Diesel SUVs for TV - experiences? - Fiberglass RV


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Old 06-28-2013, 02:03 PM   #1
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Diesel SUVs for TV - experiences?

It's time to upgrade the old f150, and its 13 mpg with trailer. I'm looking at Mercedes ML350 or VW Toureg diesels, with 28 est mpg. Anyone out there have experience towing with them? Yes, I know they are expensive, but so is a new truck, and I need something that will do double duty as dressy for work. Thoughts?
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Old 06-28-2013, 02:09 PM   #2
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I have no real knowledge of those two vehicles, just thought I would add the Jeep Grand Cherokee with a diesel option, and the 2014 Dodge 1500 p/u will have the same diesel available too.
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Old 06-28-2013, 02:19 PM   #3
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There are many fuel efficient options for towing a 13' Scamp. Consider a SUbaru 4 cylinder. comfortable, gets good mileage and has 4 wheel drive.
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Old 06-28-2013, 03:53 PM   #4
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Wow the Toureg has the same size engine as my Rav4 with 7000 lb tow capacity is sweet with 17/23 gas mileage... I'm interested lol
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Old 06-28-2013, 04:36 PM   #5
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I'm looking at Mercedes ML350 or VW Toureg diesels, with 28 est mpg. Anyone out there have experience towing with them?
I think that it would be helpful to know whether your interest is specifically in these listed vehicles, or a bit more generally in diesel SUVs (as stated in the title), or is wide open. I don't see any point in yet another thread on which everyone proposes their favourite tug.
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Old 06-28-2013, 04:40 PM   #6
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Wow the Toureg has the same size engine as my Rav4...
... plus a turbocharger or two - big difference. All diesel engines available for this type of vehicle will be turbodiesels...including specifically the ML350 and Touareg.
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Old 06-28-2013, 05:28 PM   #7
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Diesel for a 13' Scamp is a little overkill, any v-6 vehicle should be able to handle that trailer without the diesel premium. Diesel costs as much as premium and this offsets the increase in mpg. In addition there is a diesel up charge at purchase time. Diesels are expensive to maintain, you must use synthetic oil and the average $$ at the dealer is about $200 every 5k miles. In the winter they must be plugged in when it drops below freezing and if you ever run out of fuel, you may have to be towed into the dealer to get your motor restarted.
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Old 06-28-2013, 06:16 PM   #8
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Speaking of diesel, we parked next to a person from BC at our last NL campground. He, like us, drove many of the back roads, and said he sometimes found it difficult to find diesel for his big truck.

We also met two people with small diesel Class C rigs. Both commented they did not like driving many of the off Trans-Canada roads in NL, too rough, with their 60 psi tires and class C suspensions.

We admit to having to do some 'dodgem' on some roads... again not a strength of a class C. I'm convinced there are even more advantages to a small trailer.

Neither of the class C's towed a car. I did not realize how much less mobile they are than a tow vehicle and a trailer. Evert where you go requires breaking camp.

I have said earlier there was no diesel price difference compared to regular that I've seen so far gas.

Unless you are planning to upgrade to a larger trailer you have a tremendous field of vehicles to choose from for a tow vehicle..
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Old 06-28-2013, 06:43 PM   #9
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I have not found, especially lately, that there is a diesel "premium"; it's true that the vehicles usually cost more, but the fuel in my experience has been roughly the same as regular gas - sometimes more, sometimes less. In Kansas and California, especially, it was significantly less than even 87 octane gas. We are now in Oregon and diesel is approximately the same price as the cheap gas and always less than the higher octane stuff. We choose to get biodiesel as much as possible (which is a lot here), which has kept a steady price for over a year now; depending on what station you compare to, it is the same or a few cents more than petrodiesel #2, but it keeps the air and the engine clean.

And while oil changes are a little pricey due to the heavyweight synthetic (just had our oil and air filter changed for about $100 at the dealer), our owner's manual outlines a service schedule of every 12,500 miles, not every 5000 like a gas engine. We do it every 8 or 10K just be safe. And the torque the diesel engine offers allows my 4-cylinder 2.8L engine to pull as much weight as the 3.7L V6 gas equivalent.

As far as plugging diesels in, this hasn't been true for many years, thanks to glow plugs. You just have to wait a second or two before turning the key from "on" to "start" when it's cold and everything's fine. If it drops below -20F you could have issues; my uncle in Alaska just pours some kerosene in the tank when this happens, and it starts right up. Kerosene will run a diesel engine, BTW.

Our tug is a 2006 Jeep Liberty CRD.
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Old 06-28-2013, 07:01 PM   #10
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My interest was in those two specific vehicles, preference being for mid size SUV with good capacity to make up for loss of truck bed, diesel for mileage and low end power, AWD for forest service roads in CO. We put on a lot of miles. Jeep diesel is coming, but delayed. Not trying to start a debate over favorite tugs; looking for anyone with experience towing with those two. May end up with larger trailer (Bigfoot), plus boat. Appreciate the input.
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Old 06-28-2013, 07:21 PM   #11
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My 2006 Jeep Liberty CRD had to be plugged in.
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Old 06-28-2013, 08:45 PM   #12
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Barring, I have not towed with either but have been following the forum info on these vehicles for many years now. Both are top rated for towing but it has been suggested that the Mercedes is the better of the two.

This youtube blurb shows you just how good they can be when the set up is right. Mercedes towing Airstream - YouTube
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Old 06-29-2013, 05:49 AM   #13
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Originally Posted by cpaharley2008 View Post
Diesel for a 13' Scamp is a little overkill, any v-6 vehicle should be able to handle that trailer without the diesel premium. Diesel costs as much as premium and this offsets the increase in mpg. In addition there is a diesel up charge at purchase time. Diesels are expensive to maintain, you must use synthetic oil and the average $$ at the dealer is about $200 every 5k miles. In the winter they must be plugged in when it drops below freezing and if you ever run out of fuel, you may have to be towed into the dealer to get your motor restarted.
I didn't find that this really was true when I had a diesel VW Golf. No plugging in, at least in Pennsylvania winters, didn't really have anything in the way of maintenance costs that was different from a gas car, and the 45 mpg trumped what at the time was a slightly higher per gallon price.

Boy, I miss that diesel purr and loved that car. But thanks to a blunder when the dude who changed the oil forgot to screw the plug back in, the car caught on fire after my husband drove it 25 miles without oil, not really expecting to worry about it, and suddenly it only existed in the form of a nice check from the insurance agency. But it's the fact that I needed to replace that car that I eventually ended up with the Forester and the ability to tow a trailer! So I have that forgetful mechanic to thank for my new adventures.
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Old 06-29-2013, 07:07 AM   #14
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Boy, I miss that diesel purr and loved that car. But thanks to a blunder when the dude who changed the oil forgot to screw the plug back in, the car caught on fire after my husband drove it 25 miles without oil, not really expecting to worry about it, and suddenly it only existed in the form of a nice check from the insurance agency. But it's the fact that I needed to replace that car that I eventually ended up with the Forester and the ability to tow a trailer! So I have that forgetful mechanic to thank for my new adventures.
Sounds familiar jen. A buddy helped me change the oil on my 1st car, a 1967 Austin Mini 850. He installed the cartridge oil filter wrong which leaked. Fried the crankshaft bearings after 10 min of driving.

Anyway we know what the OP wants and that is great but the diesel Golf's would be nice for towing an Egg.
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