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Informal trailering survey

Drew Dowdell

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H'mmmmm 🤔

What auto's are overloaded with a bigger trailer than their tiny engine can handle for a $100?

What Auto's have a big American V8 and are towing itty bitty trailers for $200?

What Auto is overloaded and sagging in the butt needing a load leveling system from Germany for $300?

What kinds of things are trailered by people with SUVs for $400?


Man we could have such fun games while Drew is driving! :P 

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Okay. So I’m checked into my hotel in Huntsville Al.

As I was heading south through West Virginia I was amazed by the number of huge gooseneck camper trailers on the interstate. And initially they all seemed to be being pulled by the big Rams.  And all of the pull vehicles looked close to brand new. So I started counting. 

But I didn’t want to count all goosenecks, working goosenecks are a common thing. I was curious about what people are buying to use for purely recreational activities. All the truck companies talk about how they make the best work truck, but what do people buy for play?

 So here’s what the totals represent. It had to be a camper or a very large boat that would be at the top end for a 150/1500 series. If the camper wasn’t a gooseneck, it had to be so big the next step up was gooseneck. I didn’t count any toy trailers since it’s impossible to tell if it has a classic car in it or a bunch of tools. So, biggest campers possible or biggest boats.

One of the things that caught my attention was initially there were no Fords. It was dominated by Ram the entire time and then Chevy and GMC in the mix at about the ratio you’d expect.

The bright green Porsche Cayenne was interesting, it was pulling a huge Airstream. It has a 7,700 lbs tow rating, so most 150/1500 trucks would have handled it, but it definitely was an interesting way for the owner to get the most combined bang for the most combined bucks. Airstreams are physically big but light for their size, and modern ones are loaded with luxury touches. Clearly this person was going glamping instead of camping.

The poor Nissan was overloaded and had its nose pointing to the sky. It wasn’t even the XD version.

Each of Ford, Chevy, and GMC fielded one entry each of their biggest SUVs pulling a land barge.

Both Toyotas were pulling big boats. Again, clearly in the 150/1500 range but pushing the upper end of their capabilities.

While most of the brands were recent models, there was one early 90s Ford F-250/350 dually in pristine condition doing its thing with a gooseneck camper. There was also a similar vintage Dodge Ram 2500 barely holding it together.

People buy these huge trailers to be comfortable when camping and it’s interesting that they’re also picking a Ram to go with it in large numbers.*

*Unofficial and completely unscientific survey

  • Agree 3
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Friends of mine that are into camping have a small--around 20 foot travel trailer (bumper tow, not a fifth wheel) and they pull it with an early '00s Ford F350 Super Duty.   They recently bought a Hyundai Palisade, it could probably pull it.   They also recently bought a fixer-upper 1981 Bluebird Wanderlodge motorhome, around 30 foot.

I grew up camping in motorhomes, I think I'd probably go for a small motorhome if I ever got into RVing again...rather drive something than tow a trailer. 

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