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Discussion Starter #1
I've seen the specs for the hybrid, and am wondering if people here have towed much near the stated max ratings. I have a 1500 pound boat with 177 pound tongue weight. Most of my driving would be 40 mi or less trips to the lake, with a few 400 mi round trips at most a couple of times a summer.
Just didn't know how taxed the hybrid would actually be near it's stated load rating.

I assume it will have the oomph to get the boat out of steep ramps... but i suppose i shouldn't take that for granted either.
 

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You'll prolly be fine as long as the trailer has brakes, unbraked max tow rating is 1000lbs, UK hybrids have a much higher tow rating.


Confirm that the gross trailer weight, gross combination weight, gross

vehicle weight, gross axle weight and tongue weight are all within the

limits.

GCWR*

6710 lb. (3045 kg)

TWR*

1750 lb. (795 kg)

Unbraked TWR*

1000 lb. (450 kg)


http://www.rav4world.com/forums/109...-rav4-hybrid-towing-capacity.html#post2047441
 

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It won't be any more "taxed" than the gas powered Rav4. It does in fact have more power not less. The real question is whether a Rav4 is appropriate for towing your boat, which is one you should decide for yourself.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
That 1000 lb, unbraked would be the deal killer. boat trailer doesn't have brakes (and from past looking, getting a braked one would be prohibitively costly for what it is)
 

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Just didn't know how taxed the hybrid would actually be near it's stated load rating.
The low tow rating on the RAV4 has almost nothing to do with the engine power. It's mostly the weak mount of the tow hitch to the unibody of the vehicle. If you look at small frame trucks with similar curb weight and similar engine power, you'll see 3500+ tow ratings.

The RAV4 has a maximum tongue weight of 150lb, the last I checked, which you exceed, but it probably won't cause any issues since the numbers are worst case scenarios. Such as rapid braking in an emergency situation. You could tow 3000lb, but if you have to brake really hard, the trailer will rip off the hitch.
 

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The low tow rating on the RAV4 has almost nothing to do with the engine power. It's mostly the weak mount of the tow hitch to the unibody of the vehicle. If you look at small frame trucks with similar curb weight and similar engine power, you'll see 3500+ tow ratings.

If that were the case, UK and EU rav4 Hybrids would have the same tow rating as US Hybrids, they don't, has more to do with testing/rating authorities I'd bet.



http://www.rav4world.com/forums/109...-rav4-hybrid-towing-capacity.html#post2047441

Yet in the UK, a similarly equipped 2.5l Hybrid has an unbraked towing capacity of 750 Kg (1650 lbs.) and a braked towing capacity of 1650 Kg (3630 lbs.).

It all appears to be due to different test procedures and possible marketing strategies by Toyota US. There's much more money in selling their trucks than in their small SUVs so guess which one gets the higher tow rating...

Since in the UK they say it's acceptable to tow up to 3630 pounds with a trailer having brakes on it, that's just as 'safe' here in the US in my opinion. And since there's nothing in the insurance policy I have in Massachusetts to say they won't cover the vehicle/trailer if I tow over the manufacturer's published guidelines - I'm going to take the risk and ignore them.

Why can they tow a 3630 pound 'caravan' in the UK legally and safely but I'm limited to 1750 pounds here in the US? It's ridiculous in my opinion and not worth worrying about if the proper tow-hitch is mounted to the vehicle.

As to the hitch - the only factory one offered is a Class-I hitch. Class I hitches are weight carrying (WC) hitches rated up to 2000 lbs. gross trailer weight (GTW) with a maximum trailer tongue weight (TW) of 200 lbs.
A Class I hitch usually has a 1-1/4" square receiver opening.
A higher class drawbar does not increase the towing capacity of the hitch.
Class I hitches usually attach to the bumper, truck pan or vehicle frame.

Toyota's Class I hitch mounts far more securely than the aftermarket ones in my opinion and is also tucked up higher under the rear bumper cover so it's less visible and doesn't significantly reduce the vehicle's ground clearance.

I think I'm going to put down a deposit on that 1670 pound (dry) [email protected] Max-S and keep it under the 2000 lbs limit of the Toyota Class-I hitch. Screw the published tow rating... It's all marketing and not based on the actual safe towing limit.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
that 150 pound tongue weight is odd... thought i had seen a higher number somewhere... but looking at toyota's docs... they're crap... they only say it in the manual that your tongue weight should be 9 to 11 percent of trailer weight... which is the normal advice. but they don't list an actual max tongue weight for their vehicle).
 

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Call me stupid if what i'm about to say makes no sense.

But, is the reason the tow weight is low, is because of hooking the hitch up to the rav4, is not fully as secure as these other trucks you mention, right? If so, then getting some type of body work done to add in reinforcement, does that mean it could tow a lot heavier stuff?

My concern with towing anything has been the strain on the engine and/or transmission.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
it's as secure. but combination of frame/body strength, and the ability of the vehicle to pull, and more importantly stop and control, the towed object is mostly what the towing capacity relates to.

the rav4 is no worse than the vehicles in its class. compared to others, they just pretty plainly say outright that if you're above x weight... you need trailer brakes. other vehicles in this size range either say 1500 lb towing... or don't tow at all.

prior to buying my Golf, i had been looking at the gas rav 4's, and forgot completely that i ran into this then too.

right now, without rolling under my boat trailer to take a bunch of measurements when it's -10f outside.... I'm thinking i can put on replacement axle with disc brakes and the the rest of the stuff for about 1K. this just works into my overall math on whether i think it's worth it.
 

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Recently I read a letter in one of those car help columns in the paper. The guy was wondering why his Charger with 5.7L Hemi V8 was only rated to tow 1500 lbs. while a RAM truck with the same engine was rated at 5000? The reason given was that engine size/horsepower was only one part of the equation. Frame strength, suspension, cooling and electrical systems need to be beefed up as well.
 

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Discussion Starter #11
Pinging this thread again to see if anyone new has towing experiences to share with their hybrid.

still looking for people with extensive? towing experiences near the max tow weight.

thanks
 

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Here's one in....http://www.rav4world.com/forums/109...7-rav4-hybrid-limited-towing.html#post2297601

Don't have any advice on trailers for MN, but I do have towing experience with my '16 RAV4 Hybrid Limited. I have an old Coleman popup camping trailer, base weight of 1325, max weight 1995 lbs. I'm sure I've been close to maximum load carrying 20gal of water, two 20lb propane tanks, and all the gear.

Going up a steep hill it can get noisy with the engine running at high revs continuously, but other than that the RAV4 rides fine. Even with hills or mountains on the way, I get an overall mileage of 24mpg while towing it. And, I can maintain 60 mph+ on all but the steepest hills in CA and NV.

IMHO, electric trailer brakes are a must. Braking on a level surface is sort of OK, but when I tried going down a long hill without using trailer brakes, my discs on the RAV got pretty squishy. Even on a flat surface, it clearly stops faster with the trailer brakes, and just feels safer.

I think the air helper spring kits are a must, too. Pain in the neck to get those air bladders inside the coil springs, but they keep my RAV4 level when its loaded down.

For reference, I have a Drawtite 75235 hitch, Tekonsha Prodigy P2 brake controller, Firestone 4174 Coil-Rite Air Helper Spring Kit, Reese 118578 T-One Connector. All are working well so far.

BTW, with the mostly LED lamps, Toyota changed the size of the wires and connectors starting in year 2016. T-connector trailer wiring kits for 2015 or older RAVs don't work.
 
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