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View Full Version : Do you tow with your Sprinter?


sikwan
03-15-2007, 07:41 PM
And if you do, do you think this is doable?

http://www.fleetwoodrv.com/brandtomodel/floorplan.aspx?brand=orbit/ob&m=180XP

I'm just looking actually. :D Figure either this or a toy hauler. I would like a toy hauler for the motorcycles, but it seems the towable ones are a little sparse and the nicer ones with the elevated bunk, so that you don't have to move the bikes out to sleep, weigh too much. Since I'm the only one that rides, it wouldn't make any sense to have all that room wasted for bikes. :rolleyes:

It seems to me, if I went all out and loaded it down with water, propane, generator, food, equipment, etc., I'll be coming close to the rated 5000lbs tow limit. And this is not including the stuff I might store in the Sprinter. The GVWR is 8550lb.

Thanks,
Seek

Dave C.
03-15-2007, 09:49 PM
Well yes, most of the time it is just a Jeep Liberty but last year I towed a Forest River travel trailer to Eileson AFB Alaska which is about 30 miles From Fairbanks. It was an SV235RS model and was about 4000 lbs loaded. It was new and was basicly empty just a few small things we put inside to make more room for us. By the way I negelected to mention that my Sprinter is an MB Crusier class B motor home so it's pretty heavy at 6100 empty and I probably added at least another 1000 including occupents. To make a long story short it pulled it like a dream could hardly tell it was back there once you got rolling and that just took a little bit longer and only complained with RSN if I really was agressive on takeoff. Had a prodigy progressive brake controller temporarily installed for the trip and stopping was no problem. The highest pass from central Illinois to Fairbanks is only a little over 4000 so I didn't put it through any tough climbs . I did have to pull one short steep one in 2nd but was not a problem. It did impact my fuel milage quite a bit if I went over 55-60. Worst was about 13 best about 18 but had less than a 1000 on odometer when I started the trip so wasn't broke in yet. I will try to upload some pictures later for you to check out if you so desire. So I don't know where the bikes going but I think the trailer you linked to is very doable. Just keep your tanks empty as much as possible to keep weight down.

Dave C.

KenB
03-15-2007, 09:55 PM
Seek,
Read more closely, this trailer (fully loaded) should not exceed 3,700 lbs.:clapping: :thumbup:

You have some room for stuff in the Sprinter, including (? lbs of) fambly and fiends... or family and Friends if you prefer!!:tongue:

No, I don't yet tow, and hope not to do so very often as I prefer to go light, tent camp now with fambly and later will want to stay in Sprinter with my wife except when we want a cabin or a hotel/motel Rm.

KenB:cheers:

sikwan
03-15-2007, 10:02 PM
Wow Dave, you pulled that thing with the Liberty? :wtf:

I will try to upload some pictures later for you to check out if you so desire. So I don't know where the bikes going but I think the trailer you linked to is very doable. Just keep your tanks empty as much as possible to keep weight down.

Pictures? :drool: No need to ask. :smilewink:

I will have to forego the option of carrying motobikes, since no one in our household rides except me. I guess I can always carry it outside in the back of the TT if needed.

Seek,
Read more closely, this trailer (fully loaded) should not exceed 3,700 lbs.:clapping: :thumbup:

You have some room for stuff in the Sprinter, including (? lbs of) fambly and fiends... or family and Friends if you prefer!!:tongue:

You're right Ken. Hopefully they don't underspec their values because the 985lb can easily be exceeded fast, not to mention the tongue weight.

Thanks,
Seek

talkinghorse43
03-16-2007, 12:13 AM
To make a long story short it pulled it like a dream could hardly tell it was back there once you got rolling and that just took a little bit longer and only complained with RSN if I really was agressive on takeoff.

RSN is normally associated with noise/vibration heard/felt at very low torque levels (almost coasting) and is considered by most to be benign, but annoying. However, what you describe here is considered a problem that can and should be repaired. Noise/vibration at high torque levels is usually called shudder and has been repaired with a tranny fluid flush.

poolmike
03-16-2007, 01:47 AM
I have pulled a couple of car trailers with mine. My buddy has a nice closed bottom steel car trailer that I towed to Baltimore to pick up my Mini. I couldn't notice any difference from normal driving. Same fuel economy.

http://img174.imageshack.us/img174/3580/65mini005mu4.jpg

A closer look at the trailer. I did not have a brake controller....no issues at all. However, no hills from Baltimore to my home in Richboro.

http://img174.imageshack.us/img174/5245/65mini006ru7.jpg


Recently I pulled a U-Haul car trailer from North Jersey with a Nissan 240 on it. It was a very heavy trailer. Pulling some of the hills in the Pocono region was a bit of a challenge, but I kept it moderate without raising temps. It stopped fine with no brake control.

Old Master
03-16-2007, 02:19 AM
Last May, when my 2004 Sprinter was two years old, I towed a fiberglass boat weighing 5500 lbs., not counting the trailer, from Seattle, WA to Cincinnati, OH. I went the northern route, but anyone who has driven it knows there is lots of mountain driving. I had decent weather...not hot, not cold. Last November I towed the same boat from Cincy to Jax, FL and back, also lots of uphill driving (I-95 to I-26 to I-40 to I-75.) From N. Carolina-S. Carolina state line on I-26 to Newport, TN is almost all uphill.

So, I had no problems...none. In fact, out west I took some of those mountain passes without the van even downshifting. It was virtually effortless...you know how some people say it, "It handled like the boat wasn't even back there!" That's my story...and I'll be towing it more this summer, and the next summer, and the next, etc.

John

Edit: I did have trailer brakes...the surge type.

sikwan
03-16-2007, 03:53 AM
Looks like I won't have any problems.

You guys rock! :bow:

:cheers:
Seek

pgr
03-16-2007, 10:14 AM
I tow my Citroen Mehari (about 1200#'s) on my double-axel car trailer. My milage drops to about 17 from 22 but otherwise I forget it's there sometimes (until I look in the rearview mirror)!

pgr

ChasM
03-16-2007, 01:42 PM
The Dec '06 issue of Trailer Life has an article on the trailer towing capabilities of the '06 Sprinter 2500 SHC with the standard 3.72 axle ratio towing an R-Vision 25 foot F23QB travel trailer, the largest of their Bantam Flyer lineup weighing in at 3,580 pounds wet but empty. They were very impressed with the Sprinter and with its towing prowess.

acvr4
03-16-2007, 01:57 PM
Nice info. I just got back from Bike week in Daytona Florida. I went down there with a friend with his RV (Ford 450 V-10) pulling a double enclosed trailer. Averaged about 6mpg :idunno:
I'm planing on changing things a bit next year and put my bike in the Sprinter and pull my jet boat down and heading to the Keys for a while and stopping on the way back to Daytona. So from what I read I shouldn't have any problems :thumbup:
I just need to find the right hitch now:smilewink: .

sikwan
03-16-2007, 02:07 PM
By the way I negelected to mention that my Sprinter is an MB Crusier class B motor home so it's pretty heavy at 6100 empty and I probably added at least another 1000 including occupents.

http://sprinter-source.com/forum/attachment.php?attachmentid=1376&stc=1&d=1174052169

ChasM brought up a good point (Welcome and Thanks!), what's your diff ratio, Dave? With all that weight, I imagine you have the 4.10?

Thanks,
Seek

ChasM
03-16-2007, 10:16 PM
I just bought an '07 R-Vision 27.5' light weight travel trailer model TC26RKS with a measured dry weight of 4,002 lbs. Fully loaded weight should come in at less than 5,000 lbs.

I am in the process of special ordering an '07 Sprinter 2500 144" wheelbase diesel passenger van for towing. One of my main concerns is the rear axle ratio. The standard ratio for '07 is a fairly low 4.18, with a higher 3.92 and lower 4.72 as options. My main question is....Why did they lower the standard ratio from 3.72 in '06 to 4.18 in '07 since I am fairly certain that the 5 speed tranny ratios remain unchanged?!

I am very tempted to order the 3.92 ratio opposed to the standard 4.18 ratio in order to maximize the fuel mileage and driving pleasure when not towing. If the van was going to be used solely as a tow vehicle I would go with the standard 4.18 ratio however I feel that even while towing a light weight trailer the optional 3.92 ratio will be satisfactory. Note that the optional '07 3.92 ratio is still lower than the older standard 3.72.

I would greatly appreciate your thoughts on this. Perhaps the new 3.0L V6 diesel engine functions better at a higher rpm than the older 2.7L 5 cylinder??? :thinking:

Altered Sprinter
03-16-2007, 11:14 PM
Axle ratios stated from 4.727 to 3.923 because of engine capacity and size of vehicle single wheel to dual.
The New 2007 Sprinter has the 3.923 ratio with 5 speed auto on the 318 CDI V6 for the three ton model range Five ton is another set of ratios , at present I've misplaced the specs.
It's a hard call because the Sprinters have both manual and Auto shift with different ratios based on engines and load weight capacity, where the US Dodge has options,that appear to be unique to the US sector.
When I look at the Euro Specs it appears your being offered different ratios meant for the new four cylinder engines, my thoughts also are you have a migrating axle ratio from The VW Crafter, must chat to Ben on this one as he has the specs as the crafter has retained the 5 cylinder in line engine but with a higher power out put this may explain the odd variations you have in the US.
Interesting there is an option for over five ton units no specifics as of yet both different for manual and auto.{ This option based on towing capacity and weight capacity within the unit.
Now I'm starting to understand why the DOT in Australia put the brakes on these units because of a Chassis issue}
Richard

talkinghorse43
03-17-2007, 12:58 AM
Why did they lower the standard ratio from 3.72 in '06 to 4.18 in '07 since I am fairly certain that the 5 speed tranny ratios remain unchanged?!

I am very tempted to order the 3.92 ratio opposed to the standard 4.18 ratio in order to maximize the fuel mileage and driving pleasure when not towing. If the van was going to be used solely as a tow vehicle I would go with the standard 4.18 ratio however I feel that even while towing a light weight trailer the optional 3.92 ratio will be satisfactory. Note that the optional '07 3.92 ratio is still lower than the older standard 3.72.

I would greatly appreciate your thoughts on this. Perhaps the new 3.0L V6 diesel engine functions better at a higher rpm than the older 2.7L 5 cylinder??? :thinking:

The torque curve for the new diesel v6 is elsewhere on this site and shows that max torque comes on later than the 612 & 647 engines, so the v6 probably does function better at higher rpm. Plus, being a v6 it's better balanced too.

Since the v6 has more grunt than the older engines, I think the 3.92 ratio would be fine for your purpose

Altered Sprinter
03-17-2007, 12:00 PM
cant help noticing the axle ratios your quoting
2005 year for 316 and 416 engine capacity
LWB
316 bore 2685
316 156 hp @3800
Axle ratio 4.111
rated 4 Tonne

416 bore 2685
416 156 hp @3800
Axle ratio 4.111
rated 4 Tonne
max torque 330Nm @1400-2400 for both engines 316-416

optional ratios 5.286-4.375- standard 4.111

2006 New Generation Sprinters
2007 US
V6 Diesel 518 CDI
518 bore 2987
518 184 hp @3800
Axle ratio 3.923
rated 5 Tonne
max torque 400Nm @1600-2600

optional ratios 4.364-3.923-4.364-standard 3.923
There is an option for another ratio on both the older Sprinters and the newer Sprinters which I could not find, however this is for European vehicles and Australasia that option up for PTO and 100 liter Long range fuel tanks
2007 Sprinter specs are for Automatic five speed triponic
Richard

SprintED
03-19-2007, 06:49 PM
Tow my '76 21ft Chrysler boat...with ease. The Sprinter pulls it like a dream compared to the 2000 Chev Express 3500 5.7L it replaced. Boat & Trailer run about 3500lbs or so.

Boat is bit more aerodynamic than a TT, but IMHO a sprinter will pull this trailer fine...better than any other van IMnotsoHO. Whether or not you will like driving around with a trailer behind...well that is a matter of personal preference.

Ed

sikwan
03-19-2007, 07:18 PM
Got some Ronals I see, SprinterED. :thumbup:

Seek

ChasM
07-28-2007, 05:27 PM
I just bought an '07 R-Vision 27.5' light weight travel trailer model TC26RKS with a measured dry weight of 4,002 lbs. Fully loaded weight should come in at less than 5,000 lbs.

I am in the process of special ordering an '07 standard height Sprinter 2500 144" wheelbase diesel passenger van for towing. One of my main concerns is the rear axle ratio. The standard ratio for '07 is a fairly low 4.18, with a higher 3.92 and lower 4.72 as options. My main question is....Why did they lower the standard ratio from 3.72 in '06 to 4.18 in '07 since I am fairly certain that the 5 speed tranny ratios remain unchanged?!

I am very tempted to order the 3.92 ratio opposed to the standard 4.18 ratio in order to maximize the fuel mileage and driving pleasure when not towing. If the van was going to be used solely as a tow vehicle I would go with the standard 4.18 ratio however I feel that even while towing a light weight trailer the optional 3.92 ratio will be satisfactory. Note that the optional '07 3.92 ratio is still lower than the older standard 3.72.

I would greatly appreciate your thoughts on this. Perhaps the new 3.0L V6 diesel engine functions better at a higher rpm than the older 2.7L 5 cylinder??? :thinking:

I finally got tired of wating for my special order '07 Sprinter van. After an exhaustive search within a 1,000 mile radius of Sacramento, which included surveying the inventories of 59 dealerships and 100's of Sprinters, I found one that almost met my specifications. This single Sprinter lacked the towing package, and it had the 4.1_ rear end ratio rather than the 3.92 ratio that I had originally specified. I checked out several frame hitches and found the Curt hitch to be the best, and installed the Curt hitch myself. I paid an independent shop to 'hardwire' the wiring and Prodigy brake controller.

Thus far after 2,000 miles, the Sprinter has averaged 22 - 23 mpg on the freeway while travelling unladen at 60 - 65 mph. On its maiden 340 mile towing voyage, it got 14 mpg towing the travel trailer (loaded weight close to 5,000 lbs) with a KTM 525(540) EXC four stroke dirtbike plus gear in the van. This trip included about half freeway driving and half in the mountainous Sierra Nevadas between Hwy 99 and Yosemite. I was extremely pleased and gratified at the towing prowess of the Dodge Sprinter. It handled the steepest mountain grades with aplomb. The 4.1_ rear ratio may be the better choice when towing heavy loads, but perhaps the 3.92 would suffice, plus provide better mileage when the van is unladen.

soflo316
08-01-2007, 08:46 PM
I bought my 06 short/low van to tow a 3500 lb boat for my business. This of course also includes launching and retrieving on the boat ramp, something I was a bit worried about using this vehicle for. I do this on a weekly or daily basis, and I have had only ONE problem on a very bad ramp. Apparently everyone but me knew that this particular lane was bad, and even 4wds have slippage while using it. The fix was to load 5 guys in the back of the van for traction and just idle the boat right out of the water!

For the first couple of months I though I was the only weirdo who used this van as a boat tower, but now many of the local marine businesses are doing same, with much larger boats then I sell. Sometimes when I exhibit at shows I have the van in my space along with the boat, and I could probably sell 3-4 vans during the course of a boat show, in addition to the boats!

I get about 19-20 mpg while towing, and 24-25 unloaded. While towing I keep it at about 68 mph, that is where it feels right for me.
Todd
www.epowermarine.com

kendall69
08-01-2007, 10:12 PM
The Hitch can do 7,500 lbs. with Weight Distributing: 750 tongue - 7500 lbs. tow.

ChasM
08-02-2007, 05:01 PM
The Hitch can do 7,500 lbs. with Weight Distributing: 750 tongue - 7500 lbs. tow.

My Curt hitch is rated for 10,000 lbs with weight distribution, twice the factory rated tow capacity for the 2500 Sprinter.

KenB
08-02-2007, 09:05 PM
Won the recent ebay factory MOPAR hitch, and just got it from UPS literally DROPPING it on my porch and RUNNING away... UPS employee made it Into brown van (non-Sprinter) and gone before we could get to the door that they did NOT knock on, or RING the bell of, as they were dropping and running away... You can tell the pride they have in their delivery by their avoidance of customer contact!!!

The Box was BEATEN to Death on one side and the (now-boxless) exposed edges of the hitch assembly are missing the fancy 2 part (e-coating?) paint. Yet to assess all damage and decide to install or go to UPS with a claim.

KenB:bash:

Altered Sprinter
08-03-2007, 10:30 AM
My Curt hitch is rated for 10,000 lbs with weight distribution, twice the factory rated tow capacity for the 2500 Sprinter.
Quote! You need to do your homework first 10,000 Lbs weight distribution for the trailer, and it's contents.
The towing capacity is 6,000Lbs Border lining past the max, for a class 2500 Sprinter.
Although they fit a Sprinter! This does not mean you can exceed The Sprinters capacity for strength and structural engineering specifications. or to compromise the center of balance.
Richard
2855

2856

ChasM
08-03-2007, 03:29 PM
Quote! You need to do your homework first 10,000 Lbs weight distribution for the trailer, and it's contents.
The towing capacity is 6,000Lbs Border lining past the max, for a class 2500 Sprinter.
Although they fit a Sprinter! This does not mean you can exceed The Sprinters capacity for strength and structural engineering specifications. or to compromise the center of balance.
Richard
2855

2856

I just mentioned the hitch rating, and in no way meant to imply that one should tow more than the factory recommended 5,000 lbs maximum.

NMC
03-31-2014, 09:45 AM
while I'm killing time waiting for tools to arrive. This is my weekend rig.
Some boat ramps are a little slippery, so I try to keep the motorcycle in back for the extra weight.

sailquik
03-31-2014, 03:01 PM
ChasM,
Too bad Trailer Life didn't get a Sprinter with the "towing" rear end ratio.
3.72 is the highest ratio available in NAS Sprinters.
They would have really liked the 3500 (DRW) with the 4.182 rear end.
Far more stable overall.
Bet they didn't use a Scan Gauge II to keep the % engine Load in the best range so they probably did not get the best
performance or the best fuel economy.
Roger

Aqua Puttana
03-31-2014, 03:14 PM
while I'm killing time waiting for tools to arrive. This is my weekend rig.
Some boat ramps are a little slippery, so I try to keep the motorcycle in back for the extra weight.
Nice looking boat. Catalina 22 perchance?

Not that you asked...

I can't see whether you have any center support for the mast while in transit. Back when I raced a Catalina 22 it seemed that the mast failures we saw often were on boats who trailered frequently and didn't have a center support. The mast can flex a bunch. The spreader area seems to take the beating.

Anyway, sorry to mention it if you already have a support.

Given a decent trailer nose wheel and no tongue extension I've backed the trailer down using a strap to keep the van up on the level. Just make certain that everything is really secure. vic

NMC
03-31-2014, 08:10 PM
Hi Vic,
You're correct, no centre support. HotChocolate is a Australian Catalina 22. Made under license in the 70/80's as a Boomaroo 22. I have often thought about building a center support. I don't believe she has ever had a mast support and is still on her first mast which is starting to get a little tired at 36 years old. I'm the 3rd owner and have traveled about 10k towing HotChoc. Your right though and I should build a support, simple piece of insurance for the mast. Its all academic however, if I cant fix the injector issue as I will most likely have to sell HotChoc if the sprinter cant be repaired.

here she is on the water https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FpBYfzL2NDI

CHEQUERED TUNING
04-04-2014, 12:02 PM
We tow all over this great country and we tow heavy, melbourne to darwin and back again soon aswell (7600km round trip).

V6 is the only way to go, started with a 80 series toyota but it sucked so we bought a GU patrol and it was better... but, nothing with decent internal volume compares to the V6 sprinter. Will happily tow at anything up to 130kmh (state and limit permitting).

Diff ratio swap was all that was really needed for serious long haul high speed towing.... unless you like sitting on 3k for hours on end.... and needlessly burning fuel.

ooh and a sneaky flash tune.

https://fbcdn-sphotos-f-a.akamaihd.net/hphotos-ak-prn2/t31.0-8/1891440_600067416753408_489323645_o.jpg

CHEQUERED TUNING
04-05-2014, 04:13 AM
Just an update for those aussies chasing a towbar, this is possibly the best towbar on the aus market atm (great plug and play wiring harness kit) :

http://www.milford-auto.com/products/towbar/mercedes_benz/sprinter/592050

fitted up in around an hour and wiring took another hour, first time working on a sprinter so its a piece of cake.

If your in victoria Greg @ Kentone Distributors had it to me the next day, plus it was better than the hayman reese item i first assessed. (bonus was that it was cheaper too)

We looked at 4 models and found the MILFORD to be the best all rounder, and best service out there.

pgr
04-05-2014, 11:12 AM
Snow job:thumbup:

Aqua Puttana
04-05-2014, 01:29 PM
... (great plug and play wiring harness kit) :

...
I'm not aware of any quick harness available in North America. The Milford Tow Bar Wiring section didn't help me figure out where things plug in for "Plug and Play" on the Sprinter.

Where does it plug in? Tail light assembly plugs maybe?

vic

MillionMileSprinter
04-06-2014, 01:52 AM
Yes. Camper has brakes, easy to tow. White Sprinter didn't have brakes. Much harder to stop!

CHEQUERED TUNING
04-06-2014, 03:52 AM
I'm not aware of any quick harness available in North America. The Milford Tow Bar Wiring section didn't help me figure out where things plug in for "Plug and Play" on the Sprinter.

Where does it plug in? Tail light assembly plugs maybe?

vic
Kick panel and fuse box.