New V6 Canyon/GMC Colorado Tow Review - Fiberglass RV


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Old 03-13-2015, 07:36 AM   #1
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New V6 Canyon/GMC Colorado Tow Review

It's no secret that many forum members here are using some sort of pick up truck to tow their trailers.

This morning on another forum there was a very good towing review that I thought would be of interest to some folks here.

I was impressed with the capabilities of the new mid sized GM trucks and the overview of the safety issue about the weak GM hitch.

Hope this article helps with anyone looking to buy one of these new trucks.

New Canyon & Colorado - Airstream Forums
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Old 03-13-2015, 08:14 AM   #2
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Certainly an interesting Personal Opinion piece about a truck that, basically, had almost the same towing specifications in the 2003 model.


In that he claimed that the hitch mount was damaged it would have helped if he had mentioned the total weight and hitch weight of the 34' trailer he was towing that caused that damage in such a short time. IMHO: If a new vehicle is unable to support it's specifications the answer is to communicate with the manufacturer, not to start doing ones own modifications.


And, as far as the ratings being to high, most truck owners don't use them to tow travel trailers, but many use them to tow work & equipment trailers, where weight capacity is of interest and frontal area is a lesser concern.


But that said, it was a positive review for those of us in the FGRV sector who would not be towing at or over the maximum limit of that truck anyway.
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Old 03-13-2015, 08:55 AM   #3
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For those interested in the current 2015 Canyon/Colorado, and want something more in-depth, I found this series useful. You will have to scroll to the bottom of the page to find the first installment in the series.
2015 GMC Canyon long-term review Archives AutoGuide.com News
Again, it is an opinion piece, but it reflects more information about the truck itself than a 40 miles test tow might impart.


BTW: any frame/hitch damage caused while towing within mfg's specifications, would be covered by mfg's warrantee for at least the first two years.
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Old 03-13-2015, 09:07 AM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bob Miller View Post
Certainly an interesting Personal Opinion piece about a truck that, basically, had almost the same towing specifications in the 2003 model.

But that said, it was a positive review for those of us in the FGRV sector who would not be towing at or over the maximum limit of that truck anyway.
Like virtually all reviews it's a 'Personal Opinion', however from a recognized experienced professional.
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Old 03-13-2015, 09:29 AM   #5
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I am very interested in this truck. I want to downsize from my Silverado 2500HD once my fifth wheel is sold. I like the compact dimensions of the Colorado/Canyon.

Besides the new Oliver, I also have a Yamaha jet boat that tips the scales around 5200 lbs. I was thinking the Colorado/Canyon with a 7000 lbs tow rating would be a good match for both trailer and boat.

I'd really rather not wait for the diesel version. Diesels are good for big towing, but the noise and pricey fuel are still downsides.

I found this piece enlightening:

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Old 03-13-2015, 10:13 AM   #6
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My comments were based on what was written, not who wrote it.


The writer seems to be suggesting that the hitch area is not designed to meet the manufacturers specifications.


According to a listing posted on another Airstream forum:
http://www.airstream.com/wp-content/...me-Weights.pdf
The "Dry Weight" of a 30' Airstream Classic is 6382 lbs with a tongue weight of 880 lbs, suggesting that the trailer in the test, unless it was completely empty and dry, could have been over the design towing weight specifications for the TV.


Sometimes more questions are left unanswered than are answered.
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Old 03-13-2015, 10:17 AM   #7
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There is no telling what his real weights were, as well as any craziness imposed with his WD setup. There are lots of threads on that forum where people have actually damaged their trailers with the weight distributing hitch set up too rigid.

I suspect he was way over 7000 lbs, as well as beyond the spec for the tongue weight.
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Old 03-13-2015, 11:39 AM   #8
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There is no telling what his real weights were, as well as any craziness imposed with his WD setup. There are lots of threads on that forum where people have actually damaged their trailers with the weight distributing hitch set up too rigid.

I suspect he was way over 7000 lbs, as well as beyond the spec for the tongue weight.
Generally speaking from what I have seen/read the author tests trailers empty as he is an RV dealer. He also uses and recommends the "Easy Lift" brand of WDH that is the most gentle brand of WDH's on the market.

One would also suspect that any component or factory option on a vehicle has headroom built into it's spec. Also note GM has a record of building weak factory receivers. The forum chatter grapevine is full of accounts of bending, breaking GM receivers.
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Old 03-13-2015, 11:48 AM   #9
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Interesting.

I've never heard of broken GM receivers before. I'd like to see someone try to bend the one on my Silverado - it's a Class V rated at over 17000 lbs!

Sometimes dealers will sell you a bigger WDH than you really need. They come in various weight classifications. So if you have an 800 lb tongue weight, and expect it to be 1000 loaded, you should buy the 1000 lb bars. You may be tempted to buy the 1200 lbs bars thinking you'd have headroom just in case. What you end up doing is having unnecessarily stiff bars and thus put too much stress on the trailer tongue and frame. You'd actually be better off erring on the size of picking bars too small - especially with lightweight trailers like FRP's and Airstreams.
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Old 03-13-2015, 01:06 PM   #10
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Weight rating of bars

Quote:
Originally Posted by Ron Merritt View Post
Interesting.

I've never heard of broken GM receivers before. I'd like to see someone try to bend the one on my Silverado - it's a Class V rated at over 17000 lbs!

Sometimes dealers will sell you a bigger WDH than you really need. They come in various weight classifications. So if you have an 800 lb tongue weight, and expect it to be 1000 loaded, you should buy the 1000 lb bars. You may be tempted to buy the 1200 lbs bars thinking you'd have headroom just in case. What you end up doing is having unnecessarily stiff bars and thus put too much stress on the trailer tongue and frame. You'd actually be better off erring on the size of picking bars too small - especially with lightweight trailers like FRP's and Airstreams.
When we bought our Casita , we purchased. the factory WDH option. The hitch came with the 600 lb bars. When the bars were stolen a year later , the local RV place tried to sell me 1000 lb bars , telling me " Size doesn't matter."
I called the WDH manufacturer and was told the exact opposite and for the reasons mentioned by Ron . I purchased new 600 lb bars from the tmanufacturer.
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Old 03-13-2015, 01:17 PM   #11
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Also note GM has a record of building weak factory receivers. The forum chatter grapevine is full of accounts of bending, breaking GM receivers.
Hummm, have a family that has been pulling for years large/heavy boats such as Off Shore Pursuits and Grady Whites with GM Trucks and have never heard any of them mention a bent receiver in all the years they have been doing it and all the GM trucks they have collectively owned.
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Old 03-13-2015, 01:33 PM   #12
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Weak GM Reveivers?????

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(clip) "Also note GM has a record of building weak factory receivers. The forum chatter grapevine is full of accounts of bending, breaking GM receivers.
"

I have used GM products for towing since my 1972 Blazer/Airstream combination I have never heard that allegation either

I thinks that specific supporting examples are in order before making that statement.

Anecdotal reports, especially from a part of town that may see manufacturer's specifications as "suggestive", may have some value, but not without complete details.

I looked on the huge S-10 forum I belong to and didn't find a single mention of a factory installed hitch failing.

If this is a real problem it is something that should be brought to the attention of the NHTSA and General Motors. I am forwarding this entire thread and the original link to GM's Safety Reporting Hotline for comment.
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Old 03-13-2015, 01:58 PM   #13
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Originally Posted by Ron Merritt View Post
Interesting.

I've never heard of broken GM receivers before.
There are many reports Ron... Here is just one that came up on a 2 second Google search.... Not a pretty sight.

GM Hitch Failure Can Happen to You
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Old 03-13-2015, 02:22 PM   #14
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If you go to the Ford, Chevrolet ,Dodge , Ram forums ,there are hundreds of posts concerning factory installed hitch failures on all brands .All of the truck manufacturers require a WDH to achieve full towing capacity. The majority of the hitch problems seem to stem from not using a WDH as directed . The necessary information about towing is in the owners manual ,the problem is getting people to read and follow the manual IMHO
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