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Old 06-09-2018, 03:59 PM   #1
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4x4 or rear drive only?

thinking about ditching the class A for a 5er. curious about whether to get a 4x4 or rear wheel drive to tow it with. it'll probably be a pretty big one. (not interested in dualies.)

thanks, wynn
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Old 06-09-2018, 04:07 PM   #2
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Really depends on where you tow and when .

Both my TVs were 4X4 , nice to have low range to back into some spots and I've seen ( and helped ) other RVers, who've spun out on wet grass with 2wd.

If you're always in a level RV park with paved streets and sites , 2wd could be all you need.
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Old 06-09-2018, 04:55 PM   #3
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Very few 2 wheel drive duallys out there. Now 2500s yes. You stated no dually but going to be a heavy one???? Heavy is dually territory.
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Old 06-09-2018, 06:05 PM   #4
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RWD will cost less to maintain drivetrain, get better fuel mileage, and cost less initially. 4WD really wins out if you need to move a load on a loose or slick surface, especially backing. RWD will do it but tends to be harder on the turf, and can get you in a bit of a bind with wheel spin in reverse. Resale probably higher on 4WD. Ride and handling is fairly even on newer trucks. Most late model SRWs will be good to around 15-16k gross trailer weight.
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Old 06-09-2018, 06:51 PM   #5
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You are in Colorado. I will be surprised if you can find a RWD only truck. I just bought a RWD truck with locking rear axle. Before that I have had AWD Honda Ridgeline, a 4 x 4 Ford F-150 and the last 6 years a 4 x 4 Ford F-450. Never used the 4 wheel drive feature. The 4 wheel drive system will spin 1 rear wheel wheel and 1 front wheel for a total of 2 wheels spinning. RWD with locking rear differential will also spin 2 wheels, both in the rear.
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Old 06-09-2018, 06:53 PM   #6
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A lot depends where you want to go . A 2 wheel drive is fine on level hard packed surfaces . If you have to venture into softer sandy soil or even wet grass , a 4X4 is a must . All you need is to be on a slick surface or uneven ground and could easily be stuck. A 4X4 is like insurance , you don't need it till something happens . I like having it , especially when out in the boondocks.
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Old 06-09-2018, 07:11 PM   #7
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A lot depends where you want to go . A 2 wheel drive is fine on level hard packed surfaces . If you have to venture into softer sandy soil or even wet grass , a 4X4 is a must . All you need is to be on a slick surface or uneven ground and could easily be stuck. A 4X4 is like insurance , you don't need it till something happens . I like having it , especially when out in the boondocks.


Yes.. what he said. 4x4
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Old 06-09-2018, 07:15 PM   #8
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I always had 4x4 when I was towing my 5ths. Didn't need it very often but was really glad I had it when it was needed. You pretty much get your money back at trade time. For me, I recommend 4x4. I also recommend diesel if your budget can stand the punch. jmo mark
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Old 06-09-2018, 08:08 PM   #9
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You are in Colorado. I will be surprised if you can find a RWD only truck. I just bought a RWD truck with locking rear axle. Before that I have had AWD Honda Ridgeline, a 4 x 4 Ford F-150 and the last 6 years a 4 x 4 Ford F-450. Never used the 4 wheel drive feature. The 4 wheel drive system will spin 1 rear wheel wheel and 1 front wheel for a total of 2 wheels spinning. RWD with locking rear differential will also spin 2 wheels, both in the rear.
and 4x4 with a e-locker spins 3 wheels


2WD is all you need to tow a 5th wheel on the road. period. and you'll save money on fuel, tires, and maintenance.

I have used low range to back uphill into tricky spots, and 4Hi when boondocking in dirt/sand out in the desert or at a lake. Absolutely required? Probably not - you'll simply adapt to what traction you have. I was willing to drive on the beach, as I knew I could "most likely" extract myself if needed. Ditto for the softer dirt when boondocking in the desert. If you had a 2wd would be as adventurous? Maybe, maybe not. You see some class A's in amazing spots lol.

That said, some people aren't into boondocking - and only stay in RV parks or maybe forest campgrounds which are paved. That's fine too! Different strokes for different folks. What are your plans? A 2WD may fit the bill!

Would I ever own another 2wd drive truck? No, I've had two. 4x4 only for me anymore, preferably with the e-locker. In my mind a truck is a tool, and if your missing some functionality...its simply a less useful tool.
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Old 06-09-2018, 08:25 PM   #10
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2016 Chevy 2500HD 4x4 and is the only way yo go.
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Old 06-09-2018, 08:29 PM   #11
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You have to get 4 x 4 with e-locker option to spin 3 wheels. Else you only spin 2.

A few trucks a jeeps can lock both front and rear axles like the Ram Powerwagon or Jeep Rubicon unlimited.
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Old 06-10-2018, 05:01 AM   #12
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The problem with any RWD only vehicle is whatever loose soil/snow piles up in front of the front wheels acting like a wheel chock. A 4x4 will use the front wheel drive system to pull over the hump.

My experience has been in order of getting unstuck: RWD no positraction rear gear, RWD with snow type tires and a partial load in just the truck bed, same with positraction rear end, duelly SRD, 4x4 SRW, duelly 4x4.
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Old 06-10-2018, 05:40 AM   #13
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RWD will cost less to maintain drivetrain, get better fuel mileage, and cost less initially. 4WD really wins out if you need to move a load on a loose or slick surface, especially backing. RWD will do it but tends to be harder on the turf, and can get you in a bit of a bind with wheel spin in reverse. Resale probably higher on 4WD. Ride and handling is fairly even on newer trucks. Most late model SRWs will be good to around 15-16k gross trailer weight.

I have owned nothing but 4wd for many years. never had one instance where any maintenance cost more for them. they do seem to get a better price at resale or trade in time. I like having it when I need it and to me they feel a little different from 2wd when driving..maybe the little extra wt. or the steering/suspension a little heavier feel. we do several ski trips each year, so good for that and I like to put it in auto when driving in the rain. certainly not a neccessity for towing tho.
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Old 06-10-2018, 09:40 AM   #14
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I have owned nothing but 4wd for many years. never had one instance where any maintenance cost more for them.
So you never changed the transfer case and front differential oil? Or had an front SFA U-joint or an CV joint in a IFS go bad? No stuck hubs or vacuum leaks?

They require plenty of maintenance. Now I suppose you don't have to do it.........
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