Toyota 4Runner - Fiberglass RV


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Old 05-23-2020, 05:14 PM   #1
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Name: Bob Ruggles
Trailer: 2015 Escape
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Toyota 4Runner

As a tow vehicle? Thoughts? I’m looking for a replacement for my Ram 1500.
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Old 05-23-2020, 07:57 PM   #2
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Name: Gordon
Trailer: 2015 Scamp (16 Std Layout 4) with '15 Toyota Sienna LE Tug
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Originally Posted by rgrugg View Post
As a tow vehicle? Thoughts? I’m looking for a replacement for my Ram 1500.
It will be great for a 1000 lb utility trailer.. it will be terrible for a 33 foot Airstream Classic model (at over 8,200 lbs). Thats my opinion.
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Old 05-23-2020, 08:13 PM   #3
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Name: julie
Trailer: 2017 Escape 17B
Idaho
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I tow a 17’ escape w my 2012 4runner. Wouldn’t want to tow anything over the 19’ with this vehicle. 5000# tow capacity. Added air bags to rear to offset rear sag.
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Old 05-24-2020, 06:12 AM   #4
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Name: Bob Ruggles
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I tow a 17’ escape w my 2012 4runner. Wouldn’t want to tow anything over the 19’ with this vehicle. 5000# tow capacity. Added air bags to rear to offset rear sag.


I should have included that I tow an Escape19 with a gvwr of 4000 pounds.
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Old 05-24-2020, 08:29 AM   #5
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You won't like the results, but that doesn't mean you can't do it.

Check the payload limit of your 4Runner. That's what gets those of us towing with smaller vehicles. I tow with a 98 Tacoma, 5000# towing limit. My trailer is around 3,000#. However with a ~300# tongue weight, plus everything in my truck, when I'm very liberal in adding up the weight of all my crap, I figure I'm about 100# over the payload limit.

If you're getting up toward your tow limit, and over your payload limit, it's starting to get a little sketchy.

You've got to do the math on the payload.
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Old 05-24-2020, 09:21 AM   #6
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Name: Mac
Trailer: 2013 Casita 17' LD
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Our tug is a '17 4Runner and we like it quite well.
Our 17' Casita LD is tongue-heavy - with full propane tanks, it comes in at 450# - but this is within the 500# tongue weight limit. I've added airbags to keep things more level, but don't use a WDH. We have >20K miles towing with this setup, and it's fine. We have adequate power, good handling, and mileage that runs 13-16 when towing, and 17-20 when not. The differences with your setup would be a bit more weight, but also more sail area. Strong crosswinds (SoCal passes with wind sometimes 50 MPH) have been no problem, but the Casita's profile is smaller than an Escape. Ideally, renting or borrowing a 4Runner to try it out might be the ticket. They come with plug and play for brake controllers, and the hitch receiver is already there, so a dealer could work with you on this if they wanted to make the sale. I see folks towing 21' Escapes, but I'm not sure I would want to do that, even though it's within tested SAE J2807 spec to do so. Just a personal risk calculation.
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Old 05-24-2020, 09:52 AM   #7
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Name: Jack L
Trailer: Sold the Bigfoot 17-Looking for a new one
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I have an 07 4Runner and 07 Tacoma. both have 4 wheel drive. The longer wheel bade on the Tacoma makes it a much better tow vehicle. The Tacoma has a higher tow weight rating, but the longer wheel base is what does it for me.
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Old 05-24-2020, 10:13 AM   #8
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I'd be interested to see where everyone's payload numbers came out. I don't have the math I did anymore, but it's clear most of these small vehicles aren't meant to tow much. A 5,000# tow limit sounds great, till you realize that with two people, a full tank of gas and a cooler of food, you're already at your payload limit.

I think if you have a good feel for vehicles, you can tell if you're overloaded. My old motorhome was dangerously overloaded, from the factory. With my truck, mostly I'm shortening its life towing a trailer whose size and weight Toyota didn't really intend, at least for common use. As to safety, I've towed up and over a lot of steep passes, through winds and through city traffic. I've had to slam the brakes in town, and keep it under control in those high winds and steep downhills. It's always been under control.

But I think it's worth going through the exercise of adding up how much weight you'll realistically have in your vehicle, including passengers, when you'll be towing. If you know you're 500# over your payload limit, your driving style will likely be much more conservative.
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