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Old 02-09-2020, 04:45 PM   #1
New Camper
Join Date: Dec 2019
Location: TX
Posts: 5
What's the smallest vehicle I can get away with? Z1 18SS

I know I can read the towing capacities for individual vehicles, but it seems a lot of the less powerful (and cheaper!) V6's might be pushing the limits for my camper.

Specifically, any experience using a Toyota 4runner V6. Some of these have towing capacities of 5000 lbs. With my 3700 base weight camper, fully loaded I'll be getting close to 5000 lbs. And I will be doing a lot of travelling including through mountainous regions.

And what about Toyota Tacomas?

I really don't want to get way more than I need, but I definitely want to get at least what I need!
2016 Crossroads Z-1 18SS
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Old 02-09-2020, 11:18 PM   #2
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Location: Mb
Posts: 156
You have to be aware of payload capacity too of the tow vehicle. Also GCVWR. Tongue weight takes up payload capacity too.
2013 Zinger ZT260BH towed by a 2013 Silverado Z71 1500 CC 5.3L
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Old 02-10-2020, 10:00 AM   #3
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Location: TX
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THanks, catman, I am aware of the many different weight variables to consider.

I'm just interested in hearing some first-hand experience of people using smaller and/or older V6's with less torque and hp that start to push the limits of those weight capacities.
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Old Yesterday, 03:19 PM   #4
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Also consider things like wheelbase. I towed a viking saga pop-up with our 4runner, and it pushed the tow vehicle around a lot, just because of the short wheelbase. It had plenty of power and brakes for the camper, but just got squirrely.
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Old Yesterday, 03:46 PM   #5
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Join Date: Aug 2016
Location: Colorado
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First off I am a big Toyota fan I have a 4Runner and a Sequoia and have had 2 Tacoma’s and a Tundra.
The power will be down on the v6 it will get you there but you will be pushing it hard. In the mountains my v8 will have more power and gets the same or better mileage as the v6 because it is not working as hard.
You mentioned mountain driving and the camper you asked about is single axle so I don’t know if it has trailer brakes or not but having some size to the tow vehicle helps control and stopping on down hill runs.
I have only towed my atv trailer behind my Toyota’s
it weighs about 3000 loaded. I towed my Z1 228rr and now my 5er with a 2500 Cummins.
I think it would be better to have too much than too little.
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Old Yesterday, 04:51 PM   #6
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Over the years, I towed several < 5000 lb trailers: Coleman 18’ and a Dalton Apache (don’t ask). I had a V-6 Isuzu (remember them?) and an F-150 with a 302. Both were rated to pull 5000 lbs. Both failed miserably. Overheating was the main problem. Even with a cooler. The other issue was stability in the wind. The new engines are more efficient. However, add in the mountain roads, the thinner air, and the desire to go over 45 mph. If you can afford to do so, get something with more towing power. You’ll be happy you did. i ended up with a Ford Diesel. I also keep things a long time. So, its 17 years old with 480,000+ miles on it, tows up to 12,000 lbs (although I won’t). We have a 5300 lb trailer plus everything on earth inside. I can tow it fine, and it’s stable. Good luck. Let us know what you decide to do.
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