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Old 10-06-2012, 08:16 AM   #1
Join Date: Sep 2012
Location: Gainesville
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New hybrid, tow vehicle?

We are looking at Hybrids, we have a 2003 Explorer with the V-6 and the Tow package, is this enough to pull a hybrid, we would be happy with the X17A since there is only 3 of us, and am also considering the X18D. Looking forward to any input, right now we have a coleman popup that is about the same weight as the X17A/D. We are ready for the upgrade, easier setup

John S
Coachman Clipper 128
2003 Ford Explorer
Hopefully Jayco X18D

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Old 10-06-2012, 08:33 AM   #2
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I just looked up the specs on your TV and you are rated to 5000 lbs, if you are properly equipped. You should be able to pull an X17A safely. You won't have much power on hills, but if you are prepared to just go slow, and not overtax the transmission, you should be fine. I wouldn't go any heavier or bigger in terms of trailer.

We tow an X17z with our Chevy Astro, which is rated in the same range as your explorer, and have no problems. We do have a sway system and equalizer. Hills are slow going, but we manage it.

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Old 10-06-2012, 09:23 AM   #3
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Agree with gaylec. Should be okay on the flat without significant winds. Aside from that you will not enjoy the experience. Don't ask me how I know.
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Old 10-06-2012, 09:35 AM   #4
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Thanks, the popup fights a little on hills as it is. I have looked about the TVs online, and haven't found a website that tells me clearly, in the future, we will probably get a full size P/U, just wondering which to get first
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Old 10-06-2012, 11:47 AM   #5
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You will notice a big difference at highway speeds as the popup has much less wind resistance... ask your dealer if you can test drive one first with your tow vehicle...
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Old 10-06-2012, 12:23 PM   #6
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Welcome to JOF

If your present PUP weighs in at about the same as the X17A under "loaded" conditions, you may find that do to the increased frontal area of the X17A hybrid it will create a little more drag effect on your present TV. The X17A has a GVWR of 3,500lbs, and do to the limited cargo capacity IMO you will be towing a 3,500lb loaded HTT to the campground. I mentioned this because most manufacturer's UVW isn't the ship weight..., look for the yellow sticker on any given RV trailer for the actual ship weight, then start adding from there.

The "published" tow rating on your TV may be 5,000lbs, but the following JOF sticky may shed a little light on the subject: https://www.jaycoowners.com/showthrea...uot-Tow-Rating

I think it's very possible that the loaded X17A may not exceed your present TV's weight limits, but IMO it may be a less than ideal towing experience. Keep in mind the "loaded" trailer tongue weight gets subtracted from a TV's published payload capacity.

Originally Posted by jstor1 View Post
snip....just wondering which to get first
If the money was coming from my wallet, I would purchase a new/used (properly equipped) full size pick-up prior to your next HTT (or TT) purchase. This will allow you more flexibility and room to grow in your future HTT (or TT) selection.

Hope this helps.


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Old 10-06-2012, 02:20 PM   #7
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X2 on getting a bigger TV first. Safety is of primary concern. I would much rather have too much truck on the present unit, and later upgrade to a bigger camper, than to have too little truck with the present trailer, and risk losing control and a potential accident. You definitely don't want the tail wagging the dog when pulling anything. JMHO
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Old 10-06-2012, 02:32 PM   #8
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I would put an aftermarket transmission cooler. The built in ones won't handle the extra heat.
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Old 10-07-2012, 08:03 PM   #9
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We just got an export 17c and have pulled it on a couple trips with a 2008 Toyota Highlander which is rated up to 5000lbs with the tow package. I would estimate that fully loaded we are around 3800lbs. The biggest thing you will notice is the wind resistance (pulling a barn door behind you). We get about 9mpg at 60 mph with moderate grades. The biggest thing that helps us is the weight distribution hitch and sway bar which I recommend for any SUV.
I would not want to pull anything bigger and can see a full size truck in our future.

Happy trails!
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Old 10-08-2012, 02:02 PM   #10
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We tow our X17Z with a '09 Honda Pilot, before that we towed a Fleetwood Utah CP. Both the popup and hybrid have the same GVWR (3500 lbs), so the big difference with towing is the frontal area of the hybrid vs the popup. With that said, we just completed a 5,000 mile trip from NJ through Colorado and Utah towing the hybrid. We went over several 10,000+ ft mountain passes with absolutely no issues. We have the dealer recommended weight distribution hitch and separate sway bar. Even with 35-45 MPH wind gusts going through Kansas, we didn't experience any sway with the camper that made us feel uncomfortable. We certainly saw a lot of larger units having difficulty keeping their rigs in one lane, but they were going a lot faster than us. We tend to keep the speed at or under 62 MPH.

The Pilot is rated for 4,500 lbs towing, which is 500 lbs under your Explorer.

The one big difference we saw was the gas mileage. While towing the popup two years ago on a similar trip out to S.Dakota and Colorado, we averaged between 12 and 15 MPG while towing. With the hybrid, we got between 9-12 MPG. Getting lower gas mileage is to be expected, and worth it for the convenience of the hybrid. When we aren't towing, we get 20-22 MPG; giving the smaller tow vehicle a definate advantage over the full size pickup for our situation.

Good luck with whichever decision you go with.

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