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Old 08-23-2019, 01:09 PM   #1
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Recommendations for Subaru

My friend is looking at getting a 2016 Outback (6 cyl), and is also deciding on the type of trailer she can pull. She is looking at the Trek. But I'm posting this to see if anyone has other ideas. Thanks

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Old 08-23-2019, 11:01 PM   #2
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Location: Phoenix, AZ
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Recommendations for Subaru

I believe the towing capacity is 3,000 lbs for the 6 cylinder. Like minivans or small SUV/CUVs with a 3,500 lb capacity, a traditional travel trailer is out of the picture. Too much weight, too much wind resistance, too much ďsailĒ behind the tow vehicle pushing the car around. And donít deceive yourself...these vehicles are not SUVs; these are light duty cars. A small teardrop/pod-type of trailer or a midsize and smaller tent trailer (pop-up) is the most this vehicle should pull. Some larger popups and those with slides will be too heavy.

Remember, that 3,000 lb capacity must include the dry weight of the trailer, the weight of all options, cargo and supplies in the popup, the weight of the steel receiver hitch, the weight of all cargo in the tow vehicle, and finally the weight of all passengers. Usually, the tow capacity is above and beyond the weight of the fuel in tank and a 150-lb driver. So you can see the weights add up quickly.

For towing stability, you need about 10% of the popup weight on the hitch. Add that weight to the other weights that load the Subaru and the total cannot exceed the rated Cargo Capacity (or Payload Capacity). That will be stated on the yellow sticker on the driver door frame when you open the door. Finally, you cannot exceed the weight limit of the rear axle, or the Gross Axle Weight Rating GAWR-rear, which will be on the white sticker right next to the yellow sticker. A lot to think about.

Personally, I would not exceed a 2,000 lb dry weight popup with only a driver and passenger with a modest amount of cargo. More passengers, then less trailer. Full car with cargo plus bikes on top? Then only consider the smallest of popups with the lowest of profiles. A smaller nuCamp TAB pod/teardrop trailer might also fit the bill if a softsided popup is not wanted. These look pretty cool and quite practical in my opinion. A small fiberglass pod/egg type trailer like Scamp might also work.

2000 Coleman Tacoma Pop-Up
2006 Ford Explorer XLT, 4.0L-V6, 4x2
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Old 08-26-2019, 05:29 AM   #3
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We use a 2013 Subaru outback to tow a n Aliner Ascape Plus (walkthrough video - https://youtu.be/wt0yUmA9jEI). The Ascape is a hard sided camper. We didn't want to deal with wet canvas since we don't store it at our home. It's 1640 lbs dry.

It depends on what your friend intends to do with it. We car camp in state parks so it's good for us. I'm not sure how it would do with extended boondocking. It has a small kitchen, ac and a toilet, which were our main requirements. There is a model with a wet bath but it's too heavy for the Subaru (tongue weight will be a limiting factor).

Aliner had a newer model with grand in the name that is slightly larger but that parallel line are all too big so if looking at it, check the original models.
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Old 08-26-2019, 06:44 AM   #4
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Other small, albeit pricey, campers that work are the Helio O2 (https://youtu.be/M5a3lZd4BQc) and the Safari condo Alto (safari alto).
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Old 08-26-2019, 06:53 AM   #5
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Sorry, I can't seem to edit on my phone. Here's a walkthrough of the Alto - https://youtu.be/9Rr-qo_9h20 . Both the Helio and the Alto are Canadian. There are some smaller fiberglass campers as well. When we were looking last summer there were a bunch of different campers that were within the weight range but the tongue weight was too high. They usually had a wet bath. That seems to push things over. We didn't really look at the traditional teardrops because they make my wife claustrophobic. You could definitely tow many of those.
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