Is AWD/4WD Really a Requirement as a Tow Vehicle? - Escape Trailer Owners Community

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Old 08-30-2018, 12:18 PM   #1
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Is AWD/4WD Really a Requirement as a Tow Vehicle?

Is AWD/4WD Really a Requirement as a Tow Vehicle?
I've been towing RV's most of 40 years and can count on one hand the number of times that I truly needed AWD/4WD while towing.
So is it really worth the initial added cost to purchase a AWD/4WD and the reduction in overall mpg, stiffer ride and harder to get in and out of?
So how many of you that don't go off road, tow with what FWD or RWD tow vehicle and wished they had AWD/4WD and for what reasons?
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Old 08-30-2018, 12:25 PM   #2
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In our world, it certainly IS a requirement. We wouldn't be able to get home without it. All our cars and trucks are AWD/4x4 vehicles. The technology is so good now, I don't see why not. Our F-150 was actually too soft of a ride, and I stiffened it up with new shocks, Hellwig helper springs, and a Hellwig anti-sway bar. My wife's CRV ( granted NOT a TV ) is AWD, doesn't have a stiff ride, is easy to get in and out of, and gets 30MPG. I don't buy many of the negatives you stated, especially with the newer vehicles.

I've needed 4x4/AWD ability in the strangest of places, on-road.

It's better to have it and not need it than to need it and not have it.

And, I really don't like having to call a tow truck.
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Old 08-30-2018, 12:29 PM   #3
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Our first tow was an F150 with 2wd. We thought it was sufficient until one January traveling down I29 from SD to MO we hit a lot of snow, I had no snow tires and really worried when I thought I felt the rig start skidding a few times, especially when passed by semis doing 70-80mph while I was between 45-50.

Two years ago we bought a new F150 4wd and not only have snow tires on for the winter but have used the 4wd both towing and not. Twice I've had uphill campsites into which I could not have made it without the 4wd.

Yes the extra weight does cut down the payload weight and worse gas mileage but overall I am glad we have 4wd now.
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Old 08-30-2018, 12:32 PM   #4
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I had to back down a hill ( towing a tent trailer with my Subaru Loyale wagon ), put the vehicle in 4x4 and take another run at it. Not sure what I would have done if I didn't make that graveled hill that led to the campground.
Many vehicles ( including AWD and 4X4 ) run mainly in front wheel drive with assistance from the rear when required. Towing a trailer makes it more critical that the rear wheel become engaged.
Probably few of us go "off road", but many go "off maintained pavement".
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Old 08-30-2018, 01:01 PM   #5
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How about this thread. Why 4X4 vs 4X2?
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Old 08-30-2018, 01:17 PM   #6
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You know, better to have and not need. I never got a big thrill out of being stuck but always enjoyed pulling people out who were. Never charged a dime. Loren
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Old 08-30-2018, 01:53 PM   #7
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i have been glad i had it when i needed it.
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Old 08-30-2018, 02:16 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by HomeCamp View Post
Is AWD/4WD Really a Requirement as a Tow Vehicle?
I've been towing RV's most of 40 years and can count on one hand the number of times that I truly needed AWD/4WD while towing.
So is it really worth the initial added cost to purchase a AWD/4WD and the reduction in overall mpg, stiffer ride and harder to get in and out of?
So how many of you that don't go off road, tow with what FWD or RWD tow vehicle and wished they had AWD/4WD and for what reasons?
We live in the mountains of Vermont and drive in the snow and mud so in our case yes it is a must. My truck is my daily driver. I also have needed to use low range and/or 4wd to get the camper parked a few times due to either steep or slippery approaches. If you do not foresee these type of driving situations then no you do not need 4wd/AWD to pull a trailer. So I guess my answer is IT DEPENDS. There is certainly a penalty in MPG to haul around the extra drive shafts etc.
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Old 08-30-2018, 02:50 PM   #9
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OK, You all convinced me. What was I thinking! Should have know better not to have even asked the question. I do remember the times that I really did need 4WD and was so glad I had it!
Thanks,
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Old 08-30-2018, 03:49 PM   #10
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I spent the last 4 years towing my Escape 19 with a fwd GMC Acadia without a problem. I just replaced it with an AWD Highlander. The AWD came with a few extras I liked. Also, when it comes time to sell, I expect the AWD will boost the resale a bit. Like others have said, if that time comes where the AWD helps out, I won’t regret having it.
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