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Old 08-06-2013, 08:36 AM   #1
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Questions about the Vibe 6502

I do not currently own an RV but I really want the Vibe 6502 model, so i've been doing some research but still have unanswered questions...

I have a 2008 Ford Escape, automatic, 6-cylinder engine. The Ford towing guide says once I install a towing package, I can tow up to 3500 pounds. I have found a few Vibe 6502's for sale, but they have different weights. I am going by the dry weight only. One weighed about 2700 pounds and another of the SAME model weighed 3100! How can this much of a difference exist? If they're exactly the same, they should weigh the same, so which one is right? Also, I can't find anything on the Forest River site about older models so i'm not sure how many years they made the Vibe. Would the older ones be heavier? I read in another thread on this forum that someone ended up in the ditch towing the 6502 with an Escape but someone else said they knew someone with no problems. I don't know what to do now. I can't find any other models I like so my heart is set on this one, and I just bought my Escape for this reason so i'm not about to sell it, besides I'm very short and small and have a hard time driving larger vehicles so I don't want to get a different one when I just bought this.

Does anyone have any advice or suggestions? thanks!
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Old 08-06-2013, 08:55 AM   #2
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I think the 6502 may be too much for the Escape. The 2013 and 14 models weigh 3,800lb's GVWR. You don't really want to go by the dry weight. I don't think there were made before 2012.

My friend has a 6502 and loves it. Tows it with a 6cyl Toyota 4-Runner without any issues but not sure the tow rating on that.
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Old 08-06-2013, 09:00 AM   #3
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I think the 6502 may be too much for the Escape. The 2013 and 14 models weigh 3,800lb's GVWR. You don't really want to go by the dry weight.
I thought the GVWR was the total weight the TRAILER can handle, not the tow vehicle? All this time i've only been looking at the base weight of the trailer! Well that really limits me. I'm bummed.

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My friend has a 6502 and loves it. Tows it with a 6cyl Toyota 4-Runner without any issues but not sure the tow rating on that.
I just looked up the Toyota 4 runner and it looks almost exactly like an Escape, looks about the same size, too! I see ads all the time saying Escapes can tow a lot of small trailers, I didn't think the Vibe was that big, it's even designed to be easier to tow.

I don't know what to do now.
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Old 08-06-2013, 09:10 AM   #4
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yea, dry weight is before they put things like propane tanks, batteries, and dealer installed accessories in the unit and also before you add things like water and gear. Also, I've ready a few places that you really don't want to go over 80% of your max wieght unless you are really ok with abusing the heck out of your vehicle.

Maybe some others with Escapes will chime in.
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Old 08-06-2013, 12:51 PM   #5
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GVWR is what the total trailer can be, not what it is. Many on this forum assume that you will load it to the max and therefore suggest you use that number. The dry weight on the brochure is usless as well. The number you need is on the yellow stick on the side of the trailer and then add in propane, battery, etc. Yes I know someone pulling a 6502 with an older escape however they are not going far nor are they hitting a lot of hills. They also have to look at the weight of everything they put in. The person who ended up in a ditch towing a 6502 with an escape probably had no business towing a trailer in the first place (my guess is the didn't have enough tongue weight and it didn't matter what the TV was).

Bottom line is yes you can tow it with an escape but I would not really reccomend it. I would look at an Rpod if I were you unless you are just going to go short distances on flat ground and carry very little weight.
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Old 08-06-2013, 01:13 PM   #6
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Problem is, the yellow sticker is as equally meaningless as the others. From the day we picked up my camper, before we put our first personal item into it, my camper weighed more than its yellow sticker due to dealer-installed add-ons.

My recommendation is to go with the GVWR in order to be conservative. If you're within ratings at that number, anything less is just icing on the cake. Otherwise, I've heard told that the average user adds 1,000-1,500 pounds of stuff over the dry weight but even that is subjective to your camper, camper size, packing and traveling habits. Each situation is different..
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Old 08-06-2013, 07:50 PM   #7
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Originally Posted by tanddc View Post
GVWR is what the total trailer can be, not what it is. Many on this forum assume that you will load it to the max and therefore suggest you use that number. The dry weight on the brochure is usless as well. The number you need is on the yellow stick on the side of the trailer and then add in propane, battery, etc. Yes I know someone pulling a 6502 with an older escape however they are not going far nor are they hitting a lot of hills. They also have to look at the weight of everything they put in. The person who ended up in a ditch towing a 6502 with an escape probably had no business towing a trailer in the first place (my guess is the didn't have enough tongue weight and it didn't matter what the TV was).

Bottom line is yes you can tow it with an escape but I would not really reccomend it. I would look at an Rpod if I were you unless you are just going to go short distances on flat ground and carry very little weight.
Well my plan was to live in it fulltime, and travel the country. Since I can't avoid hills forever, I probably shouldn't do this. I looked at the R pods but didnt like any of them. I have looked at ALL Rv's for the last few years. The Vibe is truly unique, the 6501 is lighter but not by much and that one didn't have any counter space which I need.
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Old 08-06-2013, 08:14 PM   #8
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I don't think you would be happy with that combo. Full timing means bringing lots of stuff. Not only would the escape not haul it, the vibe doesn't have a lot of carrying capacity. I would look at an explorer for a TV and plan on hauling a lot of your stuff in it.
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Old 08-06-2013, 08:27 PM   #9
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Go by the gross and also keep in mind, unless your TV comes from the factory with the tow package, your not towing what your book says. 'Properly equipped' is when it comes from the factory with the tow package installed
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Old 08-07-2013, 08:44 AM   #10
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Go by the gross and also keep in mind, unless your TV comes from the factory with the tow package, your not towing what your book says. 'Properly equipped' is when it comes from the factory with the tow package installed
You mean if I went to the Ford dealer and had them install a towing package, it wouldn't be as good as if they had done it when the vehicle was brand new? I don't see what the difference would be. That was my only hope, because Ford's website says the towing package lets you tow 3500 pounds. Geez if I had known this, I would have never bought my Escape.
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