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Old 12-01-2015, 10:58 PM   #51
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If I have to replace the RAV4, I will likely move to Highlander, but not because I fell in love with it. I've looked at lots of potential tow vehicles, but none of them make my heart beat faster.
Maybe I'm just old, but I remember when I was a kid and loved cars.
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Old 12-01-2015, 10:59 PM   #52
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Originally Posted by dfandrews View Post
That reminds me of something I found out from a friend during my searching for a T.V.. On some of the nationwide vehicle search websites, there were some cars that were remarkably good deals; they were from Hurricane Sandy areas. Turns out that they were insurance co. salvage due to mud inundation.
How would you know? CarFax maybe?
Once looked at a used Toyota pickup at Ford dealer -something funny about the truck saw mud and grass under truck which no one could explain . Also seemed like carpet inside had previously been wet . Just bad vibes about the truck . Where are all the brand new vehicles after flooding ? Pat
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Old 12-02-2015, 11:05 AM   #53
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While the RAV4 does have a fairly short wheel base, I believe the stability when towing comes from the very short distance between the rear wheels & the hitch. Less leverage for the trailer to toss the tow vehicle around.

In any case, it has been a very stable tow vehicle (with a weight distribution hitch).
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Old 12-02-2015, 11:52 AM   #54
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No idea where it originated, but I've seen 110" wheelbase is good for up to a 20' trailer. Has to do with preventing, or limiting trailer sway effecting the tow vehicle. A quick google shows a RAV4 with 104.7", pretty close.
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Old 12-02-2015, 09:35 PM   #55
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Hi,
I bought a 2004 Chevy Express van with All wheel drive and 5.3 liter V-8 used for $21000 in 2005. It had 12,000 miles on it. It lives in northern Michigan and has never spent a night in a garage. It has towed a Scamp 16 for over 30,000 miles. It gets 19 mpg on the highway solo and 16 in town. Towing the Scamp it gets 13-14 mpg depending on which mountain we ask it to climb.
It had 111,000 when we left for Alaska in 2010. It had 157,000 miles on it in 2013 when we drove from Mich to Fla to Portland, Or. and back. No problems!!
It now has 198,200 miles on it. Shocks and exhaust are all original. Rust from Michigan salt is eating it. I would leave for Alaska tomorrow, but my lovely wife thinks it look shabby. Wheel bearings, brakes, and tires, have been replaced as needed.

I think in high altitude, mountain terrain, a tow vehicle needs all or 4 wheel drive and tons of power to not be the slow dog in the right lane. Run a big engine in your tow vehicle
and you enjoy quieter and faster climbs. V-6 power is not fun on the Bear Tooth highway.

A full sized van or pickup with a cap is the ultimate tow vehicle because you can bring most everything and have a place to put it and the power to climb.

My opinion is worth what I'm paid for it. Not much.
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Old 12-30-2015, 08:23 PM   #56
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I think I reflected on the wisdom of this comment more than anything else.
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Old 12-30-2015, 08:31 PM   #57
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Getting back to used cars -- So far -- knock on wood -- our experience with our 2009 Toyota Highlander -- purchased in 2013 with 80,000 miles -- has been excellent. We've only bought used cars for the past 30 years -- includiing the two
Suburbans that worked admirably to pull our Airstream (the first one was running fine but then the neighborhood firebug torched it) but this time we thought we might buy new. Then we saw this one,which appeared by all accounts to be in impeccable condition, even with the high mileage. Two mechanics told us (without seeing it though) that 80000 miles on a Toyota is the new 40,000. So we did it. We drove it for nine months before we towed and had it checked out before we left to pick up our Escape.

So that is our experience. It's not the definitive experience, but Terry's always felt that buyin a new car that turned out to be a lemon would drive up his blood pressure higher than problems with a used car.

We've been non two cross country trips now and so far so good.
Ruthe, we just bought a 2007 4wd Highlander Limited with factory installed tow package. The tow capacity is 3,500 pounds. We pick up our new 17' Escape in a couple of months.

Consumer Reports in their most recent annual vehicle edition (April 2015) lists 30 vehicles they would recommend to family and friends. The Highlander is one. 😊
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Old 12-30-2015, 08:54 PM   #58
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Ruthe, we just bought a 2007 4wd Highlander Limited with factory installed tow package. The tow capacity is 3,500 pounds. We pick up our new 17' Escape in a couple of months.

Consumer Reports in their most recent annual vehicle edition (April 2015) lists 30 vehicles they would recommend to family and friends. The Highlander is one. ��
Steven I think you will have a fine towing experience. After consultation with folks here who use one, we're getting a new Highlander (with tow package so 5000# tow rating) to use with our current 17B and with our (hopefully) upcoming in 2017 21'. After driving a Highlander, we both really enjoyed the ride and friends who tow 21's with them report a great towing experience too. (I'm not of the philosophy that one needs a tow vehicle rated to tow a trailer 2 or 3 times heavier than what you plan to tow...but to each their own in that regard. When i'm towing up mountain passes I don't feel the need to be in the left land passing everyone. We're retired so we just enjoy the view on the way up. )
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Old 12-30-2015, 10:13 PM   #59
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Steven I think you will have a fine towing experience. After consultation with folks here who use one, we're getting a new Highlander (with tow package so 5000# tow rating) to use with our current 17B and with our (hopefully) upcoming in 2017 21'. After driving a Highlander, we both really enjoyed the ride and friends who tow 21's with them report a great towing experience too. (I'm not of the philosophy that one needs a tow vehicle rated to tow a trailer 2 or 3 times heavier than what you plan to tow...but to each their own in that regard. When i'm towing up mountain passes I don't feel the need to be in the left land passing everyone. We're retired so we just enjoy the view on the way up. )
Your left lane comments match my sentiments exactly. Just curious what model Highlander you plan to get. Am particularly interested in whether you will go with 2WD, AWD, or 4WD. I got 4WD because it is what this used vehicle had, but I otherwise do not feel strong on these options. Also curious if you plan to get a hybrid. Thanks.
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Old 12-30-2015, 10:32 PM   #60
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I don't think thoer will have much choice, if he wants the tow package and/or heated seats. Auto companies offer "trim levels" so, if you want this, you have to buy that, and that, and that.
I suspect it will be the Highlander Limited ( with seats for seven ). Same with Hyundai Santa Fe.
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