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Old 04-21-2018, 11:02 PM   #1
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New Tow Vehicle

Just got my new tow vehicle - 2018 Ford Transit XLT150 with 3.5L EcoBoost, heavy duty tow package and integrated brake controller.

GCWR=11,200lbs
Vehicle Weight=5,500lbs
GVWR=8,500lbs (I think the tires will limit this to 8,249lbs)
Towing Capacity= 5100lbs

Looks like the GCWR is my limiting factor. But assuming that my 21' weighs in the neighborhood of 4,500lbs and I remove the last row of seats from the trailer(150lbs), I should have cargo capacity of between 1,200 and 1,350lbs. I think I can live with that and I'm sure the 3.5L EB will provide power to spare.

Any opinion as to whether I should use the WDH that I'd been using with my 4Runner?

Chas
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Old 04-21-2018, 11:59 PM   #2
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cvanzan View Post
GVWR=8,500lbs (I think the tires will limit this to 8,249lbs)
The Ford.ca site lists the tire spec for single-rear-wheel Transits like this as
235/65R16C 121/119 R
That's a commercial tire with a 121 load index, which means 3,197 pound per tire. The factory-installed tires never limit the GVW to less than the GVWR, and certainly won't in this case (with a total of 12,788 lb capacity to carry 8,500 pounds). Of course, they'll only have this full capacity at a specified pressure - apparently 85 to 90 PSI in this case - but you can use a more reasonable pressure to meet the load requirement (following the direction on the tire information placard).

Chas, why would you expect the tires to limit gross vehicle weight to 8,249 pounds?
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Old 04-22-2018, 12:15 AM   #3
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That is an interesting combination. Yes, your GCWR will limit you. Most people do not want to be at that limit so they try to stay at least a few hundred pounds below it. Does your manual say anything about a WDH?
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Old 04-22-2018, 12:21 AM   #4
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Originally Posted by cvanzan View Post
Any opinion as to whether I should use the WDH that I'd been using with my 4Runner?
Normally I would consider factors such as these:
  • Although it has the regular wheelbase, it's still 3300 mm / 129.9" - that's pickup truck territory. The longer the wheelbase, the less reason there is for a WD system.
  • Have you worked out what your axle loads will be with cargo and hitch weight? If the rear axle load is not close to the rated capacity, axle load is not a reason to use WD.

But in this case...
Quote:
Originally Posted by float5 View Post
Does your manual say anything about a WDH?
Yes. The owner's manual explicitly states:
Quote:
Weight Distributing Hitches
A weight distribution hitch is not recommended for use with your vehicle.
Done.
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Old 04-22-2018, 12:29 AM   #5
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Originally Posted by Brian B-P View Post

Yes. The owner's manual explicitly states:

Done.
Which is not the same as "A weight distribution hitch is prohibited" . It's just not recommended. Use one or not.
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Old 04-22-2018, 12:42 AM   #6
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Originally Posted by gbaglo View Post
Which is not the same as "A weight distribution hitch is prohibited" . It's just not recommended. Use one or not.
I agree that it's not a prohibition. If someone thinks they know better than Ford what should be used with a Ford Transit, they take responsibility for their decision. Keep in mind that Ford has nothing against WD; they allow, recommend, and even require WD (depending on hitch load) for other Ford vehicles.
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Old 04-22-2018, 12:50 AM   #7
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And, I agree. So, if use of a WDH gives you a more comfortable ride, there is no reason not to use one ( other than expense of the unit and its weight ).
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Old 04-22-2018, 12:15 PM   #8
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I think your cargo capacity is closer to 3000#'s less hitch weight approx 600#'s equals approx 2400#'s. GVWR 8500 less weight of vehicle 5500 equals 3000. This van is made to carry 15 people (15 x 200# = 3000#).
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Old 04-22-2018, 02:29 PM   #9
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Looks to me as if the OP has it correct and he has far far less cargo capacity when towing than when not, due to the GCWR. A not uncommon situation.
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Old 04-22-2018, 07:44 PM   #10
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I'm still trying to understand this, so please bear with me. OK, I now see the 1200# limit, but wouldn't you reduce 1200# cargo capacity by the tongue weight of the trailer?

I also noticed that the tongue weight limit on this van is 500#'s, if correct, I would recommend WDH.
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