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Old 10-14-2016, 09:41 AM   #1
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Unhappy Toyota 4runner w/ 195 Sunset Ultra Lite

I am very new to pulling a camping trailer. Started a few months ago by looking for the lightest trailer that would fit out needs. Landed on a 19 ft Crossroads Sunsetset ultra lite, just a tad over 4000 lbs. Then started researching tow vehicles. Did not want a truck because of the open storage area and the overall size. Ended up with a 2017 4Runner rated to pull 5000 lbs.

On my first trip through Wyoming driving from the St Louis area I had a lot of problems. Had a hard time keeping the rig moving at 60 MPH. At times I could not keep it up to 50 MPH. Several Toyota dealers and the trailer salesman confirmed the 4Runner was fine for the size trailer I purchased.

Have I made a very expensive mistake or do you think something is wrong with the Toyota?
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Old 10-14-2016, 11:17 AM   #2
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You have to remember once you add all the stuff to your trailer and 4 runner and the passengers most probably add 1000-1500 Lbs. All that little stuff adds up quick. Take it to a truck scales with everything loaded and I think you'd be surprised how much weight you've added. You might need to trade up on the truck. Salesmen will tell you anything to sell a truck or camper. Take it to the scales and let us know the results.
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Old 10-14-2016, 12:07 PM   #3
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Years ago I had purchased a new 1500 Chevrolet to pull a new 5er. The Chevrolet salesman assured me it was enough to pull the trailer. Which on paper it was; and had no problem on flat areas. The problem was when pulling mountains it lugged down a lot and the transmission even felt like it slipped a couple of times. I called the Chevrolet salesman and told him my concerns and he said don't worry it's under warranty if the transmission comes out. I told him maybe so but I'm going to be the one broke down on the side of the road with my camper. I ended trading it in on a 2500 HD. Sorry about your issue but I've been in your shoes as many on here has. Let us know what happens.
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Old 10-14-2016, 01:39 PM   #4
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Yes, you made the same a LOT of new rv owners make, you listened to the salesman when his lips were moving & he gave you their scripted sales speech "Oh yes! You'll have no problems pulling that with your vehicle", when in fact he didn't have a clue or give a s### whether you could or not. Probably nothing wrong with your Toyota except not enough vehicle to do the job. SORRY for the bad news, but NEVER, NEVER listen to a salesman til you've done your homework.
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Old 10-14-2016, 03:26 PM   #5
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Ok that's the bad news. Go ahead and scale it so you do know what your real weight is. More than likely you cannot reduce the weight enough to make this setup work.
The 4Runner is an expensive vehicle. Go back to the dealer and see what they will do on a trade.
A used vehicle may do the trick if you are enjoying the 4Runner outside of towing.
You are not the first or last to be victimised this way.
Consider your expected travel plans and move on. Best of luck and safe travels. Just a bump in the road.
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Old 11-10-2016, 08:27 AM   #6
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Unfortunately the smaller V6 in the new 4-runner just doesn't cut the mustard when in comes to towing. You could do some suspension upgrades and better tires to help it tow "better" but you will never have enough power to pull 5,000 lbs of loaded trailer down the highway at 60mph with the small 4.0L V6. We had a 2009 4-runner with the V6 and absolutely loved it. But when it came time to look at travel trailers I knew it would not be powerful enough even if I did some engine mods and added a transmission cooler. That said we traded in the 4-runner and upgraded to a Sequoia and absolutely love it! Great everyday driver and pulls our 6,500 lb trailer like its not even back there. I live in the mountains of NC and go up steep grades at 65mph no problem. If you absolutely have to have an SUV and a Toyota take a look at the Sequoia for sure. Good luck!
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Old 11-10-2016, 09:51 AM   #7
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Agree with the above, you likely don't have enough truck. Don't forget, you are at higher elevation (Wyo, etc) and are going up hills, not the flatlands of Florida.

The other issue is you are pulling a tall camper (vs popup) so are adding drag by punching a bigger hole in the air.
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Old 11-10-2016, 10:41 AM   #8
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Thanks for the input

We tried to talk to Toyota about it but they stopped returning my calls when they found out what my concerns were. Just purchased a 2012 Dodge 1500 with the 5.7L. I expect / hope my towing issues are behind me now. Again thanks for all the comments.
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Old 11-10-2016, 11:11 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dennisf View Post
We tried to talk to Toyota about it but they stopped returning my calls when they found out what my concerns were. Just purchased a 2012 Dodge 1500 with the 5.7L. I expect / hope my towing issues are behind me now. Again thanks for all the comments.
Congrats! However, we are literally hoping your towing issues are not "behind you." But gone all together.
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Old 11-10-2016, 11:19 AM   #10
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Good idea and maybe a good excuse to buy a truck! Let us know how it pulls....
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