What cars can be Flat Towed behind a RV?

In General by Magnus Sellén1 Comment

An RV is a recreational vehicle that comes with living quarters.

The home enables you to enjoy yourselves when you are at a campsite or doing road trips. Once you set up your temporary home, you may need to use your car to head to the town for groceries. It is hard navigating city traffic with your RV.

In addition, you have to find parking for your RV. Towing your vehicle gives you the best option. However, your RV cannot flat tow all car models. The first place to check whether your car can be towed is your car manual.

Some Ideas of great cars to tow behind an RV

The RV is a great way to have a home away from home. However, you may need to have an extra car to use during shopping trips or off-road excavations. In this case, you need to flat tow your car.

Not all car models can be flat-towed. Firstly, are problems with the transmission. The transmission needs the engine to be switched on at all times so that the pump can lubricate all moving parts. It is for this reason that the best cars to be flat towed are manual cars. If you have an automatic car, call your dealer and ask if you can tow it with the automatic transmission before trying.

Alternatively, you can make certain adjustments to the pump. But, this tends to be costly and can cause further damage to the car. Most cars manufactured before 2016 are the best for towing. However, we have come up with some great cars to tow behind an RV.

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2015 Fiat 500, Toyota Corolla 2016 and Chevrolet Spark

These are pretty small cars that can easily be towed. The cars are lightweight and are excellent when looking for parking space. These vehicles are often equipped with manual transmission, which is great for towing.

JK jeep wrangler and 2017 Jeep Rubicon

The jeep has being a favorite for many car owners who love doing going off-road. The jeep can be towed with all its wheels on four wheels. For the best experience, try models before the year 2018.

Land cruiser or FJ cruiser

The most popular Toyota models for towing are the Land cruiser and the FJ cruiser with a manual gearbox. Most of newer automatic Toyota and Lexus models are not suitable for towing.

The problem with these models is that the transmission is designed in such a way that the transmission pump has to be operating for it to lubricate the moving parts. This means you have to be driving the car. If the car engine is not running you will have serious trouble when towing the car.

2015 Chevrolet Malibu or 2016 Ford Fusion Hybrid

While both cars come with automatic transmission, they are still great to tow. The cars are also rear– wheel drive vehicles. Avoid above 2016 models unless the car’s manual specifically states that you can tow them.

Tips when flat towing

The RV is a great second home when you are camping. However, you may need to do some traveling while leaving the RV stationery. Having a small car to use oft trips saves you on fuel and parking space. Flat towing involves moving the car on its four wheels.

The car rolls as you move along. Before the age of modern cars with automatic transmission and modern electronics, it was pretty easy to flat tow any manual transmission car.

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If you have an automatic transmission car you can add several add-ons to make the car easier to tow. This can include adding transmission lubrication pumps and driveshaft decouplers. However, these add-ons will depend on the car model. It is also expensive for purchasing and installing these add-ons. Lastly, you can end up destroying your car which brings more problems with your warranty.

Method of towing

Using your RV to tow your car is also called “dingy towing”. If it is impossible to tow your car on its four wheels you can use a flatbed or enclosed trailer. In some instances, you can have the car on its two wheels while the rest are suspended. The weight of the car versus that of RV will also determine your method of towing.

The law specifies the allowable gross combined vehicle weight rating. This is the total weight of the RV and the car. This figure is important as it protects you from ruining your transmission. When you are flat towing ensure that you place a cooler to avoid ruining your transmission.

Car uses

The type of car that you choose to tow will also be determined by the purpose of your trip. If you plan on using the car for groceries and small trips to town then a small car will be ideal. However, if you plan on doing some serious off-road travels then the Jeep is your best choice.

Running the engine during stops

As stated earlier, some car models cannot pump the transmission fluid unless the engine is on. In this instance, you may need to make regular stops along the way and start the engine. This lubricates most of the transmission parts. In some instances, you may need to remove some fuses before continuing with your journey. When flat towing your car you will need to engage the car on neutral.

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However, there some 4X4 cars that are flat towed at park position. You then use the neutral mode for transfer cases. You will need to check the manufacturer’s manual again for confirmation. Destroying your transmission is not worth the burden of carrying along with your beloved car during RV trips.

Ignition switch

Most modern cars nowadays lock the steering if the key is not turned on. These kind of cars will lock the front wheels making the trip impossible. In this case you are required to leave the ignition key at the accessory position.

Auxiliary brakes

The RV is a large vehicle and with car being towed behind it is a recipe for road accidents. In this case, the driver behind cannot see when you are signaling or braking. To prevent accidents, various US states have made it compulsory to have auxiliary brakes that work in tandem with the towed car. To avoid further fines even in states that do not make it compulsory have them on.

Hello I'm Magnus, the owner and the writer of this website. I have been working with cars since I was 16 and I'm specialized with in-depth Automotive diagnostics. Also been driving drifting for the last 6 years. I'm here to give you answers to all your automotive questions and I hope that you enjoy our content.

  1. Could you tell me if you can flat tow a 2006 Pontiac Solstice with a manual transmission?

  2. Due to a very high demand and high ammount of comments, you have to wait for some time for your car questions to get answered. If you want to get fast answers from a certified master technician you can ask your questions here:
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