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Nonie & Pop

Confused with RV Search

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We are new to the RV world and we've been doing quite a bit of research as to what type of RV is best for us and weight, quality build, dual axle vs. single, etc, etc.  And we aren't sure we know much more now than when we started our research.  Our towing vehicle will be a 2016 Toyota Highlander V6.  We know that the tow capacity is 5000 lbs.  Would any of you happen to know off-hand a good recommendation for a quality built trailer preferably with murphy bed, dry bath, tandem axle that our Highlander will pull?

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First of all, welcome to the Escapee forums! We are happy to be of help as much as we are able. 

I have owned a number of RVs over the years and at present we own one of the smaller travel trailers with a fairly light weight. The first thing that I would caution you is when you look at trailers make sure that the weight you consider is the GVWR or gross weight rating and not the unladen weight which is often stated by the sales people because it makes things look better. It takes very little to add 1000# to a trailer as you fill water tanks, add groceries and personal items. Our trailer is a 20', ultra-lite that has a gross weight of 3,900# the unladen weight is 2,800#. I have weighed it when ready for travel and if the water tank is full and the waste tanks are empty we are usually at about 3,800#. When we started to travel with it, we were towing with a Borrego, V6 which is also rated to tow 5000#. It did the job but was tiring to drive for longer trips or if it was windy at all. I have since upgraded to a truck.

I have had both single and double axle trailers and while double costs more, they also handle better and are much less prone to move the tow vehicle around. I very much prefer the double axle and consider it well worth the extra cost. Our trailer is a KZ, Sportsman Classic and it has been a good RV for the price we paid. Not the highest quality but it has stood up well and we have used it for as long as 5 continuous months and it is now 12 years old and still in good condition. With any RV it is very important to do the proper maintenance on a regular basis in order to have it serve you well. 

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Quality built, dry bath, dual axle and under 5,000 lbs?  That’s a tall order.  Personally I don’t know of any - they may be out there, but I don’t know of them.

If you are willing to compromise on the axle, I can think of a couple of Lance trailers that might be possible - the Lance 1475 and the Lance 1575.  They are both light enough, they both have dry baths, they both have regular queen sized beds rather than a Murphy bed.  They are both single axle.  The 1475 doesn’t have a slide, the 1475S has a small slide and the 1575 has a big slide.  If I were looking in that class I’d probably choose the 1475S, I like the floor plan a little better.  The quality is better than many small trailers but you also pay for that quality.

If you wanted to upsize your tow vehicle to something like the Jeep Grand Cherokee (V6 or V8) or another SUV with 6,500 - 7,500 lbs tow rating, you will have a lot more choices and could easily find a dual axle model.

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Yay! We just purchased our first RV....a 2020 Winnebago Micro Mini 2108DS.  We decided to tow with our 3/4 ton diesel pu instead of the Highlander.  It was always available but it's my husband's work truck for his masonry restoration business and I didn't want to have to ride in all the nastiness but, we've compromised and he will have it detailed and put new seat covers on.

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Congratulations! I think that you made a very good choice. With a GVWR of 7000 you would be asking too much of the SUV. I really think that you will be happy with the combination and Winnebago has a very good reputation. Thank you for letting us know.

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Welcome to a great way to see our country. Winnebago is a good brand and their Grand National Rally is a hoot if they ever get to hold one again.

Linda Sand

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