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Old 02-01-2014, 04:36 PM   #1
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Towing and mileage

My wife and I recently purchased a 2003 Fleetwood Bounder 35 foot, which I have not taken on a trip yet. (Waiting for spring!) I will be towing a 2012 GMC Terrain, four wheels down.
Will my towing/driving experience be similar to what I used to drive, which was a 2003 ton Chevy Duramax/Allison pulling a 34 foot Carriage Cameo with four slides.
Also what kind of mileage can I expect. I'm guessing around 6 or 7 MPG.
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Old 02-01-2014, 04:44 PM   #2
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this is a question that's hard to answer. Mileage will very depending on road conditions. Are you going to encounter hills? How about head winds? Stop and go starting will kill your mileage. If you can keep your RV on the freeway and maintain a constant speed, your going to get the best.
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Old 02-01-2014, 05:16 PM   #3
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My experience is 7.5 mpg towing a Honda Accord on a tow dolly. I kind of poke around at 55-60 mph because I'm not in any hurry. I think my numbers would have dropped fast if I ran about 70 mph. My next trip will be 4 down with a Wrangler so waiting to see what my numbers will be.
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Old 02-01-2014, 06:34 PM   #4
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I think that a lot depends on how you drive the motor home, as well as the road conditions, hills, etc., and how heavy a foot you have. Look for the "sweet spot" after you have traveled some with your outfit and you will get "good" fuel mileage. Lets face it, if you want good mileage, leave the MH in the yard. I get between 6-8mpg in most of my travels pulling a tow dollied car. I once got 3mpg but was going up into Yellowstone and got kinda in a hurry.
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Old 02-01-2014, 07:07 PM   #5
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I've towed with gas and diesel coaches. The coach doesn't know the car is there. It will be the same with you as a driver. You will not know the car is there. MPG will not vary enough to measure. The big MPG determination is wind, terrain and speed. Weight is a factor, but I have not been able to measure it. I always cruise at 60 MPH (on the interstates). MPG is 7.5 to 8.0. Enter wind and terrain. The MPG can go from 6.0 to 10.0 it just depends. Readings are taken real time with Scan Gauge Diesel. I'm moving 37K+ lbs down the road.
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Old 02-01-2014, 07:44 PM   #6
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Thank you, everyone, for your input. One question was not fully answered, perhaps I did not phrase it properly. What is easier to drive, the truck pulling the trailer, or the coach pulling the toad.
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Old 02-02-2014, 06:08 AM   #7
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I've towed with gas and diesel coaches. The coach doesn't know the car is there. It will be the same with you as a driver. You will not know the car is there. MPG will not vary enough to measure. The big MPG determination is wind, terrain and speed. Weight is a factor, but I have not been able to measure it. I always cruise at 60 MPH (on the interstates). MPG is 7.5 to 8.0. Enter wind and terrain. The MPG can go from 6.0 to 10.0 it just depends. Readings are taken real time with Scan Gauge Diesel. I'm moving 37K+ lbs down the road.
Completely agree. If I actually totaled up the costs of owning and operating/maintaining our coach, any change in mileage between towing and not, let alone towing something a bit heavier or a bit lighter, would likely be so small as to represent a rounding error, if it could even be measured.

Bottom line: I just don't care about mileage. It is what it is...and obsessing about it won't change it, but WILL drive you (and therefor your DW) crazy.



Jim
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Old 02-02-2014, 06:45 AM   #8
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If it is on a Ford chassis with the V-10, depending on road and weather conditions you can expect between 6 and 8 mpg. Towing the GMC might cost you 0.3 mpg or less. It all depends on the wind, terrain and your foot.
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Old 02-02-2014, 07:49 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bruceeb View Post
My wife and I recently purchased a 2003 Fleetwood Bounder 35 foot, which I have not taken on a trip yet. (Waiting for spring!) I will be towing a 2012 GMC Terrain, four wheels down.
Will my towing/driving experience be similar to what I used to drive, which was a 2003 ton Chevy Duramax/Allison pulling a 34 foot Carriage Cameo with four slides.
Also what kind of mileage can I expect. I'm guessing around 6 or 7 MPG.
NOPE no comparison. Not even close on the fuel mileage either. I moved out of Dodge Ram 3500 QC SB with slider hitch, axillary 50 gallon fuel tank pulling a 12K lb 5th wheel getting 10 -12 MPG on the highway at speeds we won't talk about. I could go 800 miles between fillups. I took this setup across country 2 times and it would leave behind most people and not even be breathing hard even with the AC on when it was 110 degrees outside.
Now I'm driving a barn towing a dingy and getting about 6MPG and this thing is out of breath and handles like a Submarine at periscope depth in a hurricane with no propulsion.
Now there are advantages to the MH, no stopping to let the DW go potty, same for spoiled mutt. Also no stopping for DW to grab you a sandwich and cold drink from the fridge. You also don't have to get out and setup when you get to the campground if it pouring down rain. You can be lazy, start the generator, level up, stick the slides out and wait. Can't do that with a 5th wheel.
Disadvantage is MPG's, the truck and 5th just down right smoked it. The truck was also very very comfortable and the 5th wheel made it ride even better.
Your MH will not have any where near the storage space you had with the 5th wheel either. You will find that there are a lot things you will have to leave behind.
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Old 02-02-2014, 08:59 AM   #10
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Pretty much apples and oranges comparison here. Total combined weight of the truck and 5er is what, 20,000 lbs? Total combined weight of a 40 ft pusher and 5,000 lb toad is what, 35,000 lbs? Fuel consumption per pound per hour might be a fair comparison, but what is the point? Bet my 2,500 lb. Mazda Mazda gets better mileage than a 5,000 lb. 1/2 ton pickup. Useless comparison.
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Old 02-02-2014, 11:55 AM   #11
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I guess I was looking for a little support, as we have never had a motorhome before. Now I'm feeling a bit beaten before the wheels turn.
Looks like I'm in the wrong Forum for support.
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Old 02-02-2014, 12:00 PM   #12
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I've had both and I think you will like pulling toad better than pulling trailer and you can make your coffee as you go.Mileage is pretty close to the same on both systems.
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Old 02-02-2014, 12:05 PM   #13
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Thanks for the encouragement. I'm feeling better already. :-)
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Old 02-02-2014, 12:11 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bruceeb View Post
I guess I was looking for a little support, as we have never had a motorhome before. Now I'm feeling a bit beaten before the wheels turn.
Looks like I'm in the wrong Forum for support.
OH...there are always a few that toss out flippant answers or good info that is slightly "tart". LOL

I think it will be hard for you to make a comparison on your own since you haven't had a MH before. As has been said several times the fact you are driving a barn door into the wind, especially a head wind is a much bigger factor than a toad. Of course, as has been said several times your driving habits and terrain play a major role.

I think from other similar threads you will see that on average you will see about 1/4 MPG penalty for towing...maybe not that much even. Obviously with the extra weight urban driving will use more go juice as will hilly terrain.

Try to put it into perspective and maybe the answer will be less important. If on average you get 7 MPG (OK...that is what I get. LOL) without a toad you now get 6.75 MPG. Now drive 10,000 miles and fuel is $4 a gal. Without the toad you will spend $5715 on fuel. With the toad you will spend $5925. It is costing you $215 for a busy year of driving to have your toad with you. Even if you pay $5 a gallon the cost of a toad on MPG should be about $265-$270 all things being equal.

I hope that helps put it in perspective.
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