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Old 04-16-2019, 05:35 PM   #1
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Escape 17B and Durango/Jeep GC -- V6 or V8

Hi all

I'm just starting to narrow down, know I want either an Escape 17B or a Casita Spirit Deluxe 17'. Have been perusing SUV towing options, and realize that to get excellent factory tow package it looks like a Dodge Durango or a Jeep Grand Cherokee.

Here's the question. I am trying to figure out if I really need a V8, or if a V6 would do.

I'll be camping at our local beach monthly, 60 miles 1 way, but a decent grade both ways. If I venture out towards Yosemite, there's the Grapevine on I-5, a definite grade. Is a V8 necessary, or would a tow-equipped V6 not in OD be safe and reasonably comfortable?

I truly wish I could test drive a V6 towing one of these. It would surely help answer the question, wouldn't it?

Thanks

Deborah
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Old 04-16-2019, 05:54 PM   #2
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Deborah:

We happily tow our 2015 17B with our 2008 Toyota 4Runner (4.0 L V6). We made the choice for the Escape over the Casita, in part due to the Escape being quite a bit lighter than the Casita. We've been very happy with the trailer and the 4Runner. We tow the trailer frequently in the mountains and find more than adequate towing performance with the V6.

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Old 04-16-2019, 06:08 PM   #3
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I tow a 21’ with the basic 6 cylinder 2018 JGC over 11,000’ passes as a matter of routine.

About 13 mpg vs 17 without towing.

I can keep a steady 50mph on the steepest grades dragging some 4,500# behind.

I don’t see the need for the V8 up charge.

Ed
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Old 04-16-2019, 06:20 PM   #4
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The V6 will "do," however the V8 will "do better!"


With the V6, you might want to climb the long, steep grade at 40 mph instead of 50 mph. But it will get you there. For your travel distance, I don't think it will make much difference in your arrival time to go a bit slower for a few miles here and there. (And IIRC about CA, you're not supposed to be driving faster than 55 in any case!)
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Old 04-16-2019, 06:24 PM   #5
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I tow 17B with 2008 RAV4 V6 Sport.
I climb the Coquihalla eight per cent grade at 50 mph with transmission in 4. I just stomp on the gas and it gears down for short bursts to regain speed. Most of my trips involve this climb. I average 15 mpg towing.
I'm not recommending you buy a RAV because things have changed since 2012.
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Old 04-16-2019, 07:31 PM   #6
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Go with the v-6 Much better mpg Unless you need to burn rubber every time you tow I would go with the Dodge v-6 .we almost bought one but decided on a Ford Expedition with the v-6eco boost We tow the E21 and a 5200lb boat So we needed the extra Hp Good luck try them first then decide JimW
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Old 04-16-2019, 07:32 PM   #7
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Are you saying you're towing with a V6?
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Old 04-16-2019, 07:52 PM   #8
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Eco boost

YES we have the 2nd gen 3.5 eco boost v-6 engine .Non towing we get 19-20 mpg around town over 25 mpg on HWY This is with a 5600 lb Expedition.We still havenít towed the Escape but have towed our 5200lb boat getting 13.5 mpg Should get better with 4200lb E21 lighter and more aerodynamic then our cabin boat .Jim w
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Old 04-16-2019, 07:58 PM   #9
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Smile

Quote:
Originally Posted by DebiT View Post
Are you saying you're towing with a V6?
Yes.
Very, very pleased.

I have no need to be the first dude to the summit. I’ll leave that to the guys with the diesel dually dragging their custom, 40’ Fiver.

The JGC owners manual has an extensive section about towing. Worth reading during your decision making process. Plus each variation of the JGC might have different towing capacity ratings.

Your 17’ will be some 1,000# lighter than my 21’

Most other full size SUV’s also are capable tow vehicles. Lots of people with the 17’ model swear by the Toyota Highlander.

We primarily went with the Jeep because we enjoy off-road driving.

Decisions, decisions


Upon further review, I’m not sure who you question was addressed to. Whatever.
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Old 04-16-2019, 09:01 PM   #10
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...Your 17í will be some 1,000# lighter than my 21í

Most other full size SUVís also are capable tow vehicles. Lots of people with the 17í model swear by the Toyota Highlander.
Loved our 2013 Highlander SE towing our 17B, and you are right- it is about 1000#'s lighter than a 21. Alluding to the Highlander as a Full Size SUV is incorrect however. That would be the Expeditions, Tahoes, Armadas, Yukons plus their luxury variants.
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Old 04-16-2019, 09:22 PM   #11
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There is more to figuring the towing capacity of the Jeep or Durango than just the engine you choose. The V6 models, when configured appropriately, should be more than adequate. A V6 Durango SXT will max out at 6,200 lbs towing with a 1,300 lbs payload capacity, while a V6 Jeep Grand Cherokee Limited can hit 7,200 lbs towing with a 1,380 lbs payload capacity. In that narrow comparison, the Jeep is the better TV.

The real world capacities will vary depending on your actual payload and your tongue weight. Those payloads are low compared to the rated tow capacity. A Honda Pilot, for example, is rated for only 5,000 lbs but has a low-end payload capacity of 1,420 lbs. A formula you can use to estimate the heaviest trailer you should pull is (Payload Capacity - Weight of Passengers and Gear) / Tongue Weight % (usually 10-15%). Using this formula I have found some interesting "real world" numbers pop up, especially when going for the "worst case" scenario of 15% tongue weight. I have heard of some trailers (Bigfoots and Casitas I believe) approaching even 20% tongue weight, but perhaps this could be reduced by adjusting interior and fluid loading.

I have seen several owners on the Facebook group who tow their 21' Escapes with a Toyota Highlander, a vehicle rated for 5,000 lbs. Another popular one is the Honda Pilot. Granted I think those 21s are the old models that are about 1,000 lbs lighter than the new one--but they will still be substantially heavier and have a larger frontal area than your 17'. I have seen people say they've tried a V6--not enough power, would never drive anything smaller than a 3/4 ton V8, you take a huge hit to fuel economy with the trailer. But I've seen more people who are perfectly happy with the performance. Most of those who prefer the larger engine are full timers or take regular, longer trips. We will be occasional travelers, and the slower drive and hit to fuel economy are downsides we are perfectly happy accepting in order to have a comfortable, economical ride for the other 98% of our driving.
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Old 04-16-2019, 10:02 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gbaglo View Post
I tow 17B with 2008 RAV4 V6 Sport.
I climb the Coquihalla eight per cent grade at 50 mph with transmission in 4. I just stomp on the gas and it gears down for short bursts to regain speed. Most of my trips involve this climb. I average 15 mpg towing.
I'm not recommending you buy a RAV because things have changed since 2012.

Are you talking US or imperial gallons? Because I get 20 imperial MPG which is about 16.6 US with my V6 Canyon.
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Old 04-16-2019, 10:12 PM   #13
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Are you talking US or imperial gallons? Because I get 20 imperial MPG which is about 16.6 US with my V6 Canyon.

I'm talking about litres converted to US gallons since fuel in Canada is sold by the litre.

I dare you to find a single gas pump in Canada that sells fuel in imperial gallons.

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Old 04-16-2019, 11:08 PM   #14
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Go with the v-6 Much better mpg Unless you need to burn rubber every time you tow I would go with the Dodge v-6 .we almost bought one but decided on a Ford Expedition with the v-6eco boost ...
Quote:
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Are you saying you're towing with a V6?
Quote:
Originally Posted by jennykatz View Post
YES we have the 2nd gen 3.5 eco boost v-6 engine...
Just in case it isn't obvious, the Ford EcoBoost engine is turbocharged and the Dodge/Jeep engine is not turbocharged, which makes an enormous difference to performance. The cylinder count is completely unimportant compared to having a turbocharger (or two) or not.
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Old 04-16-2019, 11:13 PM   #15
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....I have seen several owners on the Facebook group who tow their 21' Escapes with a Toyota Highlander, a vehicle rated for 5,000 lbs. Another popular one is the Honda Pilot. Granted I think those 21s are the old models that are about 1,000 lbs lighter than the new one--but they will still be substantially heavier and have a larger frontal area than your 17'.
Hmmm- where did you get that 1000# difference between "the old model" 21 and the new one? When I bought my 2014 the dry weight posted at ETI's website was 3050 for a 21 with no options. Currently that figure is 3210, which is a 160# difference.
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Old 04-16-2019, 11:23 PM   #16
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Just in case it isn't obvious, the Ford EcoBoost engine is turbocharged and the Dodge/Jeep engine is not turbocharged, which makes an enormous difference to performance. The cylinder count is completely unimportant compared to having a turbocharger (or two) or not.


So does anyone know if a Durango or Jeep GC V6 with a tow package will be satisfactory for pulling a 17 foot Escape or Casita?
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Old 04-16-2019, 11:37 PM   #17
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So does anyone know if a Durango or Jeep GC V6 with a tow package will be satisfactory for pulling a 17 foot Escape or Casita?

For how long?
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Old 04-16-2019, 11:41 PM   #18
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This for me is the hardest part. I have to decide what vehicle to buy and it's not like I can "test tow" it. Seems like from the previous posts at least some people are happy with their non-turbo V6 tow vehicles. I just don't want to make an expensive mistake.
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Old 04-16-2019, 11:51 PM   #19
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This for me is the hardest part. I have to decide what vehicle to buy and it's not like I can "test tow" it. Seems like from the previous posts at least some people are happy with their non-turbo V6 tow vehicles. I just don't want to make an expensive mistake.
Bought my Highlander to tow our 17 three months after buying the trailer as the Murano did not seem really suited for the task. Five months later we ordered a new 21 then decided we did not want to tow another 1400#'s with the Highlander and traded it for a Yukon. The sales tax hit alone was $3K. While this doesn't happen a lot I know I'm not the only one who bought the wrong vehicle not thinking about the fact that many buy a trailer they decide later is too small.
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Old 04-16-2019, 11:54 PM   #20
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I'm not concerned that I will want a larger trailer. I'm very sure about that. I just don't want to find out that I've bought a wrong vehicle. I don't expect to be racing up hills. But I don't to overheat either
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