Originally Posted by Jerry Pergande
After reading all the responses I'm questioning on pulling my newly acquired a122s (dry weight less than 1900 lbs) with my 2013 Ford Escape with the 2.0 turbo boost. Tow rating 3500lbs. I appreciate any opinions. Is sway bars necessary with this unit?
Unfortunately, dry weight means less than nothing. It's deceiving and will never be achieved in real life.
There should be a yellow sticker somewhere that lists the actual weight as it left the factory (it will be several hundred pounds heavier than the dry weight). You also need the max gross weight - which is the published maximum weight the trailer should be when fully loaded. Your towing weight should be somewhere between the two, depending on much stuff you pack into the camper, and how much weight the dealer added on in extras and options.
From what I have seen from those who have actually weighed their a-frames in camping condition at a truck scale, your real tow weight will be somewhere around 2600 - 3000+ lbs. With that front stowage locker, you can really add weight, although I believe Forest River claims stuff in the front locker should be less than 150lbs.
With a Ford Escape, I would add a combination weight distributing hitch and anti-sway. This, when adjusted, will stop your Escape's rear end from sagging, and prevent sway. I use an Equalizer E2 hitch for both WDH and anti-sway - works very nicely on my Hyundai Entourage minivan.
From everything I have read, the EB engine will give better torque and power than a standard V6. Your gas mileage while towing won't be any better than a V6 (15-19 mpg, depending a lot of factors).
But you won't know until you try. I would also make a very concerted effort to keep your A122s weight as towed below 3000lb. A trip to the truck scale loaded up for camping will be very enlightening and worth the time and a few bucks.
2014 Rockwood A122 a-frame
2008 Hyundai Entourage (minivan)
camping Colorado and adjacent states one weekend at a time