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Old 04-13-2013, 09:32 PM   #1
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Weight issues

Bought a travel trailer dry weight 4700lbs. Toyota Tacoma can tow 6500 but seemed to struggled with the rig with minimal stuff added. Not sure if I should upgrade or not worry...
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Old 04-13-2013, 10:27 PM   #2
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Slkneib View Post
Bought a travel trailer dry weight 4700lbs. Toyota Tacoma can tow 6500 but seemed to struggled with the rig with minimal stuff added. Not sure if I should upgrade or not worry...


You've already answered your question. How concerned were you when towing? Did it make you nervous or anxious? Camping is supposed to be relaxing and enjoyable, if driving your truck and towing makes you answer yes to those questions you will not enjoy camping very much. That dry weight may be understated, take your TT to a scale and weigh it. Once you know actual weight, only then will you know how much "stuff" you can load into the TT and how close to your trucks Gross Combined Weight Rating you actually are. This travel trailer weight calculator is quite useful when properly and safely matching a tow vehicle and trailer. One more item; TT weight and truck towing capacity is most of the equation but there is one part not addressed. You are pulling a wall behind you (front of trailer) with considerable wind resistance, which sucks up HP at highway speed. This may be offset with a bigger truck and bigger engine.
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Old 04-14-2013, 08:44 AM   #3
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Originally Posted by Slkneib View Post
Toyota Tacoma can tow 6500 but seemed to struggled with the rig with minimal stuff added...
Some very few Tacos have a tow rating of 6,500. They must have the V6engine and the V6 towing package and the shorty bed.

Here are the specs for a late-model Taco doublecab short bed V6 4x4 with V6 Tow pkg:

GVWR = 5,500
GCWR = 11,200
Max tongue weight = 650 pounds
Tow rating if you don't exceed GVWR or max tongue weight = 6,500

In real life, the tongue weight of any TT that grosses 6,500 pounds is going to be more than 650 pounds. More likely is 12.5% of gross trailer weight = 812.5 pounds. And some TTs have tongue weight of up to 15% of gross trailer weight.

GCWR 11,200 minus tow rating of 6,500 means you can tow 6,500 pounds only if your wet and loaded tow vehicle weighs less than 4,700 pounds. Good luck with your wet and loaded Taco grossing less than 4,700 pounds before you tie onto the trailer.

Conclusion? You can't tow a TT that weighs anywhere near 6,500 pounds without exceeding the GVWR and the max tongue weight of your Taco. And if you don't have the factory V6 tow package, then don't bother trying to tow a TT of any weight.

What to do? First you need to load the Taco up with everything that will be in it when towing. Driver, passenger(s), pet(s), tools, stuff, and the shank and ball mount of the weight-distributing hitch. Go to a truckstop that has a certified automated truck (CAT) scale, fill up with gas, then weigh the wet and loaded Taco. Subtract that weight from 5,500, and the answer is the max tongue weight you can tow without being overloaded over the GVWR of your Taco.

If that max tongue weight is less than 650 pounds, then divide that tongue weight by 0.125 and the answer is a decent estimate of the max GVWR of any TT you can tow without being overloaded. If that max tongue weight is more than 650 pounds, then ignore the computed max tongue weight and divide 650 by 0.125, and the answer is the max GVWR of any TT you can tow without being overloaded = 5,200 pounds.

I'm a Toyota fan. Last year I needed a new pickup to tow a 7,000 pound cargo trailer. I beat the numbers to death, and finally concluded that the Taco with V6 engine and the V6 tow package was simply not enough truck to tow more than about 5,000 pounds. And it would be right up against its limits with even a 5,000 pound trailer. And I'll bet that the CAT scale will show that your wet and loaded TT weighs more than 5,000 pounds.
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Old 04-14-2013, 08:56 AM   #4
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Honestly, if you are not over your limits, you are darn close when loaded. The dry weight on a trailer is a useless number, unless you plan to never add anything to it. The dry brochure weight is generally based on a trailer with zero options. Any item listed as an option is not included in the dry weight...like, A/C, microwave, TV, awning, batteries, etc. Then you add some water and propane and start loading your stuff. It is not unusual for a trailer weight to be 1000# over the "dry weight".

Having been the route of a small tow vehicle, I personally would limit a Tacoma to no more than 4000# wet and loaded trailer.

With the V-6, it is going to struggle on the hills and you will normally have to run down one gear from the top gear and lower on the hills.

Ken
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Old 04-14-2013, 10:11 AM   #5
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A full size truck would tow your trailer a lot better. I moved from a Honda Ridgeline to a 2011 F-150 5.0 litre. What an improvment. Of course I moved from 250hp and 255 ft.lb. torque to 360hp and 380ft. lbs. of torque.

The F-150 also weighed 1,200 lbs more than the Ridgeline. No more tail wagging the dog. Also the F-150 got slightly better MPG too. Towing and non-towing was better.

My trailer weighed 4400 lb dry. And 5200 ready to camp.
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Old 04-14-2013, 05:47 PM   #6
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Upgrade, get a real truck.
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Old 04-15-2013, 06:07 AM   #7
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Don't think u need to buy an oil refinery TV to tow ur new trailer. I tow 5000lb unloaded with a Touareg and it is fantastic. 3.6 V6 has no problems and no sway. Technology is moving on. If like me u don't want a truck then consider this as an alternative.
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Old 04-15-2013, 08:38 AM   #8
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A truck is a great tool to have when towing, camping, and hauling stuff like the typical camper has. I carry firewood, dirt, landscaping timbers, kayaks, bikes, tow a boat. To me it is much better than an SUV.

And I do not need an oil refinery.
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Old 04-15-2013, 10:02 AM   #9
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Don't think u need to buy an oil refinery TV to tow ur new trailer. I tow 5000lb unloaded with a Touareg and it is fantastic.
Touareg is a very nice tow vehicle for small RV trailers. Tow rating of the TDI is 7,700 pounds, so a practical max of about 5,000 to 6,000 pounds TT could be expected with a light load in the SUV. But VW gets a bit carried away with pricing of the Touareg in the USA. The cheap ones are almost $50,000, and the nice one is a hair over $60,000 MSRP.

Touareg TDI Executive.
3.0L, 240 hp V6 TDIŽ engine, 8sp auto w/ 4MOTIONŽ
Base price $59,175
Destination charge $875
MSRP $60,050

I swore off of German cars back in the 1970s. In the meantime, none of the German brands have gotten away from their policy of charging premium prices for their vehicles and parts sold in the USA. VW/Porsche/Audi, Mercedes-Benz, and BMW all have the same policy of soak the stupid Americans. My 1978 Audi (division of VW) 5000S was a very nice car, but cost too much up front, then when it began to age the Porsche/Audi dealer in Denver charged about three prices for simple parts. I needed one part that should have cost about $5 for a Ford or Chevy or Toyota, but that Audi dealer charged me over $60. Same story with an earlier Mercedes-Benz 220SE. Wonderful car until the generator went out. If you can't afford to drive them 3 years and then trade them in, you're gonna pay a lot of money to your dealer to keep them running.
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Old 04-15-2013, 06:47 PM   #10
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I get the mrsp is a bit steep on German imports but look at 6 months old and let some other guy take the hit on depreciation. I payed 38k for a 2012 Tourareg a saving of nearly 20k against new.. It only had 8000 miles and pulls the trailer like a dream. A 5 yr warranty covers any defects...
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Old 04-17-2013, 08:10 AM   #11
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Bought a real truck

Thanks for the responses. I intend on RVing at least 7 times this summer and I want to enjoy myself without worrying so I traded up to the Tundra. It tows, I'm not stressing over every ounce and I love it.
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Old 04-17-2013, 08:26 AM   #12
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My parents used to toward TT weighing 8000 pounds with an expedition. It towed it but it wasn't wasn't a fun experience for them. My father was worn out just driving. They upgraded to a Tundra and have loved it. I tow a 6000 pound 5er with a 250HD. I have plenty of extra carrying capacity on the truck. It's worth it not to max your tow vehicle out with just your trailer.
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Old 04-17-2013, 09:28 AM   #13
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Touareg is a very nice tow vehicle for small RV trailers. Tow rating of the TDI is 7,700 pounds, so a practical max of about 5,000 to 6,000 pounds TT could be expected with a light load in the SUV. But VW gets a bit carried away with pricing of the Touareg in the USA. The cheap ones are almost $50,000, and the nice one is a hair over $60,000 MSRP.
For less than $50k-60k, I went with a Duramax. As a practical matter, I don't have to worry about, "is 7,000 lbs dry weight too much for my tow vehicle?"
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