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Old 09-26-2021, 03:03 PM   #1
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Toyota Tacoma 6 cylinder, 6800 capacity

Hello All,

I am looking to purchase a small trailer with weight from 3,500 to about 4,300.
My Tacoma is rated for 6,800.
My kids are grown so camping this time around will be just my wife and me.
With that we probably will not be loading a whole lot of extra stuff / weight.

Does anyone have any experience using a Tacoma as a tow vehicle and if so how does it do? What did you pull with it?

I am not in a position to upsize my P/U so it will have to do and just want to make certain our trailer purchase aligns well with the truck.

Hope to get some feedback and thank you in advance.

Rich Messler
Powhatan, VA
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Old 09-26-2021, 04:19 PM   #2
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What is the truck's payload capacity? It's on the driver's door sticker.
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Old 09-26-2021, 06:19 PM   #3
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As bikendan stated. Payload is king here always. Towing capacity is hardly ever the issue unless you literally try to tow past the rated weight. People who don’t realize, and newbies have to learn this, payload is the determining factor most often in your final decision.
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Old 09-27-2021, 08:43 AM   #4
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I have been towing our G12SRK for about 7 months with my 2021 Tacoma TRD 4X4 (with tow package). We camp a lot. Biggest trip to date was Grand Canyon from So. Cal. Loaded with all our gear (No water in tanks) Full propane (2), Dual batteries, Full fridge, bedding, Clothes, ETC.... Towing is not an issue. Only down side is i go from 20 mpg to 14-16 mpg (Depending on terrain) while towing, Flat terrain a little better, but not much. This pic shows how much gear we typically carry. If im off grid, i carry a Gen for emergency's (TT has Solar). Still under the trucks tow capacity. TT has a full kitchen also. Granted this TT is smaller then you probably want but its perfect for the both of us. Just showing what a Tacoma can do. I also tow within 55-65 mph but on flat land (If you don't pay attention) it cruises 70 with ease.

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Old 09-27-2021, 09:11 AM   #5
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I had a Tacoma but found over time it wasn't really a good tow vehicle for me. The small gas tank had me looking for gas less than every 150mi. Plus it always felt like the truck was working hard... I do miss that little truck though!
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Old 09-27-2021, 09:33 AM   #6
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I had a Tacoma but found over time it wasn't really a good tow vehicle for me. The small gas tank had me looking for gas less than every 150mi. Plus it always felt like the truck was working hard... I do miss that little truck though!

The Gen 3 Tacoma's power band comes on about 3K and then pulls pretty good, I guess it all boils down to terrain and the weight your pulling with all your gear. So far have had no real issues and no regrets, Total weight for me is only about 3500-3800 with everything, Thats including what im carrying in the truck as well. I do agree that there has been a couple times, Like climbing up I40 to Grand Canyon (Steep Grade) where i wish it had a bit more but, Nothing that we couldn't over come. Just took a little longer.
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Old 09-27-2021, 09:46 AM   #7
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I'm using a 2021 Nissan Frontier to tow our 2021 Wildwood FSX, no problems to date, pulls good, Nissan pulls 6750, payload of 1, 460 lbs.
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Old 09-27-2021, 09:54 AM   #8
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Not as simple as it seems especially with small tow vehicles.

Published trailer weights are always empty. Determine the fully loaded weight, usually listed as the Gross Vehicle Weight Rating (GVWR) before determining what you can tow. Not unusual for that weight to be 1000 or even 2000 pounds more than the listed (empty) weight.

Max towing capacity is also stated with the truck empty. Every pound in the truck needs to be subtracted from max capacity. Stuff in the truck, including people and dogs, plus the weight on the ball counts against the cargo capacity of the truck.

Tongue weight must be at least 10% (and up to 15%) of the trailer's weight for safe towing hence the need to know the cargo capacity of the tow vehicle.

Example: My Expedition has a cargo capacity of about 1500 pounds and I have 700 pounds on the ball leaving 800 pounds for internal cargo in the SUV. That can easily be absorbed with adults, dogs, firewood, etc. "Max towing capacity" is 9200 pounds but that's not the critical number.

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Old 09-27-2021, 10:56 AM   #9
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I was towing about 3600 lbs with my 2020 Tacoma. Payload around 900 lbs and tow rating of 6400 lbs.


It was completely capable of pulling the trailer, but it's not a relaxing drive. It had to frequently downshift to 3rd gear on the highway to maintain 60 mph. Wife and kids had to ride in another car so as to not go over payload. You will also make a lot of stops for gas.



So it absolutely can be done, I just found that it felt like the truck was always working so hard and it was a little more stressful. I switched up to a half ton truck and now I loaf along in comfort and can easily drive all day without getting tired.


What year is your Tacoma? I think the older 4.0 was a better engine for towing than the 3.5 in the current Tacoma.
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Old 09-27-2021, 12:53 PM   #10
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Tacoma Towing

I have a GEO Pro 19FD and had towed it with a 2016 Tacoma TRD Sport. Where I live in Southern British Columbia, we have a lot of steep climbs and descents. I found the Tacoma struggled in pulling up the mountains, but was ok on the flats. Mileage sucked, and was not enjoyable towing. Traded my Tacoma in last summer for a 2020 Tundra. Big difference in towing, ease of driving and the mileage was not that bad. Hope my experiences help in your decision.

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Old 09-27-2021, 01:05 PM   #11
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I have a 2012 Tacoma 4x4 TRD (6500# max) and pull a 5000# (loaded) Roo easy on the flats and at 55-60 up hills on the freeway. The 6800# means nothing. I would say 5000# is the max. Payload (1050#) & tongue (650#) are the limiting factors. Get yourself a good WDH and make sure it's setup properly. Balancing the load to keep the tongue weight just right is essential. Two people and gear in the cab is 400# + 650# on the hitch and I'm done.
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Old 09-27-2021, 01:27 PM   #12
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I have a Ď19 Tacoma TRD Sport that I use to pull my Geo Pro 14fk. Itís 2200 pounds dry and I probably carry around a couple hundred pounds of gear around. It does the job, I try to keep my speed under 65mph and it does a good job with that. Going up steep hills isnít the Tacoís strong suit though. Thereís one hill that I have to go up on the highway on my way home that I have the peddle to the floor, the engine is screaming and Iím barely keeping it at 55mph. Outside of that, I donít have too many complaints with the towing ability. Just keep in mind your gas mileage is going to be terrible as I normally get about 20mpg not towing and 12-14 while towing.
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Old 09-27-2021, 03:07 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ed from Riverside View Post
I have been towing our G12SRK for about 7 months with my 2021 Tacoma TRD 4X4 (with tow package). We camp a lot. Biggest trip to date was Grand Canyon from So. Cal. Loaded with all our gear (No water in tanks) Full propane (2), Dual batteries, Full fridge, bedding, Clothes, ETC.... Towing is not an issue. Only down side is i go from 20 mpg to 14-16 mpg (Depending on terrain) while towing, Flat terrain a little better, but not much. This pic shows how much gear we typically carry. If im off grid, i carry a Gen for emergency's (TT has Solar). Still under the trucks tow capacity. TT has a full kitchen also. Granted this TT is smaller then you probably want but its perfect for the both of us. Just showing what a Tacoma can do. I also tow within 55-65 mph but on flat land (If you don't pay attention) it cruises 70 with ease.

Ed




Can you tell me the make and model of the bikes?
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Old 09-27-2021, 10:30 PM   #14
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Can you tell me the make and model of the bikes?
Those are "Costco" ebikes. Jetson Bolt Pro Folding Electric Bike. Low cost but very efficient. Can go a weekend on full charge, Depending on terrain of course. we love them.
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Old 09-27-2021, 10:30 PM   #15
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Those are "Costco" ebikes. Jetson Bolt Pro Folding Electric Bike. Low cost but very efficient.

Thank you
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Old 09-27-2021, 10:32 PM   #16
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Thank you
Your welcome
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Old 09-28-2021, 08:27 AM   #17
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I have been using a 2017 Tacoma TRD Sport with tow package(rated at 6400 lbs) for a little over 4 years now pulling a single axle 21 foot 5,000 lb trailer(4300 Dry weight) with around 400 pound tongue weight. Never have had an opportunity to actually weigh my setup, but I do carry my trailer spare, extra propane, various tools in the bed and three occupants(500 pounds). Hills are a bit much but like others have said the 3rd gen Taco power comes beyond 3500 RPM. Slow and steady is my motto! Never beyond 62 mph for the most part as that seems to be the sweet spot for the truck and my comfort. Gas mileage around 11.5 - 12 mpg's! I think from your description you will be just fine just keeping in mind some idea of weights and Tacoma limitations!
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Old 09-28-2021, 08:52 AM   #18
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I have been using a 2017 Tacoma TRD Sport with tow package(rated at 6400 lbs) for a little over 4 years now pulling a single axle 21 foot 5,000 lb trailer(4300 Dry weight) with around 400 pound tongue weight. Never have had an opportunity to actually weigh my setup, but I do carry my trailer spare, extra propane, various tools in the bed and three occupants(500 pounds). Hills are a bit much but like others have said the 3rd gen Taco power comes beyond 3500 RPM. Slow and steady is my motto! Never beyond 62 mph for the most part as that seems to be the sweet spot for the truck and my comfort. Gas mileage around 11.5 - 12 mpg's! I think from your description you will be just fine just keeping in mind some idea of weights and Tacoma limitations!
100% true.

slow and steady and don't over load it! No hurry will still get you there.

I tow with ECT on and in "4" gear selection. Drop to 3rd on hills and it will cruise up the hills about 3-3500rpm. Tows good from my perspective just not a rocket, (Depending on what your haulin of course). When i get on really flat terrain or descending grades, i switch to Regular driving mode "D" so the overdrive will kick in to get a little mileage squeezed out of the truck. I think the best i ever got was 16. Worst was around 11-12.
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Old 09-28-2021, 09:14 AM   #19
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Before I bought the Ram, I was towing my similar weight TT with a Nissan Frontier..basically the same setup you are contemplating with your Tacoma.
High RPM, lots of downshifting and poor mpg was needed to keep up with traffic. Lack of reserve power meant I was permanently confined to the slow lane. You can do it but please use turnouts in the mountains.
Your fuel stops will also be frequent.
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Old 10-04-2021, 06:32 PM   #20
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Pulling with a V-6 Tacoma

[QUOTE=Paxman1955;2643367]Hi I purchased a 2020 R-Pod 189 trailer last year. It weights 3,091 lbs. I haven't had any problems pulling it with my 2016 Tacoma TRD Sport truck. Make sure to use an anti sway bar or weight distribution hitch. Mine is rated for 5800 lbs. I like the R-Pod. I can see around the side of the camper while pulling it because of the width of the trailer.
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