2014 Subaru Forester- 1500 lb towing - Page 6 - Fiberglass RV


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Old 02-23-2013, 08:37 PM   #71
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Unhappy Subaru vs Trailer Life

I recently received the 2013 Trailer Life Guide to Towing. It seemed to me that the Forester had a higher rating than mentioned here. It says 2400, however, on the Subaru website, it does say 1500. Quite a difference.

Trailer Life does have the Outback correct, 2700 for the 2.5L and 3000 for the 3.6L.

Darned if the listing on the web isn't for the 2014. Did they sell all the 2013's?

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Old 02-23-2013, 08:42 PM   #72
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2013 WAS 2400. 2014 is 1500.
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Old 02-23-2013, 08:44 PM   #73
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jared J View Post
If trailer brakes are working properly, there should be no difference from driving the tow vehicle without the trailer.
This is simply not true, in my opinion. I think according to velocity laws- immutable, like other physics principles- Thomas' observation is correct.

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Old 02-23-2013, 08:50 PM   #74
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They do though have different transmissions so that may also be a part of why the difference in ratings along with the wheelbase and difference in rear suspension. Only Subaru knows for sure as to why!
Although these two models have had different transmissions, they now have the same basic specs (although different AWD control systems). I think the transmission is unlikely to be a source of towing rating difference (although transmission cooling could be in the automatics), but I agree that there are many details to consider and only the manufacturer really knows what might be the weak link in the chain.

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... one is left to wonder whats the marketing plan. Doesnt make sense to me that they now have two vehicles the Forester and Outback in the line up so close in specs and size.
The specs are often very similar between models because for efficiency of development and production the same components (engines in this case, but also transmissions and complete suspensions) are used where one might reasonably expect a difference.

Since the Outback now has substantially more towing capacity - whether or not we understand why - dealers have a reason to force buyers up to the Outback from the Forester. When I asked a Toyota salesman about the lack of towing capacity in the new RAV4, he said that he will just direct buyers who want to tow to a Highlander... this is similar.

Although the base engines are the same, the upgrade engines are different, distinguishing the models.
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Old 02-23-2013, 08:57 PM   #75
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Question Transmissions

I have my doubts about CVT Transmissions for towing.
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Old 02-23-2013, 09:14 PM   #76
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jared J View Post
If trailer brakes are working properly, there should be no difference from driving the tow vehicle without the trailer.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Francesca Knowles View Post
This is simply not true, in my opinion. I think according to velocity laws- immutable, like other physics principles- Thomas' observation is correct.
I'm not sure what "velocity laws" is intended to mean, but there is no fundamental principle which keeps a tug with trailer from decelerating as effectively as the tug alone. The relevant really basic law is Newton's good old second law: Force = mass x acceleration

The trailer adds mass, but it also adds tire traction in proportion, so if brake hardware is also added to those trailer wheels, the net result can be no change. Think of a 3000 lb tug and 1500 lb trailer like a 3000 lb car being very closely followed by a 1500 lb car, each doing its own braking; any size or weight of vehicle can brake equally effectively, with similarly appropriate tires and brakes. In practice, it takes no more push on the brake pedal in my Sienna to stop with the trailer than it does without, since the trailer does its share of the work.

Due to typical practices in trailer equipment, ultimate braking performance will be worse with the trailer... because the trailer will likely have tiny and low-traction tires with marginal drum brakes. Put on comparable hardware and all is good.

There is the problem of control, which will keep the rig from stopping at the ultimate limit of the tug alone, but I doubt the average driver would get close to detecting the difference with proper trailer brakes.
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Old 02-23-2013, 09:32 PM   #77
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The Outback is at its original towing capacity (or we assume it is, the 2014 specs aren't up.) Give it time. I don't think the intention was to downgrade the Forester; I think the Outback will be following in its tracks.

But maybe not- they were going for higher gas mileage so maybe they'll leave the Outback alone and then push the Forester as a better all-round car. (But that doesn't really make sense... my guess is the Outback will go down in towing capacity when it gets its redo, too.)

Still.. glad I got my Forester when I did.
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Old 02-23-2013, 10:00 PM   #78
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For those who may think that the presence of electric brakes on a trailer is equivalent to an equalization/sufficiency of braking power for the towed combination, I encourage a close look at the following report regarding then-new Federal mandates for braking distance minimums on semitruck/trailer combinations.

The trucks pulling the trailers had no problem with the minimums when not towing, but despite many thousands of dollars invested, the trucking industry was unable to perfect the technology required to build brakes for the trailers that would succeed in bringing the whole combination to a stop in the required minimum distance.

Here quoting from Federal Reduced Stopping Distance Mandate

Quote:
Even with air disc brakes on all wheels, testing demonstrated that these vehicles were unable to meet the 30 percent stopping distance reduction. As a result, the agency implemented a 13 percent reduction for these vehicles.
I leave it to others to divine the reason for the Feds' reduction in the minimum stopping distance requirement in the case of commercial trailers. But for myself, and for purposes of this discussion, the fact that the trucking industry had such difficulty with the standard suggests that there is very much more to stopping a towed combination than the simple addition of an electric-braked axle.

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Old 02-23-2013, 10:02 PM   #79
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Originally Posted by Francesca Knowles View Post
This is simply not true, in my opinion. I think according to velocity laws- immutable, like other physics principles- Thomas' observation is correct.

Francesca
How so? Just hitting the manual brake controller will put your head through the windshield, pulling the car trailer. The scamp with 28 year old tiny 7" brakes, handled every bit of stopping itself. With new 10" brakes, they will more than handle the trailers share of braking.
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Old 02-23-2013, 10:05 PM   #80
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I have my doubts about CVT Transmissions for towing.
I have my doubts about the subaru cvt NOT towing. I test drove a legacy with one, and it was an absolute dog. I told the dealer if the 6speed manual drove like that, they could keep it when it came in. Luckily, it drove like it had another 50hp on the cvt. Don't get me wrong, it's nothing impressive, but it will pull itself on hills without having to downshift.
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Old 02-23-2013, 10:10 PM   #81
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Originally Posted by Francesca Knowles View Post
For those who may think that the presence of electric brakes on a trailer is equivalent to an equalization/sufficiency of braking power for the towed combination, I encourage a close look at the following report regarding then-new Federal mandates for braking distance minimums on semitruck/trailer combinations.

The trucks pulling the trailers had no problem with the minimums when not towing, but despite many thousands of dollars invested, the trucking industry was unable to perfect the technology required to build brakes for the trailers that would succeed in bringing the whole combination to a stop in the required minimum distance.

Here quoting from Federal Reduced Stopping Distance Mandate

I leave it to others to divine the reason for the Feds' reduction in the minimum stopping distance requirement in the case of commercial trailers. But for myself, and for purposes of this discussion, the fact that the trucking industry had such difficulty with the standard suggests that there is very much more to stopping a towed combination than the simple addition of an electric-braked axle.

Francesca
First off, that's a lowered rating. Second, you apparently have no idea of the ratio of weight of the tractor compared to the trailer. Third, you have up to 80k pounds being stopped by four brakes. That comparison is so far out of the ballpark, you're not even in the parking lot.

My pickup is 5k, the camper will be around 3500 pounds. I have pulled 11,000 lb trailers with it, without diminished stopping. I guarantee you I will stop just as fast with my camper. My car trailer can lock up all four on the highway. Trust me, she slows down right quick.
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Old 02-24-2013, 01:47 AM   #82
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Although these two models have had different transmissions, they now have the same basic specs (although different AWD control systems). .
Actually we dont know that they do have the same transmissions as yet. Yes the 2014 Forester has now had a change to the same transmission but they havent announced what will be on the 2014 Outback as yet or if they will even be making one!

One other big difference between the two is that the Forester was/is built on the same platform as the Impreza. So I suspect they may have more than a few build components that are going to be different. In particular the suspension.

Planet Subaru has a bit of an explanation of the differences as things now stand.

Glenn is correct though in regards to the demographics - a lot of Subaru's flying around these parts - they have become the car of choose for a lot of Soccer Mom's. They are also popular choose for week-end trips to the mountain for skiing. Neither of those two groups are going to have a high percentage of them wanting the car to also tow.
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Old 02-24-2013, 08:20 AM   #83
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Originally Posted by Jared J View Post
If trailer brakes are working properly, there should be no difference from driving the tow vehicle without the trailer.
My comment was to differentiate the braking distance required at 55 MPH vs 75 MPH, regardless of the presence of a trailer. Thus my preference to drive more slowly.
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Old 02-24-2013, 08:54 AM   #84
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The Planet Subaru thing is interesting- but it is comparing the 2013s, not the 2013 Outback to the 2014 Forester (or both 2014s.) I don't think the Outback has a makeover coming this year as the Forester one was announced months before it actually appeared.

What I like about the Forester is the headroom for tall people, and as they say, the high seat but still very solid feeling cornering. My Mazda MPV was about as high but you felt like you were going to roll on any fast cornering. None of that with the Forester.
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