My wife and I are ready to purchase a used vehicle. The main thing we
want is an SUV with a third row of seats. We want an SUV because we will be
doing some towing and most SUV's have what it takes. We will be towing a
travel trailer weighing approximately 7100 pounds wet. We will only be
towing on short trips to go camping. They may get longer, but right now
will mainly be kept to a few 100 miles or so. Here is a list of what I know
that comes with three rows of seats. I would like a list of what I may have
missed, what years the vehicles started having three rows of seats in and
what might be good buys. We kind of have our eyes out for the Land Cruisers,
because they are smaller then the rest and still have the power.
Toyota Land Cruiser
Thanks for any help provided
You need to look at the towing capcity too.
The Honda Pilot has 3rd row seating, but only 4500 lb towing capcity.
The GMC Yukon has 3rd row seating and over 8000 lb towing capcity.
The Hummer H1 I think meets your specs, too.
IF I WERE YOU I WOULD BUY A SUBURBAN BECAUSE WE HAVE ONE AND IT IS VERY
COMFORTABLE AND IT COULD TOW A LOT OF WEIGHT AND LOOKS NICE AND THE RIDE
QUALITY IS EXCELLENT WELL DEPENDING ON HOW MUCH MONEY YOU ARE WILLING TO
SPEND I WOULD GET A 4*4 BUT IF U GET A 4*2 MAKE SURE YOU GET THE STABILITY
TRACK ANOTHER THING IS IT COULD SMOKE ALOT OF THE SUVS ON YOUR LIST CONSUMER
REPORTS TESTED IT AND IT RAN 0-60 IN ONLY 7.6 SECONDS ON ONLY 8 CYLINDERS
UNLIKE THE 0-60 IN 10+ SECONDS FOR THE V10 (10 CYLINDERS) OR THE EXPEDITION
(TO SMALL) OR EXCURSION (TO BIG) ,DURANGO (UGLY) I WOULD NARROW IT DOWN TO
SUBURBAN (YES) OR THE LAND CRUISER (DAMN)
Why do you say the Expedition is too small? If you only occasionally need to
haul 8 people, the Expedition has plenty of seating room. If you need to take
long trips with 8 people and need lots of cargo room, then the Excursion is far
better than the Suburban. If seems to me that the Suburban is just the wrong
size - too big if you don't need 8 seats for long trips and too small if you do.
I suppose if you are drag racing, then the Suburban with the big gas V-8 is a
good truck to own, but if you are towing something heavy, the Excursion with the
PSD is far better. BTW, the Excursion with the V-10 made it to 60 in 9.7 seconds
in the Consumer Reports tests and the Suburban took 8.6 seconds despite being
the light duty model. The Land Cruiser is a an old design with a ridiculously
high price. It has no advantages compared to any of the bigger US designed SUVs
that it competes with. It is testament to the loyalty (or gullibility) of Toyota
owners that they can give them away. If I was in Africa, the Land Crusier would
be a good choice, but in the US it is a non-starter. Even the mediocre Sequoia
is a better choice here.
It's not the people. It's the trailer. A 7000 lb travel trailer is in
the 26' - 29' range. A long trailer behind a short wheelbase towcar down
a mountain grade or in gusty winds is a guaranteed "E" ride.
It sounds like you already have the trailer. Rather than focusing on
brand names, with a trailer that size your focus needs to be GVWR and GCWR.
It's really scary how many people exceed their weight ratios with either
indifference or ignorance.
My dad has a Durango with a 5.9L engine and 3.92 axle ratio, it won't
tow the weight you want to tow. He's actually out as I type looking
at pickups to tow his 28 foot trailer, to add to the stable, not
replace any vehicle completely. He's not comfortable towing the
trailer in the mtns. with his current rig but he loves the truck. If
you're looking at the 2004 Durango, not the first-gen one, it may be
capable. Of the trucks you listed, the Suburban, Excursion and
Expedition may tow the load you want, with a 3/4 ton Suburban, not a
1/2 ton. As others said, look at tow capacity, not just number of
seating rows, and to add to the list of 3-row SUVs that can't handle
that load, the Buick Rondezvous.
Suburban or Excursion. You need a vehicle of substantial weight to pull a
trailer of substantial weight on a regular basis in order to avoid problems.
It's not only a wear issue, but a safety issue. You can put all the power
you want in a small-midsize SUV, but if things get squirly while pulling
that trailer the power is not going to do you any good.
Assuming that 3 rows of seats means you're going to be taking passengers
(family perhaps?) on these trips, look VERY closely at the safety factor.
In other words, get a truck that is fully capable of pulling that trailer.
Like others said, you're going to want a vehicle with bulk as well as power.
With that large of a crew, I'd go for a Suburban. I've owned mostly
Toyota's all my life, but my father is a big GM fan. He's very meticulous
with his maintenance and has had very good luck with GM full size trucks.
Heck - for what a LandCruiser costs nowadays, you can buy 2 suburbans, and
just keep one as a spare if the other one breaks down ;-)
Don't forget, there are different varieties of Suburbans, some of which
are heavier duty (with greater towing capacity) than others. There are
also full size passenger vans built on similar truck chassis that can
handle heavy towing, but have more interior room (these also come in
different varieties, some with more towing capacity than others).
http://www.edmunds.com lists towing capacities and other information
for various vehicles.
Timothy J. Lee
Forget the SUV. Get a 1969 Chevrolet Kingswood station wagon. 454,
M-22, Moser 12 bolt. Paint it two-tone, white top and big-chunk metal
flake green. Dog-dishes and steelies, Flowmonsters and green-tinted
glass. Trade your current trailer on one of those big silver AirStreams.
Everytime you pull up to a stoplight, alternate between quoting Brady
Bunch episodes and screaming that you're "Oh, oh, oh, oh, stayin alive!
Sorry for the smartass post, but the idea hit me and wouldn't go away.
In fact, where'd I put my AutoTrader...
It sounds like you're not going to tow very often. You might consider
buying a regular passenger vehicle (such as a minivan) and then
renting a big SUV for the camping trips. You'd save a lot on gas, the
purchase price will be lower for a minivan than for a big SUV, and
you'd avoid the problems (such as safety problems like rollover) that
are common to SUVs.
Suggest you go to library and look at April issues of Consumer
Reports, which will give you brief reviews of almost all passenger
vehicles on the US market, reliability ratings, and references to full
reviews in CR. Also look at the latest issue of CR for the index at
the back to see if there are any reviews since April that could be
useful to you.
But overall, if you only need an SUV for occasional use, I suggest you
buy a vehicle (such as a minivan) that will haul people, groceries,
etc. (which is what I assume you need to do most of the time), and
then rent a big SUV only when you need it. Then you won't have to drag
the big SUV around all the time and you'll avoid the typical SUV
Renting would be fine if there weren't needs such as a brake
controller, trailer wiring and a properly set-up hitch/weight
distribution. Some of this takes some time to get set up right, and
how many rental SUVs do you see with trailer hitches and complete
wiring on them? Certainly not ones from Hertz or Enterprise unless
the hitch is part of the bumper as in the Trailblazers. There's the
matter of mounting the brake controller, getting the proper hitch
height, setting the weight distribution properly. Certainly NOT all
tasks I want to do EVERY time I go for a camping trip. Once you get
the hitch height and weight distribution figured for one vehicle, it
will take minutes to hook the trailer to the vehicle, and there's NO
gaurantee you'll get the same truck as a rental. I'm SURE rental
companies wouldn't be too pleased with you drilling holes, messing
with the wiring, etc., etc in their vehicle. I say drilling holes
because, in order to mount a brake controller, it should be SOLID,
unable to move, and NOT resting on the floor or dash to move anywhere
it pleases, it should be in easy reach of the driver to hit the manual
activation switch in case of trailer sway or an emergency situation.
On 14 Oct 2003 09:45:02 -0700, email@example.com (Neil) wrote:
Which brings to mind a point to consider. Unless there has been some
recent engineering breakthrough, it is my understanding that electric
brake controllers and ABS are incompatible. I believe trailer surge
brakes are required when towing with an ABS vehicle.
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