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Old 02-23-2021, 04:32 PM   #1
veysiyildiz
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Default Towing a vintage 19erd with 2004 BMW X5

I am totally new to towing and RV life. I have a 2004 X5, v6 3.0l, which according to specs has a towing capacity of 6000lbs, Horsepower 225 @ 5900 RPM, Torque 214 @ 3500 rpm. My mechanic told me that the hitch he can install on this car has specs of 7000lbs towing and 700lbs tongue weight.

19erd specs are as follows:
Dry Weight 3,090
Hitch Weight 370
Net Carrying Capacity 1,294

Although according to specs everything looks within limits I am worried about the tongue weight as it is hard to estimate what will be the tongue weight after loading the trailer.

This car has a value of ~$3k + cost of setting up the hitch with electricals. Is it a good idea to go down this way or consider an alternative pickup truck?
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Old 02-23-2021, 09:35 PM   #2
Chuck v
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Your BMW has the power needed to tow your rig, but that is not the only thing to be concerned about. The wheelbase of the X5 is 111 inches, which is quite a bit under the lower limit for this 23 ft 2 inch model of trailer, according to this:


... As a general rule of thumb, the first 110 inches of wheelbase allow for a 20-foot trailer. For each additional four inches of wheelbase length, you get one foot more in trailer length.


You need a wheelbase of about 120 inches or more to meet this recommendation.


Also, breaking abilities should be considered. You will of course use an electric brake controller with any tow vehicle...but the larger a margin of all the parameters you have the less stress on the machinery and the less sweat for the driver.


If I were towing a camp trailer again, I would do what I did with my 20 footer, upgrade my van to a half ton truck and upgrade the truck itself to air lifts on the rear and better disc brakes/pads all around. My truck has a wheelbase of about 140 inches.


Good luck whatever you decide...stay safe, and keep the rest of the folks on the road safe as well.


Chuck
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Old 02-26-2021, 01:02 PM   #3
Flower
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I think you would be under power and has been said your wheelbase is somewhat short. You also need to think of the wind load from the front of your camper. We had a Jeep liberty 210 hp 5,000 tow capacity and we were towing a smaller liter camper R-Pod 171 and the Jeep struggled to tow it.
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Old 02-28-2021, 05:38 PM   #4
VintageBob
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Default I Tow a Vintage 19RBS with a 2013 Volvo XC60 T6

Hi veysiyildiz,

I tow a VC 19RBS with my 20013 Volvo XC60 T6. My experience has been very good but all depends on the specifics. Note: Can Am RV in Ontario Canada is an expert in towing small and large trailers with European cars and SUVs check out their website.

My trailer: 23' from tongue to bumper - 3500# empty - 4200# loaded (with empty water and waste tanks). Tongue weight 370 MT 430 loaded

My towing setup: I have an aftermarket Curt Hitch that is rated for a Weight Distribution System. I upgraded my rear shocks to performance Bilstein's.
I use the Recurve R6 Weight Distributing hitch (WDH) with sway control. I have a Wireless Curt Echo brake controller.

My Car: The XC60 T6 has a turbocharged inline 6 that produces 300hp at 5600 rpm and 325 ftlbs of torque from 2100 rpm. I use CIPA extension mirrors. I put about 5-6 PSI extra in the rear tires. I always use "sport" mode while towing. My car weighs about 4200# about the same as the loaded trailer.

My Results: Power and torque are way more than adequate. Braking is good - adjusting the setting on the Echo Controller takes a bit of trial and error. Sport Mode is critical the engine shifting and revs in sport mode keep the engine from lugging and I have had no overheating issues. The WDH and the stiffer shocks keeps the rear end from drooping.

Respond of you have any specific questions I have not answered.
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Old 03-07-2021, 12:35 PM   #5
BryanL21
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Default GMC Acadia

Hi - I bought a 19CSK vintage last summer and a GMC Acadia with a 5000lb towing capacity to tow it. Despite working the numbers and getting advice from others who said it be fine, it turned out to be highly stressful on the vehicle and me! Perhaps the variable is the definition of ďfineĒ. Anyway, I decided to admit the error and traded the Acadia for a mid sized truck with a 7000 lb capacity last month. The camper is SO much easier to tow and much less stress all around. I canít tell you whatís best for you and YOUR stress tolerance but that has been my newby experience.
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Old 03-07-2021, 01:04 PM   #6
VintageBob
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Default I Tow a Vintage 19RBS with a 2013 Volvo XC60 T6

BryanL21,
Good Points. I do find any towing a bit stressful. My other experiences have been with a large 5th wheel (2500HD Silverado) and a 22' Cabin Cruiser (Ford Econoline Van). I think the ample HP and Torque (300hp/325 ft lbs) in my Volvo make it much less stressful. I find the most stressful aspect of towing is the constant vigil for potholes. I experienced two blow-outs on the 5th wheel and therefore am a bit paranoid about blow-out. At the time of purchase I upgraded the stock trailer tires to Goodyear Endurance one size up for some added peace of mind.
BTW, which mid-size PU did you get? I sure like the GMC Canyon. And, what engine and configuration (eg crew cab 4X4, short or long box etc)?
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Old 03-07-2021, 05:41 PM   #7
BryanL21
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I bought. 2018 Colorado, V6 and factory tow package. Love it!

I just am not ready to go to a full size truck for use as a daily driver.
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Old 03-07-2021, 05:43 PM   #8
BryanL21
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Sorry - itís a Z71 4x4, crew cab with 5 ft bed.
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Old 03-07-2021, 06:31 PM   #9
VintageBob
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BryanL21,
Sounds great - The 4x4 and Z71 package provide much stiffer suspension than regular, so that helps a lot with towing. My wife is leaning toward a larger trailer and I've often thought that the Colorado/Canyon would be a great option. Nice to hear it works well. I also don't like the idea of a full-size PU. The 2500HD we had was nice on the freeway, put tough around town and parking lots.
Happy Travels...
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Old 03-08-2021, 06:30 AM   #10
BryanL21
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The Colorado is also a very nice driving and comfortable vehicle generally. Take care.
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Old 03-08-2021, 01:08 PM   #11
Ldubs
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Chuck v View Post

If I were towing a camp trailer again, I would do what I did with my 20 footer, upgrade my van to a half ton truck and upgrade the truck itself to air lifts on the rear and better disc brakes/pads all around. My truck has a wheelbase of about 140 inches.


Chuck
ChuckV, I hope you don't mind a question about the air lifts. If using a WDH hitch, what additional benefit would there be from air lifts?
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Old 03-08-2021, 04:10 PM   #12
Chuck v
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Ldubs,


I put air lifts on both my van and my truck. When towing the 20 ft camp trailer I used a WDH of course, but I also had a cargo trailer and a flat bed tandem trailer for other uses. and neither of these had a WDH setup. So the lifts took some of the "squat" out of the rear when using those trailers, and even with the WDH on the camp trailer they kept the ride height just a bit higher (the WDH keeps the tow vehicle level in either case...)


The advantage of the air lifts over more conventional 'overload' springs is that the ride is less adversely effected when the vehicle is lightly loaded and you let some of the air out for that use configuration.


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Old 03-09-2021, 06:12 PM   #13
Ldubs
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Chuck v View Post
Ldubs,


I put air lifts on both my van and my truck. When towing the 20 ft camp trailer I used a WDH of course, but I also had a cargo trailer and a flat bed tandem trailer for other uses. and neither of these had a WDH setup. So the lifts took some of the "squat" out of the rear when using those trailers, and even with the WDH on the camp trailer they kept the ride height just a bit higher (the WDH keeps the tow vehicle level in either case...)


The advantage of the air lifts over more conventional 'overload' springs is that the ride is less adversely effected when the vehicle is lightly loaded and you let some of the air out for that use configuration.


Chuck

Huh, I thought I had circled back around yesterday to say thanks, but must have neglected to press a key or something. Anyway, thanks for the info. I spent a little time looking at what systems were available for my truck. What surprised me is the on board compressors actually cost as much if not more than the air lifts.
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Old 03-09-2021, 06:35 PM   #14
Chuck v
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Yes...I did not buy the on-board compressor due to its outrageous cost. It is not often you need to change the pressure, and not hard to use a small portable 12 volt rig like the one I take camping anyway...


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