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Old 04-28-2011, 02:03 PM   #1
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Size of toad vehicle

I am getting ready to buy a new vehicle that will be our primary car both at home and on the road. My wife wants an Explorer to replace her 2004 Nissan Pathfinder Armada which is not flat towable (at least not easily).
This will be our first Dinghy and I do not want to make mistakes or have surprises. I know mileage will decrease, but I was debating the difference between pulling and Explorer and a smaller car, say maybe an Escape.
Does anyone out there pull a 2011 Explorer. Anything I need to know before jumping in? Any info or opinions will be appreciated. Thanks.
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Old 04-28-2011, 02:05 PM   #2
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We tow a 2007 Explorer and it's "ok" but I miss my Grand Cherokee.

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Old 04-28-2011, 04:51 PM   #3
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Hard to beat a Honda CRV. Has all the typical Honda traits...economy, reliability and roomy , as well as heated leather, dual digital climate control, seven speaker stereo, and more. Plus Honda will tell you in plain English that it is okay to tow four down, and how to prepare the car to do just that.
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Old 04-28-2011, 05:04 PM   #4
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We have a couple of threads on the 2011 Explorer.

Use the Google search at the top to search iRV2 for "2011 Explorer" to find them.
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Old 04-28-2011, 05:06 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by hooverbill View Post
Hard to beat a Honda CRV. Has all the typical Honda traits...economy, reliability and roomy , as well as heated leather, dual digital climate control, seven speaker stereo, and more. Plus Honda will tell you in plain English that it is okay to tow four down, and how to prepare the car to do just that.
Is there someone who won't tell you in plain English? My Colorado, Tahoe and Escape manuals all described the flat towing procedure in plain clear English.

FYI, my RV dealer said they shudder when someone comes in with the new CRV and wants baseplates put on it. They said very difficult and time consuming job.

As to options, DW's Escape also has heated leather seats, dual digital climate control, many speaker stereo, Sirius radio, back up sensors, backup camera etc. Also has 240 HP.
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Old 04-28-2011, 05:10 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Boeing Guy View Post
I am getting ready to buy a new vehicle that will be our primary car both at home and on the road. My wife wants an Explorer to replace her 2004 Nissan Pathfinder Armada which is not flat towable (at least not easily).
This will be our first Dinghy and I do not want to make mistakes or have surprises. I know mileage will decrease, but I was debating the difference between pulling and Explorer and a smaller car, say maybe an Escape.
Does anyone out there pull a 2011 Explorer. Anything I need to know before jumping in? Any info or opinions will be appreciated. Thanks.
The new Explorer looks very nice. Seems to be based styling wise on the Territory sold in Australia. Blue Ox has baseplates listed for it. Had it been available last September when we traded our Equinox and Tahoe for an Escape and Flex I'm not sure what the outcome would have been. Just love the Flex but I would have been tempted by the Explorer. You might take a look at the Blue Ox site and download the baseplate installation instructions and review them to get some idea of how difficult installation will or will not be.

Don
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Old 04-28-2011, 05:20 PM   #7
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[QUOTE=The Shadow;842612]Is there someone who won't tell you in plain English? My Colorado, Tahoe and Escape manuals all described the flat towing procedure in plain clear English.

FYI, my RV dealer said they shudder when someone comes in with the new CRV and wants baseplates put on it. They said very difficult and time consuming job.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Sounds like a great dealer
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Old 04-28-2011, 05:35 PM   #8
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I don't know if typical but the local muffler shop is putting a base plate on my new CRV for $395. (I didn't get to see him shudder tho) Just the base plate - I'm doing the wiring.
Bob
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Old 04-28-2011, 05:38 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Boeing Guy View Post
I am getting ready to buy a new vehicle that will be our primary car both at home and on the road. My wife wants an Explorer to replace her 2004 Nissan Pathfinder Armada which is not flat towable (at least not easily).
This will be our first Dinghy and I do not want to make mistakes or have surprises. I know mileage will decrease, but I was debating the difference between pulling and Explorer and a smaller car, say maybe an Escape.
Does anyone out there pull a 2011 Explorer. Anything I need to know before jumping in? Any info or opinions will be appreciated. Thanks.
[QUOTE=Chuck 1935;842623]
Quote:
Originally Posted by The Shadow View Post
Is there someone who won't tell you in plain English? My Colorado, Tahoe and Escape manuals all described the flat towing procedure in plain clear English.

FYI, my RV dealer said they shudder when someone comes in with the new CRV and wants baseplates put on it. They said very difficult and time consuming job.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Sounds like a great dealer
Yes a VERY good dealer. Does honesty trouble you? They tell you exactly what what will be required and yes, they do put them on CRV's. Perhaps you aren't very familiar with the problems that can be encountered in baseplate installation and the amount of cutting that can be required?

We didn't get our 04 Journey from them but they put the tow package on our Colorado and did a fine job. We did the Tahoe and then Escape ourselves (well, my son did them and I supervised - he is an MEng and his company has front end parts on both the Tahoe and Escape (he spent 6 weeks in Hiroshima working with Ford and Mazda on the Escape/Tribute) so it was not a very difficult job for him).
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Old 04-28-2011, 08:03 PM   #10
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[QUOTE=The Shadow;842639][QUOTE=Chuck 1935;842623]

Yes a VERY good dealer. Does honesty trouble you? They tell you exactly what what will be required and yes, they do put them on CRV's. Perhaps you aren't very familiar with the problems that can be encountered in baseplate installation and the amount of cutting that can be required?
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I love honesty, as a matter of fact, I installed my own CRV baseplate and didn't shudder one bit. Wasn't a big deal. Whenever I install a baseplate I always look at the instructions from the various manufacturers to see which one is the least complicated for that particular vehicle. They all vary.
I'm not trying to be a wisenheimer, I just dislike people making a big deal about something just to set you up for a big bill. Not that these guys are, but !!!
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Old 04-28-2011, 09:08 PM   #11
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Chuck, I'm afraid you don't read and absorb to well. At least not in this case. Notice I said the NEW CRV. I said nothing about the older model that you have. Things change from year to year, but I'm sure you know that.

Last fall when we did switch from 3 bowties to 3 blue ovals I also considered a CRV and the Odyssey - but couldn't get either in Sept/Oct in their top models - just not available since the 2010's were sold out except for bottom models and they were not getting delivery of the 2011 models yet (and we always depart for FLA near the end of Oct). You seem to think I have something against the CRV or Honda - not the case at all and you made a quantum leap in this case. I think the Odyssey is one of the best, if not the best Van available today.

BTW, you may recall when the Odyssey was towable. Honda took it off the list when it burned out too many transmissions. How do I know that - well a friend towed one for a few years. He reported the tranny problems to Honda and even though the warranty was up when the transmission finally packed it in, they replaced it no charge.

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Old 04-28-2011, 09:33 PM   #12
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I can't answer your specific question about towing an Explorer. However, last year we found ourselves in the same situation with our Windstar which wasn't going to be easy to set up to tow.

We thought about something smaller like a Honda CRV to tow, but we just couldn't fit that vehicle size into our lifestyle. We decided on a 2005 Honda Pilot, which I think is about the same size and weight of the Explorer????

The bottom line is, we couldn't be happier. We NEVER know the vehicle is behind us. I keep the backup monitor on most of the time so that I can watch it, and I have a tire pressure monitor system on all tires including the toad.

We speculate that our mileage may have been lowered by 1/2 a mile per gallon, but it may not have been. We have pulled the Pilot up 7% grades, and I believe that it does not affect our power at all. Our coach has a 8.3C Cummins, there seems to be ample power.
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Old 04-28-2011, 10:49 PM   #13
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[QUOTE=The Shadow;842854]Chuck, I'm afraid you don't read and absorb to well. At least not in this case. Notice I said the NEW CRV. I said nothing about the older model that you have. Things change from year to year, but I'm sure you know that.
---------------------------------------------------------------------
Well Shadow, your right about one thing, I don't read and absorb too well.
Also, your right I did install the baseplate on my 2003 CR-V, BUT, I also installed one on my son's 2008 CR-V, which I believe is the same through 2011. I used the Roadmaster 1559-1. Like I said, I used a Roadmaster baseplate because, in my opinion, it was the easiest for the CR-V.
Before any installations, I always look online for the specific installation instructions to see which manufacturer is the least complicated. I hope that explains things more clearly.
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Old 04-28-2011, 11:28 PM   #14
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Chuck, I looked at Roadmaster instructions for our Tahoe and the Escape. They sure didn't look any easier to me, in fact for the Tahoe they looked a lot more complex - but that is going to vary by vehicle. I just looked at the RM and BO instructions for the CRV and they do look more complex than the Escape instructions.

I think a major factor is how many an installer does of a particular type. Each vehicle is going to be different and some far more difficult than others. After my son did the Escape (and keep in mind he has more than a passing familiarity with it having designed some of the front end) he figured if he did another it would take half the time and maybe even less. The Tahoe was a different story altogether. BO screwed up and there was a front end change very very early after the intro of the 2007 (which was a redesign year) and they didn't catch it and even though they said no cutting was necessary it sure was. Their suggestion to solve the problem we encountered was way off base (pull the fascia out and over the baseplate (about an inch) so we wouldn't have to cut). My son took one look at it and said "no way, we'll cut out a bit rather than put that stress on the panel. Interestingly, the RM baseplates specified cutting. After my experience I suspect BO made the slight revision necessary so cutting is not required. Without that screwup because of the change the plates would have gone on very quickly. As it was no panels had to be removed. Tow brackets had to come off, a hole drilled in each frame rail (same place as for RM) and in went the plates. No cross support is necessary with the Tahoe because the frame is so strong. Actually it is a great vehicle to tow if you don't mind 5700 lbs. With our Amb 40PLQ and Cummins ISC it was a nothing. With the Kodiak and less than half the torque, not as easy at all and you could feel the tug when going over rail lines etc. Our Itasca has the 22,000 GCWR E450 and in theory with a heavier receiver fitted we could have towed the Tahoe - but I don't think that would be fun.

My dealer (which just became my dealer when we swapped our Kodiak for the Itasca) has done several CRV's (since it is a popular toad) so they should have a good idea how it compares with other vehicles.

Don
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