Originally Posted by wandering1
So what is your truck rated to tow?????
Originally Posted by DougL3NC
There's a lot of speculation surrounding that statement! With the 4.6 and 3.08 gear I haven't found a difinitive answer yet.
Per '99 Ford RV and Trailer Towing Guide for F-150 SuperCab 4x2, 4.6L engine, 3.08 ratio:
So the total weight of the wet and loaded pickup and trailer combined cannot exceed 10,000 pounds, and the total weight on the 4 pickup tires cannot exceed 6,000 pounds.
Ford's mythical "tow rating" for your drivetrain is 5,400 pounds, but that assumes your wet and loaded pickup before you tie onto the trailer weighs less than 4,600 pounds. Your Dad's F-150 is going to weigh a lot more than 4,600 pounds with your family inside, so ignore Fords myth and compute your own actual tow rating per the following:
To determine how much trailer you can tow without being overloaded, put all the people and stuff in the pickup that will be in it when towing. Include the shank and head (ball mount) from your weight-distributing hitch. (If you don't have the WD hitch yet, add 50# to the pickup weight.) Go to a truckstop that has a certified automated truck (CAT) scale, fill up with gas, and weigh the wet and loaded truck.
Subtract the weight of the wet and loaded truck from 10,000 and the answer is the max weight of any trailer you can tow without exceeding the GCWR. The GCWR tells you the max weight you can gross without burning up something in the drivetrain of a well-maintained tow vehicle, and without being the slowpoke holding up traffic when climbing hills and mountain passes.
Subtract the weight of the wet and loaded truck from the GVWR of the truck and the answer is the max hitch weight you can haul without exceeding the GVWR. The GVWR tells you how much weight your truck's suspension can carry without overloading any of the components, such as springs, tires, wheels, and frame.
Convert max hitch weight to max tandem-axle trailer weight by dividing hitch weight by 0.15 (15%). For example, if your max hitch weight is 600 pounds, your max trailer weight is 4,000 pounds.
Originally Posted by DougL3NC
I'm wholly not opposed to selling the BMW and getting something more suited to towing as my commute is only about 2 miles round trip to work. But if I sell the BMW I have to have something that seats 6 in decent comfort.
Summarizing what others have already written:
First choice is a full-size van, E-350 with 7.3L diesel engine, or GM 3500 with the Isusu diesel engine design (newer than about 2003?). Ford offered the diesel engine in the Econoline vans for several years, but not recently. GM still offers the diesel engine in the current full-size 3500 vans. So if you're looking for an older vehicle, try to find a 2000 to 2003 E-350 with the 7.3L diesel engine. (I would not buy a van with the 2003-up 6.0L diesel engine).
Ignore the Ford and GM half-ton and 3/4-ton vans. They don't have enough payload capacity to haul your crew plus the hitch weight of a decent-size travel trailer. So Ford E-350 or GM 3500 only. I'm a diesel fan, so I would want a diesel.
If a van turns you off, then my second choice would be a 2000 thru 2003 Excursion with the 7.3L diesel engine. But those wonderful towing machines are very much in demand, so you won't find a nice one for less than $10,000, and most of them go for over $15,000, even though the newest ones are over 10 years old and with over 150,000 miles on the clock.
Excursion with the gas-hog 6.8L V-10 engines were available through about the 2006 model year. Wonderful rig if you don't mind buying lots of gas. Don't consider an Excursion with the 5.4L V8 gas engine. The 5.4L was a good engine for a half ton pickup, but not enough oomph for an Excursion or SuperDuty pickup.
Third choice would be GM Suburban/Yukon XL 2500. Don't even look at a normal 1500 model - you'll be overloaded. The shorter Tahoe/Yukon doesn't come in a 2500 model, so ignore those. Even with the 2500, you'll have to watch weights because of the lament about large SUVs: You can either haul a wagon full of people or a small travel trailer, but not both at the same time without being overloaded.