Towing with VW Jetta TDI - Page 7 - Fiberglass RV

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Old 03-14-2016, 02:14 PM   #85
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SilverGhost's Avatar
Name: Jason
Trailer: Egg Camper
Posts: 273
Saw this video was posted on TDIClub. It illustrates (taken with a grain of salt given the source ) how T-ESP can save your butt. I believe RedBarron55 posted recently about the great lengths he went to to properly install the wiring so the T-ESP would work correctly (along with shift points of the DSG).

I wonder why this hasn't taken off in the truck market (IE: Ford, Dodge, Chevy, Nissan, Toyota, etc.)?


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Old 03-14-2016, 02:25 PM   #86
Trailer: 87 Scamp
Southern New Jersey
Posts: 62
Great video, good laugh.

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Old 03-14-2016, 10:11 PM   #87
Name: J
Trailer: 1978 Trillium 1300
North Carolina
Posts: 57
I have just "designed" and installed a custom hitch on my '03 Jetta TDI wagon. Attaches fully to the frame like the Bosal or Westfalia, but has a 2" receiver tube and is higher up. It clears the fascia, so no loss of ground clearance. I will be towing my 13' Trillium with brakes down the ALCAN and across the US this summer. Car is rated at 49/50 mpgs from the factory, I will see what I average while towing.
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Old 03-15-2016, 08:04 AM   #88
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Name: JD
Trailer: Scamp
Posts: 765
I have pretty much finished my 16' Scamp trailer modifications and the installation of the hitch, electrical wiring and air bags for the 2013 Jetta Sportwagen. I have seen the clip from Top Gear a while ago and I think that the trailer stabilization systems have been required since 2006 in Europe.
My car recognized the trailer and the car tuning is modified for it. That and the T-ESP are the reasons I went to all of the trouble to get the car properly setup.
The Ford Kuga (Escape in this country) also had a higher tow rating in this country when the factory towing setup is used which includes the module and wiring along with the hitch, very important!
The tongue weight is a little higher than I wanted, but the air bags level the car OK.
I will have to trim the balance to get the weight exactly where I want it to be.
I am shooting for 200 lbs on the tongue as per VW specifications.
Since the weight and tongue weight is unloaded there are accommodations that can be made.
I think that I will be spot on if I add a generator mount in the rear, but the addition of weight there has to be thought out carefully and tested as well.
The trailer tows quite well as is and the car with the 2.0 L. TDI has plenty of power. If you give it too much throttle it can still spin the front tires. I think that is the limiting factor.
Cruises easily at 65 mph. which id the limit for the trailer tires anyway.
During my test runs the setup has reported 25 mpg on the computer. We will see on the way to Green Eggs and Ham this weekend. 1ST trip!
So much to setup and test out!
See Ya at Green Eggs and Ham Catoma #33
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Old 03-15-2016, 10:17 AM   #89
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Name: Michael
Trailer: Li'l Hauley
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That video was a hoot! Those guys are having way too much fun. They must not have to pay for any of that stuff.

Obviously, the VW is superior to the Mazda.
To every thing there is a season, and a time to every purpose under the heaven... --Ecclesiastes 3
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Old 03-15-2016, 11:55 AM   #90
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Name: Carol
Trailer: 22' Airstream Formerly 16' Scamp
British Columbia
Posts: 11,706
Originally Posted by Mike Magee View Post
That video was a hoot! Those guys are having way too much fun. They must not have to pay for any of that stuff.

Obviously, the VW is superior to the Mazda.
LOL I love those guys. And Yup I don't think they pay for any of the gear they take out and destroy! LOL

It would be fun to try to do some of the caravan racing they do on the tracks without worrying about the final impact on the trailer or the car towing it! LOL would be a great way to learn to handle your trailer correctly in situations when it becomes wiggly/unstable.

Also totally agree the European hitch system/set ups are far superior to what we get in North America.

Trailer stabilization systems on the cars in Europe is just one component that makes their towing system better than that in North America.

Some of the other BIG differences is they do not have the genetic Hitch Class System we have here in North America that often results in poor fitting/designed hitches being installed and installers drilling holes and attaching on parts of the car that were never designed to take that amount of weight or stress.

In Europe each hitch is made specifically for the car it is going to be attached to so that only the factory reinforced mounting points are used and hitch is stamped with the same weight limit on it that the car manufacture has set for that cars tow rating - no more.

The European hitches are also not going to stick out to far or sit to low (which will change the towing stability) on the car as they often do on cars using the NA generic hitch class system.

The hitch/ball set up in Europe are more upright vs North American horizontal. The ball on the hitch is also not normally removable. On the trailer side of things the Euro couplers have a more sophisticated attachment to the ball than we have here in NA as well. In Europe they use the ISO standard tow ball of 50 mm on all the vehicles.

European trailers all have brakes but its not common to find electric brakes on them. The most common type of brakes found on European trailers are called Over runs (do a google for differences in application vs electric brakes). Also some of the trailers in Europe have their own stability system on them and may have another different type of braking system as a result.

The other BIG difference regarding trailer stability when towing is of course the across the country tow limits which in many/most counties is 50mph max with some exceptions but you will not find to many places you can tow over 60mph.

Speed of towing is the BIGGEST game changer when it comes to a trailers stability as well as the ability of the vehicle pulling it to adequately tow it, which is the probable the #1 reason many vehicles in Europe that are the same or close to the same in all ways (although there are very few if any that are these days) have a higher tow rating than its counter part in North America.

In Europe you would be very foolish to attach a trailer to a car that is heavier than what the car manufacture states the car is rated to tow as the police do and will check the car labels (tow rating appears on a visible label), the trailers weight labels and the hitch stamp/label.

The European authorities are generally far more serious about ensuring those towing trailers are following the cars & trailer manufactures towing specifications than they seem to be here in North America - that is until you have an accident and hurt and kill someone here in North America - then they get serious about it here.

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