Bought a new trailer, need a new tow vehicle


#1

I bought a new trailer and was foolish enough to tow it with my Prius V. I used it to carry extra belongings on a trip to a family funeral. Despite the car being extremely overloaded with 3 people, a babies car seat, and luggage, I still managed to get an average 44mpg on the highway with the a/c on. Of course I was a rolling roadblock since I was only going 71mph in a 70mph zone, but somehow even though I impeded the flow of traffic I made it back alive. Anyway despite getting 44 mpg with a full load in a Prius V while towing, I am sure I did irreparable damage to my car by taxing it so, with the trailer and such. I mean my lawnmower can tow this trailer all day long, but I realize this is a different story with aerodynamic drag and such.

I realize the error of my ways and I need a new vehicle to tow with so I can drive my natural speed which is about 85-90mph to keep up with traffic so I am not impeding anybody and I am safe.

I am thinking of an f-250, but I want to be on the safe side so maybe a F-350. Do I need a diesel, or will the V-10 do ok?

Oh…I occasionally buy 8-10 bags of mulch as well, I normally put it in the prius but I probably smoke the electric motors every time I do.

Oh heres the trailer.

http://www.harborfreight.com/automotive-motorcycle/trailer-accessories/600-lb-capacity-78-inch-tag-along-trailer-66771.html

P.S. In case you missed it, I am being a tad bit facetious here. Why do some people think you need such a huge vehicle to go to home depot once a month to buy a 2x4? I see it all the time around here.


#2

Get the diesel. In the RV world…overkill is a good thing when it comes to tow vehicles.


#3

How much do you want to spend, Rick? A Ranger would work just fine, but you wouldn’t need the trailer anymore. If you are looking at a new vehicle, a diesel Cruze would likely to the trick. What about a Harley Davidson?


#4

Dedicated hybrids like a Prius operate under a different set of rules. Exactly as you stated, speed plays an integral part. You can safely tow a lot of loads with these things at lower speeds but I guess you found out better then anyone else can explain. You’re so called “natural speed” as determined by how you feel, can be wrong. Cars can be less safe, less capable and prone to more problems when they play by their own set of rules as determined by engineers then yours as a driver. Still, we don’t have a clue what the weight is for the trailer and load ? That would have a lot to do with towing it.


#5

Is there an elephant in the room? You want to tow a trailer at 90mph? That doesn’t strike me as a particularly good idea.


#6

Hmm, 90mph and no cops? Where is this place? Germany?


#7

. Rick, I know you feel safe at that speed, but your car and trailer combination does not. So, where in the US does everyone drive 85 to 90 in a 70 mph speed zone ?


#8

As you guys may recall, Rick does not care to go 90 or even 80 for that matter. He even told us he was pulling our chain.


#9

Our Home Depot rig is a '07 CRV with a 4x8 utility trailer hooked up behind. But only when it’s really needed. The trailer only cost $200 (Assembly not included) and does the job without having to maintain and fuel a F150 or similar just to bring home lumber.


#10

You need a Chevy Avalanche or its baby brother, the Honda Ridgeline. Both are the Swiss army knife of vehicles. Given you are a Toyota Pious owner, the Honda should suffice. 4 doors, seats 5 or 6, a small covered truck bed that is either a big trunk or the midgate folds down for a 4x8 sheet of drywall in a snap. Sport Family Truckster, available on used car lots everywhere. Ditch that trailer, you won’t need it anymore. As for the Pious, Rick, you should keep that for the sake of your image :wink:


#11

@WheresRick‌
You are comparing towing with a small cargo trailer with a Prius to needing a Ford F350 as being fastidious ?
That seems down right strange. My leg feels like it’s being stretched out of it’s socket.


#12

@‌Wheresrick,

I wouldn’t risk towing that trailer with anything less than this pick-up http://www.gizmag.com/go/5181/


#13

The spec sheet on that trailer shows a maximum speed of 55mph. I assume that’s because of the size of the tires. I would upgrade the tire/wheel package to an 18 inch low profile set. I think that would lend you more stability at higher speeds of 85+ and also allow you some extra payload.

You’ll need the extra payload capacity to support the weight of the electric motor and drive gear mechanism you’ll build and apply to the trailer in order to reduce the strain on the Prius gas engine. You’ve got a high voltage source sitting right there in the Prius, easily capable of driving an auxiliary motor on the trailer. And if you make it a point to only drive downhill all the electricity you need will be regenerative–free power. In fact, just haul around an extra battery pack in the trailer for more electricity to use when you’re home.


#14

@WheresRick, you are exceeding your vehicle’s tow rating (zero pounds) by towing with a completely inappropriate tow vehicle. Heck, gen II Prii don’t even allow you to deselect traction control…the reasoning being, that the fragile powertrain can’t take the jolt that would occur from spinning wheels suddenly “catching” on good pavement. (It’s apparently a complaint amongst Prii-istas in colder climates.)

From that, we can deduce that this car is amongst the very worst vehicles to tow with. Which makes sense: its "mission profile’ is to transport 4 (or 2 and their bags) at the highest possible MPG. Overbuilding the powertrain would cost MPG, so they didn’t.


If you wanted a hybrid sedan that got good MPG–but had a bit more “oopmf” behind it–you should have gone for a Ford Fusion Hybrid, IMO. 80% of the MPG…but more robustly built. (Still not recommended for towing per the mfr, though.)


#15

It’s all about how heavy the load is and where you plan to tow it. With boats it’s not just the weight of the boat/trailer but how steep the ramp is (lakes around here almost always have much easier ramps than on Puget Sound) Given that a previous tow vehicle struggled with the Rocky Mountains even without a trailer hitched behind it would make me suggest something with more power if you wanted to go into that kind of terrain. If space allows a dedicated tow vehicle is what my family would prefer so that we can have a smaller daily driver, but that’s what works for us.


#16

Despite @Whereisrick 's insatiable appetite for trolling, and always having to be right and/or get the last word in, I’ll respond; For such a trailer, just about any vehicle will do, even a Prius would probably be okay really.


#17
Despite @Whereisrick 's insatiable appetite for trolling, and always having to be right and/or get the last word in,

My wife agrees with you, FWIW.

I do not understand why you can not tow a trailer that weighs 200lbs loaded with a small car, no reason why you can’t in my book.


#18

@dagosa‌

I was trying to be smart. I was actually reading another thread about towing a small boat and people were suggesting vehicles that were so overkill it made me angry so I made this thread.

I love it when I see someone in a big f350 towing a tiny trailer with a lawnmower on it, I see a guy around here all the time, he tows a small 4x8 trailer with a lawnmower on it, I never see him towing anything else. I tow the same thing with my prius and its fine.

That was my whole point. I was just being a jack&ss


#19

I agree with you, Rick. I don’t think a Prius should be used regularly for towing because it just isn’t designed for it, but most cars have tow ratings and it’s safe to tow that much at least now and then. Cars are not that fragile and manufacturers are quite conservative in rating them. They don’t want a flood of lawsuits from people who towed a few bags of mulch. They also know some towing will be uphill, though they may not intend you to take on Pike’s Peak (no reason to tow a boat up there.) Still, towing over modest hills by slowing down a little shouldn’t break anything. I’m impressed by just how sturdy modern cars have become. We used to tow with far less powerful vehicles and not worry about breaking them., but now we act as if they need to be coddled. The older vehicles did have frames that made towing easier, but their engines usually weren’t very stout, unless they were work trucks or similar. Every summer thousands of people took the tarp off the travel trailer and set out in their Torino or Nova with the trailer behind for their summer trip to wherever. We were tent campers but saw plenty of travel trailers in campgrounds along the way. Smaller pop-up tent trailers, too. I think my mom coveted one of them, but knew there were places we couldn’t get to with one. We liked to camp in the rugged Southern California mountains near home. Some of the roads we took were barely passable in our station wagon. I’m sure now they have restrictions on them. Back thrn they just gave warnings. After that you were on your own. We did lose the rear license plate once on an especially rough road. The station wagon was heavily loaded so probably dragged in back a little.


#20

Did Robert hijack rick’s account? :stuck_out_tongue: