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  • DD Tow vehicle? Looking for real world suggestions/feedback

    Picked up an open steel trailer finally to haul the 240 to track days. I'm looking to get rid of my current daily too and since CT taxes and insurance are killer I'm looking for a unicorn all-in-one daily and tow vehicle.

    Shooting for a used vehicle 2010 and up, somewhere $35K and below. Anything older, especially American cars have pile of junk interiors...and living in the northeast I'm a fan of creature comforts like heated seats. I know it sounds extremely crazy, but ideally I want something with good gas mileage as long as it's economical.

    I have it very loosely 'narrowed' down to 2 that I'm looking at:

    A. 2011+ Jeep Grand Cherokee Overland. Aside from 2008, unfortunately Jeep is just releasing the diesel for 2014 which at $55K is still too expensive, so we're looking at the gas V8--so it's horrible on gas (at 15mpg combined) and I'm sure gas prices aren't going to get any better. The GC has less towing capacity (~6400lbs) than the Touareg (7700lbs). I'm a little concerned about quality as it seems to be rated below average.

    B. 2011+ Touareg TDI. In the latest gen they removed air suspension, it's more costly, but comes closer to evening out in gas mileage as it gets 22mpg combined. (5-6 years breakeven @ 15K miles a year), In general, price is about $10K more than the Jeep GC, but it's also worth about $10K more at resale. Quality seems to be average, but maintenance might be just a little more expensive.

    C. 2010+ Tahoe, but I don't know if I want something that big. I really don't haul alot of crap.

    Any other recommendations? I don't really want/need a gigantic diesel that can tow enough to pull the earth out of it's orbit and shoot black smoke out of it's 8" smoke stacks.
    97 Kouki SR 240

  • #2
    I bought a 2006 Grand Cherokee for my tow vehicle / daily. The interior isn't the greatest nor the mileage but it had no problems towing a uhual car trailer with my buddies 05 Legacy GT. Does great moving people comfortably and getting groceries / parts.

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    • #3
      If it were me I'd go with the Tahoe. Chevy can do a truck based SUV right, and the newer ones don't skimp on creature comforts.

      Jeeps? I know nothing about them, esp the newer ones.

      VW... GERMAN DOWNWARD SPIRAL OF ELECTRONIC DEATH IN 3 YEARS. I'm sure it seems nice on paper where everything works in theory.

      I got a 2003 suburban (1/2 ton 5.3 2wd flavor) as a DD / tow vehicle. Mostly because the mileage difference to a smaller something that had at least a 5k lbs towing capacity seemed negligible. I have a short commute so the 12 towing / 14 city / 18 highway MPG on regular doesn't bother me. Lets not forget AC that can freeze a small house on the hottest summer day. Long wheel base doesn't hurt MPG too bad, and makes towing even easier.
      '95 240sx

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      • #4
        I've been eyeing awd honda pilots.... they get decent gas mileage and can tow 5000 lbs...
        '89 RX-7 TurboII - SSM - Widebody - Ford 8.8 IRS - giant wing - Megasquirt3
        '89 Corolla SR5 - SMF - 4A-GE 20 Valve 6 speed swap - Megasquirt-2
        '01 Impreza 2.5RS - Rallycross Stock AWD / Daily
        '81 BMW R65

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        • #5
          Originally posted by eage8 View Post
          I've been eyeing awd honda pilots.... they get decent gas mileage and can tow 5000 lbs...
          I saw one towing an open steel bed trailer and s2000, the pilot was nearly tucking the rear tires....

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          • #6
            I have an 08 highlander and a 13 cayenne diesel. both can tow an open trailer but i've only used the highlander for towing so far. the highlander isn't great for towing but can get the job done, while keeping about 15 mpg towing and averaging 19 on 87 octane. otherwise it's a toyota. not much else needs to be said in terms of reliability and maintenance. it's a comfy suv with one up on say the 4R cuz it's not a truck platform. a little cushier for DD IMO. Looks a lot less masculine and rugged for sure though.

            from what i've heard, the touar tdi is supposed to be the little bro of the CD. not quite as attractive or sporty but still has the drivetrain (is the touar 8 speed?). great for towing and has a good amount of luxury. my wife and i love our CD, but i can see getting reamed for out of warranty breaks or failures by porsche... similar but to a lesser extent hopefully in the vw. i've done an oil change myself and it's easy. $360 from the stealership, no thanks.

            edit: google tells me the touar also has the 8speed trans. you should get mid to high 20s combined on it. i get just under 28 average every tank, and the CD is rated at 19/29.. a lot like the touar. ~650 miles for a full tank.
            Last edited by gawdzilla; 07-23-2013, 01:02 PM.

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            • #7
              Originally posted by Scores240 View Post
              I saw one towing an open steel bed trailer and s2000, the pilot was nearly tucking the rear tires....
              s2000 CR? I probably know that guy I have yet to ask him how well it actually works, but he tows around with it a good amount.
              '89 RX-7 TurboII - SSM - Widebody - Ford 8.8 IRS - giant wing - Megasquirt3
              '89 Corolla SR5 - SMF - 4A-GE 20 Valve 6 speed swap - Megasquirt-2
              '01 Impreza 2.5RS - Rallycross Stock AWD / Daily
              '81 BMW R65

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              • #8
                I think the Pilot has a 4500lb towing capacity and I'd be maxing that out. I have two friends with Pilots but the interior is not crazy impressive. I've heard some people say you should only go up to 80% of the max towing capacity. I'm sure there's some safety room in the numbers they project, but for repair purposes I'd like to play it safe. hah

                Yeah, the t-reg tdi is an 8 speed with a cooler and is essentially the Cayenne diesel.
                97 Kouki SR 240

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                • #9
                  I just picked up a Nissan Titan for this same purpose. I was lucky to find a 2005 with only 47k miles for a good price in excellent shape. I towed an RX-7 about 100 miles two weeks ago and got 16 MPG between the trip down with the empty trailer and the trip back. Truck never felt like it was struggling.

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                  • #10
                    Originally posted by eage8 View Post
                    s2000 CR? I probably know that guy I have yet to ask him how well it actually works, but he tows around with it a good amount.
                    Was black, probably a CR. Saw it during a philly SCCA autocross at Warminster community park.

                    Sent from my HTC One using Tapatalk 2

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                    • #11
                      I just picked up a 4th gen 4Runner for this task to replace the RSX. I really liked the RSX for what it was, but it definitely felt a bit frantic for a DD. The manual never bothered me, in fact I like that, but it was just not a relaxing car to drive home after a long day.

                      IMO, I'm not a huge fan of any of those options.

                      The Jeep is a Chrysler product that is going to be unreliable a couple of years after you buy it on average.

                      The Touareg is a VW - which is even worse. Basically the German equivalent of a Chrysler product. Nice interior, but do you want to be tossing

                      Tahoe - pretty poor gas mileage, and a really large SUV - both of which you don't seem to really want.


                      I'm averaging just over 22 mpg so far in my 4Runner. Which on 87 is barely more expensive than the RSX was on 93 (I tried out 87 a couple of times when the split between 87 > 93 was like 70-80 cents/gallon - it hated it).

                      I just need to get the Bilstein 5100's on it this weekend, then order the aftermarket hitch receiver, and it'll have a tow rating of 6300 lbs which is more than enough for a <2500 lb S13 on an open steel trailer. My problem is just finding a reasonably priced storage place for the trailer.


                      IMO, out of all those choices, I'd go with a new 4Runner for mid-30's. It'll hold it's value better than any of the above, and it's new, and can tow that just fine.



                      Honda Pilot - just bought my wife a 2013 Pilot. Great DD SUV, but I wouldn't tow anything with it. Probably has enough power, but I would not trust the trans, and the suspension has to be way too soft for any sort of reasonable tongue weight.

                      Same thing with a Highlander. The trans on those car based SUVs is just not going to hold up to towing that sort of load for very long, as they're typically out of a sedan, and designed around that (Camry/Accord).
                      '18 Chevrolet Volt - Electric fun hatch for DD duty!


                      DefSport Koni Sleeve and Spring Perch Buy!!!
                      http://www.nissanroadracing.com/showthread.php?t=5902

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                      • #12
                        +1 on he Tahoe. Just replaced my 05 Tahoe. That thing was pretty much bullet proof, had a nice interior and was comfy on long trips. We went with a Land Rover LR. Rode a bit better than the Jeep GC which was our second choice.

                        Incidentally you could also look at American diesel pickups from a few years ago. The interiors are nice, they easily tow in style and get decent gas mileage, especially when tuned/deleted.

                        My 12 Dodge Ram Laramie getting about 24 mpg since deleted and tuned, is very comfy on long trips and towed my 240, trailer and associated life junk with no power issues from Cali to mountain Colorado in the dead of winter no problem, through 3 huge mountain ranges.

                        Good luck!

                        Ch

                        Sent using XT912 M

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                        • #13
                          My buddy has the same gen Tahoe. It's extremely basic.

                          I compare it to the new gen Tahoe, and I swear to crap all they did was change a few of the body panels. Everything looks and sounds exactly the same--steering column shifter, motor sound, the seats, the 'hey we found a box radio we can just slide into the dash'. The interior still looks like trash--I can't stand those cheap blue LED's that looked like they still pulled them out of a bin they've been using since the early 80's.

                          Originally posted by a250gpguy View Post
                          Incidentally you could also look at American diesel pickups from a few years ago. The interiors are nice, they easily tow in style and get decent gas mileage, especially when tuned/deleted.
                          I might start looking into that kind of stuff too. One of my buddies swears by Duramax. I really just didn't like the idea of daily'ing with a giant bed behind me I'm never going to use all that much.

                          Good stuff so far. I'm still an indecisive idiot though lol, I hate sacrifices
                          97 Kouki SR 240

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                          • #14
                            One thing I've noticed about full sized SUV's and Pickups... People say they won't need a full sized SUV / pickup that much till they own one.
                            '95 240sx

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                            • #15
                              Originally posted by Sleepy_Steve View Post
                              One thing I've noticed about full sized SUV's and Pickups... People say they won't need a full sized SUV / pickup that much till they own one.
                              I never thought I really needed a truck, but I wanted one for just some random stuff. Now that I have one, I'm far beyond happy I have it... Don't think I'll ever go back to DDing a car. I still probably don't need a truck, but it's a great snow troll 4wd ftw

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