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Old 10-13-2021, 03:24 PM   #1
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Small truck OK for small-ish trailer?

I'm looking at a relatively small travel trailer, 4500 unloaded, plus 1300 cargo capacity. I don't expect to tow it stuffed to the gills, but understand I have to also factor in people weight and stuff inside the tow vehicle. The Toyota Tacoma has the towing capacity, 6400 lbs (OK as long as I'm careful about packing) but are there other considerations? Like a cross wind putting me in the ditch?
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Old 10-13-2021, 03:44 PM   #2
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I towed a 4500 lbs. boat/trailer with a 2021 Tacoma for a bit, and I have to say it was awful. Barely enough power to tow on the highway and it gear-hunted the whole time. And a boat is a lot easier to tow that a TT of the same weight, because it has a lot more wind resistance and drag. A 6400 lbs. TT would be a nightmare, IMO.
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Old 10-13-2021, 04:22 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by fwschreiber View Post
I'm looking at a relatively small travel trailer, 4500 unloaded, plus 1300 cargo capacity. I don't expect to tow it stuffed to the gills, but understand I have to also factor in people weight and stuff inside the tow vehicle. The Toyota Tacoma has the towing capacity, 6400 lbs (OK as long as I'm careful about packing) but are there other considerations? Like a cross wind putting me in the ditch?
Tow capacity is the least important rating when it comes to towing a TT with a 1/2 ton truck. Payload (cargo carrying capacity) will likely be exceeded before you hit the tow cap. limit.

Look at the driver's side door jamb at the yellow/white Tire & Loading info sticker. What does it state is the cargo capacity (payload) of your particular vehicle?

From this sticker weight subtract the following:

-741 lbs (the approx. tongue weight @ 13% of your 5700 lb GVWR trailer)
-the weight of you and any other passengers/pets that will be in the truck
-100 lbs. for a good weight distribution hitch
-the weight of any and all gear that you will carry in the truck (bed or cab)

What if anything is left?
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Old 10-13-2021, 05:03 PM   #4
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Tow capacity is the least important rating when it comes to towing a TT with a 1/2 ton truck.
If only a Tacoma were as capable as a 1/2 ton.
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Old 10-13-2021, 05:18 PM   #5
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If only a Tacoma were as capable as a 1/2 ton.
Oh yeah....jeez! 3/8th's then. Must have had Tundra in my head.
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Old 10-13-2021, 08:14 PM   #6
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My friend's brother that I also know towed a small Winnebago Micro Mini for two seasons with a newer Tacoma and never liked it. I guess his trailer was about 4,500lbs. Anyway he got rid of both the Micro Mini and the Tacoma and now uses a bigger truck and a bigger trailer.
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Old 10-14-2021, 06:08 AM   #7
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Have to agree with the others, it would be unpleasant at best, deadly at worst. That is why my 1/2 ton Ram is growing to a 1 ton Ram. It also gives me flexibility for a different trailer should the need arise (already looking).
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Old 10-14-2021, 07:55 AM   #8
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We started out with a small SUV and a smallish trailer, a 20 Foot two axle. It would tow the trailer, but it was tiring to drive, and the hitch was properly set up.

For a Tacoma, I would stick to pop up trailers or a Casita and no more. RVing is supposed to be fun, not work.

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Old 10-14-2021, 08:50 AM   #9
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I towed a popup with my 2015 Canyon, had 7K tow capacity and ~1500 pound payload. My popup was about as large as you could get for a basic popup, dining table was even on a slide, was a full 7 foot wide. Base weight was about 2500 pounds. As I purchased, was probably closer to 2800 pounds, I may have loaded an additional 300-500 pounds of gear, in trailer but most of the gear had to be loaded in bed of truck. (All of this impacting the payload, of course.)

It towed fine, but if you went with a traditional travel trailer, I think the additional wind resistance would have been a bear to tow. I would argue to keep dry weight on a mid-size travel trailer no more than 3500 pounds, no wider than 7 foot, in order to be able to tow properly. Anything more and you are asking for a difficult time.

I did tow a Saturn Vue and a Jeep Wrangler on a 2 wheel U-Haul car dolly, each about 250 miles. They actually seemed to tow as easy as the popup, even though the dolly/vehicle combination was about 4500 pounds. Dolly did not have surge brakes, I did not have trouble with braking, but I also planned for at least double the braking distance.

I am not familiar with the Tacoma specs, I thought they had a higher tow capacity, but payload is likely to be as critical a factor.
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Old 10-14-2021, 10:32 AM   #10
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I towed a Coleman tent trailer with a Toyota T100 which is about the same size as the current Tacoma. The tow was not good. The short wheelbase and long rear overhang combined to provide a bouncy and unsafe ride. Things improved some when I installed a WDH on the tent trailer. I wouldn't consider doing what you are proposing.
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Old 10-15-2021, 10:36 AM   #11
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a 5800 lb GVWR TT is well into 1/2 ton territory and too much for a Taco.

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