What Tow Vehicle for Escape 19? - Escape Trailer Owners Community

Go Back   Escape Trailer Owners Community > Escape Tech > Towing and Hitching
Click Here to Login
Reply
 
Thread Tools Display Modes
 
Old 10-03-2017, 01:20 PM   #1
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Sep 2017
Location: Seattle, Washington
Trailer: Escape 19'
Posts: 99
What Tow Vehicle for Escape 19?

Our beloved 1997 4Runner was totalled last year by another driver, and we will need to buy a new vehicle to tow the new Escape 19 we are planning to buy. We are concerned about whether a 4Runner will have the oomph needed to pull it (the new Escape 19) up hill and over dale.

When we first began trailer camping, we pulled a 21' Wilderness Ultralight with our 5000 lb towing capacity 1997 4Runner. We were resolved to stay within 75% of the towing capacity limit and it weighed under 3600 pounds when fully loaded with our gear, gas, and propane but empty water and sewage tanks. But we were climbing the I-80 hill to Lake Tahoe in the slow truck lane, going no more than 40 mph. A few years later, we towed our new 17' Casita, which came in at only 3100 pounds when loaded for camping, at our 1997 4Runner's normal uphill speed. We never noticed the Casita's presence, we were so nimble!

I have read in this forum that many people tow their Escape 19s with 4Runners --- do you stay under 3750 pounds total trailer weight (75% of 5000 pounds)? How do you manage that, given the dry weight of the trailer before options are added and gear is loaded?

For those who tow with another vehicle, why did you choose the vehicle you tow with, and would you make the same choice again?

All comments welcome!

Thank you,
Elisabeth
__________________

egraham is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-03-2017, 01:29 PM   #2
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2017
Posts: 345
You just can't beat an F150 for towing. I've had ours for 5 years, 83,000 miles, much of it towing our 17' Casita ( just ordered an Escape 21) and I still love it. A full sized pickup can't be beat IMHO.

A big one for us was the ability to keep the "stinky and dirty" stuff in the bed of the pickup. That's why we dumped our SUV's and went with the pickup. Much nicer to be able to just toss nasty stuff back there and take off. No fumes or funny smells in the cab of the vehicle or the camper.
__________________

thiggins is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-03-2017, 01:49 PM   #3
Senior Member
 
thoer's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2009
Location: Galesville, Wisconsin
Trailer: 2017 21 "Blue II" & 2017 Highlander XLE (previously 2010 17B "Blue" & 2008 Tacoma)
Posts: 4,207
We, IowaDave, Leon and some other folks tow 21's with our Highlanders and are more than satisfied with the experiences. Interestingly starting with the 2017 Highlanders, Toyota raised the GCWR of Highlander with the new V6 engine to 11,000#, which now give me an easy margin on the one weight rating we were closest to.

But others will give you completely different opinions so as the ever wise Donna says, YMMV
__________________
Eric (and Mary who is in no way responsible for anything stupid I post)

"Beware of false knowledge; it is more dangerous than ignorance." George Bernard Shaw
thoer is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-03-2017, 02:02 PM   #4
Senior Member
 
arniesea's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2016
Location: Bremerton, Washington
Trailer: 2019 5.0 TA
Posts: 811
Quote:
Originally Posted by egraham View Post

For those who tow with another vehicle, why did you choose the vehicle you tow with, and would you make the same choice again?

All comments welcome!

Thank you,
Elisabeth
Hi Elisabeth,

I tow my 2013 19" with a 2016 Tacoma. I had a 2014 Tacoma before but the main reason I traded it in so soon is the 3rd generation Tacoma (2016 and later) has a more fuel efficient engine and more importantly for towing, one can manually select any of the 6 gears on the automatic transmission. That allows me to down shift approaching hills before I loose speed and maintain my momentum. in most cases and can maintain 60-65 MPH except for the steepest grades. But even on long steep passes, I can maintain 55 MPH.

I keep my weight low by running with empty tanks for the most part. I use the "AllStays" app on my phone to locate fresh water sources near my destination if I'm boon docking. And try to empty the waste tanks as soon as possible after breaking camp. (Again, using the "AllStays" app to locate dump stations,) The Tacoma with two package has a 6,400 # tow rating so it is easy for me to stay under 75% of capacity.

I freely admit my bias toward Toyata build quality. Starting with my '86 Corrolla to our 2010 Prius, I have had 4 sedans, and 3 Tacoma's. In my case I need a pickup for my daily life and I like the nimbleness of the Tacoma. The main downside of the Tacoma is the ride is not as smooth as other options.

Others on this forum that prefer a smoother ride and the enclosure of an SUV swear by the Highlander. The recent vintage Highlanders also have the manual select transmissions that I talk about above but with 4 wheel independent suspension one has a smoother, more comfortable ride than the Tacoma. Some of these forum members are using Highlanders for 21' Escapes others are pulling 19. But I will let them speak for themselves as to their experience pulling grades as that seems to be your main concern. The 4 runner has a 5 speed rather than 6 speed transmission so I can't speculate on how they perform. Good Luck!
__________________
- Arnie & Paula
- Kizzy the rat terrier
- 2019 5.0 TA, 2017 Tundra Platinum.
- Bremerton, WA
arniesea is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-03-2017, 02:06 PM   #5
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Sep 2017
Location: Seattle, Washington
Trailer: Escape 19'
Posts: 99
YMMV?

I would love to have a Tundra but we travel with 2 cats who can be made comfortable only in the LARGE rear area of a fully-enclosed vehicle: litter, water, food, baskets, duvet to curl up in, and on top of. We really need the full back area of an SUV.
egraham is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-03-2017, 02:13 PM   #6
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Sep 2017
Location: Seattle, Washington
Trailer: Escape 19'
Posts: 99
One of the things I loved about our 4Runner was my ability to downshift (so to speak) when going down hills so that the engine did some of the braking. We also added a transmission cooler to the '97 4Runner before we took off on our travels (it came with the factory tow package, but that didn't include a transmission cooler back then).

(I suspect I am not the only person who still mourns the loss of a 4Runner!)
egraham is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-03-2017, 02:16 PM   #7
Junior Member
 
Join Date: Oct 2014
Location: Beaconsfield, Quebec
Trailer: 2017 Escape 19
Posts: 24
Hi Elisabeth,
We opted for the Sequoia 2017 to pull our 19’. It is perhaps a bit of over kill but we also carry bikes, sea kayaks and at times for adults. We spent 4 weeks in the Rockies this summer and appreciated the extra power. The transmission temperature always stayed within the safe operating range even on hot days climbing the Coquihalla Highway and the Icefields Parkway.

Cheers
Miguezc is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-03-2017, 02:22 PM   #8
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Apr 2013
Location: Kamloops, British Columbia
Trailer: 2013 Escape 19
Posts: 249
We tow our 2013 19 with a 2012 Highlander. In the four years we have had the trailer we have had no issues towing with the Highlander. We had vehicle reliability problems towing boats with another vehicle from a different manufacturer so we are happy with how the Highlander is performing. We put the dirty stuff in the front box of the trailer and find using a WDH improves towing performance. Wish we had a bit more torque on steep grades but not enough to justify for us to change vehicles at this point.

If we were going to purchase another vehicle it would likely be another Highlander given the new models have a bit more HP/torque than the 2012 and we like the reliability and comfort of the Highlander. Our second choice would be a Tacoma so we could have space in the bed.
gharper is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-03-2017, 02:24 PM   #9
Senior Member
 
thoer's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2009
Location: Galesville, Wisconsin
Trailer: 2017 21 "Blue II" & 2017 Highlander XLE (previously 2010 17B "Blue" & 2008 Tacoma)
Posts: 4,207
Quote:
Originally Posted by egraham View Post
YMMV?
"Your mileage may vary" - basically means everyone is entitled to their own opinion and what works for some, may not work for others.
__________________
Eric (and Mary who is in no way responsible for anything stupid I post)

"Beware of false knowledge; it is more dangerous than ignorance." George Bernard Shaw
thoer is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-03-2017, 02:43 PM   #10
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Sep 2017
Location: Seattle, Washington
Trailer: Escape 19'
Posts: 99
Thank you. So many acronyms, so little time!
egraham is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-03-2017, 02:56 PM   #11
Senior Member
 
gbaglo's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2008
Location: North Vancouver, British Columbia
Trailer: 2009 Escape 17B - "Toad". '08 Toyota RAV4 V6
Posts: 13,822
SMA, SLT.
Anyway, I don't understand this suggestion that some vehicles can't be geared down heading downhill. Do it all the time in my RAV4.
__________________
2009 Escape 17B "Toad"
2008 Toyota RAV4 V6 Sport
North Vancouver, British Columbia

What happens to the hole when the cheese is gone?
- Bertolt Brecht
gbaglo is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-03-2017, 03:05 PM   #12
Senior Member
 
arniesea's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2016
Location: Bremerton, Washington
Trailer: 2019 5.0 TA
Posts: 811
Quote:
Originally Posted by gbaglo View Post
SMA, SLT.
Anyway, I don't understand this suggestion that some vehicles can't be geared down heading downhill. Do it all the time in my RAV4.
They can, but often on normal automatics like my 2014, I only had the options of D, D2 or D1. On my 2016 I can pick any one of the 6 gears so I have more granular control. I can manually pick the perfect gear for the situation.

Also I was talking about gearing down heading UPHILL not down hill. I can downshift to one lower gear, keeping the engine in its ideal torque range for pulling the hill.
__________________
- Arnie & Paula
- Kizzy the rat terrier
- 2019 5.0 TA, 2017 Tundra Platinum.
- Bremerton, WA
arniesea is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-03-2017, 03:11 PM   #13
Senior Member
 
thoer's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2009
Location: Galesville, Wisconsin
Trailer: 2017 21 "Blue II" & 2017 Highlander XLE (previously 2010 17B "Blue" & 2008 Tacoma)
Posts: 4,207
Quote:
Originally Posted by arniesea View Post
They can, but often on normal automatics like my 2014, I only had the options of D, D2 or D1. On my 2016 I can pick any one of the 6 gears so I have more granular control. I can manually pick the perfect gear for the situation.
Or 8 in the 2017 Highlander. Towing to the rally 6th seemed to be a really nice sweet spot. The extra 25HP, better MPG, more than 1000# increase in GCWR, the 8 speed tranny and a host of new safety features convinced me to do something very far outside my ordinary self -- trade in our 2016 on a 2017. But my salesman sure was a happy guy!
__________________
Eric (and Mary who is in no way responsible for anything stupid I post)

"Beware of false knowledge; it is more dangerous than ignorance." George Bernard Shaw
thoer is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-03-2017, 03:31 PM   #14
Senior Member
 
arniesea's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2016
Location: Bremerton, Washington
Trailer: 2019 5.0 TA
Posts: 811
Quote:
Originally Posted by thoer View Post
Or 8 in the 2017 Highlander. Towing to the rally 6th seemed to be a really nice sweet spot. The extra 25HP, better MPG, more than 1000# increase in GCWR, the 8 speed tranny and a host of new safety features convinced me to do something very far outside my ordinary self -- trade in our 2016 on a 2017. But my salesman sure was a happy guy!
Hi Eric, Yes, same experience trading in my 2014 on a 2016. Took three days to convince Paula but that ended up working in my favor as in the end, I got a great deal. One model grade up, nice option package for $10K cash.
__________________
- Arnie & Paula
- Kizzy the rat terrier
- 2019 5.0 TA, 2017 Tundra Platinum.
- Bremerton, WA
arniesea is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-03-2017, 03:37 PM   #15
Site Team
 
cpaharley2008's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2010
Location: Chilliwack, British Columbia
Trailer: Escape#4, 2019 Escape21 DejaView pulled by 2014 Ram Hemi/8sp
Posts: 19,792
The nice thing about purchasing a vehicle that has a built in brake controller vs an add on after market one is the coordination between the tug and the trailer. Using the tow mode allows the tug to automatically downshift for engine braking and the two (tug and trailer) seem to act as one. In addition make sure the tug has a full sized spare, something a lot of vehicles do not have these days. I just purchased one for my Ram 1500!!
__________________
Jim
"Never in doubt,..... often wrong!"
cpaharley2008 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-03-2017, 03:39 PM   #16
Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2015
Location: Boulder, Colorado
Trailer: 2016 19
Posts: 74
Often lost in these "which tow vehicle" threads is the fact that the "best" tow vehicle selection will depend upon a host of questions, such as:

- The topography of the location where you will tow most often (i.e., steep grades frequently or just once a year?)
- The number of people that will typically travel in the vehicle
- Bikes, kayaks, coolers, firewood, or other heavy-ish things coming along?
- Frequently towing with full water tank and/or waste tanks?
- Etc. etc.

These questions are particularly important for the 19 and 21, where any of the above factors can push a tow vehicle rated for 4000 to 5000 lbs. from "tows great!" to "not enough," even if you are staying within the rated tow capacity.

Highlanders and V6 4Runners can work very well for a 19 if you aren't towing a lot in the mountains and/or don't have a lot of people and gear on board. We found our 4Runner's performance lacking for towing our 19 (family of four plus all of the things listed above!) here in Colorado. Swapped the 4Runner (which was a 2009 V6) for a V8 Land Cruiser and now much happier with the change.

I suspect that any of the other 8-cylinder Toyota/Lexus vehicles (Sequoia, Tundra, GX 470, and V8 4Runner (circa 2004-09)) would have offered similar improvement, but for a variety of reasons didn't suit our preferences.
canyonrider is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-03-2017, 04:22 PM   #17
Senior Member
 
rubicon327's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2016
Location: Burlington Twp., New Jersey
Trailer: 2010 Escape 19
Posts: 3,334
Elisabeth: We tow a classic 19 with a 2005 and 2007 V6 4Runner and it handles it quite well. If I had a newer 19 (heavier) and was towing on steep grades regularly I would probably want a bit more vehicle. The 4th gen 4Runners (2003-2009) are sought after with the available V8 partly for the better towing capacity (7000# 4WD, 7300# 2WD). The V8 is no longer available unfortunately. Would need to jump up to the Sequoia with current models boasting a 7100# (4WD) 7400# (2WD) towing capacity or others as canyonrider hit on.

If you go to the top search and put in "towing with Toyota" into the Search Site / Google box you will find a bunch of good threads on the topic.
Attached Images
File Type: jpg search snip.JPG (29.0 KB, 11 views)
rubicon327 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-03-2017, 04:40 PM   #18
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jun 2013
Location: Felton, California
Trailer: 2018 21' ; 2014 Escape 19' (Sold)
Posts: 1,188
We have a 2004 Tundra double cab that we love but which doesn't have a high tow rating. That was one of the reasons we went with Escape. (Note: The double cab has a large back seat which could easily accommodate a set-up for cats.). Now we're looking at a new Tundra with a higher tow rating which, if we get one, would mean we could tow a larger Escape. Sigh!! It's a vicious cycle.
__________________

Jan

We do not remember days, we remember moments.
- Cesare Pavese
CADreamin is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-03-2017, 04:46 PM   #19
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Dec 2012
Location: Edmonton, Alberta
Trailer: 1979 Boler B1700
Posts: 11,983
I pay relatively close attention to automotive transmission technology, and I don't recall ever seeing a transmission that can't be shifted down (from the automatic selection) in individual gear ratio steps. On the other hand, selecting a gear doesn't mean that the transmission will necessary use that gear: it will upshift to higher gears as necessary to keep the engine under redline, will downshift to lower gears to avoid stalling, and may be slow to respond (especially if hydraulically controlled).

For instance, our van has D-4-3-2-1 positions on the lever ("D" is 5th gear). Newer versions of the same vehicle have a "sport" mode - move the lever over then bump it forward or rearward (labelled "+" and "-" to step up and down; this was done because with six or more ratios that's too many positions for the shifter. Column-mounted paddles are often used for the "+" and "-", especially in vehicles intended to give a "sporty" or "high tech" impression. Of course some control arrangements are better than others: for a while it was popular to have a separate "OD" switch to go from the highest gear to the next one down, then shifter positions for the other ratios, which was just silly.

A limitation in some cases is just that there are not enough gear ratios, so the steps are undesirably large. For instance, our Ford motorhome has only a 4-speed transmission; occasionally I have wanted to shift down from 3rd for more power or engine braking, but could not because the engine speed would have been too high all the way down in 2nd.

Quote:
Originally Posted by cpaharley2008 View Post
The nice thing about purchasing a vehicle that has a built in brake controller vs an add on after market one is the [connection] between the tug and the trailer. Using the tow mode allows the tug to automatically downshift for engine braking and the two (tug and trailer) seem to act as one.
My 2004 Toyota Sienna minivan downshifts for engine braking - automatically - and has neither a tow/haul mode nor an integrated trailer brake controller. Toyota calls the feature which downshifts when needed for engine braking "Grade Logic", and it should be included in every modern automatic transmission vehicle. It will normally act more aggressively when tow/haul mode is engaged in vehicles which have that feature (such as our motorhome, which is like any other Ford SuperDuty).
Brian B-P is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-03-2017, 05:29 PM   #20
Senior Member
 
arniesea's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2016
Location: Bremerton, Washington
Trailer: 2019 5.0 TA
Posts: 811
Quote:
Originally Posted by Brian B-P View Post

Newer versions of the same vehicle have a "sport" mode - move the lever over then bump it forward or rearward (labelled "+" and "-" to step up and down; this was done because with six or more ratios that's too many positions for the shifter. Column-mounted paddles are often used for the "+" and "-", especially in vehicles intended to give a "sporty" or "high tech" impression.
This the way the later model Tacoma's and Highlanders work.



Quote:
Originally Posted by Brian B-P View Post
My 2004 Toyota Sienna minivan downshifts for engine braking - automatically - and has neither a tow/haul mode nor an integrated trailer brake controller. Toyota calls the feature which downshifts when needed for engine braking "Grade Logic", and it should be included in every modern automatic transmission vehicle.
This the way the later model Tacoma's and Highlanders work. I lightly apply the break until engine breaking engages, then I can let my foot off the break and it will use engine breaking as long as the grade stays the same.
__________________

__________________
- Arnie & Paula
- Kizzy the rat terrier
- 2019 5.0 TA, 2017 Tundra Platinum.
- Bremerton, WA
arniesea is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off






» Featured Campgrounds

Reviews provided by

Disclaimer:

This website is not affiliated with or endorsed by Escape Trailer Industries or any of its affiliates. This is an independent, unofficial site.


All times are GMT -5. The time now is 08:05 AM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 4
Copyright ©2000 - 2019, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.
Copyright 2012 Social Knowledge, LLC All Rights Reserved.
×