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Old 10-19-2015, 06:27 PM   #1
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Tow Vehicle size and power.

Hello All,


My wife and I are new to the world of trailer camping. We’ve been reading through this forum and others extensively. There’s a tremendous amount of information available. We have an Escape 17B on order but not surprisingly it won’t be ready for pick-up for another year. In the mean time, we are looking to buy a new pick-up truck. The proverbial dilemma really applies to us since we’ve never towed a trailer. The big question: how big and/or powerful does the truck need to be in order to comfortably tow our new rig and carry other miscellaneous items in the back of the truck?? By comfortable we mean being able to climb Rocky Mountain roads without slowing below 50mph and running at 5000rpm. Living in New Mexico, we’re always driving in mountains. We spend a lot of time in the western national parks (both US and Canadian). Our home is at 7000 ft. elevation and accessed on a steep gravel road.


Our two potential choices are the Toyota Tacoma and Tundra. I’m sure most of you are familiar with these two trucks and their capabilities. The vast majority of the information on this topic would indicate that for a 17 ft. fiberglass trailer, pretty much any 6 cylinder vehicle will be adequate. I don’t doubt this info. But “adequate” has different definitions for different people.


It appears to me that the folks that chime in on this topic (with a few exceptions) are those that are towing with the smaller vehicles and engines. Perhaps they are in the majority. I wish I knew. But I’m thinking that there could also be a lot of folks towing fiberglass trailers with large vehicles and engines. It would be equally valuable to hear what they have to say.


Thanks very much for any input I receive.
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Old 10-19-2015, 06:41 PM   #2
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Of the two trucks you list, I would pick the Taco over the Tundra.
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Old 10-19-2015, 06:54 PM   #3
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I agree with Robert, the Tacoma would be plenty of truck for your needs. That would be my choice for towing the 17.
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Old 10-19-2015, 07:11 PM   #4
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I'd also go with the Tacoma, and I would, if my wife would let me.
She says I'd be too old and decrepit to climb into the cab.
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Old 10-19-2015, 07:22 PM   #5
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I apprenticed with a 2006 4 cyl Subaru Outback 5 speed towing a 16 Scamp and had no problems. Then as a journyman I moved up to a 17 foot Casita towed by a 2011 Toyota Tacoma auto 4 wheel drive and again had no issues. Now I have graduated to the master class of the Escape 21 and tow it with the same Tacoma. We picked it up in late April this year and towed it up and down and all around back to NY. It is not a fire ball with the 21 behind it, but it works fine. So you should not have an issue with a Escape 17 IMHO.
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Old 10-19-2015, 07:49 PM   #6
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Patrol - good to hear as we are considering a 21' and I'm planning on towing with our Tacoma.
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Old 10-19-2015, 08:13 PM   #7
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We tow a 19 Escape with a 2010 Tacoma 4.0L 4X4 Double Cab with the six foot box. Tows well even in the mountains. We have done Rogers Pass a couple of times. Although I do not tow in overdrive. We even outrove my brother in law with a 2015 Ford with EcoBoost pulling a pop up.

My vote would be the Taco
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Old 10-19-2015, 08:53 PM   #8
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6 cylinder would have lots of ability, I would go with the longer wheelbase- I towed my 17 with a 6cyl RAV4 - I drove many miles and long distances, would have liked to have had a longer wheelbase. There are others who tow the 17 with a RAV4 and appear to be quite satisfied with it.
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Old 10-19-2015, 08:57 PM   #9
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I'd go with the Taco long bed. I towed my 19 from the factory to NJ with a 4Runner. The Taco has great resale and trade in value.
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Old 10-19-2015, 09:02 PM   #10
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[QUOTE=kmk7580;115158]Hello All,


...... Living in New Mexico, we’re always driving in mountains. We spend a lot of time in the western national parks (both US and Canadian). Our home is at 7000 ft. elevation and accessed on a steep gravel road.
QUOTE]

By our count you will be Escape #5 in the state. There is a 19 in Edgewood, our 5.0 Classic in Sandia Park, a 17 in Corrales and another - I forget which size - in Santa Fe!
If there is anything we can do to help you get ready for being an Escape owner, let us know. We are also in Sandia Park! Welcome!
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