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Old 09-07-2014, 03:54 PM   #1
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Frontier or Tacoma for 5.0?

Hello, all.
We are in the process of purchasing a 2013 Escape 5.0, and also shopping for a tow vehicle. It looks like a lot of folks have experience using a Nissan Frontier as a tow vehicle, and a few with a Tacoma (V6, tow package). I'd really appreciate hearing any comments, advice, etc. about making this choice. Thanks!
Roke W.
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Old 09-07-2014, 04:50 PM   #2
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We have a 2011 Nissan Frontier Pro4X crew cab with short bed (5') Works well with our 5.0 Classic. If we had to do anything different we would have gotten a longer bed...but it would not fit in our garage. It tows well and handles well. We are right at the payload capacity with the 5.0 Classic pin weight of about 720.
We use the B&W Patriot hitch because you can position the head back a few inches....we had to mount our hitch a bit behind the axle so moving the hitch head back gave us a bit more room for turning. It is not a slider hitch.
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Old 09-07-2014, 05:57 PM   #3
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I tow a 5.0 single axle with a Frontier long bed. No problems towing but the limiting factor of both the Frontier and Tacoma is the cargo capacity which is around 1200 - 1300 pounds depending on the model. The pin weight of the 5.0 plus stuff carried in the truck's bed, plus passengers, plus, plus, plus can easily approach the capacity.

When I decided on the Frontier I believe the Toyota had a weaker rear end and lower cargo capacity than the Nissan. Newer models may be different ...
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Old 09-07-2014, 06:31 PM   #4
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We have a 2011 Nissan Frontier 2WD King cab long bed (about 6 foot?), pulling a classic 5.0. It has all the power we need, but the weight in the bed is about as much as we'd like.

Our deciding factor was the really good price we got at the time That and the towing capacity was plenty on the model we chose.
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Old 09-07-2014, 06:47 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Roke W View Post
Hello, all.
We are in the process of purchasing a 2013 Escape 5.0, and also shopping for a tow vehicle. It looks like a lot of folks have experience using a Nissan Frontier as a tow vehicle, and a few with a Tacoma (V6, tow package). I'd really appreciate hearing any comments, advice, etc. about making this choice. Thanks!
Roke W.
Hi: Roke... Can't say enough good about the Nissan Frontier. Our 2010 has now pulled both a 5.0 and a 5.0TA with ease. We have a 4X4 SE longbed and the standard suspension is fine...no helpers required. Got almost 60,000 mi. on the clock without problems. The turning radius takes some getting used to, but it's easy if you've had a boat or a bus!!! Alf
escape artist N.S. of Lake Erie
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Old 09-09-2014, 10:24 AM   #6
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Roke

You asked about 4x4 on fgrv. Here is our thread if you haven't seen it.


http://www.escapeforum.org/forums/f1...rive-3986.html
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Old 09-09-2014, 11:21 AM   #7
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Last September we went to the Grand canyon and back with a friend who pulls his 5.0 with a Nissan Frontier. We have a 5.0 with a Ford F150 5.4 V8. I could not keep up to the Nissan and he used a couple of gallons less fuel at each fill up. Also we had a person interested in buying our 5.0 to pull with his Toyota Tacoma. Toyota would not honour his warranty if a 5th wheel hitch was installed (drilling holes in the frame/bed is apparently the issue). Nevertheless the Toyota looked like it could pull the 5.0 all day long. I have seen many Tacomas pulling construction trailers loaded to the hilt. My friend did install passive air bags (Timbren) in the Frontier which he said improved handling immensely.
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Old 09-09-2014, 12:02 PM   #8
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Last September we went to the Grand canyon and back with a friend who pulls his 5.0 with a Nissan Frontier. We have a 5.0 with a Ford F150 5.4 V8. I could not keep up to the Nissan and he used a couple of gallons less fuel at each fill up. Also we had a person interested in buying our 5.0 to pull with his Toyota Tacoma. Toyota would not honour his warranty if a 5th wheel hitch was installed (drilling holes in the frame/bed is apparently the issue). Nevertheless the Toyota looked like it could pull the 5.0 all day long. I have seen many Tacomas pulling construction trailers loaded to the hilt. My friend did install passive air bags (Timbren) in the Frontier which he said improved handling immensely.
Hi: GerriJ... The only holes drilled in our truck were thru the box floor. The frame brackets from our GMC were re used and the bolts fished through holes already in the frame... 2 small holes for the 7 pin bracket too!!! Alf
escape artist N.S. of Lake Erie
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Old 09-09-2014, 06:52 PM   #9
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Hi Alf, as I understand it, its the Tacoma that has a warranty issue with the 5th wheel hitch.
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Old 09-09-2014, 08:42 PM   #10
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Hi Alf, as I understand it, its the Tacoma that has a warranty issue with the 5th wheel hitch.
When we went to have the fifth wheel hitch installed in our Frontier, the installation shop said they had called Nissan and were told the Frontier could not tow a fifth wheel and that drilling anywhere on the frame would invalidate all warranties. The installation guys worked out an arrangement whereby they did not drill into the frame at all. But we just close the tonneau cover whenever it goes into Nissan for service . It's the same old problem about assuming all fifth wheels are the big monster trailers...
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Old 09-10-2014, 12:18 PM   #11
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Originally Posted by GerriJ View Post
Toyota would not honour his warranty if a 5th wheel hitch was installed (drilling holes in the frame/bed is apparently the issue). Nevertheless the Toyota looked like it could pull the 5.0 all day long. I have seen many Tacomas pulling construction trailers loaded to the hilt.
I looked into the possibility of a 5th wheel hitch for a Tacoma. Similar to Frontiers and others, drilling into the frame would void the warranty. In addition, the composite material in the box on the Tacoma could limit the install of a 5th wheel hitch.

When I broached the issues the hitch shops, they have both hitch designs and installation techniques that negate those issues making it possible and easy to install a 5th wheel hitch in a Tacoma. In the end, I did not get a 5th wheel so cannot speak to its performance.

Overall, pretty pleased with the Tacoma and the Escape 17' combo though.
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Old 09-10-2014, 12:42 PM   #12
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Roke

You asked about 4x4 on fgrv. Here is our thread if you haven't seen it.


http://www.escapeforum.org/forums/f1...rive-3986.html
Roke regarding your inquiry re; 2WD vs 4WD. I have had both and since I don't live in snow country I rarely (almost never) used the 4X4 function. Mostly to get up on the leveling blocks when I had a Bigfoot Camper. The biggest advantage for the 4X4 here (if you stay home the one day a year it snows)is that they are easier to sell. The 2X2 pickups were more than adequate payload wise. The other thing to consider is that the 2X2 vehicles generally have a lower ride and are much better suited to the 5.0, even the mid sized trucks (the Frontier being one exception).
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Old 03-01-2015, 07:58 PM   #13
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Seen lots of "opinions" on the Tacoma. but haven't heard from anyone who actual pulls a 5.0 with one. Does this animal exist?
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Old 03-01-2015, 10:37 PM   #14
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Seen lots of "opinions" on the Tacoma. but haven't heard from anyone who actual pulls a 5.0 with one. Does this animal exist?
We pulled our 5.0 with an 08 Tacoma 4x4,6' box which had the towing pkg. and it was an excellent TV, sufficient power and good handling. No problems with hitch installation as Reace provided us with a good hitch shop in Chiliwack who had installed several hitches in the composite box of the Tacoma. Did not have any issues with the hitch or the Tacoma.
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Old 03-02-2015, 11:16 AM   #15
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Thank you! Did you ever weigh the 5.0 loaded? Or your TV?
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Old 03-02-2015, 03:17 PM   #16
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Thank you! Did you ever weigh the 5.0 loaded? Or your TV?
No, never had an opportunity to weigh the trailer and Tacoma loaded; however never had a problem with braking or suspension.
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Old 03-02-2015, 09:29 PM   #17
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We pulled our 5.0 with an 08 Tacoma 4x4,6' box which had the towing pkg. and it was an excellent TV, sufficient power and good handling. No problems with hitch installation as Reace provided us with a good hitch shop in Chiliwack who had installed several hitches in the composite box of the Tacoma. ...
We came close to doing the same with our 2014 Tacoma 4X4, 6' box, tow package, manual transmission. The 4X4 option includes a slightly stiffer suspension which helps. I discussed the hitch with the same shop and came away impressed that they had the (in my opinion), all the right answers. The only concern was total payload loading, because in my case, I tend to take everything!

In the end however the desire to use a topper and the entire bed for our non-trailer adventures overcame the lust for that full-size queen bed in the 5.0TA. The pain hasn't gone away but our future '21 will help a lot.

--
Alan
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Old 03-02-2015, 11:58 PM   #18
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The Frontier has one important feature over the Tacoma, 30 more horses. In my opinion the Fronty will out pull the Toyota hands down anytime.
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