Can I comfortably tow this?

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New member
Dec 29, 2005
Hi all,

My wife and I are newbies here, but very motivated to get a new trailer this year.  I've tried searching here, google, etc and I can't find exactly what I'm looking for.

I have a new 2005 Nissan Pathfinder which is rated to 6000lbs towing.  We are currently looking at a few different trailers and these have caught our eye:

KZ Frontier/Outdoorsman - 2101QS-F
  - from the specs the Dry Weight is 4100, GVWR is 5512.

*** knowing that we would invariably not be loaded to the gills with stuff for a trip, would we be able to comfortably tow this trailer with my vehicle?

Also, it appears that the construction of the frontier is an Plywood/MDF(composite) mix.  Is that a concern from a longevity perspective?

Another option is the Keystone Outback "21RS"
  - from the specs dry weight is 3990, cc - 1510
  - same questions

thanks for any help or suggestions on other options,
Pull yes, comfortably, maybe.

We like to give a bit of head room on the rating:  10% if you tow in the east, 15-20% if you tow in the mountain west and Pacific Coast.    Two ways to come at it.  Discounting the 6000 lbs tow rating 10% gives you 5400 lbs.  15% gives you 5100 lbs.  You will probably dump 500-1000# of garbage in the trailer  -- food, gear, water, clothing.    You are pushing things if you travel in the west.  Maybe not in the east.
You are probably OK, assuming you load the trailer to no more than about 5000 lb total.  However, for real "comfort" I would  suggest a lighter trailer, one that runs around 3200-3500 dry.

Remember, though, the 6000 lb max towing assumes an empty truck. You must subtract any gear and passengers in the Pathfinder from the total towing capacity.  And the 6000 lbs is the highest tow rating for a Pathfinder - your particular configuration may be less.  Make sure your combination of body style, engine, transmission, rear axle and accessories is indeed a full 6000 lbs. You may find it is a bit less, maybe 5200-5500.  That would make your tow marginal at best.
thankyou for the info, and great point on the vehicle load.  I would imagine many people do not count that into the equation.

Can you recommend any brands/models with specs in the 3200-3500 dry range?  We seem to be hitting the 4000 lb barrier with many that we've looked at.

bradk said:
*** knowing that we would invariably not be loaded to the gills with stuff for a trip, would we be able to comfortably tow this trailer with my vehicle?


FWIW, Brad, I went thru that scenario thinking I could pull a light trailer w/an SUV. One suggestion I would make is to tell each dealer that you work with that you "must" be able to actully pull the trailer with "your" vehicle before purchase. None of the dealers I worked with refused my request. I had purchaed a distribution hitch and was ready to tow as I chatted with each dealer. Most dealers went with me, whereas one told me to pull it all day if I wanted to solo.

In my case, I pulled the trailer to Auburn, CA in the foothills from Sacramento. Unfortunately, I should have pulled it further. My first trip with the trailer after purchase was to Reno over Donner Summit -- and that caused the SUV to overheat. To make a long story short, I wound up trading the SUV in on a GMC pickup.

If I were in your position, I would take the advice I read here and go with a much lighter trailer -- or, get a bigger truck. Otherwise, when you take that first 5-6 percent grade -- you are going to go into buyers remorse, for sure.  :(

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