View Full Version : Can I tow this?

05-04-2010, 11:50 AM
I have a 2004 Sunvoyager with an 8.1 Vortec engine and an Allison transmission.
Can I tow a chevy suburban 1500? on all four.

05-04-2010, 12:11 PM
You should be able to go to the Motorhome magazine site and check their free towing guide for the information you need. Have you checked the owner's manual for the 1500?

05-04-2010, 12:21 PM
I know I have to change the drive shaft in the Surburban due to the electronic four weel drive. I was hopeing to find someone that has experience with towing such a large vehicle.

05-08-2010, 11:22 AM
I found the brochure for your coach http://www.gulfstreamcoach.com/litarchive/2004/2004SunVoyagerweb.pdf

Towing capacity depends on model. Smaller models have higher towing capacity since they weigh less to start with.

Model 8329 and 8335 have the W20 Workhouse Chassis with GVWR of 20,700 lbs. All other standard models have the W22 Workhouse Chassis with GVWR of 22,000 lbs.

GVWR is the maximum weight of the MH itself. I call it the weight 'on the springs'. Most GS coaches weigh about 2000-1600 lbs less than GVWR when empty. The only way to know this number is to have you MH weighed on a commercial scale. If you will be towing such a heavy toad, I would strongly suggest you do this!

Now the fun part. The GCVW of all these Workshorse chassis' from this era is 26,000 lbs. That means the combined weight of your fully loaded MH + toad is 26,000 lbs.

With a W22 chassis, your options are limited. A full-size truck toad filled with gas weighs around 5500 lbs. You will only be able to tow a 5500 lb vehicle with a near empty MH. Even so, you would have to upgrade the hitch to a 6000 lb version. This is not really a viable option because the dry weight of the coach is just too high.

With a [i]smaller[/] W20 chassis, your have some hope. If your don't fully load your MH and keep the GVWR 'weight on the springs' to under 20,500 lbs, then you can tow a 5500 lb vehicle. One again you will have to add a 6000 lb hitch.

Practically speaking, only the newer Workhorse W24 chassis with GVWR of 24,000 lbs and GCVW of 30,000 lbs is suitable for towing trucks.

BTW: GVWR/GCVW is set by the chassis manufacturer. The MH manufacturer cannot change these limits. They can only improve things by building lighter MH's and adding stronger hitches where it makes sense. GS is about the same as everyone else in this regard.

Sorry to break the potentially bad news to you.

05-08-2010, 11:58 AM
Thank you for all the information. It is well appreciated.

J79 Engine
08-24-2011, 08:03 AM
Well I hope I did not make a mistake but I just purchased a 2012 GMC Terrain SLT2 AWD which I plan to add as a 4 wheel toad behind my 2005 SunVoyager 38ft powered by a 8.1 workhorse and a Allison transmission. The curb weight is 3,500 which is what I gaged it on. I figured we could fudge the max weight a little as long as I stayed under the hitch weight of 5K. If it gets too heavy going through the mountains I can always get my wife to push or maybe to un hitch and drive through the mountains. However in reality I think as long as I keep the water level and cargo level down we should be ok. The RPM gage and temperature gage will be a good indication if I'm running heavy. I'm having the dealer hook everything up as he has a 35 year experience guy and told me he can run the brakes through the cars electonic system so I won't need a brake buddy installed and he will set it up so all I need to do is place the SUV in neutral and pull one fuse which he will mark and of course connect the tow bar. They told me it would be $3-3500 but how much is road safety and peace of mind worth when your travelling and know all was done right! I met one guy out while camping that told me he only has a tow brace on and magnetic brake lights for when he travels at night. He has a broken brake buddy he places on the floor in case he gets in an accident so he can say he had it hooked up but it must have failed...what a short with a big risk to other prople