Towing with a toyota echo



My 2000 Toyota Echo has installed a Reese Towpower/Trailer hitch which I currently use to carry a couple of bikes during the weekends.

I want to tow an small trailler(4’x5’) with a total weight of 250-300 pounds for 7-10 miles within the city (Boston).

Car max capacity is 775pounds (passangers+luggage).

(Toyota said no towing with this car)

i’d appreciatte your comments.



I don’t see any harm in towing something that light for such a short distance.
The main reason for Toyota’s recommendation is liability. They do not want to say “tow it” and then get sued if something happens.

Look at U-Haul. They will flat not rent a trailer to anyone who owns a Ford Explorer; all because of that bogus Explorer/Bridgestone tire rollover fiasco from a few years ago.
However, they WILL rent a trailer to someone driving a Mercury Mountaineer. The Mountaineer actually IS a Ford Explorer; it just has a different set of name badges attached to it much like the Taurus/Sable cars.


I agree with OK…it’s probably fine. That’s a very small and very light trailer. It probably can’t haul that much anyways.


You will put undue stress on your vehicle however an Echo can last a lot longer than what you’ll likely keep it or rust will get at it first. I would make sure to use the severe interval for transmission fluid changes if this is automatic. You may push the component to the edge towing as its simply not designed for it.


Agree, you can tow something that light for a short distance without ill effect. If the car has a stick shift, you may want to stay in 3rd gear in the city. As Andrew says, follow the severe maintenance schedule. My brother-in law once towed a small streamlined house trailer all over Europe in a Mitsubishi Colt with a 1.6 L engine. He could not use 4th gear, however. The trip was very slow.


Are you all trying to make my head explode? If the maker of the car says it isn’t designed for towing, don’t do it. Get a roof rack instead.


Is this a one-time thing? Total loaded trailer weight is 300 pounds or is that what you are loading on the trailer? That is only 30# tongue weight.

What kind of trailer do you have that is so light and what are you hauling that is so light? Something bulky that won’t fit inside? My local Lowes or Home Depot rents trucks for cheap. Maybe you have to buy something.


While I agree that a 300 pound total load for 10 miles in Boston probably won’t harm the car. I side with the recommendation to rent a pickup. Maneuvering through traffic around Boston, especially if part of that mileage is I-93, is hard enough without a 300 pound tail wagging the car. That could be enough to send you out of control. And should something happen you could also have a liability issue. Wagging a 300 pound tail 8 feet behind the rear axle is not the same as having it positioned inside the car.