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Old 03-12-2017, 09:56 PM   #1
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19ft Escape and 2015 Toyota Highlander

Looking for opinions on whether my 2015 Toyota Highlander Limited Platinum with the tow package would make a good tug for a 19 ft Escape, keeping in mind that we frequently travel over mountain passes. Currently we're pulling a 16 ft Scamp and we hardly notice we towing. I know the numbers work but am wondering how much the towing experience will be negatively impacted by the heavier trailer. Appreciate any comments.
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Old 03-12-2017, 10:00 PM   #2
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Should work fine. Others here have similar combos. You will slow down on the highest steepest grades but that is pretty typical unless you opt for a torquey full size pickup.
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Old 03-12-2017, 10:11 PM   #3
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I know the specs on the Highlander are OK for the Escape 19. We upgraded from a Casita 17' to an Escape 19' towing with a 4.0L 4Runner. Although we are well within the tow capacity for both trailers (5000 lb capacity on the 4Runner) what I can say is that with the 19' we know we have a load behind us when compared to the Casita. No problems on any mountain pass, etc but you know you have a load
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Old 03-12-2017, 10:46 PM   #4
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That's what I was kinda thinking. The Highlander tows our 16 ft Scamp like there's nothing there (which we really like!) and we're a little fearful that towing a 19 ft Escape will be on the top end for towing and we'd struggle a little going over high mountain passes. Hubby really worries about stressing the tow vehicle and probably would stress with this combination. BUT we really like the Escape...
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Old 03-12-2017, 11:58 PM   #5
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Towed the Escape 17 with my 2007 FJ Cruiser, 4.0L, V6, 5000 + 500.
I never knew it was there and I'm not worried about the FJ / 19 at all. You'll be fine IMHO.
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Old 03-13-2017, 12:29 AM   #6
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Our 2013 Highlander has been a great SUV and a good tow vehicle for our 19. If you want to climb steep mountain passes with ease it's not the vehicle for you but a great all round vehicle capable of towing a 19. Since you already own the Highlander I would use it towing the 19 with a WDH. I wouldn't be concerned about stressing the vehicle, i.e. downshifting on the hills and running at a higher rpm. We change the fluids more often and haven't had a problem towing long distances including steep mountain passes.
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Old 03-13-2017, 09:27 AM   #7
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HIGHLander

We tow the fully loaded 19 with a 2012 Highlander. We've pulled a lot of mountain passes without any problems. A fairly high percentage of the time we are held up by truck traffic, underpowered overloaded smaller vehicles, and especially drivers who do not know how to maintain road speed going up steep grades or are panicky going down. I'm not afraid to buzz the engine or challenge the transmission with self shifting. 143,000 miles, no problems. Use your head, pay attention to the grade at hand and watch the road. Many people have navigated the grade ahead of you with less power, poorer brakes no power steering, and older rigs. You can do it with your Highlander. People who doubt this in forum print are in the same class with those who honk or make gestures. They do not qualify as fellow motorists in my opinion.
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Old 03-13-2017, 09:56 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Iowa Dave View Post
We tow the fully loaded 19 with a 2012 Highlander. We've pulled a lot of mountain passes without any problems. A fairly high percentage of the time we are held up by truck traffic, underpowered overloaded smaller vehicles, and especially drivers who do not know how to maintain road speed going up steep grades or are panicky going down. I'm not afraid to buzz the engine or challenge the transmission with self shifting. 143,000 miles, no problems. Use your head, pay attention to the grade at hand and watch the road. Many people have navigated the grade ahead of you with less power, poorer brakes no power steering, and older rigs. You can do it with your Highlander. People who doubt this in forum print are in the same class with those who honk or make gestures. They do not qualify as fellow motorists in my opinion.
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Hi: Iowa Dave... I have been "Gestured" before... Had a wood screw and piece of wire removed from my trailer tire, but never had a "Wire tapp". Alf
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Old 03-13-2017, 09:56 AM   #9
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We towed a 19' with a 2015 Highlander for about a year without any problems. It was a great vehicle until... Well we wont go there today but the problem was not with the Highlander.
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Old 03-13-2017, 11:57 AM   #10
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I think the weight of your overall load plays a big role here. IME, towing our 19 with our V6 4Runner (also 5000 lbs tow capacity) was "ok" in the Colorado mountains as long as it was just me and one passenger. But once loaded up with our two kids, bikes for four, full water tank, etc. I found it to be less than adequate, so we ultimately went with a bigger tow vehicle.
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Old 03-13-2017, 12:19 PM   #11
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We're pretty "light weight" campers, since there is just the two of us and we've always been pretty focused on keeping the weight on our load as low as possible. The trailer alone would be on the heavier side because we'd want most of the extras but our personal accessories and take-alongs would be minimal.
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Old 03-13-2017, 05:40 PM   #12
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We've been towing our Escape 19 with a 2015 Highlander for over 12,000 miles all over the country without any problems. I love the way it tows. We just went ver a 15% grade. Frankly, coming down was more scary than going up. My biggest complaint is that Toyota didn't offer a 7-pin connector and a built in break controller connection on a vehicle rated at towing 5,000 pounds. There are workarounds, but built in is better.
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Old 03-14-2017, 11:26 AM   #13
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Thanks, people, for your knowledge and experiences. Ultimately, we just can't know how happy we'd be with this tow combination until we actually try it- and then it's too late!
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Old 03-14-2017, 11:44 AM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ljswany View Post
Looking for opinions on whether my 2015 Toyota Highlander Limited Platinum with the tow package would make a good tug for a 19 ft Escape, keeping in mind that we frequently travel over mountain passes. Currently we're pulling a 16 ft Scamp and we hardly notice we towing. I know the numbers work but am wondering how much the towing experience will be negatively impacted by the heavier trailer. Appreciate any comments.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ljswany View Post
Thanks, people, for your knowledge and experiences. Ultimately, we just can't know how happy we'd be with this tow combination until we actually try it- and then it's too late!
Why too late! Sounds like you already have the Highlander. Others on this forum tow or have towed a 19' with similar tow vehicle and have had satisfactory experiences. There can be no harm in trying it out on a trip or two to see whether the towing experience satisfies you. If not, look for a different tow vehicle at that time.
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Old 05-30-2017, 11:34 PM   #15
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Originally Posted by wolfnjan View Post
We've been towing our Escape 19 with a 2015 Highlander for over 12,000 miles all over the country without any problems. I love the way it tows. We just went ver a 15% grade. Frankly, coming down was more scary than going up. My biggest complaint is that Toyota didn't offer a 7-pin connector and a built in break controller connection on a vehicle rated at towing 5,000 pounds. There are workarounds, but built in is better.
Are you using a wdh and/or anti-sway bar? If so, could you tell me what model(s) and if you like them, if they are easy to use, etc? We don't need either while towing our Scamp, but we are tentatively planning to go with the $625 (CA) E2 by FastWay integrated wdh/anti-sway option from ETI. We could save some money by purchasing the non-integrated Pro Series option, but we'd like the most effective, easiest to use and lightest equipment.
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Old 05-30-2017, 11:45 PM   #16
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We just picked up our 21. Dennis installed the E2, and said he thinks it is a very good hitch. We've pulled up and over many passes here in BC as we slowly make our way home and the Highlander/21 combo has been excellent for us. It rides well and I have not felt even a hint of sway, and we had some pretty strong winds coming from Chilliwack to Osoyoos.
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Old 05-31-2017, 07:52 AM   #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ljswany View Post
Are you using a wdh and/or anti-sway bar? If so, could you tell me what model(s) and if you like them, if they are easy to use, etc? We don't need either while towing our Scamp, but we are tentatively planning to go with the $625 (CA) E2 by FastWay integrated wdh/anti-sway option from ETI. We could save some money by purchasing the non-integrated Pro Series option, but we'd like the most effective, easiest to use and lightest equipment.
We tow with a Nissan Pathfinder, so similar specs as with the highlander, and use the E2 by Fastway. We love the ease of use, and how stable it makes towing.
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Old 06-01-2017, 12:13 AM   #18
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I haven't been using a weight distribution hitch on my Highlander/Escape 19 combo for 3 reasons: 1) I don't feel the need for it. It tows quite well without it. 2) I don't want the extra complexity/hassle of the hitch. 3) and perhaps most importantly I don't want the extra weight. Toyotas hitch is rated for 500 pounds. I don't have an accurate figure for current weight but estimate around 400 pounds. I really don't want to add the weight of one of these hitches.
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Old 06-01-2017, 12:23 AM   #19
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19ft Escape and 2015 Toyota Highlander

Our 2016 Highlander manual makes no reference to maximum tongue weight, only to insuring that it is within the accepted % of trailer weight standards they list. Strangely as I have mentioned before, the max tow is 5000# and the manual says if you tow more than 5000# that you must use a WDH


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Old 06-01-2017, 04:08 PM   #20
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Now I'm wondering where I got the 500 lb tongue wait from. I know I've seen it somewhere. But regardless, it's important not to put too much weight on the tongue. The Toyota springs are softer than a pickup truck and I wouldn't want any more weight pushing down on the back.
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