View Full Version : downsizing towing vehicle

03-06-03, 05:25 AM
My husband has just got a vehicle for work (sedan)that we can use on weekends and whenever we like with all expenses paid for. THis is very exiting and new for us as we have never had this opportunity but the problem is that we just bought a new Nissan Patrol 4.5litre 4wd to tow with a couple of months ago. Obviously now we are paying off heaps on its payments every months without using it becasue we use the work car for everything. So our idea is that we should probably sell it. The only issue is that about 4-6 times a year we like to go camping with the horses or go to a few clinics here and there. So we still need a car that we can use for towing on those occassions. This means we have to downsize and sell the 4wd. What sort of vehicle can I buy for under $10,000 that we can use to tow with when we need to.....(details: double float (650kgs and two horses 1000kgs = approx 1700 all up). Any ideas????

03-06-03, 07:11 AM
I think you'll just have to shop around.
For $10,000 plenty of early model (1989 - 1992) Nissan Patrols and Toyota Landcruisers out there, just check the towing capacity to make sure it is legal to tow your 1700kg or more, check the speedo on how many km's it's travelled, average kms per year is 25k-30k, if it has done lots more - be wary as a motor rebuild could be just around the corner.

03-06-03, 07:24 AM
If it's only you and your husband (two horses), then why not a F100 or something. Does it have to be a wagon/sedan? Plus some bench seat F's are registered for 4 passengers, generally 3.

03-06-03, 08:07 AM
well I have a medium sized dog that loves to go ridnig and camping with us

03-06-03, 09:24 AM
Friends have a Holden Jackaroo turbo diesel - 4 cylinder - marvelous towing vehicle - I am very Toyota biased (heck married to a company rep) and we use the toyo ute and wagon for towing 3 horse slants. I did not have much of an opinion for the Jackaroo but being a passenger in it the other day with a large horse and 14hh pony with an older float I found it very responsive.

03-06-03, 01:36 PM
My Ford ute (auto, with Hayman Reese towbar) has a towing capacity of 2200kg (maximum recommended by manufacturer). Admittedly I don't tow much and not on hilly country either but it's ok for taking short trips on flat(ish) country and freeway travelling like I do. I also rarely take two horses but if I do, it's not a huge problem. I drive it on petrol (it has a gas option) when towing and I take it fairly carefully.

The reason I don't drive a 4wd is that I drive 100km to work a day, and I couldn't afford to (and wouldn't want to) drive a 4wd that distance daily. I find that a six cylinder sedan is the best option for me. It's probably an idea to also upgrade the radiator/cooling system but I think it's better than buying a clapped out 4wd. From my experience, old F100's are to be avoided at all costs!!

Best of luck with your choices. I guess you can't talk hubbies' boss into buying you a 4wd?! ;-)

03-06-03, 01:38 PM
Sorry for the typo, I meant to type ute is best option for me but fingers typed sedan!

03-06-03, 01:48 PM
if you want to know the towing capacity of any car I think the website is www.theredbook.com.au or the redbook.com.au or maybe no .au

03-06-03, 02:58 PM
I have just acquired a new Ford Falcon XR6 for the very reasons mentioned. This is my work car, very nice and economical to drive every day. I took the option of a 2300 kg tow pack. The engine has heaps of power and is great for towing. You would not want to tow every day, a 4wd would be needed then, however if you tow about once a month or less this is a great option. What type of car is the work car? Maybe you can ask them to put on a tow pack?

04-06-03, 12:10 AM
Unfortunately the work car is a 2.4/2.6 litre Bravo ute with a very light back tray......I wish so much it was more powerfull but unfortunately its not so yeah.....What about a mid 90's Ford Wagon????

04-06-03, 03:03 AM
Just be careful with towing with utes. I have a ute, and it's not legal to tow 2 horses with a ute in Qld or NSW. If you have a 1 tonne ute, you can get away with it, just. It's not the towing capacity of the towing gear that is the problem, it's what you vehicle is legally allowed to tow. My ute tows 2 horses, and I mean big horses (17.3 and 16.3) with ease, but it's not legal (I do still do it anyway, but I have been booked once).

04-06-03, 03:13 AM
horsesandme - I find your comments quiet irresponsible. Obviously legal limits are in place for safety reason ie. stopping. You may knowingly take this risk on behalf of you & your horses but other motorist are unaware of this.

Another towing option would be a small truck? My girlfriend has a ripper F100 horse truck for sale which can take 3 horses or 4 small ponies & with the Luton peak plenty of storage space, well under the $10K mark.

I have a F100 4wd, a 1980 model and I love it - haven't had any major drama with it. But only use it occassionally mainly for towing and farm work.

Cheers Bubbles

04-06-03, 03:27 AM
Bubbles....I don't quite understand what your getting at. All I was doing was making a comment, as alot of people don't realise this stuff....as I said, I do it myself even though it is illegal....yes, the general public probably doesn't realise it or care, but if you tow you should know....it's not for stopping or stuff, its the law....and i should know, I am an ex-COP!

04-06-03, 05:03 PM
I have one of these, and I tow with it about once every two or three weeks (sometimes every week, depending on the competition schedule). Mine is a '95 EF Falcon GLi 6cyl wagon, auto, with Hayman Reece heavy duty tow pack.

I only two one horse at the moment, and smallish ones at that, around the 15hh mark. However, the car is easily powerful enough to tow my standard size double float, I do quite a bit of hill work with mine, as well as on the Hume highway. It is very responsive, the only thing I would suggest (and of course it is a legal requirement, at least in Vic,), is if you are towing 2 horses that you get the weight distribution hitch option. The car pulls really well up the hills, and has plenty of power to spare on the open road with the float on. I've even been known to pass other people towing floats with 4WD's! BOY I get some strange looks!!!!!

We took a TB mare up to NSW in November, up and down some really STEEP hills, and it was a bit tired when we got home, I wouldn't like to do it again with the 6 cyl, but for general towing to comps and riding club and so on, it is great.

We are in the process of upgrading to a '95 V8 Fairmont wagon with LPG, which I am very excited about, it should be ready in a few weeks. It is currently having an XR6 front fitted, going to be really specci!! I'll be selling my current wagon once the wombat damage is fixed!!!

I would say that for the amount of towing you're doing, absolutely go for a 95 - 97 Falcon wagon. You'd pick something up with reasonable k's for around the $9 to $10 k mark, but make sure you have the H/duty hitch put on (oil cooler required, although I think these may be fitted as a matter of course with this model), and electric brakes on the float are a must.

The towing capacity for this model with the Class 2 towpack fitted (that's the h/duty hayman reece with oil cooler), is 2,200kg with auto transmission, and I think 1200kg with manual transmission. I know that in Vic at least, this is the legal towing capacity, although I don't know about other states.

We've had our EF for over a year now and it's a really reliable car, provided it's serviced regularly and tuned on the computer analyser.