Looking at a new tow vehicle

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swallman

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Dec 22, 2018
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We currently tow a 17' hybrid travel trailer, GVWR of 3760.  Unloaded it says 2515 (which doesn't include any water or propane).  Normally it's just my wife and I traveling and I know we don't come anywhere near 3760 fully loaded (it's not that big of a camper). 

Our tow vehicle is a 2008 Jeep Liberty, rated for 5000# and it has been OK for towing for the most part.  We did end up having to put a new transmission in it this fall but it had been making an odd noise for awhile even before we started towing so don't think it was simply towing that killed it (but it probably didn't help LOL).

Some other misc. issues with the Jeep is it's a bit narrow so hard to see around the camper (even with tow mirrors), and the shorter wheelbase definitely made it feel like you're towing something...

Anyways, it's time for an upgrade to our tow vehicle and we've sort of narrowed it down to either a Honda Pilot (2016 or newer), Acura MDX (2014 or newer), or a Jeep Grand Cherokee (2014 or newer)...

The Honda and MDX are basically similar platforms, both rated at 5000#.  With the Jeep we'd possibly consider the V8 which would give us nice pickup and towing up to 7200#.

Just wondering what other people's thoughts are?  We really like Honda/Acura because of the reliability, but not sure if the Jeep would be better?

I've been researching all the vehicles for awhile now so just thought I'd see what this community thinks...
 

SpencerPJ

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I have a friend who tows a decent size pop-up with his Pilot, he is really pleased with it.  I'd go that way, just because I'm a Honda fan (and I drive a YukonXL), personally I'm not a fan of Jeeps, had one for a high school kid, always was a money pit, dropped a transmission in hers as well, and many other items.  I guess you either love them or not. I guess if money was not an object, I'd probably consider the Acura and upgrade over Pilot.  Just my 2 cents. 
 

grashley

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May 7, 2015
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Welcome to the Forum!

I agree with Spencer.  I am also a Honda fan.  Since you have clearly shared your towing needs, I believe either option will work well.  I doubt a 3000# trailer with 300 - 400 lb hitch wt and only two passengers would overload any choice.

Thank you for asking!
 

IBTripping

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Sep 19, 2018
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The Grand Cherokee (V8) has a heavier tow rating, but it will use more fuel. But, whatever you decide, I suggest you try to get a vehicle with a factory installed towing package. If that isn't an option, you might consider adding a transmission cooler to preserve the tanny and a heavy duty radiator to ensure the engine runs as cool as possible. Good luck finding a TV that works well for you.
 

Gary RV_Wizard

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The Jeep isn't any better unless you anticipate needing the greater tow capacity in the future.  If you do not, then the Honda/Acura is a better choice for reliability and probably fuel economy too.  However, doesn't the Honda Pilot max out at 4500 lbs towing?

Grand Cherokees can have a tow rating between 6200 and 7400, depending on the configuration.

Have you considered the Nissan Armada (V8) and Pathfinder?  oyota Highlander?  Volkswagon Touareg?  All very capable SUVs.  The Armada and the Touareg has 7000+ tow ratings.
 

swallman

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Dec 22, 2018
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Gary RV_Wizard said:
The Jeep isn't any better unless you anticipate needing the greater tow capacity in the future.  If you do not, then the Honda/Acura is a better choice for reliability and probably fuel economy too.  However, doesn't the Honda Pilot max out at 4500 lbs towing?

Grand Cherokees can have a tow rating between 6200 and 7400, depending on the configuration.

Have you considered the Nissan Armada (V8) and Pathfinder?  oyota Highlander?  Volkswagon Touareg?  All very capable SUVs.  The Armada and the Touareg has 7000+ tow ratings.

The new generation (2016-) of the Pilot maxes out at 5000# now.

I've looked at the Touareg - expensive to repair/maintain...briefly considered the Highlander but never have been a fan of that model...

The Nissan tend to be dated (IMHO)...so far I'm leaning towards the Pilot/Acura
 

swallman

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Dec 22, 2018
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IBTripping said:
The Grand Cherokee (V8) has a heavier tow rating, but it will use more fuel. But, whatever you decide, I suggest you try to get a vehicle with a factory installed towing package. If that isn't an option, you might consider adding a transmission cooler to preserve the tanny and a heavy duty radiator to ensure the engine runs as cool as possible. Good luck finding a TV that works well for you.

Neither the Honda or Acura come with a factory hitch - they are dealer installed but do include a transmission cooler as part of the install.  One advantage of being either of those used and without the hitch is you know they've never towed anything.
 

Delaware RV

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Sep 24, 2018
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18
The Toyota 4Runner has a 5000# tow rating too, and bit bit nicer design then the Highlander.  Also, did you think about the small pickup trucks (Colorado, new Ranger, Tacoma, etc)? you can put a cap on the bed and get better towing experience. 
 
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