Towing with a Toyota Highlander: V6 vs hybrid with CVT. - Fiberglass RV
Journey with Confidence RV GPS App RV Trip Planner RV LIFE Campground Reviews RV Maintenance Take a Speed Test Free 7 Day Trial ×


Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread Display Modes
 
Old 11-08-2021, 04:28 PM   #1
Senior Member
 
Name: zack
Trailer: scamp 13
California
Posts: 266
Towing with a Toyota Highlander: V6 vs hybrid with CVT.

We are thinking of getting a newish Toyota Highlander to use to tow a Scamp 13. What do people think about the choice between a V6 with an 8-speed automatic transmission vs a hybrid with continuously variable transmission (CVT). With either choice we would also want all wheel drive. The hybrid option involves a 2.5 liter 4 cylinder engine and two electric motors. We have to go up a fairly steep grade pretty often, but it is only about 1/2 mile long. Are there important considerations relative to towing with either these options (hybrid with CVT or V6 with 8-speed automatic)?
zack sc is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-08-2021, 04:36 PM   #2
Senior Member
 
Name: You can't call me Al
Trailer: 1977 Scamp 13'
Massachusetts
Posts: 592
Here's a comparison for you to evaluate:
https://www.copilotsearch.com/posts/...wing-capacity/

(I have no experience with either engine)

Also, here's a link to a built-in brake controller that looks nice for this vehicle.
https://www.etrailer.com/bc-2021_Toyota_Highlander.htm
https://www.etrailer.com/p-ETBC7.html
(You'll need to run the large wire bundle from the front to the back of the car.)
AlanKilian is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-08-2021, 05:50 PM   #3
Senior Member
 
Jon in AZ's Avatar
 
Name: Jon
Trailer: 2008 Scamp 13 S1
Arizona
Posts: 11,018
Registry
That's a tough call in my mind, especially given the higher initial cost of the hybrid. I'm sure either will get you and the trailer up that one grade, but it really comes down to the big picture of how you will use the vehicle. If you'll put on a lot of daily commuting miles, with only limited towing, the economy of the hybrid might pay off. If you're retired, drive relative few miles annually, and lots of towing, the V6 makes more sense.

I wouldn't worry as much about the transmission. The Toyota eCVT is nothing at all like the belt-and-pulley CVTs that are used in conventional gas drivetrains. The electric motors themselves are used in tandem to vary the drive ratio. It seems plenty robust for towing smaller molded trailers.
Jon in AZ is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-09-2021, 12:40 AM   #4
Senior Member
 
Name: Lynn
Trailer: '06 Scamp 16
Rochester, New York
Posts: 238
We've towed our Scamp 16 with two Highlander Hybrids over the past 12 years. A great combination.
Lynn Eberhardt is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-09-2021, 08:30 AM   #5
Senior Member
 
Jon in AZ's Avatar
 
Name: Jon
Trailer: 2008 Scamp 13 S1
Arizona
Posts: 11,018
Registry
Quote:
Originally Posted by Lynn Eberhardt View Post
We've towed our Scamp 16 with two Highlander Hybrids over the past 12 years. A great combination.
The latest HH has dropped the 3.5L V6 in favor of a 2.5L I4 as the gas engine component. That’s the big unknown in my mind when it comes to towing. I still expect it to be adequate for a 13’er with help from the electric motors, but it will be working harder.
Jon in AZ is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-09-2021, 10:40 AM   #6
Senior Member
 
Name: Pat
Trailer: 2006 Scamp 19 Deluxe
Enchanted Mountains of Western New York State on the Amish Trail in Cattaraugus County!
Posts: 479
Quote:
Originally Posted by Jon in AZ View Post
The latest HH has dropped the 3.5L V6 in favor of a 2.5L I4 as the gas engine component. That’s the big unknown in my mind when it comes to towing. I still expect it to be adequate for a 13’er with help from the electric motors, but it will be working harder.
According to Toyota's webpage, the 2022 model is available in the V6. Maybe it's a supply chain deal?
parmm is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-09-2021, 11:21 AM   #7
Senior Member
 
Name: Wayne
Trailer: '16 Parkliner
Iowa
Posts: 1,252
for a 13 ft Scamp? No problems. You won't even know it's back there…
We are towing a Parkliner, and before that a 16 ft Scamp DLX (the heavier one) with both a hybrid and regular Highlander.
Just check the tow ratings.
Personaly I would have the hybrid for better gas mileage. Esp ifyou will use it as a daily driver.
Wayne Collins is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-09-2021, 12:48 PM   #8
Senior Member
 
Jon in AZ's Avatar
 
Name: Jon
Trailer: 2008 Scamp 13 S1
Arizona
Posts: 11,018
Registry
Quote:
Originally Posted by parmm View Post
According to Toyota's webpage, the 2022 model is available in the V6. Maybe it's a supply chain deal?
In my remark about four cylinder engines I was specifically referencing the Highlander Hybrid (HH for short). I double-checked, and as far as I could tell, all hybrids now have the 2.5L. Non-hybrid versions still have the V6. That’s the OP’s dilemma.
Jon in AZ is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-09-2021, 06:34 PM   #9
Senior Member
 
Name: Wayne
Trailer: '16 Parkliner
Iowa
Posts: 1,252
Are you sure you're not looking at the RAV4? it is 4 cylinder only now


But 4 or 6 doesn't matter. It's the torque that pulls the load, and the power that determines how fast.

I used to drive a Caterpillar RD6 tractor with a 3 cylinder engine that turned at 800 RPM full speed. It could probably pull 100 Scamps, … but at 4 mph.
Wayne Collins is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-09-2021, 08:37 PM   #10
Senior Member
 
Jon in AZ's Avatar
 
Name: Jon
Trailer: 2008 Scamp 13 S1
Arizona
Posts: 11,018
Registry
Quite sure. The Sienna also has the 2.5L hybrid power train as its only option, no more conventional 3.5L. The Highlander still offers a choice. One wonders how much longer….
Jon in AZ is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-13-2021, 12:52 PM   #11
Junior Member
 
Name: Kevin
Trailer: 13' Lil Bigfoot and Escape 15a
California
Posts: 22
We tow a Escape 15a with a 2010 Lexus LX450h and before that used a 06’ Lexus RX400h. Both are hybrids with 3.3 v6 and CVT, and AWD. Both came with tow packages rated for 3500#. No problems with CVT. Smooth and quiet. Seemless engine on and off. CVT has no shift points, so smooth as silk. At speeds below 30mph, it will run all electric, so pulling into a campground late at night is very quiet. We bought both cars second hand. The 10’ at $15k with 56k miles and the 06’ at $7500 with 89k miles. Both very well taken care of. Very comfortable on long trips. In some ways, I really liked the RX400h better than the RX450h. It has better performance, in fact faster than the all gas RX350. The window stickers on both were in the upper $60k, so I think we got great deals on both. Real world fuel economy is not as good as rated but better than the RX350s. We have an EV we use for all our local trips, and then use the RX for towing and long trips.
Kevin Dawson is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-21-2021, 02:54 PM   #12
Senior Member
 
Borden's Avatar
 
Name: Borden and Carole
Trailer: 1978 Earlton Ontario boler
Ontario
Posts: 1,496
Registry
Such a small trailer? Have seen 13' boler with factory plate stating only 800 lbs empty recently. What would a scamp weigh?

Do wish we had AWD.
__________________
Our postage stamp in heaven.
Borden is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-22-2021, 04:27 PM   #13
Senior Member
 
Name: zack
Trailer: scamp 13
California
Posts: 266
towing with Tesla model 3

Do you think it would be okay to tow a Scamp 13 with a Tesla Model 3 AWD? The horsepower is rated over 200 I believe.
zack sc is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-22-2021, 05:34 PM   #14
Senior Member
 
Jon in AZ's Avatar
 
Name: Jon
Trailer: 2008 Scamp 13 S1
Arizona
Posts: 11,018
Registry
Quote:
Originally Posted by zack sc View Post
Do you think it would be okay to tow a Scamp 13 with a Tesla Model 3 AWD? The horsepower is rated over 200 I believe.
Horsepower- along with the all-important torque- will not likely be a problem.

But one, what does Tesla say? And two, what will it do to the range?
Jon in AZ is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-23-2021, 10:26 AM   #15
Junior Member
 
Name: Hazel
Trailer: In the market
Ontario
Posts: 2
I have towed a Casita 17’ extensively with a Sienna V6 and a Highlander Hybrid. After the Hybrid I would never use anything else. The Hybrids I have used were 2009 and 2013 V6 with 200hp and a 65hp single electric motor. The electric motor fills in the torque curve of the ice making for a smooth driving experience. The Sienna was exhausting for a drive of any length.
Bluebirdhazel is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-20-2022, 01:59 PM   #16
Junior Member
 
Name: Darryl
Trailer: 1976 Trillium 1300
Ontario
Posts: 2
I previously towed with a Toyota Sienna V6, same drivetrain as the Highlander. it towed ok but the gearing is more for gas mileage and is not great for towing. My experience is that the transmissions will run hot when towing as well. In the Sienna, Toyota rates it for 3500Lb towing, I would say 2500 would be a more realistic upper limit for towing. This is purely due to the transmission, the engine was great but the fwd based transmissions in these just are not setup very well for towing.

If I was looking at a new Highlander for towing purposes, I would absolutely get the hybrid, it is a better all around drivetrain than the V6 with the 8 speed auto.
Darryl_Lowes is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-20-2022, 02:32 PM   #17
Senior Member
 
Jon in AZ's Avatar
 
Name: Jon
Trailer: 2008 Scamp 13 S1
Arizona
Posts: 11,018
Registry
Quote:
Originally Posted by Darryl_Lowes View Post
If I was looking at a new Highlander for towing purposes, I would absolutely get the hybrid, it is a better all around drivetrain than the V6 with the 8 speed auto.
Even though the hybrid drivetrain now uses a 2.5L 4 cylinder as the gas engine component?
Jon in AZ is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-20-2022, 03:31 PM   #18
Junior Member
 
Name: Ron
Trailer: In the prototype phase...
Ontario
Posts: 3
I found the 2021 Highlander Hybrid seriously under-powered for towing on the highway. It was OK in town but mileage went from 7L/100km to 17L/100km on the highway with a 1500lb 16' V-Nose cargo trailer attached. It was not happy at anything over 100km/hr.


On the highway, the Hybrid and Gas get similar mileage so if you commute, go with the Gas. Where the Hybrid shines is in town or low speed. I did get 5.8L/100km's on country roads when being light footed (not towing, of course). The Gas would probably double that.


Also, on the Hybrid I thought the 110V 1500amp outlet would be great for camping but be aware that you have to physically push the button to make it live and the vehicle shuts itself off after 1hr unless the doors are locked (and they can't be locked from the outside with the FOB - only a key in the door. That made the idea of tethering to a trailer for power pretty much useless.
RonC is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-21-2022, 01:59 PM   #19
Member
 
Name: Mike
Trailer: None currently
Virginia
Posts: 42
Quote:
Originally Posted by Darryl_Lowes View Post
I previously towed with a Toyota Sienna V6, same drivetrain as the Highlander. it towed ok but the gearing is more for gas mileage and is not great for towing. My experience is that the transmissions will run hot when towing as well. In the Sienna, Toyota rates it for 3500Lb towing, I would say 2500 would be a more realistic upper limit for towing. This is purely due to the transmission, the engine was great but the fwd based transmissions in these just are not setup very well for towing.

If I was looking at a new Highlander for towing purposes, I would absolutely get the hybrid, it is a better all around drivetrain than the V6 with the 8 speed auto.

I’ve towed thousands of miles with a 2007 Sienna. Full height stick built travel trailer over 3000 pounds. No problems whatsoever. Definitely needed airbags and a weight distributing hitch, but towed like a dream with those even though it sucked down the gas.

So, I would not be concerned one bit with towing a 3500 pound egg with a 2004-2020 Sienna and am planning on doing just that with our 2007 which will have over 180,000 miles on it when it’s time to pickup our Casita.

I have no idea how the hybrid 2021+ Sienna models would do towing and would be interested to hear anyone’s experience towing with the Toyota 2.5L hybrid drivetrain.

-Mike
FloridaNativeMike is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply


Currently Active Users Viewing This Thread: 1 (0 members and 1 guests)
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
2020 Highlander Hybrid 4 cylinder--towing 13 Scamp? donnalef Towing, Hitching, Axles and Running Gear 7 02-05-2020 12:23 PM
Towing with Highlander Hybrid -- Need to add transmission cooling system? Lisle Problem Solving | Owners Helping Owners 17 09-12-2019 04:43 AM
Highlander Hybrid Towing Lynn Eberhardt Towing, Hitching, Axles and Running Gear 11 06-27-2018 09:41 PM
Tow vehicle, 2008 Toyota Highlander Hybrid AWD WDavidG Classified Archives 3 03-27-2017 12:13 PM
Hybrid Highlander for lightweight towing Ben Kadas Towing, Hitching, Axles and Running Gear 8 07-23-2010 03:20 PM

» Upcoming Events
No events scheduled in
the next 465 days.
» Featured Campgrounds

Reviews provided by


All times are GMT -6. The time now is 07:11 PM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.11
Copyright ©2000 - 2022, vBulletin Solutions Inc.