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Recommendations for an sub-$10k SUV w/ min of 5000 lb tow capacity

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  • #16
    There are some out there, but it will be tough to find with under 100,000 miles.

    AWD and 4x4 actually lower your tow rating on most vehicles.

    Ford Explorer
    Chev Trailblazer
    Grand Cherokee

    Trucks:
    Ford Ranger
    Toy Tacoma
    Nissan Frontier crew cab

    I almost bought the Frontier a couple years ago, but settled for a , well I settled, and regret it now.



    https://www.carfax.com/vehicle/1N6AD07U79C416959
    Medford, WI


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    • #17
      In 2016 I purchased a 2002 V10 Ford Excursion w. 165k miles for $3400 to pull my 7k lb boat. Probably overkill for your application but I have no regrets. GREAT vehicle.

      (Actually if I had to do it again I'd get 4X4. But at your weight I don't know you'd need it)
      Last edited by San_Diego_SeaRay; April 24th, 2019, 12:35 PM.

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      • #18
        Expeditions tend to be cheaper than Tahoes/Suburbans. At that price range you'll be dealing with a 5.4 but just keep some ear plugs, a spark plug socket and an extra coil pack on hand and you'll likely be OK!

        If you're going to mostly tow with it I'd consider what towing MPG will be. I went from an Expedtion EL with the 5.4 to a F150 SuperCrew with the 3.5. I loved the around town mileage of the 3.5 eco boost until last week when I finally towed the boat and I can say with pretty high confidence that mileage withe the 5.4 towing on the highway was at least 2.5 mpg higher, probably more like 3.

        My wife had an Explorer with the non turbo 3.5. I wouldn't feel comfortable towing heavy things with it and gas mileage was about the same as my F150 and most importantly the F150 is considerably more comfy to sit in.

        I've been watching an Excursion for sale along side the road for the past 8 months and it's getting harder to pass up. I don't recommend sitting in one unless you're willing to buy it because they are that comfortable and I'm pretty sure you'd have no towing issues!

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        • #19
          I see a number of Tahoes or Suburbans for sale well under $10K with under 150,000 miles that are well cared for. My last 3/4 ton Silverado had 269,000 miles on it when i sold it. Point here is you might find something for $7000 that’s clean and well cared for that will leave you a little left over to deal with service work repairs etc. Personally I am GM guy that works on Asian cars and own a Dodge PU and a Ford tow truck and a few GM s . Everything breaks pick a well cared for what ever make you like have it inspected before you buy it and you’ll be in better shape.
          My take on mileage of used cars and mileage. I see a lot more 125,000 to 175,000 mile cars that are priced right and in decent shape then 100,000 mile cars that are priced right an in good shape. There are a lot of people who neglect there cars or abuse them or both and then sell them at lower mileage. Number one question I never get the real truth on is why its being sold when we do pre purchase inspections and the lower the mileage the more I want to know why.

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          • #20
            Originally posted by sublauxation View Post
            I went from an Expedtion EL with the 5.4 to a F150 SuperCrew with the 3.5. I loved the around town mileage of the 3.5 eco boost until last week when I finally towed the boat and I can say with pretty high confidence that mileage withe the 5.4 towing on the highway was at least 2.5 mpg higher, probably more like 3.
            interesting....thats opposite my experience towing #6500.

            Aluminum body? What rear end do you have in your F150
            Last edited by dingbat; April 25th, 2019, 04:50 AM.
            ....

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            • #21
              No aluminum body, haven't looked at the build sheet yet to find out the rear end (maybe should have before buying but towing isn't my primary use and the price was more than right. Because it was flat land I didn't engage the "tow" mode so maybe that will make a difference?

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              • #22
                Originally posted by sublauxation View Post
                No aluminum body, haven't looked at the build sheet yet to find out the rear end (maybe should have before buying but towing isn't my primary use and the price was more than right. Because it was flat land I didn't engage the "tow" mode so maybe that will make a difference?
                It could be.

                I have the aluminum body and the heavy tow package with a 3.55 rear. Can't comment on tow haul mode. Always use it when towing.

                The engine is hard on plugs. Ford says 100K but mine where toast at 35K. Made a big difference in mpg.

                ....

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                • #23
                  Mine needs plugs, guess that could easily cause a bigger change in mpg under load couldn't it!

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                  • #24
                    Probably hard to find them under 100k but the low end Chevy Trailblazer or the upscale Buick Rainier or the very upscale SAAB 9-7x and the GMC Envoy. All the exact same vehicle with cheap GM parts except the Rainier and the 9-7X only came in on demand AWD and not selectable 4wd like the Trailblazer and the Envoy. Still have a Rainier with the 5.3 and a SAAB 9-7X with the 5.3. (The SAAB also had a 400hp engine option) They each towed my 6500lb boat with ease. These vehicles are dirt cheap nowadays and come with either a locking rear diff which is a huge advantage or the 9-7 came with a limited slip diff which is nice as well. Have had my 9-7x for about 100k miles and has cost me a grand total of $300 as literally it won't break or wear out. Have had the Rainier for about 110k miles and had so many things replaced when it was still under warranty I don't even recall them all but has been good since that warranty expired several years ago.
                    2002 Chaparral 220 SSi
                    350 MAG MPI
                    Bravo 1

                    2011 Yamaha FX Sho

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                    • #25
                      Very good to be debt free! I'm late to this post but I would look at a 2011 or 2012 Dodge Durango - make sure it has the factory towing package and with the V6 it can legally tow 6200 lbs. Without the factory tow it's like 3500 lbs.
                      2003 Malibu Sunsetter LXI, Acme 525, Radar P6 ski

                      (I still like to help with Force outboards !)

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                      • #26
                        Fuel economy depends to a large extent on how you drive, what you drive, how what you drive is equipped, where you drive, conditions you drive in, and what you are hauling or towing at the time. The only way I could be convinced of the better towing economy of a small turbo engine is to make the comparison myself. Towing takes power. Power is not free. Turbos pump air, more air = more fuel to make that power. So unloaded or lightly loaded there is the inherent (but not guaranteed) better fuel economy. Heavy loaded and heavy "footed" I would need to convince myself in "my world". Is the payoff, if there is one, worth the complexity.

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                        • #27
                          2016 Expedition with the 3.5 twin turbo here (with a tow tune). My previous tow vehicle was a Ram 1500 with the hemi, 8spd trans, 4wd, crew cab, it got around 12mpg towing my tritoon.. The Expedition gets 9-10mpg towing the same boat, but the expedition chugs up the hills like a freight train, losing no speed, and doesn't need to downshift, making it easier on me, the driver. 87,xxx miles on the expedition so far, 5k mile oil changes, 3rd set of spark plugs, and the only issue I've had is a torn diaphragm on the electric blow off valve, $30 part, 5 minute job, and probably tore due to the extra intake pressure with the tune (20psi versus the stock 15psi).
                          2017 Lowe SS210 Tritoon with Wavetamer XL package, 2017 Mercury 115 Pro XS with command thrust, and 2017 Karavan trailer.

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                          • #28
                            Just put a hitch and 7 way on our 2017 Honda Pilot. towing new Starcraft 20 ft toon with 115 merc.. shorelandr tandom with breaks on all (4) wheels (surge).. boats 1850lbs, motor 370 lb, trailer bout 1k. Im towing less than 3500lbs.. Pilot good for 5K. breaks are everything... little wear and tear on tow vehicle.
                            "Na ise kalyteros anthropos apo ton patera sou"

                            (greek= Be a better man than your father)....

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                            • #29
                              Picked up a 2006 Jeep Liberty for my daughter. Got a great deal but had to do some work to get it freshened up. Still out of pocket less than $4000 and the thing has been trouble free and reliable since I turned my 16 year old free in it 2 years ago.

                              The thing is 4 wheel drive and a tank. Tow capacity 5000 lbs.

                              If you are looking for low maintenance through 200K+ get a 4 Runner.
                              Fun boat: 2004 Stingray 190LX, Merc 4.3 Carb, Alpha I, SE Sport 300 Hydrofoil, Hi 5
                              Ski boat: 1985 Ski Nautique 2001, Perfect Pass

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                              • #30
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                                I really like my wife’s 2013 Durango Crew with the Hemi .
                                ‘I think the max tow capacity is like 7200 / 6500 .
                                ‘And gas mileage is not bad really ..
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