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Old 04-29-2021, 07:41 PM   #1
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Escape 23 towing

We very nearly decided on a 5.0 three years ago, when buying our first travel trailer, which we wanted to be our last travel trailer. However, as much as I loved everything else about it, equal bathroom access without stairs seemed like a dealbreaker to this (retired) rehab nurse, and a Casita Independence won out. Now that Escape is coming out with the 23' twin bed model, the everything else may be overriding the first = last part of that decision, especially now that we know we take long trips, including in cold weather, and like to boondock. We've put a lot into modifications, but we can get almost all of those (and more) from the factory on the Escape. This would appear also to be the best time for us to make the move up, since wait lists are long, and so many people are looking for an RV. (I assume the wait for the 23 will also be long, though I've been on the wait list for a while.)

If we were to get it, the tow vehicle we have, a Nissan Frontier, wouldn't be adequate. Keeping in mind that the stairs were a dealbreaker for me, so a big step up would not work, what would you recommend to pull a 5,500 lb. trailer loaded for months long journeys from sea to shining sea? We'd be buying used.
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Old 04-29-2021, 07:46 PM   #2
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Many of the full size trucks come with running boards that you can use as a step and a grab bar inside. My even be easier to get into than what you have now.
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Old 04-30-2021, 08:11 AM   #3
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I am pleased with my Ram 1500 while towing, plenty of power and not too bad gas wise...
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Old 04-30-2021, 10:44 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Morgan A View Post
If we were to get it, the tow vehicle we have, a Nissan Frontier, wouldn't be adequate. Keeping in mind that the stairs were a dealbreaker for me, so a big step up would not work, what would you recommend to pull a 5,500 lb. trailer loaded for months long journeys from sea to shining sea? We'd be buying used.
Just to be clear, the dry weight of the 23 is expected to be 3800 lbs. It's the GVWR that is 5500. That aside, even if the Frontier could handle the weight safely (I don't know the capacity of your specific truck), I personally would not want to tow a 23 across the country with it, for various reason...I would upgrade to a full size. I have a Chevy Silverado that I love, and it has running boards that are nice and low and wide that make it very easy to get in and out of...
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Old 05-01-2021, 05:42 AM   #5
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Just to be clear, the dry weight of the 23 is expected to be 3800 lbs. It's the GVWR that is 5500. That aside, even if the Frontier could handle the weight safely (I don't know the capacity of your specific truck), I personally would not want to tow a 23 across the country with it, for various reason...I would upgrade to a full size. I have a Chevy Silverado that I love, and it has running boards that are nice and low and wide that make it very easy to get in and out of...
WE also have a Silverado and the running boards are at the perfect height for me getting in and out with my not always working right leg. They are the right height for me to be able to step up into the cab.

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Old 05-01-2021, 04:25 PM   #6
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WE also have a Silverado and the running boards are at the perfect height for me getting in and out with my not always working right leg. They are the right height for me to be able to step up into the cab.



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Ditto for a GMC Sierra. Our 10spd diesel 3litre gets upper teens mpg whether in the mountains or prairies.
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Old 05-02-2021, 12:08 PM   #7
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The first truck we looked in our search was full sized, and I had a struggle getting in and out. My knees never came back fully from being replaced, as I had to cut my rehab back to move my mother out of her apartment and into a memory unit. I went back to therapy after that, but had lost ground, and momentum. I've gained strength since then – camping and traveling has helped – but I'm still aware that things can change fast, and I want for us to be able to continue camping and traveling as long as possible. That said, I don't believe that truck had running boards. My recollection is that when we asked how much it would cost to put them in, the answer seemed ridiculously high. IIRC, it was at a regular dealership.
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Old 05-02-2021, 12:16 PM   #8
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The one we have is very easy to get in and out of. After looking at a full sized pickup first, we actually decided on an SUV, and had one lined up, but then the dealer apologised and told us he'd decided he couldn't bring it up to *his* standards, without putting more into it than it was worth to him to sell, even though it would pass inspection without everything he thought needed doing, and that he was selling it back at auction. After that, I practically tripped over our truck at a great price. I wondered how well I'd get in and out, but suddenly found myself inside looking at something that caught my eye, and similarly outside, without any issues, and have never had any problems getting in or out of it.
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Old 05-02-2021, 12:17 PM   #9
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Thanks! Good to know.
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Old 05-02-2021, 12:27 PM   #10
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Our towing capacity is 5,000 lbs., so we're just under what we'd "need." Especially considering that our son lives on the opposite side of the country, we can expect, or at least hope, to be crossing the Rockies a number of times. On long trips, it's unlikely we'd be travelling light. I'd much rather have more power than we'd need to stop that load on the downhill at highway speed.

Thank you for the information about the Silverado running boards. Low and wide is what I need. I think I have a nearby neighbour who has one. I'll have to check out running boards on the neighbours' trucks when I take walks. I don't know why it hadn't occurred to me to do that, except that one doesn't want to look like a suspicious character.
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Old 05-02-2021, 12:28 PM   #11
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Excellent! Exactly what I needed to know. I have a hip which isn't always cooperative.
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Old 05-02-2021, 12:29 PM   #12
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Oh, thank you! We'll have to check them out also.
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Old 05-02-2021, 06:26 PM   #13
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Thank you for the information about the Silverado running boards. Low and wide is what I need.

I hear you about the knees. Had one knee done when it went out completely, and it didn't go well. Swore I'd never do knee surgery again.

Amp Research has a powered extending running board.
https://www.amp-research.com/powerstep-running-board

It's around $1500 depending on truck, and I've never seen a used one listed for sale. Expensive, but for those that need it, cheaper than surgery, and fewer side effects than the pain meds.

Hope you're able to find what you need!
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Old 05-03-2021, 02:17 AM   #14
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I have made many mistakes when picking tow vehicles. I was always trying to spend the least amount of money. I finally gave in and bought a 2017 Tundra 5.7L this winter with the max tow package.

Advice, buy a full size truck, SUV's don't really cut it, they work pretty hard and don't have enough room for gear in the back. If you plan on lots of time in the mountains in Colorado and Utah, get something with a Turbo. I'm not a Ford guy, but that F150 with the 2.7L seems to be pretty good. Many improvments have been made since 2018. The 3.5L EcoBoost might be overkill.
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Old 05-03-2021, 06:05 AM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Morgan A View Post
The first truck we looked in our search was full sized, and I had a struggle getting in and out. My knees never came back fully from being replaced, as I had to cut my rehab back to move my mother out of her apartment and into a memory unit. I went back to therapy after that, but had lost ground, and momentum. I've gained strength since then – camping and traveling has helped – but I'm still aware that things can change fast, and I want for us to be able to continue camping and traveling as long as possible. That said, I don't believe that truck had running boards. My recollection is that when we asked how much it would cost to put them in, the answer seemed ridiculously high. IIRC, it was at a regular dealership.

Morgan,

There are literally hundreds of options for running boards out there. Take a look at etrailer.com as an example. The non-motorized ones look to be $400 to $600.

Don't limit yourself to what may be on a certain used truck you can find. These aftermarket ones can probably be added for $100 labor once you get them, or a friend could do it, as I did for ours a few years ago.

The Chevy/GMC trucks are known for being just a little lower on step-in height and that inch or two really can make a difference. Our son has had three of them through the years and loves his 2020 3.0L diesel.

Two wheel drive will usually be a little lower to get into, so not sure where your thoughts are between 2 and 4 wheel.
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Old 05-03-2021, 10:40 AM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Doug2000 View Post
I have made many mistakes when picking tow vehicles. I was always trying to spend the least amount of money. I finally gave in and bought a 2017 Tundra 5.7L this winter with the max tow package.

Advice, buy a full size truck, SUV's don't really cut it, they work pretty hard and don't have enough room for gear in the back. If you plan on lots of time in the mountains in Colorado and Utah, get something with a Turbo. I'm not a Ford guy, but that F150 with the 2.7L seems to be pretty good. Many improvments have been made since 2018. The 3.5L EcoBoost might be overkill.
The full sized truck which was the first one we looked at was a Tundra. It was a great truck, but the trucks I remember riding in as a kid, on farms, orchards, and ranches, in other words, working trucks, were all smaller, it seemed, than today's trucks. And I had a struggle to get in and out. At any rate, not having spent time in trucks since then, it was intimidating, I think. Having ridden around in a truck for three years, I'm sure it would be fine as far as that's concerned, but (geriatric rehab nurse speaking here) I still want one which won't be an issue nor or as we age.

We would definitely not be thinking SUV. The point of trading in would be to go up in size, not down.
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Old 05-03-2021, 10:47 AM   #17
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Originally Posted by Bill and Earline View Post
Morgan,

There are literally hundreds of options for running boards out there. Take a look at etrailer.com as an example. The non-motorized ones look to be $400 to $600.

Don't limit yourself to what may be on a certain used truck you can find. These aftermarket ones can probably be added for $100 labor once you get them, or a friend could do it, as I did for ours a few years ago.

The Chevy/GMC trucks are known for being just a little lower on step-in height and that inch or two really can make a difference. Our son has had three of them through the years and loves his 2020 3.0L diesel.

Two wheel drive will usually be a little lower to get into, so not sure where your thoughts are between 2 and 4 wheel.
Thanks! eTrailer.com it is!

Electric running boards? That's a thing? Wow! I was just thinking of something to use as a step.

At the time, it never occurred to me that we could get running boards elsewhere and have someone put them on.
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Old 05-03-2021, 11:25 AM   #18
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Originally Posted by Doug2000 View Post
I have made many mistakes when picking tow vehicles. I was always trying to spend the least amount of money. I finally gave in and bought a 2017 Tundra 5.7L this winter with the max tow package.

Advice, buy a full size truck, SUV's don't really cut it, they work pretty hard and don't have enough room for gear in the back. If you plan on lots of time in the mountains in Colorado and Utah, get something with a Turbo. I'm not a Ford guy, but that F150 with the 2.7L seems to be pretty good. Many improvments have been made since 2018. The 3.5L EcoBoost might be overkill.
I own a 3.5L EcoBoost towing a 21C. I don't think the engine is overkill. I'd want the 3.5L if I was towing a 23. Others with the 2.7L can give their opinion.
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Old 05-03-2021, 02:00 PM   #19
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2.7 is great at towing my 5.0 no issues in the mountains. but 3.5L is also a wonderful choice. I got a nice sized running board on my truck.
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Old 05-03-2021, 02:56 PM   #20
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I'm towing a 21NE (about 4500lbs in camping trim) and near max GVWR (6500Lbs) in an F150 with a 2.7L EcoBoost. I've drug it over the Coast Range (and Neahkanie and Cascade Head headlands) several times and have zero complaints about the amount of power. I've always been able to keep up with traffic.
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