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yupididit
yupididit UltimaDork
11/6/22 8:24 p.m.

In reply to EvanB :

I love these vans

Nitroracer (Forum Supporter)
Nitroracer (Forum Supporter) UltraDork
11/6/22 10:36 p.m.

It seems I have the Miata of tow rigs.  Light weight, low power, and manual transmission.  The truck is a 2012 Frontier, and the trailer was a new Gatormade 18'  low deck car hauler.  I went new on the trailer because I wanted it to work and not need fixed right out of the box.  Five years in that plan has worked out well.  I don't tend to haul cars over 3500lb so this setup has been good for years but I'm starting to outgrow it when downshifting to third in the WV mountains after a day of rallycross.

 

Byrneon27
Byrneon27 Reader
11/7/22 9:59 a.m.

In reply to A 401 CJ :

The pink paint turned gray at some point 

JShaawbaru
JShaawbaru Reader
11/7/22 2:14 p.m.

2004 Silverado and a retired Ryder rental trailer, I've been towing cars with this truck since 2020, and before that had a 2001 Silverado. Added a Harbor Freight winch, which was very useful, but then lost the wireless remote, so it's still useful but much less convenient. 

Most recently used to tow my Saabaru up north for the 2022 Press on Regardless rally. Figured if I towed it, it wouldn't break, and I was right.

It was also used to facilitate some GRM projects being moved around. I think there have been 5 GRM vehicles on this trailer?

fidelity101
fidelity101 UberDork
11/7/22 4:45 p.m.

behold: large marge the land barge:

I probably should do a build thread on it but its pretty basic broverlanding stuff however its all guised as old man truck. its a much nicer build than my project car mostly because RAM already did everything to it! 

 

2020 ram 2500 powerwagon. front/rear lockers, front sway bar disconnect, manual t-case shifter, 33"s and a front winch - all factory! not to mention its coil sprung all around on bilstein shocks and has heated/cooled leather seats. GM nor Ford can offer this kind of package. I could live without a front locker and solid front axle but whatever... 

759NRNG
759NRNG PowerDork
11/7/22 6:03 p.m.
JShaawbaru said:

2004 Silverado and a retired Ryder rental trailer, I've been towing cars with this truck since 2020, and before that had a 2001 Silverado. Added a Harbor Freight winch, which was very useful, but then lost the wireless remote, so it's still useful but much less convenient. 

Most recently used to tow my Saabaru up north for the 2022 Press on Regardless rally. Figured if I towed it, it wouldn't break, and I was right.

It was also used to facilitate some GRM projects being moved around. I think there have been 5 GRM vehicles on this trailer?

Diesel? 

JShaawbaru
JShaawbaru Reader
11/8/22 7:02 a.m.

In reply to 759NRNG :

Nope, just a 4.8L gas V8. When I bought this one I was looking for a 5.3, but couldn't find one in my price range that had a reasonable amount of sheet metal left intact. Since the first truck was fine with the 4.8, I figured that would still be enough, and it has been so far.

759NRNG
759NRNG PowerDork
11/8/22 8:28 a.m.

In reply to JShaawbaru :

what mpg's are you seeing?

pinchvalve (Forum Supporter)
pinchvalve (Forum Supporter) MegaDork
11/8/22 9:01 a.m.
codrus (Forum Supporter) said:

Yep, that's the retirement dream right there. Go from track to track from April to August, sleep in the trailer, have fun, ignore my phone.  

bobzilla
bobzilla MegaDork
11/8/22 9:09 a.m.

JShaawbaru
JShaawbaru Reader
11/8/22 9:09 a.m.

In reply to 759NRNG :

Usually 12-13 when towing, although one of the last trips I got 14. 

I've logged most of my fuel-ups on Fuelly.

MINIzguy
MINIzguy HalfDork
11/10/22 5:12 p.m.

This is my current EcoDiesel JGC after my BMW N55 based tow rig broke. I never learn my lesson on reliable vehicles. Anyways, I've had it for 3 months, 3k miles and 7/10 tanks have had a trailer connected to it. No issues so far and now that I've stopped trying to tow at 75 mph, I can get net 20 mpg keeping it betwen 65-70.

Folgers
Folgers Reader
11/10/22 9:09 p.m.

A couple more cause I berkeleying love Bettie. 

 

birdmayne
birdmayne Reader
11/12/22 1:02 p.m.

This little guy is my current tow pig. 

5.9L cummins - 112K on the clock. 6 speed manual trans, 4x4. 

Lariat package, so heated leather and Bose sound. Currently all stock, but will get a 4" exhaust, better intake, a tuner and an exhaust brake. Probably better wheels too.

 

Secondary tow pig (for comfort towing and lighter loads) is our 2017 Suburban with the 5.3L

bigeyedfish
bigeyedfish Reader
11/15/22 9:27 a.m.

In reply to birdmayne :

Damn that checks a lot of boxes.  If you ever want to sell...

dannyp84
dannyp84 Reader
11/15/22 2:59 p.m.

i bought this truck last December primarily for towing duty and general truck things, though it has often served as a daily driver when the weather is less than ideal for the FC convertible. So far I'm happy with the towing capability, though I've only ever towed the FB pictured, which is 2170 lbs currently. With a heavier load I might consider one of those weight distributing hitch things. I averaged 13 mpg towing to and from Ontario, about 12 hrs round trip. 
One complaint is that I'm too tall to sleep comfortably across the back seat.. when I'm traveling without my lady I prefer not to spend money on hotels that could otherwise go toward obscure 14" wheel purchases, so in the past I've slept at the track a few times. I might look into setting up a cot in the truck bed with some defense against mosquitos. It's not an exciting or fancy truck, but it does the job in relative comfort, and is fairly quiet at highway speeds compared to my other vehicles which are all 30+ years old. Oh and the trailer is a new 18' econo trailer, which has been stable and dependable. My only complaint is that the removable fender and ramps are noisy and the paint isn't very durable.

bobzilla
bobzilla MegaDork
11/15/22 3:13 p.m.
bobzilla said:

OK, this photo the total weigh was just south of 5k lbs (2600lb car, 1800, 200lb of cargo plus me, wife and dog). This was the only time the Rio has been on a trailer when we went to Road America. 4.8, 3.23 we averaged 15mpg round trip. Tows in 3rd at 70mph turning 2500rpms and will do that all day. 

In my former life, this set up towed a civic to nationals 3 times and the Forte once. Every time right around 15mpg, the exception being the Forte (heavier and head winds on I80 pushed it down to 13 on the way out, 15 back so still averaged 14). It's towed a C4 from Arkansas, to Nashville, and a lot of other wierd stuff. Unloaded it still averages 22mpg at 75mph, down from 24 back when it was new.

dannyp84
dannyp84 Reader
11/15/22 3:28 p.m.

In reply to bobzilla :

If I could've found a GMT800 for a decent price that wasn't rotten, a 4.8 like yours with highway-friendly final drive would've been my first choice. It's plenty for the weight of the car I tow, and the rest of the time it would get respectable mpg if I needed it to drive to work.

dannyp84
dannyp84 Reader
11/15/22 3:30 p.m.
Nitroracer (Forum Supporter) said:

It seems I have the Miata of tow rigs.  Light weight, low power, and manual transmission.  The truck is a 2012 Frontier, and the trailer was a new Gatormade 18'  low deck car hauler.  I went new on the trailer because I wanted it to work and not need fixed right out of the box.  Five years in that plan has worked out well.  I don't tend to haul cars over 3500lb so this setup has been good for years but I'm starting to outgrow it when downshifting to third in the WV mountains after a day of rallycross.

 

What is the purpose of the large air dam under the front of the truck?

bobzilla
bobzilla MegaDork
11/15/22 7:34 p.m.
dannyp84 said:

In reply to bobzilla :

If I could've found a GMT800 for a decent price that wasn't rotten, a 4.8 like yours with highway-friendly final drive would've been my first choice. It's plenty for the weight of the car I tow, and the rest of the time it would get respectable mpg if I needed it to drive to work.

We are looking for a body donor from down south. Purchased new in 2006 and the body is rotting away fast. 126k miles but no rockers or a bedside or drivers door bottom. 

Claff
Claff HalfDork
11/15/22 11:19 p.m.

We've had three tow rigs.

First one was new in 2011 when we decided we were going to be "serious" autocrossers and didn't want to drive a Miata to Nebraska. I didn't want a real truck, and decided a SUV with a frame would be the hot ticket. It was a 4Runner, V6. Trailer was also bought new, steel frame/wood deck. It actually towed pretty well aside from kicking down many gears going up the western Maryland mountains.

After three years with the 4Runner we decided we'd like more interior space. Considered upgrading to a Sequoia SUV but decided to try pickup trucks as well. Turns out that trucks don't drive like I thought trucks drove. We treated ourselves to a 2014 Ram 1500 Laramie (5.7 Hemi) and it was bliss. Mountains were no longer struggles, and we had all the room in the world both inside the cab and in the bed. In August 2015 we sold the old trailer and picked up this 18-foot aluminum trailer that has been absolutely fantastic.

When 5th gen Rams came out and the '14 was paid off I knew it was only a matter of time before Kate was going to want to get the latest and greatest model, and that happened in February 2019. We sold the '14 to a friend and picked up this Ram Laramie Sport, same mechanical specs as the previous one. The interior was a nice upgrade over the '14, which was pretty nice to begin with. We're getting close to 65K miles on the '19, most of those towing (I drove it 21K miles in 2021), mostly trouble-free. If I am conscious of my acceleration, I can squeak out 15 MPG towing.

 

GVX19
GVX19 HalfDork
11/18/22 4:36 p.m.

I do not have a pic handy of my current setup.  For now, this is why I had to upgrade. 

Loweguy5
Loweguy5 HalfDork
11/20/22 9:44 p.m.

This is my favorite truck that I've ever owned, and I've owned many.

2005 RAM 2500 with Cummins H.O. engine with 325hp 600lbs tq.  It has an automatic which performs perfectly.   It is stock other than a 4" cat back exhaust and a K&N drop in filter.  I always wanted a quad cab 4x4 with 8' bed.  This truck will haul or tow anything I ever care to.

I have owned the truck just about 2 years, and have added over 10k miles to it in that time.  I bought it from the second owner with 127k miles, it's currently just shy of 140k.

It was highly maintained by both previous owners and was fluid filmed early in its life.  As a result it runs perfectly and has almost zero rust.  To find a truck in the Northeast with a PERFECT frame is super rare, and even rarer in a truck this old.

We tow our 34' 8000 lb travel trailer with it but have dragged many projects home behind it.  I recently bought a 1966 F100 in MA and towed it home while getting 17 mpg!   We drove it from CT to MO, then IA, then back to CT on vacation last year and averaged just over 21 mpg with 4 people and our luggage in it.

It is impossible to clearly state just how much I love this thing.  

John Welsh
John Welsh Mod Squad
11/21/22 6:42 a.m.

The Gov't Mule.  As fine a truck as less than $3k would get you in January 2018. Previous salvaged Ohio Dept of Transportation truck, 2wd XL with 5.4L.  Yes, the roof light works!

Added bonus... Bring an orange cone and you can park anywhere you want. Bring a clipboard and a high-viz vest and get access to any restricted area. 

Unintended consequence...I got flagged down in a neighborhood once by a resident who asked when the Fall leaf pick up would resume. 

Brake_L8 (Forum Supporter)
Brake_L8 (Forum Supporter) HalfDork
11/22/22 10:53 a.m.

Ohhh this is a fun one. I've ended up with six (!) tow vehicles over the years and two trailers. Automotive ADD or something.

Started with a 2005 GMC Yukon Denali in that awesome color-shifty blue/green paint. Bought it and an 18' EconoTrailer to start towing my E36 to NASA weekends for TT. The BMW immediately blew a head gasket the first time it was towed to a racetrack instead of being driven. Lucky me. Denali had 125k of one-owner dealer-maintained records on it when I bought it, I got it up to 140k and put so so so much money into it. Everything that made it stop and steer broke and it soured me on GM for a long time. Many of my friends had GMT800s and claimed they were super reliable, mine was junk by comparison. But very pretty.

I realized I had been spending far too much money on an old SUV with that many miles, so I traded it in at night in the cold at a Honda dealership (so you couldn't see the leaking oil as easily) and took home a 2011 Ford F-150 FX4 with the 5.0L. This F-150 was so fantastic. I put, I dunno, 40k or 50k on it and it only asked for a set of spark plugs and some Hawk LTS brakes. I added a backup camera and CarPlay, too, as it was a fairly basic FX4 with unheated cloth seats, no sunroof, etc. 

I'd been living too far outside the city (DC area) and was tired of being known for living in Guam. Nobody would visit and Ubers home on Friday and Saturday nights were so expensive. Decided to get an enclosed trailer and downsize the tow vehicle to easier embrace city living.

First, I sold the F-150 and bought an L322 Range Rover Supercharged (2010 model year) with the supercharged Jag 5.0L making something like 515 horsepower. It was a brute of a 'truck' and I've never felt more like I "made it" than driving this thing around. Navy blue, cream seats, navy carpets, cherry wood. It got 9 MPG commuting to work and required premium but it was worth it. I put about 11k miles on it in the six months I owned it. Sold it at 105k miles with precisely nothing wrong or needing to be done - it was wildly reliable though the threat of timing chain guide failure did sit in the back of my head. 

I would have kept the RR but after the six months, I bought my enclosed trailer - a 20' CargoPro aluminum with 4' V-nose - and the Range was way too soft to safely tow it. It was a mess on windy days and that was largely due to the off-road/luxury-focused suspension setup. I got spooked towing on the Beltway one day and was at the Ford dealer a few days later.

Seen here on the way to Sebring for NASA Nationals:

So I got rid of the Range Rover, took an absolute bath on it but it didn't feel safe towing the enclosed. Open was great. The trip to Sebring was easy. Ended up at the Ford dealer, my buddy was the sales manager and I leased a 2018 F-150 Lariat. I had taken the trailer for new tires and drove the truck off the lot with about seven miles on the odometer and the trailer hooked up.

I loved this truck and it was good to me for a while. Was also a 5.0L that they did some tweakin' to for the 2018 model year, which this was. There was an issue that came up with a ratcheting/rattling noise on cold starts, which Ford acknowledged with a Technical Service Bulletin. Unfortunately, their fix didn't fix anything and after some back and forth with the BBB Auto Line program, Ford repurchased this truck halfway through my three-year lease. I was sad to see it go because it was very "me" and I did really enjoy it both towing or unloaded. The 10-speed was awesome with a trailer. In hindsight, I liked the EcoBoost more and if I had picked that engine, might still have it.

Anyway. Ford went away and I picked out a CPO'd 2016 Ram 1500 Sport. Loaded as they come with the 5.7L Hemi, ZF 8-speed, four-corner air. Love, love, love, love. This truck was not as plush as the red Ford but was even more "me" and was also a fantastic tow pig and highway cruiser. It was a crew cab long bed, which made it suck a bit for city driving but that highway ride was even better because the wheelbase was roughly the length of a school bus.

During the time I owned the Ram (two years or so) I was starting to get more and more press cars to review for Out Motorsports, and with that came press trucks for towing reviews. So, I had only done ~10k miles in two years on the Ram. It was peak "used car prices are insane" last summer and while Carvana would've given me what I paid for the Ram, I didn't really care to get rid of it because I liked it a lot. 

Ended up throwing it on Craigslist for what I deemed "a stupid amount" and figured if someone would come with that amount of money, no negotiating, they could have it. Three weeks later, someone did and I made $5,000 above my purchase price on a used gas-powered Dodge. That'll never happen again.

So then the Ram was gone and I needed... something. Not towing often with it but needs the capability, but I want it to be smaller and more fun. Enter the 2013 Porsche Cayenne Diesel. One owner, 67k miles when I bought it. About to cross 75k today. It has needed Some Stuff done - all diesel related - that's been covered by the Dieselgate warranty so far. That warranty expires in a few weeks and I think I still want to keep it around for a while. It's a lovely thing to drive unloaded and tows my enclosed far, far better than it has a right to. 

That's where we're at today. I've towed that enclosed trailer with all sorts of vehicles for the sake of reviews (lots more words about those here) but I think the Cayenne is gonna stay for a while longer. 

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