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Old 11-08-2015, 09:30 AM   #1
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Setting up 2015 Chevy Malibu for towing

Weíre at the point of setting up our first 4-down dinghy, a 2015 Chevrolet Malibu. Iím interested in how others have set up a 2014-2015 Malibu for towing.

After doing some research, my inclination is to go with a Roadmaster base plate and a ReadyBrute Elite tow bar/brake combination. I havenít decided yet on lights or electrical.

I will appreciate any experience you can share with setting up this particular car. Any comparative advantages to other tow setups?

Weíre looking for something simple to operate and reliable.

Thanks for your comments.

Wayne
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Old 11-08-2015, 04:15 PM   #2
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First thing to check is can it be towed 4 down. Our 2007 Malibu can, that's why we still have it. Our 2013 Malibu can't be towed 4 down. I don't know about the 2015. I assume an auto trans so check the owners manual for 'Recreational Towing'.

We have a BlueOx baseplate and tow bar for ours, works great. No experience with Roadmaster so can't comment other than I'm sure they make a good product too.
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Old 11-08-2015, 05:19 PM   #3
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Originally Posted by 70ChevelleSS View Post
First thing to check is can it be towed 4 down. Our 2007 Malibu can, that's why we still have it. Our 2013 Malibu can't be towed 4 down. I don't know about the 2015. I assume an auto trans so check the owners manual for 'Recreational Towing'. . .
Before we looked for a new car, I checked the dinghy towing guides and 2015 Malibu was listed. I also checked the User Manual in the glove box for verification before making the deal.

From what I gather, the 2014 and 2015 Malibu models are the same for towing purposes. I did not check on earlier models.


My tentative choices are guided by 1) Roadmaster is the only one that makes a base plate for a sports car that I would like to have the choice of towing in the future, and 2) the Readybrute Elite is both tow bar and mechanical surge brakes in one. It seems the most simple to hook up, etc., and it is also a little cheaper than separate units.

Since the coach weighs over 20,000 pounds and the Malibu is less than 3400, I thought briefly about dispensing with brakes (theyíre not required in WV) but I figure itís cheap insurance against future problems.

Wayne
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Old 11-09-2015, 05:54 AM   #4
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Good to know there are more cars that can be flat towed. Guess I should have waited and got a 2014 instead of the 2013.
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Old 11-09-2015, 07:59 AM   #5
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I have the same base plate from Roadmaster, easily installed in a day, also already had the ready brute bar that I towed my Silverado crew cab and inertia brake worked excellent.
On the 2015 Malibu I did not use the brake, it tows easily and is very lite in comparison to truck! I did find on E-trailer a wireless signal light system that mounts on the trunk lid via magnets and recently was on 2K trip not problems, only thing is lights use six AA batteries each, but have shut off switch on each when not in use, Transmitter mounts on MH trailer plug and draws power from MH when you initiate signals. Did change blinker module to an electronic one.
Hope that helps
George Diaz
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Old 11-09-2015, 11:13 AM   #6
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Thanks, George. That’s just the kind of assurance/feedback I was hoping for! A couple of quick questions if you don’t mind:

How heavy is your coach? I’m still a little undecided about supplemental brakes and I’m sure weight of the towing vehicle will make a difference.

Have you found it necessary to do anything other than pull the specified fuses to prevent battery discharge in the Malibu?

Are you using a rock guard? I’ve thought about using something like the Protect-A-Tow, but I’m not sure about potential compatibility issues.

Thanks again.

Wayne
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Old 11-10-2015, 08:20 AM   #7
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I have a 2001 Newmar Dutch Star diesel pusher 300Hp Caterpillar. On the 2015 Malibu with 2.0Liters turbo eng. I follows instruction and remove two fuses according to book, no trouble discharging batteries during full day of traveling, except first time, I think I did not follows instruction correctly.
I have never used a rock guard of any type, I only notice on My white Malibu is exhaust gases on right side of grill, that can be prevented with saran wrap or good wax on the frontal area. My MH does have a full mud guard original from factory.
Hope this works for you.
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Old 11-10-2015, 03:33 PM   #8
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Thanks, George!

Your coach doesn’t figure to be too much heavier than mine. We have basically the same engine, 300 Cat, except yours is probably a newer generation than mine, C7 vs. 3126B.


My exhaust exits out the driver side several feet in front of the rear bumper, so I would hope for no problems from exhaust soot. Time will tell, of course.


I don’t have a mud flap, so I may spend a couple of hundred dollars for the Protect-A-Tow. It’s cheap insurance, probably.


Thanks again.


Wayne
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Old 03-21-2016, 06:19 PM   #9
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We just looked at a 2016 Malibu and the manual tells you how to flat tow it.

Quote:
Originally Posted by WNJeffers View Post
Before we looked for a new car, I checked the dinghy towing guides and 2015 Malibu was listed. I also checked the User Manual in the glove box for verification before making the deal.

From what I gather, the 2014 and 2015 Malibu models are the same for towing purposes. I did not check on earlier models.


My tentative choices are guided by 1) Roadmaster is the only one that makes a base plate for a sports car that I would like to have the choice of towing in the future, and 2) the Readybrute Elite is both tow bar and mechanical surge brakes in one. It seems the most simple to hook up, etc., and it is also a little cheaper than separate units.

Since the coach weighs over 20,000 pounds and the Malibu is less than 3400, I thought briefly about dispensing with brakes (theyíre not required in WV) but I figure itís cheap insurance against future problems.

Wayne
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Old 03-22-2016, 04:11 AM   #10
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We just looked at a 2016 Malibu and the manual tells you how to flat tow it.
Yes. OP here.

We set up the 2015 Malibu with the Roadmaster tow bracket, the Readybrute Elite tow bar and surge brake combination, and the Towmate wireless LED brake light bar.

This past winter we towed it 2400 miles from West Virginia to Florida and other points around the South and back. We could not be more pleased. This towing set-up was quick and easy to connect and disconnect, and the Malibu does not require idling daily to lube the transmission, etc. On the way down, we hitched it up in West Virginia and didnít unhitch until a week later when we had made our way to south-central Florida. I recharged the Towmate light bar each evening. We basically did not even know it was there, except for being mindful that we could not back up the coach with it hitched.

Wayne
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Old 08-09-2016, 08:09 PM   #11
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We have towed our 07 Malibu for a couple of years now with the Ready Brake systems no issues. I installed a "Tow Daddy" module that plugs into one of the tailights and controls the lights but I don't believe they make them anymore.
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