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Old 06-18-2013, 05:25 PM   #15
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Originally Posted by Lori Meyer View Post
Well, still no closer to my ultimate goal of getting a Durango.

I crunched some numbers based on the info I received here (the numbers online are all over the place - anywhere from 4,000 lbs. towing to 7,550 lbs.)

The owner's manual says max trailer weight is 4,350 for the 4.7L, 3.55 Axle - way below what I had thought.

For a 2002 Dodge Durango SLT 4.7L V6 here's what I came up with:

GCWR is 9200 minus
loaded vehicle: 5,000
equals 4,200 lbs. of towing capacity.

Yet, I'm reading all over the internet that it can tow 7,200, 7,550, etc.

That doesn't include the hitch weight.

I based the above math on this:

Subtract the weight of the wet and loaded SUV from the GVWR of the SUV and the answer is the maximum hitch weight you can have without being overloaded. Divide that maximum hitch weight by 0.15 and the answer is the maximum GVWR of any travel trailer you should consider buying.

Subtract the weight of the wet and loaded SUV from the GCWR of the SUV and the answer is the maximum trailer weight you want to even try to tow. (It will probably be a lot less than 5,100 pounds.)


Can someone help me narrow down exactly what this vehicle can realistically tow?

I have a total of about 5,000 lbs. to tow.

Thanks so much. Gotta make a decision tomorrow.
As i said before, you are no better off than your trailblazer. Here are the specs for the durango, at the bottom of the page. 2003 Dodge Durango - Specs


A durango with a 3.55 axle ration is worse than your trailblazer. Even if you manage to find a durango with the 3.92 axle ratio, it only gives you a few hundred pounds for the hitch and cargo. You'll be overweight.

Any particular reason you want a durango so bad? I understand price is probably an issue, you'd probably like to own your vehicle in full. But a durango won't be any better than a trailblazer unless you get the durango 5.9L R/T model which is hard to find. A suburban or tahoe gets the same fuel economy as the 4.7L V8 durango but has way more towing and payload capacity. Durango V8's of that era got really bad mpg, i know that first hand. Probably around 15mpg on country roads.

How many miles are on the durango you're looking for. I found a yukon denali in orange,NJ for $3k. 2002 GMC Yukon Denali

Or this one for $1900 http://newjersey.craigslist.org/cto/3876770816.html
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Old 06-18-2013, 08:27 PM   #16
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Originally Posted by Lori Meyer View Post
...but we're going to look at Expeditions and Tahoes.
You're not paying attention. Expeditions and Tahoes are half-ton vehicles, and will probably be overloaded when on the road with your family and the wet and loaded trailer. They're marginally better than the Durango, which is based on the less-than-half-ton Dodge Dakota pickup (which has been cancelled).

Although a Tahoe is a shorty Suburban, it does not come in the 2500 version. So go straight to the Suburban 2500 (or the GMC equivalent Yukon XL 2500).
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Old 06-18-2013, 09:32 PM   #17
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Smoky is right. If you get the less capable tv, you will be upgrading in less than 2 years based upon handling characteristics. I 'did' the math and now i tow with a '99 f350 v10 drw crew cab. I would never tow a 25' tt with a smaller suv sgain. Been there, done that. Now i am smarter and safer.
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Old 06-18-2013, 09:36 PM   #18
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You're not paying attention. Expeditions and Tahoes are half-ton vehicles, and will probably be overloaded when on the road with your family and the wet and loaded trailer. They're marginally better than the Durango, which is based on the less-than-half-ton Dodge Dakota pickup (which has been cancelled).

Although a Tahoe is a shorty Suburban, it does not come in the 2500 version. So go straight to the Suburban 2500 (or the GMC equivalent Yukon XL 2500).
I'm not really seeing how she'll be overloaded just because it's a half-ton. She's pulling a Crossroads Zinger 25RK as noted in her other thread. It has a total length of 26'9", a dry weight of 4,640lbs and a GVWR(larger axles) of 7580 and a hitch weight of 580lbs. The payload capacity of her trailer is overkill at 2,700 lbs. You'll never load a trailer up that much even with a full tank of water unless you have a toy hauler. Realistically, as long as she's mindful of how much she loads into the trailer, and the dry weight is reasonably within range, she should be towing around 6000-6500lbs tops.

I just realized the tahoe and yukon of that era have a smaller 4.8L V8, the tow rating is very comparable to the durango and probably not enough.

With that said, i'd probably stay away from the older tahoe and yukon. The 2003 expedition doesn't look too bad as long as you get the 5.4L with the tow package. Also the suburban has a payload of 2,077lbs, and so does the yukon XL. All 3 have tow ratings well above what you need as long as it came factory with the full HD tow package. The suburban and Yukon XL have longer wheelbases which allow it to control the load much better. The Expedition is near it's max length with a 26 foot trailer, i wouldn't get a trailer any longer than that should you ever decide to upgrade.

There is a difference between towing adequately and towing exceptionally well. 3/4 trucks are nice for towing and do it exceptionally well. But i tow my personal stuff with a half ton and it's fine but you'll know you're towing. Just make sure you know your limits and use a WD hitch. Meanwhile at work i tow with 5500 and 3500 series trucks which make it feel like nothing is back there.
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Old 06-19-2013, 09:15 AM   #19
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I forgot to mention that term "half-ton" and "3/4-ton" no longer mean their literal definition. Most trucks built in the 21st century exceed far beyond the old classification. Like the 2003 Suburban/YukonXL which have over a full ton of capacity. The 2003 Expedition has 1600lb payload. Many new 150/1500 series pickups after 2008 like the nissan titan and F150 can be equipped for over 2000lbs of payload, a full ton pickup. but they are still referred to as half-ton.

Really the expedition/Suburban/YukonXl are well within spec for weights. The only issue to consider is the wheelbase.
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Old 06-20-2013, 07:07 AM   #20
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Thanks for your input GGG.

We purchased a 2003 Suburban in like-new condition yesterday and I believe it'll be more than enough to pull 4,600 lbs.

I appreciate all of your help.

Lori
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