Towing with a 2000 Ford Ranger 3.0 Auto - Fiberglass RV


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Old 02-24-2015, 09:15 PM   #1
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Towing with a 2000 Ford Ranger 3.0 Auto

Hi folks, I am still looking for a trailer. I get lots of mixed messages on what will work. I looked at a R Pod and the salesman said I am good for a 3000 lb. trailer ...no problem and then I read on other sites no way.

I am pretty sure I need a 16 minimum and maybe a 19. I am 6'2" so I am a bit concerned with sleeping room. I like the R Pod for more room but I am afraid of towing with the Ranger. How about towing either of the Scamp models. Anyone have any experience?
Thanks,
Bob
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Old 02-24-2015, 10:22 PM   #2
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Hi Bob, check your owners manual for the tow rating. They change quite a bit for different models on Rangers.
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Old 02-24-2015, 10:58 PM   #3
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Hi, Bob. We towed a 16' Casita with a '93 Ranger with the 3.0L engine. The Casita was a 1989 model, Liberty equivalent floor plan. (I don't think it was actually called that until a couple years later.) Anyway, the Liberty is the one that makes the fore/aft "king size" bed. (It's not as wide as a king, but it is probably long enough for you - although you should check the specs at Casita Enterprises. (You won't be able to walk around much in the Casita; that bothers some people, but others are okay with the height limitation - YMMV.)

Later, we towed our 17' Casita (Liberty Deluxe) with a 2002 Ranger with the 4.0L engine. It was okay. The 17' Casita Deluxe has a much heavier tongue weight than the 16.

I realize my answer isn't specific to the Ranger you have, but while you wait for someone with more relevant experience you might want to look at the specs for the 16' Casita.
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Old 02-24-2015, 11:04 PM   #4
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The Ranger is one of the most popular and competent vehicles used to tow small fiberglass trailers. Many people find it to be great in combination with a 16ft Scamp. Scamp used a late 90s 3.0L Ranger for many years to deliver Scamp 19s all over the country. Last time I visited the factory it was still in service but was parked along side a much newer late model Ranger.
I have towed all sorts of trailers, including many different fiberglass trailers for over 14 years with my 4.0L Ranger with great satisfaction.
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Old 02-25-2015, 05:52 AM   #5
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I have a 2003 Ford ranger with a 3.0 it is a extend cab I pull a 2013 16ft Scamp layout 4 it does a great job I have used it to pull the scamp over the Smokey Mountians with no problems
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Old 02-25-2015, 05:56 AM   #6
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Hi Bob,
I towed an Aliner Classic (maybe 1,600 lbs loaded) with a 2000 3.0 Ranger for approximately 4 years. It was an automatic, and maybe a standard transmission would be different. I do know that Floyd's Ranger is a standard, and he has told me he is very happy towing with it. I might suggest you borrow a cargo or camping trailer if you have a friend with one and try towing with your truck, especially if you can find some uphill grades. All I can tell you is that on the flats or slight grades I had no problems. However, there were times in the mountains of Northern Georgia, and in Tennessee/North Carolina around the Great Smoky Mountains that I wasn't sure I was going to make it to the top, as the Ranger/Aliner combination would slow to a crawl on steeper inclines. I personally did not find it acceptable. When I sold the Aliner and bought a Scamp 19, I purchased an F150 3.5L EcoBoost. It turned out to be somewhat overkill, but at least I could grin when I effortlessly cruised by 18 wheelers on the uphill grades.
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Old 02-25-2015, 06:16 AM   #7
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Hello Bob and welcome. Smaller engines on pickups tend to be adequate at best. Going up hills will be slow and merging into fast moving traffic will be an adventure. Don't be surprised at poor mileage. That said, stay within the tow ratings and you'll get where you are going.

A thread you might find useful:
Trailer Weights in the Real World

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Old 02-25-2015, 07:01 AM   #8
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Hi Bob,
However, there were times in the mountains of Northern Georgia, and in Tennessee/North Carolina around the Great Smoky Mountains that I wasn't sure I was going to make it to the top, as the Ranger/Aliner combination would slow to a crawl on steeper inclines. I personally did not find it acceptable. When I sold the Aliner and bought a Scamp 19, I purchased an F150 3.5L EcoBoost. It turned out to be somewhat overkill, but at least I could grin when I effortlessly cruised by 18 wheelers on the uphill grades.
Over the years I've learned the Psyche of the driver is a part of "What tow vehicle equation?".

When we traveled by motorhome so many of friends traded in their adequate gas powered motorhomes for more powerful diesels so they could charge up hills, hills a minor part of their driving. We kept our gas powered rig, saved a $100-200 grand in diesel motor home purchase and drove all over North America. Not a single one of them traveled nearly as much of us but they could charge up the hills.

My view is I don't need to charge by 18 wheelers but am happy to keep up with them. We towed with a 4 cylinder (with manual transmission) and never felt we were holding anyone up. Sure we sometimes were cranking more rpms than normal on hills but when towing well over 100,000 miles averaging 21 mpg is a lot better than 15.

As to the mountains of Georgia and TN, we have been all over NA and been over mountain passes higher than anything in the eastern part of the nation, again without single issue. I never worry about hill charging or merging into traffic. Virtually every semi merges at slower speeds without issue.

I have nothing against people who want to charge up hills or merge into traffic at speed, for me it's not a factor. My focus is reliability and low operating cost.
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Old 02-25-2015, 07:41 AM   #9
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What car is going to argue with a merging semi LOL!! But you'll find that 90% of the time it's the semis that will pull over to the left lane to let you merge with your camper. I'm very happy towing our 17' Casita with our Dodge Ram with the 5.7 Hemi, merging and hills are effortless. Obviously my psyche is different than Norms.
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Old 02-25-2015, 09:04 AM   #10
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Bob,

Hope the roads are clear for your return home.

My point was that many people feel the need to travel at higher speeds, to have lots of power. Certainly that works. However it's not necessary.

Smaller vehicles like the Ford Ranger can do the job and do it more economically. Often the impression given is that you have to purchase a large vehicle to tow safely. It is not the case.

I also pull over for merging semi's as they often do for me. Rving has made me much more considerate of other drivers.
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Old 02-25-2015, 09:38 AM   #11
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Ranger Towing

Thanks for all the replies. I have looked at the towing specifications and the Ranger is good for 3900 lbs, 7500 lbs gross and 50 sq. ft. of frontal area. I suspect I am mostly in the back roads mode. I do want to do some mountain traveling so that is a bit of a concern. I have a great Ranger Crewcab with 45,000 on the ticker. Full size pickups are out of sight price wise. I suspect I won't get very good gas mileage but that is probably the price.

I have also looked at the R Pod and Wolf Pub but I think the units are higher in the front and would probably create more drag. The price is definitely right on either of those.

Bob
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Old 02-25-2015, 10:04 AM   #12
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Bob,

Definitely buy what ever trailer you like but trailer shape is a big deal when towing. On anything but hills most of the trucks load is the aerodynamics and frontal area of the trailer, weight becomes the load on hills.

We had two trailers the lightest was a stick built, boxy trailer, with that we got 10% less miles per gallon than we did with a heavier more streamlined fiber glass trailer using the same tow vehicle. Shape does count.

By the way we did not buy a fiberglass trailer to get better mileage, we had no idea that we'd get better mileage. We bought fiberglass because the aging stick built leaked badly.
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Old 02-25-2015, 10:11 AM   #13
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I really like the Scamp 16 but the added room in the R Pod is tempting. I feel comfortable the Ranger would handle the Scamp with no big problem but I am concerned with the additional frontal area on the R Pod. Cost wise the Scamp is more expensive but they seem to hold the value well. Not many used ones out there. I am not sure how the R Pod will do. The R Pod is really discounted at the dealers right now.
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Old 02-25-2015, 10:28 AM   #14
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I had a 1996 Ranger with a 3.0 and a 5 speed manual and it was underpowered in the mountains trying to tow a 1000 lb teardrop trailer. My CRV Honda towed it much better and it is a 4 cyl and auto. I found the 3.0 a very poor towing engine on steep hills it was not unusual to drop down to 2nd or 3rd gear to get up a grade. When I got the 17 ft Casita I went with a Jeep Cherokee with a 4.7 V-8 and and have had no problems maintaining a proper speed up hills and most of the time there is a little extra power to get out of trouble. I'm not any kind of a speeder I just want to keep at least a 55 mph speed on the road and not hold up traffic, I could never do this with the Ranger, especially if I was towing 3000+ lbs.
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