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Old 04-20-2021, 09:50 AM   #1
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Tow Vehicle Choices

I am considering getting a different tow vehicle. Once I've narrowed down the alternatives I can decide on doing it or not. The problem is that Iím having trouble narrowing down the alternatives.
  • Tow capacity is the easy one. The travel trailer is a Coachmen 248RBS (UVW 5,380, GVWR 7,500, Hitch 705, Payload 2,120). So a combination that works with those specs is a given.
  • Truck vs SUV. This vehicle will also be my road vehicle when not towing as well as my drive-around-town vehicle so size and gas mileage are considered. Weíve always had SUVs and they seem more practical than a truck as we can lock stuff in the back. Would consider a truck, however, as less expensive than an SUV, but likely a crew cab and not sure it would fit in the garage.
  • Brand/Models. Probably Chevy, GMC, or Ford. Would not consider Toyota.
  • Gasoline vs. Diesel, Engine Options. Never had diesel. Don't know what I think. This could be its own thread, though, and likely has been, so I'll search through to find some past threads on this. Then there are the multiple engine, transmission, and tire size options.
  • Safety features. Not sure which ones really matter and which are just nice to have.
  • New vs. Used. No particular budget in mind. Could do new. Lower taxes and insurance and less depreciation on 2-4 year old models, but availability may determine it. That seems to be a big issue these days. Trucks are on the lots here; SUVís much less so. Looking online I can tell with effort if new vehicles on the lot are equipped for towing but canít tell for used.
How would you go about narrowing this down?
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Old 04-20-2021, 10:07 AM   #2
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Well, this is the highest payload sticker I've seen on a 1/2 ton...





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Old 04-20-2021, 10:13 AM   #3
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I have the same trailer you have and my "old" 2014 Ram 1500 HEMI tows it just fine. I want a new TV but my wife always says......."what's wrong with the truck you have?"
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Old 04-20-2021, 11:00 AM   #4
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one ton diesel is one obvious choice.
Trade up. 3/4 ton at least. Some gas engines are okay with newer trans and more gears.

I have had 5 RVs but have only needed one TV in the last 18 years.
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Old 04-20-2021, 12:22 PM   #5
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Other considerations.

I' d start by going to each manufacturers towing guides and looking at all the ratings the have there. GVRW, GCVRW, gear ratios, and engine options and get a feel for which combination might suite your needs. The one thing that not in the guides Is cargo capacity, because it changes based on the trim levels, cab size, and bed length of a truck.

Note: one thing I wouldn't skip out on is a max tow package. I tow alot as part of my job and travel trailers have the worst towing profiles of anything I pull. Even cargo trailers. Ford's towing specs. (Down in the appdix. The*** section) even state not to pull a trailer exceeding 42 sq ft front profile and a GVRW of 7000,s pounds without a max tow package with an F-150. Typically a max tow package will provide the towing gears. Best matched transmission. A larger altinator, bigger transmission cooler and suspension adjustments. Plus whatever extra difference between the manufacturers.

SUV vs. Truck? Unless you have a large family, just go with a truck. They are cheaper once you are in full size land and have extra pay load and towing compared to an SUV. Adding a locking bed cover or a bed cap is still less of a weight penality than an SUV on a similar frame.

New vs. Used? Finding a used vehicle to suit a towing need is like finding a needle in a haystack. My brother in law has been looking for years to find a suitable used SUV for his family of five. (Three teens + large dog) with the tow ratings needed to upsize his TT as well.

Two trucks I am considering to replace my truck are:
Ford F-150 XLT sport with a max tow 3.5 eco
Chevy RST max tow with the 5.3 or 6.2

I live in the foothills of the rocky mountains and with all the hills, long climbs and steep grades I'd like to have more power.
Hope this helps.
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Old 04-20-2021, 01:04 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SailorSam20500 View Post
Well, this is the highest payload sticker I've seen on a 1/2 ton...





Where is that at? It's a F150 Unicorn with the HDPP.
Might be what I'm looking for.
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Old 04-20-2021, 01:18 PM   #7
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That trailer will use ~700-1000lbs of the truck payload.

What else needs to go in the truck? People, cargo, add on accessories etc

I have 1800lbs of payload so that would leave me with over 800lbs available.

Ford trucks should be easy to work with and I suspect chevy & dodge would be ok too. No idea about SUVs as they tend to have lower payloads but there are probably some that will work.
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Old 04-20-2021, 02:14 PM   #8
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I'm a Ford diesel guy so I would go Ford diesel. If you can afford new that's great. If I was buying a Ford today it would be a 2016 or newer f350 diesel. I don't think the ride between a F250 and a F350 will be that noticeable driving around town. It will feel bigger than the Sequoia but you will get use to it.

You're going to get a million recommendations on what truck is best but Ford Chevy Ram in diesel and in 3/4 to 1 ton would all be fine. It will boil down to your taste in styling and most of all color.

You also want to keep in mind you might upgrade to a bigger heavier trailer someday. I have had 6 Toy Haulers since 2002 with varying weight ranges. And looking at my dream Toy Hauler it's 4000lbs heavier than the one I have now.

Good luck!
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Old 04-20-2021, 02:24 PM   #9
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Where is that at? It's a F150 Unicorn with the HDPP.
Might be what I'm looking for.

Owned by a someone in San Antonio. I spotted the stickers in the F150forum thread = Photos of 2021 XLT Payload Stickers!. There are several threads by trim level. Definitely a unicorn, I'll bet whatever you want to offer that it was ordered. I'm wondering what the PL would be if it was a 4x4. Loose about 200 lbs?
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Old 04-20-2021, 02:27 PM   #10
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Brand/Models. Probably Chevy, GMC, or Ford. Would not consider Toyota.

I'm just curious why you would not consider a Toyota, since you have one now.

My Toyota Landcruiser has been the most long-lasting and reliable vehicle I've ever owned. I've got 325,000 miles on it, and it's still going strong.

OP: Disregard above. I just read your other thread about overheating transmission problems with your Sequoia. That doesn't sound normal to me. I drove a Tundra for many years - same transmission as Sequoia - I never had any problems towing anything within the weight limits.
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Old 04-20-2021, 02:29 PM   #11
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Where is that at? It's a F150 Unicorn with the HDPP.
Might be what I'm looking for.
It is a special order.
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Old 04-20-2021, 02:30 PM   #12
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Seems experienced folks with diesels given a choice today would choose a big gas motor over the 10grand hit you take with a diesel. Plus the price of gas is cheaper most locations.

In my case the wife and I are empty nesters have owned RVs before so no need to worry about buying a tow vehicle "just in case" for the future. Love my F150 pulling my 7700 GVWR trailer.

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Old 04-20-2021, 02:34 PM   #13
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Seems experienced folks with diesels given a choice today would choose a big gas motor over the 10grand hit you take with a diesel. Plus the price of gas is cheaper most locations.

In my case the wife and I are empty nesters have owned RVs before so no need to worry about buying a tow vehicle "just in case" for the future. Love my F150 pulling my 7700 GVWR trailer.

Given a choice I'd still take the diesel over any big gas motor
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Old 04-20-2021, 03:06 PM   #14
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Brand/Models. Probably Chevy, GMC, or Ford. Would not consider Toyota.

I'm just curious why you would not consider a Toyota, since you have one now.

My Toyota Landcruiser has been the most long-lasting and reliable vehicle I've ever owned. I've got 325,000 miles on it, and it's still going strong.
I was a fan of Toyota because of longevity and reliability. However, (1) under their new philosophy of keeping parts to a minimum, it seems you can't buy a small inexpensive replacement part--only an expensive entire unit that contains that small part. (2) The layout of the 14 Sequoia makes me think whoever designed it never drove it. (3) Quality has not been up to what I expect from a Toyota. As one example, the backup camera requires perfect light to be any help in hooking up a trailer. (4) Doesn't have the tow capacity of its peers, or at least didn't. Just a few examples. Other manufacturers may have similar problems but I'm thinking to give them a chance.
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Old 04-20-2021, 04:00 PM   #15
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Seems experienced folks with diesels given a choice today would choose a big gas motor over the 10grand hit you take with a diesel. Plus the price of gas is cheaper most locations.

In my case the wife and I are empty nesters have owned RVs before so no need to worry about buying a tow vehicle "just in case" for the future. Love my F150 pulling my 7700 GVWR trailer.


I'm one of those.


My next TV will be a Ford F250SD Crew Cab with the 7.3 gas. Unless I win the lottery. Then I'll go diesel.


My philosophy with TV's (and many other things) is "Nothing too strong ever broke."


"Just Barely Capable" is never as good as "More than Capable". Get a 3/4T.
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Old 04-20-2021, 05:00 PM   #16
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Two trucks I am considering to replace my truck are:
Ford F-150 XLT sport with a max tow 3.5 eco
Chevy RST max tow with the 5.3 or 6.2

I live in the foothills of the rocky mountains and with all the hills, long climbs and steep grades I'd like to have more power.
Hope this helps.
If you go Chevy, definitely get the 6.2L. I have one of each and the 5.3L is a slug in the mountains. The 6.2L tows at the speed limit. The 6.2L also has the 10 speed transmission. I don't believe you can get the 10 speed with the 5.3L anymore, but I'd double check that.
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Old 04-20-2021, 05:10 PM   #17
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Given a choice I'd still take the diesel over any big gas motor
For a 7500 GVWR trailer a gas motor will do just fine, whether it be a half ton or 3/4 ton. For a half ton, I'd go with the largest engine available, such as the 6.2L for Chevy/GMC, or 3.5L EcoBoost for the Ford. I'd also get the max tow package, as 7500 lbs is getting up there for a half ton. Me personally, I'd go with a 3/4 ton gasser for this size trailer. It has plenty of power for this size trailer and it will make for a much nicer tow experience than a half ton would.
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Old 04-20-2021, 05:23 PM   #18
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I'm one of those.

My next TV will be a Ford F250SD Crew Cab with the 7.3 gas. Unless I win the lottery. Then I'll go diesel.

My philosophy with TV's (and many other things) is "Nothing too strong ever broke."

"Just Barely Capable" is never as good as "More than Capable". Get a 3/4T.
If I go with a pickup I'll want a crew cab. But why a 250 over a 150? What do you see are the trade-offs? I ask because i see quite a bit of towing capacity on the 150's.
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Old 04-20-2021, 05:29 PM   #19
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For a 7500 GVWR trailer a gas motor will do just fine, whether it be a half ton or 3/4 ton. For a half ton, I'd go with the largest engine available, such as the 6.2L for Chevy/GMC, or 3.5L EcoBoost for the Ford. I'd also get the max tow package, as 7500 lbs is getting up there for a half ton. Me personally, I'd go with a 3/4 ton gasser for this size trailer. It has plenty of power for this size trailer and it will make for a much nicer tow experience than a half ton would.
What is the advantage of the 3/4 ton over the 1/2 ton? It seems the F-150 can be configured to tow 10,100 - 14,000 with 1,985-3,325 payload. I'm asking since I'll need to use this for an everyday car as well, and wondering what the trade-offs are.
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Old 04-20-2021, 05:38 PM   #20
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What is the advantage of the 3/4 ton over the 1/2 ton? It seems the F-150 can be configured to tow 10,100 - 14,000 with 1,985-3,325 payload. I'm asking since I'll need to use this for an everyday car as well, and wondering what the trade-offs are.
Not sure where you're getting those towing and payload ranges.
Without it having the Heavy Duty Payload package, the 1985lbs would be the max number and would probably be a regular cab 4x2 XLT base model F150. Same goes for those towing numbers.
As far as why a F250, I bought a F150 a few years ago and it is perfect for towing my 26ft TT. But now we want a small 5th wheel and the F150 can't tow it. So I'm going to have to move up to a F250. I should have bought the F250.
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