Can we tow this?

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New member
Nov 8, 2006
We have a 2004 Ford F150 super cab, 5.4 liter V8 with towing package.  It has a 355 rear axel ratio.  GVWR is 7050 and towing  capacity is 8500 lbs. We are now looking at a 2007 Coachmen Chaparral Lite. It is a model 267RLS with a baseweight of 6315 lbs. The brochures all say these lite fifth wheels are 1/2 ton towable.  We live in Kentucky and will be RVing from here to the pacific.  Can we safely tow this?  Rockwood also has a new ultra lite fifth wheel model 8265SS that they say we can tow.  Your help is greatly appreciated.


Moderator Emeritus
Mar 3, 2005
Elkhart Lake, WI for the summer. Work at Road Amer
Welcome to the RV Forum!
The brochures all say these lite fifth wheels are 1/2 ton towable.
Glad you asked. I'm not the towing expert (we have several) but even to me, this combination sounds rather optimistic. Brochures are like salesmen; don't give them too much credence - especially if you're traveling the beautiful hills (o.k., mountains) of KY, and those little thingys out west towards the Pacific. I'm certain our resident-at-large experts will be along shortly ;)

Carl L

Moderator Emeritus
Mar 14, 2005
west Los Angeles
The Coachman 270RLS has a gross vehicle weight rating* of 9040 lbs.    It is too heavy for your F150 even without deduction of the 20% safety factor for traveling the mountain and Pacific west.

For your truck keep your trailer GVWR to 6800 lbs to pull those grades and altitudes in the west.

(*GVWR = base weight + carrying capacity.)

F-150 towable, eh?  Maybe -- in Kansas or in Florida.  Not in Utah or Colorado.

If you want F-150 towable Coachmen, look to their travel trailers, especially the Captiva line and the smaller Spirit of America line.  F-150 do not do all that well with fivers -- the units are just too heavy.

Gary RV_Wizard

Site Team
Feb 2, 2005
At my Silver Springs FL home
I agree with Carl - that is too much trailer for an F150 unless it is always empty when you tow it (and that ain't happening!). It will be severely stressed and you will be unhappy on every hill. And the payload cpacity (the weight the truck can carry, as opposed to tow) is on the light side for most fifth wheels. Fivers put a LOT of weight on the hitch, often 20% or more of the total trailer weight, and just about all of it falls on the rear axle. At 20% that would be 1300-1800 lbs  just for the trailer and the truck also has to carry your passengers and whatever gear is onboard and would likely exceed the truck GVWR and the rear axle GAWR.

To estimate your payload capacity, subtract your trucks curb weight from the truck GVWR and then subtract the weight of driver, passengers & gear carried on the truck. The remainder is your approximate payload (weight carrying capacity).

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