axles and leaf springs, you'll only find that on 1 ton's these days.
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