Discrimination against any yea of Explorer by U-Haul. The only vehicle they will not rent to:

Just wondering why the Ford Explorer, of any year, is the only vehicle that U Haul will not rent a trailer to. Absolutely no exceptions.

This could also be a Stump the Chumps idea.


Because they got involved in too many lawsuits after the Explorer/Firestone debacle and apparently the U-Haul lawyers don’t want to let facts get in the way of their company policies. Of course, you can still tow a U-haul with a Mercury Mountaineer or a Mazda Navajo or a Lincoln Aviator!

EDIT: Apparently there is something U-haul will let you attach to your Explorer’s trailer hitch: http://store.uhaul.com/product_detail.aspx?id=3438

Thanks for the reply and the ‘joke’.
This still makes no sense to me!

Are you sure this isn’t just some ignorant sap who hasn’t read the latest memo from corporate? Try another U-Haul renter in your area. You might find the first one was full of it.

No answer for ya, I’m just as intrigued…and it wasn’t just some ignorant sap…try going to uhaul.com and reserving a trailer, and then picking a Ford Explorer as the vehicle you’ll be towing with…this is the “error message” you’ll get:

“This vehicle is not authorized to tow U-Haul equipment. U-Haul does not rent behind this tow vehicle. We apologize for any inconvenience this may cause you. Is there a different vehicle that you can use for towing?”

That ‘something’ is way overpriced.

I wouldn’t rent anything from U-Haul. It’s all not fit for the road.

I can’t remember the details but a year or so ago the LA Times did a multi part expose’ on U Haul and their failure to advise renters of the dangers of certain trailer/vehicle combos. They reported on a number of fatal accidents by losing control of the trailers on down hill runs, wind shear, etc. It wasn’t all caused by improper loading either. Again I don’t remember the details but the Fords had a terrible crash record and under pressure, U Haul changed their policy of renting anyone anything. I agree they are junk, but if they won’t rent it to you, you don’t want to tow it with the Exploder.

I have a 2000 Explorer, and have gotten this message from numerous U-Haul places and online. They only singled out the Explorer, not Expeditions or F-series trucks. I think it is a bunch of crap, but if they don’t want to rent to me, I’ll be happy to take my business and money elsewhere.

I would have to suggest they have experienced problems or they would not do it.  After all want business wants to reduce the number of customers who come in the door with money in hand.

I wonder if it has anything to do with the standard hitch that comes with the Explorer. Every one I’ve see that has a factory hitch…the hitch is only a Class II, but the Explorer is rated as Class III. And MAYBE because the truck can haul 5000lbs, but the hitch that comes standard is rated at 3500lbs.

Even vehicles that I owned that was only rated a Class II, I always put a Class III hitch on them.

I wouldn’t install a hitch on a vehicle with a known stability problem either.

The stability problem that plagued the Explorers was fixed several years ago when Ford finally decided to follow the NHSI recommendations by pushing the wheels out 4"…NHSI made that recommendation to Ford back in the early 90’s.

Perhaps the problem is that U-Haul’s trailers don’t have any brakes? Most new trailers have surge brakes to assist the tow vehicle. U-Haul trailers usually don’t have brakes. I would thank them for not renting me an unsafe trailer and take my business elsewhere.

It is ironic that I can rent a trailer at U-Haul with a 2002 Toyota Sienna minivan, but you can’t with a truck-based SUV.

Perhaps the problem is that U-Haul’s trailers don’t have any brakes?

What does that have to do with the Explorer?? If the trailer not having brakes is a problem…then it should effect ALL vehicles that will tow with it.

This is true they won’t rent to any Explorers. I have borrowed a friend’s truck to pick up a trailer from them a couple of times now. They don’t seem to notice when I drop it off with the Explorer.

A trailer without brakes relies more on the tow vehicle to stop it and the payload. A loaded trailer without brakes can push the tow vehicle into other vehicles or off the road. In low traction conditions, it can even jack-knife. The Explorer might have insufficient weight or insufficient braking, or some other design characteristic that makes it dangerous to stop with thousands of pounds pushing the rear of the vehicle. Perhaps it is the way the weight shifts when the driver brakes while towing. On a vehicle with a high center of gravity, the shift of weight could allow the trailer to create unsafe conditions. Other vehicles don’t handle the same way.

Not all vehicles have the same handling characteristics, or even the same braking power. There are many possibilities as to why the explorer has different safety standards. A heavier vehicle with more powerful brakes could handle a brakeless trailer much easier than an SUV that is known for roll-overs. The Explorer is a unique vehicle with unique handling characteristics.

We don’t know that the issue is the trailer brakes, but even if it isn’t, a loaded brakeless trailer behind a tow vehicle with a high center of gravity and a reputation for rolling over isn’t very safe.

Here’s the link to the LA Times article:


Also this is their quote concerning Exploders:

(U-Haul has banned towing with Ford Explorers since late 2003. Shoen said the SUV was not unsafe but had become “a magnet for attorneys.”)

Hatfields -vs- McCoys ! Like ex-spouses it will be a never ending spat that defies all logic.

Great article! Thanks for posting that.