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Old 07-31-2011, 10:48 PM   #1
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Join Date: Jul 2011
Location: Pennsylvania
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SUN #2536
rrwayne is an unknown quantity at this point
What tow vehicle do I need?

Next year I plan to buy a T-1950. I will put about 1400 pounds of stuff in side of it and probably up to 300 pounds into the tow vehicle. I will full-time in this combination.

I will buy a used truck or SUV that is capable of safely pulling the T-1950, but I do not want to go overboard. I do not have an unlimited budget and I am a single guy -- soon to be living on SS and a very small pension. So skip the King Ranch/Eddie Bauer F-250 type of suggestions.

In your suggestions, please tell me what mileage you get if what you tow is similar or somewhat heavier than the T-1950. Obvioulsy, not everyone can supply this piece of information. There will be times when I park the trailer and travel to the midwest to visit family and friends -- so decent MPG without towing will be really important.

And, "in for a penny in for a pound" as goes the old saying, suggestions on a brand and model of tow hitch and anti-sway bars would be greatly appreciated.

Also, I've read all the forums about formulas and such and that is way (weigh ) over my head, so I'm putting my trust in you folks.

Thank you from the bottom of my heart.

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Old 08-01-2011, 06:40 AM   #2
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Location: Pennsylvania
Posts: 380
SUN #149


Our experience with the 2007 Toyota PreRunner 4-door V6 automatic has been outstanding. We've hauled everything from:

==> the Que (about 3300 lbs loaded)
==> a Hi-Lo (about 4300 lbs loaded....but very low frontal area)
==>, our current Harmony (again, about 4300 lbs, but with a slide and the even higher than normal frontal area that causes).

We've discussed our mileage before (look back thru our prior posts), but our overall towing high gas mileage was about 14.5 with the HiLo, and we achieved 12.9 on a trip to Savannah, GA with the Harmony a few weeks ago.

Overall mileage without towing ranges from 17.5-23, depending on the terrain and AC use. We have about 56,000 on the TV, with no repair or maintenance problems. I am a somewhat conservative driver with something in tow....usually settling in at about 63 MPH....where our rig gets its best mileage.

If you don't need room for over 4 people aboard the truck, this Tacoma model may be a good overall option to consider.


p.s. -- This Tacoma has 6500 lb. tow capacity. Equalizer-type hitch and sway control, naturally.

Frank Yake - Sunlines 1982-2008
TT= 2016 Casita Liberty 17 SD (NASA42-B)
TV= 2017 Hyundai Santa Fe
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Old 08-02-2011, 03:17 PM   #3
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If I were you I would have atleast a 3/4 ton truck for the safety and security. It will handle all that weight easilly and you will feel more confident towing. You do not need to have a diesel for that coach a gas V8 will do fine. If you use a quality hitch like the Reese Dusl Cam it will be a breeze.

David & Mary Ann
2018 Ford F350 Dually 6.7L Powerstroke
2006 Sunline Solaris T-264-SR
2012 Palomino Bronco B1500LB
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Old 08-03-2011, 06:44 AM   #4
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I tow my T-2153 with a 2007 Toyota FJ Cruiser. My brother-n-law tows his Jayco Jayfeather 22 footer with a Toyota 4Runner. Neither of us have had any issues with these TVs. I'm not telling you to buy one, I'm just throwing it out there.

Terry & Marsha/Northeast Illinois
1987 T-2153, 2016 Ford F250 Super Duty 4x4
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Old 08-03-2011, 10:06 AM   #5
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SUN #763
T 1950

We have a 2005 T 1950 and our first TV was a 2000 Ford Expedition 4x2 with a 4.6 V8 and a 3.31 rear end and a tow rating of 5900 Lbs. At times it was a struggle for it to pull the T-1950 which weighs around 4000 Lbs. We moved up to a F 150 4x2 with a 5.4 V8 and 3.73 rear end and a tow rating of 9200 Lbs and I have had no problems pulling the trailer. I would rather have too much of a TV then too little and I have seen a lot of people towing with to small of a TV and they are just an accident waiting to happen because the TV is too small. Just my opinion.
Jim, Mary Jane and Lord Bentley (Beagle)
2005 Sunline T-1950 (Sold)
2006 Sunline T-2499 (Sold)
2014 Ford F150 Super Crew 4x4 Eco Boost
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Old 08-03-2011, 12:02 PM   #6
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I reckon it all depends on where you are going with it. If you are going to spend a lot of time in mountainous areas, then by all means you should have the best possible pull and stop combination. My TT weighs 3200 lb empty, and I only put about 400 lb of extras in the TT and TV combined. My max GVWR is 4500, and my TV can handle 6,000 easy. I used to haul my 3500 lb boat all over the place and that trailer had no brakes. I have seen some people haul their TTs down the highway at 75-80 mph and that's just stupid! I never haul my TT over 60 mph and then I am very aware of my surroundings.

Perhaps you should go by the recommendations from your dealer or a mechanic that you trust. You're gonna get more opinions here than you probably want anyhow.

Terry & Marsha/Northeast Illinois
1987 T-2153, 2016 Ford F250 Super Duty 4x4
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Old 08-03-2011, 02:47 PM   #7
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Our friends towed their 1950 with a toyota 4 runner and weren't happy with the combination. They bought a chevy 1500 gas truck and love the way it tows now.
Lance 1475 "Snoopy"
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2012 Arctic Fox 30U, SUNLINES - 2006 2753 "Tweety", 2007 QUE "QUEtSE", 2364, 1660
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Old 09-15-2011, 09:55 PM   #8
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In my humble opinion a half ton vehicle would be perfectly sufficient. Something like a half ton pick-up truck, Tahoe, Suburban, Expedition, Tundra, Titan, etc... I'd probably lean to something with a V-8 to supply the torque needed for mountain driving, but a properly equipped 6 cyninder should do OK. The new Ford PowerBoost V-6 is getting rave reviews. One of my buddies at work bought one about 3 months ago and swears it has the same power his 2004 V-8 F-150 had, and is getting well over 20 mpg in it.
We towed our 1996 T-2153 with a 2000 Jeep Cherokee Classic. It had the 4.0 strait 6, 4x4, and a towing package. I never had a problem with lack of power, or stopping the combination, in any terrain. I still can't figure why Chrysler stopped producing that awesome was a torque monster.
Lowell, Amanda, Marley, and Winnie
1996 T-2053 (First Sunline "Little One")
2001 T-295SR (Favorite Sunline)
2003 F-304SR (Last Sunline "The Big One")
1985 T-1650 (Current Sunline)
2004.5 Dodge Ram 3500 5.9 HO Cummins
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Old 09-19-2011, 08:04 PM   #9
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SUN #387

I'm towing a 2005 T2363 with a 2003 1/2 half ton Dodge short box and feel that a half ton would be adequate for you. I have the 4.7 litre engine which at times seems a little under powered especially at highway speeds. The Dodge appears to be a little thirtsy as I only get around 8.5 MPG. I feel that the 5.7 hemi is over kill but there isn't anything in between. My friend has the same trailer as I do and he is hauling it with a half ton Chevy with the 5.3 litre. He feels that engine size is just right and he gets much better gas mileage than I do.

Hope this helps.

Lorie & Doug

2005 T2363
2016 Dodge Ram
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Old 09-19-2011, 08:39 PM   #10
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My '98 Dodge Ram 1500 had the 5.2 (318 ci) which is a fine engine. It towed pretty well on the flats and small hills. But it fell short in the large hills and especially in the mountain roads of the Adirondacks. The problem was not the engine or the transmission. It was the rear end gearing which was 3.53. Taller gears would have been much better for towing. 3.73's at a minimum, but 3.90's or 4.10's would have been even sweeter. The engine would not have had to work so hard on the hills and mileage would have been much better.

My Cummins Turbo Diesel duallie has the 4.10's, and when we hauled the T-2453, the mileage was in the 14 plus range, even in the mountains. Because of the taller gears, the engine loafs much of the time and mileage improves. Pulling the 2453 (5,500 GVWR) and the bed of the truck full of stuff, the duallie just wasn't challenged. And I didn't worry about keeping the speeds down either.

But, fair to say, the duallie's mileage without the trailer is only in the 15+ range so its not the ideal daily driver.

In summary, there are some good reasons why the larger engines make sense for towing. Striking a good balance between towing and daily driving is the difficult part.

Now, pulling the Cougar is whole different game. But then the GVWR on that thing is just a hair under 12K.

'12 F250 4x4 Super Duty PowerStroke 6.7 diesel
2011 to present: '11 Cougar 326MKS
1999 to 2011: '99 Sunline T-2453
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Old 09-20-2011, 07:34 AM   #11
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Diane is an unknown quantity at this point
We towed our 1950 with a 2006 Expedition with the 6-speed tranmission and a tow capacity of 8600 lbs. with absolutely no problems towing through mountains. The Expedition many times had our Honda 3000is generator, at 137 pounds, in the cargo area and addtional gas cans were on the rear of the trailer in a cargo carrier attached via a hitch receiver.

Towing MPG was 9-11 and non-towing MPG was 15-17.
Diane & Marshall Lucas and
The Merrythought Poodles
Former 2007 Sunline T-1950
Former 2011 North Trail & 2014 Open Range
Current 2017 Grand Design Solitude 310GK
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Old 09-20-2011, 10:37 AM   #12
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With my F150 (7500# capacity) I don't even know the t-1950 is even back there.
Paul & Sheri - Upstate New York - SUN-0258
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2012 F150 F/X 4, 6cyl EcoBoost, Max Tow pkg
2013 Rockwood 8280WS 5th wheel
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Old 09-20-2011, 11:09 AM   #13
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In the latest Diesel Power Mag they have an 05 Jeep Liberty CRD (common rail diesel) that is getting anywhere between 19.1-34.1. They have logged 19k miles. Bought it used. That would be the best all around vehicle for towing or DD. A diesel is 30% more energy efficient than a gasser & can pull stumps out of your front yard besides!

Most 1/2 ton pickups should have diesels in them too. I just read an article in Populas Science that Chevy is going to put a diesel in the Cruze for 2013, it's supposed to get 50 MPG"s.


1983 Slide in Truck Camper. Everything still works, glad we bought quality!
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