Originally Posted by Motor7
Can you tell me more about your towing experience with the 3.73 rear end? Manual says it's limited to 2000lbs, so even an Rpod with some gear in it will be at 3,000. We own a 2015 JKU w/3.73 but I just bought an '02 Avalanche to tow our R-Pod 176T. Would love to do shorter local trips with the JKU.
The best towing gas truck I ever owned was my 02 Avalanche 2500 with the 8.1 Vortec engine. If you have that one - you’ll be very happy.
I don’t know how relative my towing experience with the Automatic will be to a Manual transmission but here goes.
I don’t tow any faster than 65 mph and many times only 55-60 mph.
Loaded, I was probably crowding 3500# and had a pretty substantial load of household items and gear inside the Jeep. I did not weigh it. The Jeep did great at altitudes 3500’ and below, even on fairly good hills of up to 6% grade. It will happily maintain 65 mph in 4th gear at 3500’ on level ground. During our trip, there were No heating issues at all. Above 3500’ the Jeep had to labor a bit. Coolant and transmission tems started climbing. At one point the coolant temp was at 240° & trans temp was 205° at about 70° ambient air temp - but - we were climbing an 8% grade steadily from 3500’ to 8500’. I selected 2nd gear and maintained 40 mph. While I could have gone faster, I did not want to push the engine higher than 4000 RPM (which is - I think - where we were at when doing 40 mph). The Jeep was not in the overheat zone on the temp gauge and was running well. There was no oil consumption during our 8 day 2800 mile trip.
In my opinion, gears like 4.10:1 would not offer a great enough leverage advantage to justify the couple thousand dollars they would have cost to have them installed.
One thing I will do differently for our return trip in the spring - I will use 5w30 Mobil1 oil instead of the 5w20 Mobil1. I feel it will offer just a little more protection.
I believe the Rpod 182G to be one of the heaviest and it’s tongue weight (unloaded) is enough to make our Jeep squat. I have installed Airlift Air Bags and carried 35 psi of air in them for the trip. I also have the Equal-i-zer weight distribution hitch with built in sway control. It’s an odd system and required numerous “tuning” sessions to get things balanced out.
I will continue to use the Jeep for towing duty, but have readjusted my expectations of the entire package.
The SuperChips TD2 tuner did bring a better shift strategy to the table, but my “butt-dyno” tells me that horsepower and torque remain unchanged. The ECU I have was one that I bought from an identical Jeep to mine off of eBay. I think the vendor was LKQ Auto out of Texas. SuperChips unlocked the ECU so it could be programmed. I still have the original ECU that I will install should I need to. The Jeep’s odometer is stored in the gauge cluster and not in the ECU in case you’re interested in doing something similar. IE - No broken warranty or odometer tampering laws.
I just have a distrust for tuners in general which is why I keep the original one packaged up in a sealed antistatic bag and flat box under my driver’s seat.
As a side note -
I can’t believe Jeep is certifying their new JT Gladiator pickup truck to tow better than 7000# with no changes to the 3.6 V6 engine. 285 hp at 6400 RPM. Yes better cooling and an 8 speed automatic are great, but you need to wring this engine’s neck to get it to produce the power. Frankly, I don’t like running it over 5500 RPM and even then, only for short stretches.