How does 4Runner Toyota tow ? - Fiberglass RV


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Old 06-14-2019, 01:10 PM   #1
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Question How does 4Runner Toyota tow ?

How does 4Runner Toyota tow ?



Alas, our 2000 tow vehicle is finally getting ready to kick-it.


We have a 17' Casita. Wondering how the 4Runner (Toyota) tows. It is rated at 4500-5000. However, the vehicle is very heavy on it's own. Test drive included a sluggish uphill run. Any input from you Toyota folks. We would like to stay with a 6 cylinder for efficient fuel mileage.
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Old 06-14-2019, 02:02 PM   #2
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One thing I've realized after spending enough time around other vehicles is that a Toyota V6 is not necessarily more efficient than a good V8. In many cases it's less fuel efficient.

Are you talking brand new?

If it was sluggish uphill without a trailer, well, you can guess how it'll be with one. A lot depends on the trailer. Any 13' will be no problem. Most 16-17.5' will be ok. It'll just be slow. Payload limit is what will get you, so pay attention to that. I'm not aware of any trailer 17' or less that's over 4,000lbs, unless it's heavily modified or completely filled with junk.
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Old 06-14-2019, 02:05 PM   #3
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Any 13' will be no problem. Most 16-17.5' will be ok. It'll just be slow.
Pretty much what I was going to say (I have an FJ Cruiser which has the same drivetrain as the 4Runner).
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Old 06-14-2019, 02:52 PM   #4
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Greetings,


We towed our 17 Casita FD with a V6 and a V8 4runner. The V6 was a litelesluggish on steep uphill runs but other that that it was a great tow vehicle. We traveled thousands of miles around the western US with it. We happended to have a few extra coins before we retired and traded for a V8 (sadly no longer available, that particular engine is now in the Lexus). We were glad we did when Reace, from ETI, came along with the 21 we were all set. Hated to give up the Casita but it went to some folks who are now camping buddies. I believe it weighed around 3300 lbs (axle) fully loaded with about 1/3 fresh water and around 400 tongue weight.



Good luck! We are 4runner fans, don't know what we'll do when we need to replace it, although our mechanic says we have at least another 100,000 on it (it's an 06).


Kathie
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Old 06-14-2019, 05:38 PM   #5
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Great info. Wondering about next move. Will check out some of the V8s as a comparison.
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Old 06-14-2019, 05:40 PM   #6
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Greetings,


We towed our 17 Casita FD with a V6 and a V8 4runner. The V6 was a litelesluggish on steep uphill runs but other that that it was a great tow vehicle. We traveled thousands of miles around the western US with it. We happended to have a few extra coins before we retired and traded for a V8 (sadly no longer available, that particular engine is now in the Lexus). We were glad we did when Reace, from ETI, came along with the 21 we were all set. Hated to give up the Casita but it went to some folks who are now camping buddies. I believe it weighed around 3300 lbs (axle) fully loaded with about 1/3 fresh water and around 400 tongue weight.



Good luck! We are 4runner fans, don't know what we'll do when we need to replace it, although our mechanic says we have at least another 100,000 on it (it's an 06).


Kathie
Thank-you for the info. Upgrading to a little larger unit is actually one of the things I am looking at. The 4Runner will not pull a 21 footer...
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Old 06-14-2019, 05:41 PM   #7
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One thing I've realized after spending enough time around other vehicles is that a Toyota V6 is not necessarily more efficient than a good V8. In many cases it's less fuel efficient.

Are you talking brand new?

If it was sluggish uphill without a trailer, well, you can guess how it'll be with one. A lot depends on the trailer. Any 13' will be no problem. Most 16-17.5' will be ok. It'll just be slow. Payload limit is what will get you, so pay attention to that. I'm not aware of any trailer 17' or less that's over 4,000lbs, unless it's heavily modified or completely filled with junk.
Thank-you for the info. So much to consider !
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Old 06-14-2019, 11:21 PM   #8
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Thumbs up Toyota Tacoma V6

I have a 2011 Tacoma V6. The mileage is pitiful! In town driving, empty bed and 15 mpg. Highway, downhill, between 17-19. I dread having to pull my Casita (or Parkliner) when I find it. Am thinking I'll get 12 mpg ::sigh::. The only good thing is that it's paid for.


Wishing you much good luck.
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Old 06-15-2019, 07:34 AM   #9
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Toyotas are great for problem-free longevity (though of course you'll find people who argue this). And they've always been thought of as efficient, because of the small trucks they came out with in the 70's during the oil problems back then. But the best I've ever gotten out of a 4x4 Toyota was 22mpg in a 4 cylinder on flat ground.

My little truck with a little V6 gets 19mpg highway, unloaded. 12-14 towing. Which, really, isn't all that bad. A lot of people are getting closer to 9mpg in whatever tow vehicle they have. That's what my friends with V8 Tundras are getting. But 19 unloaded and 12-14 towing is definitely nothing to brag about. To just throw some non-specific numbers out there, in a good full size truck with a V8, I could probably be getting 21 on the highway unloaded, 17 towing. And a lot less wear & tear on a larger, stronger truck.

I'd rather not drive anything but Toyota, but I can definitely see a full size Chevy in my future, assuming I continue to own a trailer, which is never a sure thing.
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Old 06-15-2019, 09:31 AM   #10
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So not quite a 4 Runner, but I have a 2012 Toyota Tacoma X-Runner pickup. This is a two wheel drive street truck with a 6 speed manual transmission and a 4.0 liter V6. The stick does limit the towing capacity to 3,400 lbs, but it works fine with my Casita 17. In this case, I am limited by the clutch, not the motor.

Empty, I get 18 city and 22 highway. 24 if my wife is driving! Towing, I get about 15 in mountains and 18 to 19 on the flat.

Power? My motto is Shift Early and Shift Often! I will shift down as far as third at highway speeds. That's about 2,800 rpm at 60 mph, and with a red line around 5,500 or so, that's plenty of margin. Like this, I can hold 60 mph at about half throttle on a steep grade and have power left over for pulling around a slow truck. Taking the Grapevine for example, that's a 4th gear pull for me. A third gear pull might be a 7% to 10% grade. Not too bad for a V6.

But I do believe that shifting down early is easier on the motor than lugging it. I know the automatics tend to do their own thing, but shifting helps a lot.
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Old 06-15-2019, 10:19 AM   #11
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Great info. Wondering about next move. Will check out some of the V8s as a comparison.
V8, V6, Straight 6, 4 cylinder, makes no difference. It all comes down to TORQUE and reduction ratio. A long stoke, slow speed engine can pull as much as a short stroke high speed engine. But the high speed requires a greater overall reduction ratio to the axles.
To expect a TV to go uphill in high gear with no effort, requires excessive power.
Engines are smaller to save weight. They run at high RPMs and rely on a multi-gear transmission to convert high speed/low torque to low speed/high torque at the wheels.
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Old 06-15-2019, 11:15 AM   #12
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How does 4Runner Toyota tow ?



Alas, our 2000 tow vehicle is finally getting ready to kick-it.


We have a 17' Casita. Wondering how the 4Runner (Toyota) tows. It is rated at 4500-5000. However, the vehicle is very heavy on it's own. Test drive included a sluggish uphill run. Any input from you Toyota folks. We would like to stay with a 6 cylinder for efficient fuel mileage.
I'm not an automotive whiz but my '14 Runner does fine with the Lil Snoozy. It weighs in <3000 lbs. I have 2 big dogs (250 lbs total) in the rear compartment while driving if that makes any difference! We have not been to high mountain ranges but it does fine going up and down the rolling hills and mountains in the mid-Atlantic region. I have automatic engine braking so I can just roll along and let the Runner do its work. So far all is good!
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Old 06-15-2019, 12:14 PM   #13
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Try a Highlander

We recently traded our 2009 RAV4 V6 for a 2017 Highlander V6. We have pulled our 17’ Casita with both with no problems, but the Highlander definitely has more power. It has a 5000 lb tow rating and is a pleasure to drive.
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Old 06-15-2019, 05:31 PM   #14
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Our 2017 4Runner tows our 17' Liberty Deluxe just fine. On long, steep grades, we occasionally slow down to 40 MPH, but that's fine. Mileage is about 14-16 at 60-65 MPH. We recently returned from a trip where we pulled the grade west of Laughlin in 90 degree weather, with the A/C on, and the 4Runner barely broke a sweat (ATF 250 degrees, water 195). We figure it will last a long time, and it's great for backcountry travel. I will say, with a heavy kayak on top, and the back filled with camping stuff (outdoor kitchen etc.) that we did use all 3450# of rear axle capacity. We don't experience sway - use a friction anti-sway device, plus the vehicle has software to correct sway.
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Old 06-15-2019, 06:48 PM   #15
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We towed our 17' boler with our 2012 4Runner with no problems. In fact our vehicle was the only one not starting to overheat going up hills last summer when the outside temp was high. I should qualify though that we have an aftermarket cold air intake and exhaust.

The only think I don't like about it is that the cruise control doesn't work very well at maintaining a constant speed. It starts to falter and then down shifts two gears to get back up to speed. It then overshoots the set speed and gears up again, starts to drop below the set speed...and repeat. Annoying to ride in and I can't imagine what the people following us think.

We now have a bigger trailer than the boler and still seems to pull fine. Our new trailer is much heavier.
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Old 06-15-2019, 07:09 PM   #16
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The only think I don't like about it is that the cruise control doesn't work very well at maintaining a constant speed.

Read your instruction manual. I think you will find that you're not supposed to tow with cruise control or in overdrive.

What is this "cold air" intake you talk of? My RAV4 has a larger radiator and has transmission fluid cooler.
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Old 06-15-2019, 07:40 PM   #17
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Interesting. Not a thing mentioned in the towing section about cruise control. The very last line in the cruise control section says that it is unsuitable towing a trailer.

Our cold air intake is an Air Raid system. Came with the vehicle when we bought it. Also a Brule exhaust.
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Old 06-16-2019, 09:12 AM   #18
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Our 2017 4Runner tows our 17' Liberty Deluxe just fine. On long, steep grades, we occasionally slow down to 40 MPH, but that's fine. Mileage is about 14-16 at 60-65 MPH. We recently returned from a trip where we pulled the grade west of Laughlin in 90 degree weather, with the A/C on, and the 4Runner barely broke a sweat (ATF 250 degrees, water 195). We figure it will last a long time, and it's great for backcountry travel. I will say, with a heavy kayak on top, and the back filled with camping stuff (outdoor kitchen etc.) that we did use all 3450# of rear axle capacity. We don't experience sway - use a friction anti-sway device, plus the vehicle has software to correct sway.


ATF at 250 degrees is far more than “breaking a sweat” in my opinion. I start to get real nervous at 230 or so. I believe the trans warning light comes on at 260. I tow a 21’ Escape with a 2007 4Runner V8 4wd.
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Old 06-16-2019, 10:27 AM   #19
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Cold air intake is just a fancy marketing way of saying bigger, more free flowing air box (air intake for fuel).
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Old 06-16-2019, 03:51 PM   #20
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Toyotas are great for problem-free longevity (though of course you'll find people who argue this)..
I've owned several Toyotas over the years as well. But as far as problem free longevity, Toyota has had its share of problems. Multiple recalls per year on the 4 Runner and hundreds of Technical Service Bulletins.

Toyota 4Runner Recalls by Year - Toyota Problems

Toyota 4Runner Technical Service Bulletins (TSBs) - Toyota Problems


The Tacoma in particular had a recall on the FRAME for rotting out. That frame recall also included the Sequoia and Tundra. Right now there is a class action lawsuit from 4 Runner owners on failing frames that were not covered by the recall.


https://www.autoblog.com/2016/11/14/...-truck-frames/

Ford is not immune to problems for sure, as well as Chevy and Dodge. Still people accustomed to perfection from Toyota have been disappointed.
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