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Whats pulling your RPod

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Dastrom View Drop Down

Joined: 23 Jun 2017
Location: redding calif
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Dastrom Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 25 Sep 2017 at 5:03pm
I'm pulling my Rpod 180 with my Toyota Tacoma 2010 V6 4.0 liter. It pulls it just fine thru all the mountain passes here in far Northern California. The Tacoma has a 6500 tow capacity!
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jeremyrperry View Drop Down

Joined: 23 Jan 2018
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote jeremyrperry Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 24 Jan 2018 at 7:15pm
I have a 2015 X3 diesel that tows my 2017 RP-171.

My X3 has a 3,500lb towing capacity, and I know there's a lot of discussion on this site on if TV's with the same tow capacity can adequately pull an R-Pod.  I've personally had zero issues so far in my several tows that have all included segments with 6%+ grades.  When towing, I know there's a load behind me, but my TV handles it rather well.  Of course not every TV with a similar tow ratings is going to handle towing the same as my X3 does, and I KNOW the diesel makes a big difference.  But it is possible to find the compact to mid-size truck or SUV that does reasonably well at pulling an R-Pod while still giving great non-towing MPG.

Here is my beta so far:
  • Average tow MPG is 17-18 MPG, compared to 34+ highway MPG when unloaded.  So the near 50% drop is pretty par for course, but I'm not complaining about either number.
  • I keep the speed to no more than 65 MPH, and only get to that speed on rural freeways when there isn't a lot of cross-winds.  My X3 is capable of doing more, but fuel economy plummets after that point and I don't like how winds start affecting my setup at higher speeds, plus the ability to stop relatively safely if needed.  I only exceed 65 if I need to pass.
  • I have an 8 speed transmission, with gears 7 and 8 being overdrive.  I use the X3's sport mode when towing, which stiffens the suspension, changes the shift points, and keeps the transmission in a lower gear.  This means no overdrive save for pretty flat highways, and only gear 7 can be used when overdrive is possible.  This actually works out better since I don't have to put the pedal down and the transmission doesn't gear hunt as much.  
  • Curves taken at no more than 5 MPH over the recommended speed.
  • I can do 55-60 MPH up the steeper grades, save of course for curvy sections that require me to slow down.   This uphill speed accounts for modest amounts of gear, some fresh water, and even a couple of passengers.  Transmission will drop down to gear 5 or 4 depending on how steep the climb is.
  • I have a Prodigy brake controller, WDH, and sway control bars.  I wouldn't even attempt to tow the R-Pod using my TV without them.

Yes, I could have bought a more capable tow vehicle, but such a vehicle wouldn't have done much better on the tow MPG, and all but certainly wouldn't have touched my non-towing MPG and overall maneuverability in urban areas.  I reserve the option to in the future, but only if I truly need more hauling and towing capability.

You can see a picture of my setup plus a little more here:  http://www.rpodnation.com/topic4669_post44017.html#44017
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