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Old 11-19-2013, 12:48 PM   #11
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Mike

Typically I have found that with tow-haul "on" you can brake for a few seconds using somewhat firm pressure and force a downshift. If I remember correctly on the grapevine I did manually select second gear as I like to conserve my brakes and it was taking longer than I desired to select second.

As well, it seems that the controls for downshifting use some combination of brake pressure, time, and vss input to force the downshift. Sometimes when coming off a hill it will roll a bit before downshifting and if you really get on the brakes it will downshift aggressively (i.e. hard stop event).

Most times I can just modulate the brake input and force shifts where I want them for deceleration.

On hill climbing I tend to select gears myself and or switch the tow/haul mode on an off to keep the engine in the gear I desire as with tow haul always on it shifts too much (in my opinion) and with it off it can shift too late (again in my opinion).

Overall I am happy with the transmission/engine combo. I have +/- 5000 miles on the coach and am still learning how it wants to be driven.

FYI the LR Discovery weighs in right about the same as your JGC...and with four young kids and all the "stuff" I am at the max combined weight limit. Without the car being towed it feels much more responsive, which should be similar to your weight with a tow vehicle in my estimation.
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Old 11-19-2013, 09:08 PM   #12
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Interesting......when I did it a few times without the toad, all I did was get to my desired speed then tap the brake. Once I tapped the brake once I never touched it again. It automatically downshifted from there. But I surely don't know if that works on a hill like the grapevine.

But it's cool to know that a fully loaded vehicle is completely manageable with no braking or very little braking. Thanks for your experiences it is very encouraging and good to know.
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Old 12-06-2013, 05:07 PM   #13
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I have2013 Forester amd towing Ford Transit connect And just got dealer to put Class IV hitch on. As soon as house sells we will ne on road. My GCVW will be just under 21000 lbs. Need tow dolly for car. Am a little nervous, being this is first time towing, after reading about people having control problems driving
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Old 12-06-2013, 06:04 PM   #14
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Back when I worked for a Freightliner dealer in the truck shop we had many complaints from Freightliner Custom Chassis Motorcoach owners (Class 7) about wandering steering.

99% of the time there were no mechanical defects, just drivers that were unaccustomed to driving a vehicle with the high GVW. What I found worked best for advice to the drivers, (and for myself) is to drive with both hands on the wheel (10,2 or 9,3) and leave your elbows resting on the armrests...it helps to fight the urge to "oversteer" the wheel whenever the front wheels follow grooves or the coach sways a little.

This works for me on my heavy 3171DS towing a heavy car.

As well, when driving tour coaches or tractors or class 7 coaches or fire engines they all behave the same as mentioned above...to me it is nature of the high GVW vehicles.
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Old 12-06-2013, 08:11 PM   #15
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There some truth to its a big truck and drives like one.
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