We’re automotive people, not camper people. That said, we have all been behind the wheel of a truck or SUV with a trailer hitched up, either for our own vacationing purposes or simply to check out the capabilities of a brand new vehicle as a part of our test driving duties. So, for this week’s What Would You Buy, we’re going camping. Virtually, at the least.
Like I said, we aren’t camper people by trade, so we decided to show to some actual trailer experts with a view to determine what a mean family-size camper would weigh. In response to this recent article from RV Living, the Grand Design Imagine is a solid alternative for buyers in search of a family-size towable. We then went to the Grand Design website and singled out the exactly middle machine within the lineup. Listed here are the stats for the Grand Design Imagine 2800BH:
- Cost: $55,078 to start out
- Weight unladed: 6,386 kilos
- Gross vehicle weight rating: 8,495 kilos
Using those numbers, we want to sort out an acceptable tow vehicle. As you possibly can see, it must give you the option to drag around 6,400 kilos on the very least. Fully loaded, Grand Design says the Imagine 2800BH can weigh as much as 8,500 or so kilos packed filled with gear, water, food, and other various sundries and supplies. We’ll let our editors use their very own judgment when selecting their virtual tow rigs, but suffice it to say a fuel-efficient sporty sedan is not going to chop it this week. Since that is a conventional trailer and never a fifth-wheel, a pickup truck bed is just not a necessity.
The foundations are as follows:
- Recent or used, doesn’t matter
- It must be rated to tow at the least 6,400 kilos
- It has to cost around $48,000
- You possibly can spend lower than $48,000 but have in mind nothing will destroy a family vacation faster than an unreliable vehicle that breaks down
Why $48,000? Well, we went with what appears to be a mean(ish) family-size trailer, so we’re going to seek out a vehicle for a mean(ish) sum of cash. The common recent automotive transaction price in America has been hovering between $48,000 and $49,000 this yr, so there’s our budget.
2013 Toyota Land Cruiser
Senior Editor Jeremy Korzeniewski: A truck makes a complete lot of sense as a tow vehicle, little question. But an SUV offers some advantages, too, including space for more passengers or covered space for worthwhile items that you don’t need to store in an open bed. I’ve personally towed with just a few V8-powered trucks and SUVs from Toyota and Lexus, and while they do not offer the sheer capability of some American options, they’re well equipped to handle something on this weight range. The truth is, this particular 2013 Land Cruiser is rated to tow exactly 8,500 kilos, which falls perfectly in step with the trailer we have chosen for this imaginary exercise. And I would not likely tow the trailer at its full gross weight rating anyway, so there can be at the least a thousand kilos of leeway for passengers and cargo within the SUV. A Lexus LX 570 would also work, but after I found this sweet LC on Cars and Bids that went up for auction slightly while ago with a gavel price inside spitting distance of our self-imposed price cap, I made a decision it was a pleasant representation of what I’d be in search of.
2019 Mercedes-Benz GLS 450
Senior Editor John Beltz Snyder: Why not live within the lap of luxury on the solution to the campsite? We’ve got two kids, and can likely wish to bring a dog and/or a friend along, in addition to our stuff. With a tow capability of seven,700 kilos, we will unlock a little bit of in-car storage (and balance the load we’re towing) by securing a few of our gear contained in the trailer. We could even use the GLS to switch the family Palisade, leaving room within the driveway for the eventual EV for around-town driving. I already know my wife loves the GLS, so she’ll be pleased. It’ll just be slightly bit like after we used to tow our jet-skis in our GLK, but every part will just be a bit greater now: the vehicle, the load and even our family. Due to Mercedes’ knack for depreciation, there are lots of options inside this price range with totally acceptable mileage. I’ll need to keep this concept in my pocket if I ever persuade my higher half that we must always get a travel trailer.
2004 Range Rover HSE
Senior Editor James Riswick: I’ve decided to go along with this 2004 Range Rover HSE on the market on Autotrader’s Private Seller exchange. It has only 49,000 miles on it and the owner says it’s in “emaculate condition” due to all the time being garaged and professionally detailed. That is from the early days of this Range Rover generation, which implies it’s principally a BMW underneath, complete with BMW electrical architecture and BMW 4.4-liter V8. Importantly, that V8 allows it to tow 7,700 kilos, as does this one’s tow hitch. Quite simply, this generation Range Rover is one in all the best-looking SUVs ever made, a real classic, and this particular one looks terrific in blue paint with light tan interior. The asking price can be only $15,555, which leaves me with $32,445 readily available for maintenance, rental cars and one other recliner couch for home. That just looks as if a sound financial statement to me.
OK, so I’ve just been informed that my financial statement is “silly” and my alternative is “not within the spirit of this exercise.” But Jeremy’s fourth rule! He gave me the alternative to spit within the face of reliability! Wonderful! A much more sensible and still awfully nice tow vehicle can be this somewhat nice 2020 Ram 1500 Laramie. It has an inexpensive amount of miles (30,886), an actual color (Delmonico Red), ample equipment, and vitally for the towing job at hand, the EcoDiesel V6 that gives robust torque and robust fuel economy. It isn’t ’04 Range Rover, however it’s an ideal alternative.
2020 Dodge Durango SRT
Associate Editor Byron Hurd: A friend (and fellow auto critic) wrote me a one-line message in response to my Hemi send-off last yr. It read: “The 6.4 is the perfect engine ever built. No have to reinvent the wheel.” I can have an advanced relationship with the Hemi, but there’s one thing I am unable to take issue with: its bang-for-the-buck in terms of towing utility. Anything with four-wheel drive and a 392 can tow good enough for the common buyer, and it will look and sound quite good doing it. The Durango is not as refined (or pretty, in my view) because the equivalent Jeep Grand Cherokee, however the Durango offers more wheelbase, which in turn means more stability. Plus you get a 3rd row. Hey, in a automotive like this, more is more.
2018-2020 SRTs appear to be relatively common on this price range, and with 8,700 kilos of towing capability, you possibly can tow that camper with every reservoir filled and a mighty big cooler filled with beer within the back as well. ‘Murica, baby.
2014 Porsche Cayenne Turbo S
Road Test Editor Zac Palmer: The Cayenne is usually known for its unnaturally good handling and dynamite powertrains, but its lesser-known talent is towing. This 2014 Cayenne Turbo S is rated to tow as much as 7,716 kilos, which should do the trick for the Grand Design Imagine without issue. Its 550 horsepower and 553 pound-feet of torque will make quick work of any steep mountain passes, and the air suspension will keep every part on the extent. At an original sticker of $155,865, the instance I discovered is filled with luxurious nice-to-haves, and since it is the S, all of Porsche’s handling/performance goodies got here standard anyway. This particular Turbo S already has the trailering hardware I’d need to start out hauling immediately, and its selling price of $47,500 on Bring a Trailer means it’s slightly below budget. In fact, I’m buying this Cayenne just as much for its capabilities and not using a trailer attached as I’m for trailering with it. No other SUV is more fun to drive than one with a Porsche badge on it, and this one is a screaming performance deal.
2019 Ford F-350
Managing Editor Greg Rasa: My dad, who drove trucks for a living and hauled his Kubota around on a flatbed trailer, used to marvel at big campers and RVs taking place the highway. Why, he’d say, would individuals who had never driven big trucks and trailers of their entire lives suddenly resolve it might be fun to start out doing it of their retirement years? To him, it looked like zero fun and never a thing for greenhorns. I regard towing as somewhat nerve-wracking, so if I will do it, it’s best done with a vehicle overqualified for the duty. I might not regard many of the aforementioned SUVs as such — this 8,500-pound trailer is at the highest end of their capabilities. I will want capability well beyond that. There are numerous low-miles, used Ford F-350s in my area, with a towing capability of 12,000 kilos or more. Loads of F-250s and a few Ram and Silverado HDs too. Most of them are white XL work trucks, but there are some XLTs and at the least one Lariat. I picked this 2019 XLT from the bunch. It has the 6.2-liter V8, and a bit under 29,000 miles. Extra money than we have budgeted here buys you more capability. But this could get the job done.
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