Going crazy in the world of GVWR, etc - Page 3 - Fiberglass RV

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Old 08-17-2016, 04:33 PM   #29
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Name: Jon
Trailer: 2008 Scamp 13 Std
Posts: 3,571

Somehow we always come back to the same two extremes: the self-proclaimed engineers who insist you can safely tow a 21'er with a Smart Car as long as you have "the right set-up," and the fear mongers who insist you're placing the universe in danger if you try to tow a 13'er with anything less than a heavy-duty pick-up truck.

Sure, payload does matter. This chart in my Honda owner's manual shows how the tow rating is reduced as more passengers (or equivalent cargo) are loaded in the vehicle:
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Those numbers take into account GCWR, GVWR, GAWR, payload, etc. Notice how the tongue weight limits drop proportionately faster than trailer weight limits, reinforcing my earlier statement that the rear axle weight rating is often the problem.

Best thing, as Bobbie suggests, is to download the owner's manual for whatever vehicle you're considering and read everything it says about towing. Many are quite informative and will clear up a lot of your concerns. A Google search on "20XX <Make> <Model> Owner's Manual" will usually pull up a link to a downloadable PDF file. This is one time the internet is truly helpful!

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Old 08-19-2016, 07:21 AM   #30
Name: bill
Trailer: 1996 Casita LD
North Carolina
Posts: 77
Just to second the google search, tow ratings are easily found. Unfortunately, payloads are not so easy to find. The reason is they usually have the payloads listed for very basic models. But all the options most of us get come right out of the payload. So my truck if it were a stripped model, would have a payload rating of ~2,000 pounds. But as a Lariat model (next to the top), its only 1450 pounds. All the doodads and extras add up. My truck is a four door, seats five passengers. Imagine a family of five traveling in my truck. Lets say those passengers average 150 pounds each, thats 750 pounds. Then add 250 pounds for my bed camper top, thats 1000 pounds. That only leaves 450 for everything else: gear in the truck, hitch, tongue weight, etc. And in my case at least, the Casita has very little storage capacity, so there is always a fair amount of gear in the truck. Easy up canopy, folding chairs, grill, etc.

Towing most 13 footers is a much smaller number weight wise than the 17 footers. Of course, you give up space and features. My 17 foot Casita is on the porky side for a FG trailer.

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Old 08-19-2016, 10:06 PM   #31
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Name: Dale
Trailer: 2010 EggCamper, 2002 Highlander 3.0L, 1999 F250 7.3L Diesel
Posts: 471
Jill, At one time, we were strongly considering a 2016 Kia Sorento for our 17' EggCamper, but we've decided to squeeze a few more trips out of our 2002 Toyota Highlander for now. If the 2017 Kia is still on your radar screen, make sure you get a Class III 2" trailer hitch (I think the 2016 factory hitch was a Class II 1 1/4") - the more bolts holding it to the unibody frame at designated mounting locations, the better (I'm sure that will stimulate further comments). And as others have mentioned, you'll need to have a brake controller and 7-pin receptacle installed for the electric trailer brakes (unless your camper has "surge" brakes like the Lil' Snoozy). At the time we were seriously looking, our local Kia dealer was not willing to install a Class III hitch or brake controller, so we were going to have to take it to a trailer specialty shop to have that done (not that big of a deal). Anyway, just more stuff you need to be aware of, if you're not already, and to ask your local dealer about to be sure you get what you need/want for the size camper you plan to get. Dale

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