Towing with a Tundra - 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 03-29-2014, 08:34 PM   #1
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jun 2013
Location: Felton, California
Trailer: 2018 21' ; 2014 Escape 19' (Sold)
Posts: 1,220
Towing with a Tundra

Now that we've made it over several passes on our way home from Chilliwack, the highest being 1800', we're wondering what others are experiencing with their tow vehicles.

We have a 2004 Tundra, double cab, V8 with tow package, camper shell, 70k original miles and a tow capacity of 6200 lbs. We're pulling our 19', basically unloaded as we just picked it up, with OD 'off', Andersen WDH, and our Tundra was down to 45 mph coming up that 1800' pass. Tomorrow we're going over the Siskiyou Pass (4300') and plan on taking it slow and easy. Others on the forum have said they're pulling 19' or 21' foot trailers with Highlanders, Pilots and other such vehicles. Is our experience normal or are we expecting too much from our tow vehicle? Just curious as this is our first real "towing" experience.
__________________

CADreamin is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-29-2014, 08:49 PM   #2
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Feb 2010
Location: Phoenix Area, Arizona
Trailer: 2014 Escape 19
Posts: 762
Sounds like something might be off with your truck. We picked up our 19' this January with a 2005 Tundra V8 XtraCab. We drove the truck to pick it up (over) loaded with all our trailer gear from our previous trailer so we had our normal camping load on board. I had no problem running the speed limit (or over) coming back to Arizona.
__________________

jamman is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-29-2014, 09:19 PM   #3
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Dec 2012
Location: Edmonton, Alberta
Trailer: 1979 Boler B1700
Posts: 12,572
I'll ask the same question that I always do in this situation: when you were down to 45 mph, what was the engine speed... and did you have the gas pedal to the floor? Often, people don't use anything close to the full capability of their engine, and there's a big difference between "it wouldn't go any faster" and "I chose not to go any faster".

Also, what was the grade on that pass? High elevation (and 1800' isn't high) does reduce power, but it's the slope of the road that determines how much extra power is needed to climb (compared to flat ground at the same speed).

How did that speed compare to the big truck rigs on the same road? They're fast enough, and anything faster than that is gravy.

Finally, a recent Highlander or Pilot has as more power than a 2004 Tundra.
Brian B-P is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-29-2014, 10:31 PM   #4
Senior Member
 
Sally P's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2013
Location: Auburn, California
Trailer: 2012 17B
Posts: 120
In my 2009 Highlander, 45000 miles, towed 21 over the Siskyous at 45 keeping the rpms under 3000, never going into overdrive. Anderson hitch
Sally P is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-29-2014, 10:31 PM   #5
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jun 2013
Location: Felton, California
Trailer: 2018 21' ; 2014 Escape 19' (Sold)
Posts: 1,220
Hi Doug and Brian. Thank you for both your replies. We had the Tundra serviced and checked before we left and the Toyota Dealer assured us we were mechanically sound (and we've never had a problem previously when fully/overloaded with "stuff"). Now, in answer to Brian's questions ... The engine speed was about 2600, we didn't have the gas pedal to the floor (my fault as I was leery about the transmission), the grade going up ?? but coming down it was 6%. To be honest, we thought we were going downhill right before we noticed our truck lagging, but then we also noticed that the big rigs were going really, really slow so we figured we must be climbing. Must be an Oregon vortex ...

We're both laughing at your last sentence as we have a 2013 Highlander at home and were wondering if it would do better than the Tundra ... We would just have to get an after market tow package.

Really appreciate your responses as it always helps to have insight from those who have been there before.

Jan AND John
CADreamin is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-29-2014, 10:33 PM   #6
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jun 2013
Location: Felton, California
Trailer: 2018 21' ; 2014 Escape 19' (Sold)
Posts: 1,220
Quote:
Originally Posted by Sally P View Post
In my 2009 Highlander, 45000 miles, towed 21 over the Siskyous at 45 keeping the rpms under 3000, never going into overdrive. Anderson hitch
Thanks Sally ... and you were towing a 21'! Good to have comparisons. Will see what happens tomorrow. Thankfully, it's not hot ... just rainy.
CADreamin is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-29-2014, 11:12 PM   #7
Senior Member
 
Sandra L's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2008
Location: Antelope, California
Trailer: 2009 17B "Suite Escape" pulled by a 2005 Toyota Sienna
Posts: 1,536
I tow my 17B with a 2005 Toyota Sienna and do 35mph over the Siskiyou summit. I can still do 45mph (which I used to do) I think, but I envision the gas getting guzzled. I also use engine braking to keep my speed down as well, so I don't have to ride the brakes. Also, if you have not discovered the ODOT (Oregon Department of Transportation) website, check it out. The pictures and info are very helpful. Good luck, at least you don't have snow!
P.S. I have the tow package.
__________________
Peace and Sunshine
Sandra L is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-29-2014, 11:33 PM   #8
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Apr 2013
Location: Kamloops, British Columbia
Trailer: 2013 Escape 19
Posts: 249
I think the V8 in the 2004 Tundra has 240 hp and 315 lbft of torque (2005 has 280 hp & 325lbft). So less horsepower than the Highlander but more torque. I would think the 2004 Tundra would tow better than a newer Highlander. We have a 2011 Highlander and a 19 and in steep grade in the mountains it works hard and has to be pushed. Perhaps the extra weight of the canopy may impact performance in the mountains. Max torque for the 2004 V8 is at 3,400 rpm so you should see an improvement with a little higher rpm. If it was me I would tow with the Tundra and try it without the canopy, if it improves go with a lighter tonneau cover.
gharper is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-30-2014, 10:06 AM   #9
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Dec 2012
Location: Edmonton, Alberta
Trailer: 1979 Boler B1700
Posts: 12,572
Quote:
Originally Posted by CADreamin View Post
... The engine speed was about 2600, we didn't have the gas pedal to the floor (my fault as I was leery about the transmission), the grade going up ?? but coming down it was 6%.
Although the 2004 version of the 2UZ-FE engine in a Tundra can put out up to 245 horsepower, it can't do it at 2600 rpm. I don't have detailed specs for that year of Tundra, but comparing to other applications of that engine, it might need 4800 rpm for peak power; using gharper's specs, it needs 3400 rpm for a peak torque of 315 lb-ft.

At 2600 rpm, it would put out significantly less than its peak torque, and thus significantly less than 156 horsepower (my guess is about 130 hp)... and with the throttle not even all the way open, it was producing even less.

As a general rule of thumb, non-turbocharged engines run most efficiently at speeds around their peak torque, so at least that speed would be reasonable for sustained hill-climbing. Since the engine's peak torque is 315 lb-ft at 3400 rpm, it could put out 204 horsepower at that speed.

There was lots of power in reserve on that climb.

Quote:
Originally Posted by CADreamin View Post
To be honest, we thought we were going downhill right before we noticed our truck lagging, but then we also noticed that the big rigs were going really, really slow so we figured we must be climbing. Must be an Oregon vortex ...
I've noticed this on various highways myself... wondering why it is taking so much power on a flat section, then realizing I'm climbing. There's a place in New Brunswick called "Magnetic Hill", where people stop, put their vehicle in neutral, and let it roll backward in what appears to be uphill. The illusion results from changing grades: the road climbs, then climbs less steeply, then climbs more steeply again. On the less-steep portion, it looks downhill to most people due to the relationship to the other sections.

So, if the trucks were "going really, really slow", the Tundra must have been outclimbing them with the Escape, even using half or less of its peak power. That sounds like more than enough performance to me.

(Above was edited to use gharper's engine specs for the 2004 Tundra)
Brian B-P is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-30-2014, 10:16 AM   #10
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Dec 2012
Location: Edmonton, Alberta
Trailer: 1979 Boler B1700
Posts: 12,572
Quote:
Originally Posted by CADreamin View Post
We're both laughing at your last sentence as we have a 2013 Highlander at home and were wondering if it would do better than the Tundra ... We would just have to get an after market tow package.
Aside from power, the Tundra has advantages in wheelbase, suspension capacity, structural strength and the capacity for the drivetrain to operate reliably at high power levels... although it is heavier itself so it has to work harder.

I'm not a fan of adding components aftermarket that the manufacturer does better - usually that's transmission cooling. In the specific case of the 2013 Highlander, it has Toyota's 2GR-FE engine; when that engine is used in the Sienna, the towing package includes an engine oil cooler which would be very expensive and difficult to add aftermarket. I would check out the engine oil cooling situation before I considered working the Highlander hard for extended periods by towing.

Quote:
Originally Posted by gharper View Post
I think the V8 in the 2004 Tundra has 240 hp and 315 lbft of torque (2005 has 280 hp & 325lbft). So less horsepower than the Highlander but more torque. I would think the 2004 Tundra would tow better than a newer Highlander.
Torque at the wheels matters, but at the engine output shaft it doesn't matter whether you have higher torque at lower speed or lower torque at higher speed. The Highlander engine would need to spin faster, but if you are willing to use the required engine speed the end result at the wheels would be more pull with the more powerful engine.

Quote:
Originally Posted by gharper View Post
Max torque for the 2004 V8 is at 3,400 rpm so you should see an improvement with a little higher rpm.
Absolutely - good point.

Quote:
Originally Posted by gharper View Post
Perhaps the extra weight of the canopy may impact performance in the mountains.
...
If it was me I would tow with the Tundra and try it without the canopy, if it improves go with a lighter tonneau cover.
Although the tonneau would be lighter (better for grade climbing and acceleration), the canopy may result in less air drag when combined with the trailer, thus requiring less power to maintain speed, and leaving more for climbing and accelerating at highway speeds. Anyone willing to experiment?
Brian B-P is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-30-2014, 11:05 AM   #11
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jun 2013
Location: Felton, California
Trailer: 2018 21' ; 2014 Escape 19' (Sold)
Posts: 1,220
Thank you all again. I'm going to have hubby sit down and read your responses.

I should have also mentioned the weight/specs of our trailer as indicated on the tag ... 1818 kg plus 336 kg cargo. Guess I should have paid more attention to the weight of the options ... A lesson to those working on their build sheets.
CADreamin is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-30-2014, 11:40 AM   #12
Senior Member
 
ChuckS's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2013
Location: Battle Ground, Washington
Trailer: 2001 Bigfoot 21RB/ 73Boler/Trillium 5500
Posts: 183
Towing trailer

Quote:
Originally Posted by Brian B-P View Post
Aside from power, the Tundra has advantages in wheelbase, suspension capacity, structural strength and the capacity for the drivetrain to operate reliably at high power levels... although it is heavier itself so it has to work harder.

I'm not a fan of adding components aftermarket that the manufacturer does better - usually that's transmission cooling. In the specific case of the 2013 Highlander, it has Toyota's 2GR-FE engine; when that engine is used in the Sienna, the towing package includes an engine oil cooler which would be very expensive and difficult to add aftermarket. I would check out the engine oil cooling situation before I considered working the Highlander hard for extended periods by towing.


Torque at the wheels matters, but at the engine output shaft it doesn't matter whether you have higher torque at lower speed or lower torque at higher speed. The Highlander engine would need to spin faster, but if you are willing to use the required engine speed the end result at the wheels would be more pull with the more powerful engine.


Absolutely - good point.


Although the tonneau would be lighter (better for grade climbing and acceleration), the canopy may result in less air drag when combined with the trailer, thus requiring less power to maintain speed, and leaving more for climbing and accelerating at highway speeds. Anyone willing to experiment?
I towed a 16ft Scamp and a Escape 19 and now a Bigfoot 21RB with a 2007 Tundra 5.7L V8 4x4 CrewMax cab it has plenty of power.
Chuck
ChuckS is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-30-2014, 12:03 PM   #13
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Dec 2012
Location: Edmonton, Alberta
Trailer: 1979 Boler B1700
Posts: 12,572
Quote:
Originally Posted by ChuckS View Post
I towed a 16ft Scamp and a Escape 19 and now a Bigfoot 21RB with a 2007 Tundra 5.7L V8 4x4 CrewMax cab it has plenty of power.
Just a note:
5.7L V8 (3UR-FE): 381 hp @ 5600 rpm, 401 lb-ft @ 3600 rpm
4.7L V8 (2UZ-FE): 245 hp @~4800 rpm, 315 lb-ft @ 3400 rpm
A substantial difference.
Brian B-P is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-30-2014, 02:34 PM   #14
Senior Member
 
TAfraser's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2013
Location: Auburn, Washington
Trailer: 2013 Escape 21 #3
Posts: 383
Towing with a V6 Ridgeline

I took my Honda Ridgeline and Escape 21 out for a test drive three days ago. The Ridgeline has a 3.5L V6 with 255 hp @ 5750 rpm and 252 lb.-ft. @ 4500 rpm. The Ridgelines tow rating is 5000 lbs. at sea level. I wasnít able to weigh the Escape, but it was loaded with all our camping equipment (chairs, grills, ladder, tools, toiletries, bedding, kitchen stuff, etc) and the truck had (fire pit, extra propane, camping games, covers, and another grill). The only things missing were the generator, bicycles, food and clothing. I didnít want to take it too far so I only took it over two passes, Tiger, at 1200 ft and a 6% grade, and Snoqualmie at 3000 ft (I donít know the grade). It did great, maintaining 60 mph at less than 3500 rpm. Engine breaking worked so well on the down hills, I had to turn it off because it was slowing us up too much. I then took a smaller hill while taking a friend home that was at a 10% grade. I started the hill at 40 mph (speed limit) and crested the top at 40 mph. The Ridgeline did have to go to 4000 rpm in order to maintain the speed. The engine temperature didnít rise at all but I could smell heat from the converters when we stopped. Honda tells me that heating up the converters with a climb like that is normal. This summer Iíll be driving over many mountain passes with confidence (because of many talks with Honda reps) and apprehension (because I havenít done it yet). But thatís me.
Attached Images
File Type: jpg SAM_4333.jpg (396.5 KB, 24 views)
File Type: jpg SAM_4284.jpg (153.4 KB, 21 views)
TAfraser is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-30-2014, 04:39 PM   #15
Senior Member
 
paulw's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2010
Location: Marysville, Washington
Trailer: 2014 Escape 21 & Chevy Silverado 5.3L EcoTec
Posts: 643
Thanks for the report Tom. We're taking our 21 out for a quick over night next weekend.
So far i've only towed locally, but the Chevy does really well... It's rated at 291 hp @ 6000rpm and 277 lb-ft @ 4800, so you have to be willing to rev it to get it.
It'll get it's big test on the way to Maryhill in May - Snoqualmie Pass, Manastash Ridge summit and Satus Pass. Then I'll see if/how soon I'll be shopping for a V8.
__________________
Paul, Norma & Tashi
2014 Escape 21 & Chevy Silverado 5.3L EcoTec
paulw is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-30-2014, 05:10 PM   #16
Senior Member
 
TAfraser's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2013
Location: Auburn, Washington
Trailer: 2013 Escape 21 #3
Posts: 383
Paul, Norma, and of course The Girls, See you at Maryhill in May.
TAfraser is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-30-2014, 06:01 PM   #17
Senior Member
 
Join Date: May 2010
Location: Vancouver Island, British Columbia
Trailer: 2014 Escape 21. Tow vehicle: 2012 Toyota Tundra Crewmax Platunum.
Posts: 373
That's a very helpful report, Tom, for those of us anticipating towing an Escape 21 with a 5000-pound rated SUV.

It's encouraging to hear that you could maintain the speed limit on those grades.

And, your TV and 21' together make a good-looking rig!
__________________
Brent and Cheryl.
Catchlight is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-30-2014, 07:27 PM   #18
Senior Member
 
TAfraser's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2013
Location: Auburn, Washington
Trailer: 2013 Escape 21 #3
Posts: 383
Brent and Cheryl, thanks for the compliment. It's not that cute little Casita we use to own, but wow, what a nice trailer this is. I think Escapes look good behind any tow vehicle.

We'll know for sure after this summer about the towing. We're going from Seattle to south of Frisco on I5, then up 101 to the northern border. From there we're heading north east to the Three Sisters area, west across the mountains to the Tillamook area, then to Mt. Rainier and on to Sequim. We're either going to prove it's capable of towing the 21, or we're going to kill it. I'm hoping for the first!!
Tom
TAfraser is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-31-2014, 08:46 PM   #19
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jun 2013
Location: Felton, California
Trailer: 2018 21' ; 2014 Escape 19' (Sold)
Posts: 1,220
Hi all - Just an update ... we made it! Thanks to Brian's great detailed information, and the positive results from others, we set off from Ashland, armed with a new confidence. Our Tundra performed perfectly! In fact, we were up and over the 4300' summit before we knew it. After that, we laughed at upcoming hills .... (I think "newbie" apprehension and a steep grade on our very first hill got the best of us.)

John did a fantastic job of pulling a trailer for the very first time and was able to get out of some tight situations in parking lots and gas stations. Unfortunately, our narrow road at home, a tight turning area and both of our inexperience at backing up/spotting led to a broken tail light on the truck. But if that's the only mishap, I consider it a small one. (I'm calling a contractor tomorrow to have the parking area widened and graded .... )

Anyway, thank you all so much for your help and inspiration. Glad to hear those with 21'ers are experiencing good results as well.
CADreamin is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-31-2014, 08:49 PM   #20
Senior Member
 
gbaglo's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2008
Location: North Vancouver, British Columbia
Trailer: 2009 Escape 17B - "Toad". '08 Toyota RAV4 V6
Posts: 14,800
Nowhere to go but up.
__________________

__________________
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
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 02:58 AM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 4
Copyright ©2000 - 2020, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.
Copyright 2012 Social Knowledge, LLC All Rights Reserved.
×