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Author Topic: Will the Traverse tow this camper safely?  (Read 27643 times)
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marc515
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« on: May 03, 2011, 11:51:39 AM »

Hi,

We are looking at the 2011 Traverse and the 2011 Explorer (I am a Chevy owner and fan!) and am confused on the Traverse's towing capacity, and would greatly appreciate some assistance. Do not want to buy a vehicle that cannot handle our situation.

1. Our camper has a GVWR of 3,800 Lbs
2. There will be 3 people in the Traverse- I would estimate the total weight at 500Lbs
3. We will have an additional 300-400 Lbs of cargo in the back of the Traverse.
4. WHD adds an additional 150 Lbs

The Traverse tow capacity is rated at 5,200Lbs, but I'm worried that the Traverse may not be able to adaquately tow our camper and weights of people and cargo noted above, especially on hills without burning the Transmission out?

I would buy with the factory installed tow package

Do I really need to use something like an "Equalizer-E2"Weight Distributing Hitch on my camper, and will it do the job? I've read that some unibody's cannot handle a WHD?

Also, do alot of you guys tow campers, as I just went by a Chevy dealer, and there was only one Traverse with the tow package on the lot- thought there would have been more.

Would greatly appreciate any insight so we can make the right buying choice.

PS: What's the difference between the Traverse and the GMC Acadia??

Thank you,......marc
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rbarrios
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« Reply #1 on: May 03, 2011, 12:36:07 PM »

Theres a few people on here who tow some big things.
I know one of them uses a Weight dist hitch- or a sway control thingy.
Definitely get the Tow package.

The Traverse and Acadia- use the same engine, trans, suspension. The differences are the exterior and interior trim options and the look of the interior.
The Acadia is rated the same as the Trav. in terms of towing.

The Enclave is the same too-- except-- that its actually rated to tow a little less... dont know why?
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GXPWeasel
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« Reply #2 on: May 03, 2011, 01:27:23 PM »

Can't add much to what Rbarrios said, other than you will WANT a weight distribution hitch for the camper / traverse combo. Reason being, the Traverse is a front wheel drive, or a Front wheel, with rear wheel assist if needed. This means that the drive wheels will be the front ones, unless you loose traction. With the pressure to pull & stop being on the fron wheels, you will want that weight distribution hitch to help put the tongue weight of the camper equally on all 4 wheels of the Traverse. This way, you don't have nose up when pulling, and nose dive when braking while towing. To me, it's worth the extra $300 for the piece of mind knowing that you have done everything you can to make your towing experience a safe / happy one.

I wouldn't frett about the transmission being able to handle the camper. I'd say as long as you aren't over the 5,200 lbs. when completely loaded down, then you will be safe. After all, the trans is covered under the 100,000 mile powertrain warranty ( which the Exploder doesn't have to my knowledge).

You might PM Quantum on here as well. He pulls a fairly large camper with his Traverse, and probably has the most towing experience with the travers, on this board, that I know of.
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« Reply #3 on: May 03, 2011, 03:10:02 PM »

So long as you don't exceed the ratings (which you're starting to check into) then you'll be fine.  The "tow rating" is but one of them.  The Traverse (and other Lambda's) have a 6 speed transmission.  It'll do just fine.  Just don't expect fantastic fuel economy while towing all that weight.  Then again, you shouldn't with *any* vehicle as your towing!!!

Most importantly, you'll want to weigh your rig once you're all loaded up for camping.  You don't want to exceed any of the weight ratings and there are a number of them (GAWR, GCWR, etc.).  At least you're looking into all of this *ahead* of making your purchase.  Definitely a wise move on your part.

Regards,
/BTV
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Quantum
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« Reply #4 on: May 03, 2011, 04:30:23 PM »

I am on vacation right now, so I will type more when I'm back next week.  Here is a pic of what I'm towing, without issues.  My UVW is 4,295lbs.  The travel trailer is 23' long, I use a Reese WD hitch with a friction sway bar.



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« Reply #5 on: May 03, 2011, 04:59:50 PM »

 I would also have to agree that you should be fine as long as you are not towing more than the max, but it can not hurt to add the towing package. I would recommend speaking with your local dealership for more specific information regarding this option. Please feel free to keep us updated regarding the purchase. Thank you.

Tricia, GM Customer Service
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rbarrios
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« Reply #6 on: May 03, 2011, 05:06:32 PM »

I think the original poster--- is going to have better luck getting info from Quantum and the other posters on the Acadia forum (I recommend you also post there)...

the reason I say this-- is because weve had quite a few unhappy owners come to the forums- and tell us the dealer sold them a vehicle with NO factory tow package- as the salesman told them they would be fine by adding just a hitch...

Actually just read on another Traverse forum-- owner there needed to tow a large item and was told the above...
he was not happy--- and the dealer told him a hitch would be fine-- and that CHEVY/GM didnt know what they were talking about (Owner contacted GM/CHEVY- who told him he needed the tow kit)...
in the end--- the owner needed to tow his item---
he ended up going to another dealer- Trading in his Traverse-- for another Traverse.... he obviously took a small hit in 'depreciation'.
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marc515
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« Reply #7 on: May 03, 2011, 06:22:30 PM »

I've been to two dealers today, and ony found one Traverse with a tow package. The one dealer wanted to add a hitch, but I said "no thanks"; I want the factory installed package.

Thank you
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rbarrios
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« Reply #8 on: May 03, 2011, 06:57:40 PM »

your other option- is to order the vehicle your way.
Add in or leave out items you dont need.

I ordered mine- and am happy I stayed away from sunroof.
I specifically wanted the factory tow hitch.. so I could use my cargo rack and bike rack.///
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2010 FWD LT1-Gold Mist Metallic- seats 8.
Build Date- July 31, 2009-2nd day of Spring Hill 2010 production.
2013 Equinox 3.6L -    20,000
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« Reply #9 on: May 03, 2011, 09:49:20 PM »

I've been to two dealers today, and ony found one Traverse with a tow package. The one dealer wanted to add a hitch, but I said "no thanks"; I want the factory installed package.

Thank you

Smart move on your part for sure.

If you're getting a Traverse, then definitely V92 towing package is the way to go.  This is *WAY* more economical then attempting to install *all* the V92 package items into a non-V92 vehicle after the fact.  Although some of the items provide some features that you can otherwise live without, the "meat and potatoes" of the V92 package (trans cooler, HD radiator, HD alternator, etc.) are not so trivial and cost you significantly more to acquire and have installed.  Way easier and cheaper to have it all factory.

Slapping on a hitch and calling it a day is *not* the same thing.  With the trailer weight, cargo and passenger weights you've specified in your OP, for sure you do not want anything less than a V92 equipped Traverse and have *all* of that stuff as part of the factory warranty.

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« Reply #10 on: May 04, 2011, 11:38:19 AM »

I've been to two dealers today, and ony found one Traverse with a tow package. The one dealer wanted to add a hitch, but I said "no thanks"; I want the factory installed package.

Thank you

I would have to agree with rbarrios that you alse have the option of ordering the vehicle with the specifications that you would like. The build out date for the 2011 Traverse is 6/10/2011. On average, dealers need to have an order submitted approximately 4-6 weeks prior to the build out date. I would recommend contacting the dealership directly for more ordering information if you decide to go that route. Thank you.

Tricia, GM Customer Service.
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rbarrios
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« Reply #11 on: May 04, 2011, 12:13:03 PM »

now that she mentions the build out date....

ordering has closed for 2011's.
Theyre still building them-- but thats stuff that was ordered before the cut off date.
Unless your dealer- ordered stuff with a tow package.... that hes waiting on- still to be built...
If you walk in and order a vehicle-- your order will be a 2012.
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« Reply #12 on: May 04, 2011, 02:27:56 PM »

now that she mentions the build out date....

ordering has closed for 2011's.
Theyre still building them-- but thats stuff that was ordered before the cut off date.
Unless your dealer- ordered stuff with a tow package.... that hes waiting on- still to be built...
If you walk in and order a vehicle-- your order will be a 2012.

And 2012 delivery will be near the end of July like last year?
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rbarrios
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« Reply #13 on: May 04, 2011, 02:37:41 PM »

yup... end of july/early august.
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« Reply #14 on: May 04, 2011, 03:46:07 PM »

I wonder of the lack of vehicles with the tow package is a result of them being less desirable, and being what is left?

We bought our 2011 in August, so it was pretty much in the first wave of 2011's on the lot, and just about all of them had the tow package at two different dealers we went to. The salesman at the dealer we eventually bought from, said that they sell more Traverses with the tow package than without, and they try to stock more of those.

When we got ours, we looked at a few 2010's, but that late in the season selection was thin as far as options we liked, and no one had any with the tow package left.
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« Reply #15 on: May 04, 2011, 03:56:48 PM »

or- those in the know--- buy the ones with tow package... and skip the non tow packaged...

some dealers will order vehicles that have little- but add a tow package.
or order vehicles with the most popular items and also order highly loaded vehicles.
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2013 Equinox 3.6L -    20,000
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« Reply #16 on: May 04, 2011, 04:37:17 PM »

My local dealership (where I ordered my Traverse) only stocks Traverses with Tow Packages.  They said that the $500 it costs is well worth the money.  That makes it nice for people who would like to buy their Traverse immediately.  Like rbarrios, I ordered my Traverse exactly how I wanted it, including the tow package, so that I would have warranty if anything ever went wrong.
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« Reply #17 on: May 04, 2011, 04:52:12 PM »

My local dealership (where I ordered my Traverse) only stocks Traverses with Tow Packages.  They said that the $500 it costs is well worth the money. 

Smart dealer
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« Reply #18 on: May 05, 2011, 02:15:38 PM »

i would have never gotten my traverse without it.
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Dave Vianu
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« Reply #19 on: May 06, 2011, 09:18:59 AM »

I think GM should just make the tow package standard equipment on these.. They also need to crack down on the dealers for trying to add hitches after the fact and conning people into thinking they have 5200lb tow rating with an add on hitch.

It comes down to uniformed dealers. I was happy that my dealer pointed it out to me right from the start even though I knew you needed to order the factory hitch.
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