Woodalls Open Roads Forum: Hybrid Travel Trailers: minivan pulling trailer
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 > minivan pulling trailer

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Inglis

San Antonio

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Posted: 06/08/09 06:33am Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

I have a Town and Country minivan. I am looking to purchase a hybrid trailer, but am concerned about the maximum weight I can pull. Any suggestions on the type of hybrid trailer that would be best for a minivan. I have a family of 5 that will be in the van, so I understand this will lessen my weight pulling capacity.

rscraig

Denton, TX

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Posted: 06/08/09 06:44am Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

I've pulled a pop-up with a minivan and a hybrid with an SUV. IMHO, pulling a hybrid with a mini is not a good idea. Not only is the towing rating on them marginal, but a hybrid has more wind resistance than a pop-up and this is a big factor with a small tow vehicle. Remember that your mini-van's tow rating is probably based on a vehicle with just the driver's weight. Adding passengers and cargo will reduce what you can safely tow. Either stick with a small pop-up or upsize your tow vehicle.


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Fire Instructor

Upstate (Albany) NY Area

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Posted: 06/08/09 06:50am Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

I used to pull a PUP with a mini-van, and I found that the vehicle rear suspension on the typical front-wheel drive mini-van was too "soft" to pull a good size PUP with both the car and the PUP fully loaded. A friend had a rear wheel drive (Astro-van?), and he pulled a fairly good-sized hybrid with no problem. I switched to an SUV (Grand Cherokee) and had no problem pulling the PUP. When we upgraded to a hybrid, we found that the Cherokee had too short and narrow a wheelbase to be stable for long drives pulling the hybrid, so we upgraded tow vehicles to a RAM 1500. That allowed us to upgrade from the hybrid to the hardside with slide-out TT.... I can't wait to see what teh next "upgrade" brings........


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wayne_tw

South Dakota/Georgia

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Posted: 06/08/09 06:54am Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

First, you should consult your vehicle's owner's manual for the towing maximum weight and the maximum gross vehicle weight rating (the weight of the vehicle, passengers, cargo, and the trailer).
Second, find the gross vehicle weight rating of the trailer you are considering. That weight should be less than or equal to the lowest of the weight you obtained in step one.
The reality is that minivan will not be a good tow vehicle for anything more than a small pop up.

kknowlton

southeast Idaho, formerly IL/WI border

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Posted: 06/08/09 07:02am Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Front-wheel drive and AWD are not really suitable for towing. As already mentioned, we towed a PUP with a Chrysler minivan and it performed reasonably well except in the mountains (overheated going uphill - granted the van was old by then, past 100K miles). However, we needed to get the transmission serviced MUCH more than should be normal, due to the towing. And that was only an 1800-lb (loaded) popup!

Having towed a hybrid with both an SUV (Explorer) and pickup, and having had the experience of the minivan & popup, I would never recommend towing a hybrid with a minivan. Any HTT that would accommodate your family of 5 comfortably will be too big for the minivan to handle, without risking damage to the minivan.

Remember, in addition to the weight of passengers and the loaded weight of the trailer, you'll have a BIG wind drag from that front "wall" you'd be towing behind you, plus you have to add the weight of a weight-distributing hitch (absolutely essential).

ladywendolyn

Canada

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Posted: 06/08/09 07:24am Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

We are pulling a 2003 Shamrock 21 ft (they also come in smaller sizes) with our 2008 Toyota Sienna. van (rated 3500 pounds max. tow) We pulled a large tent trailer, very loaded with out problem. However this new trailer is a different story . . . we are being very careful about weight as we pack it and No mountain trips planned. Check the unloaded vehicle weight in the trailers that you look at . . . our trailer weighs 2550 pounds unloaded. These leaves 1000 pounds for gear . . . we are aiming for less as we pack. We have a towing package on the van, and an equalizer hitch.

Rollincool

RI

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Posted: 06/08/09 07:48am Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

>minivan pulling trailer >3500lb. cap + 5 peeps + hybrid + minivan = Don't.

Best trailer for your situation is a popup.

Road Ruler

Canada

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Posted: 06/08/09 07:52am Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Inglis wrote:

I have a Town and Country minivan.


We see Mini Vans towing pop ups, hybrids, and TT's all the time.

There is no quick and simple answer to your question.

What year is your T&C and what engine does it have? Does it have the factory tow pkg.

tcp

calgary

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Posted: 06/08/09 09:03am Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

We tow our 18' Bantam Flier with our 05 Sienna. No problems. Make sure you get a WDH and a good brake controller. Yup, Canadian rockies as well.
Sienna


2005 Bantam Flyer F-18 - sold
2010 Funfinder 189FDS
2005 Toyota Sienna

CobbCamp

Louisville, KY

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Posted: 06/08/09 09:04am Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Stick with a pop-up. My hindsight works great and that is what I should have done several years ago. I had a 21' HTT that I towed with a 2001 Nissan Quest. It did the job but was less than ideal. I traded the Quest for an F-150 SCrew and restored the pigmentation to my knuckles.


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