Sign in to follow this  
R W Burgess

This news aggravated me!

Recommended Posts

The Big SUV's death rattle- Yahoo! Autos Article Page

Wonderful news, huh?

It seems to me that every vehicle that old people (Yeah, I'm including me:rolleyes:)enjoy owning are being fazed out because of some misguided perceptions about fuel mileages. So, what do we use for tow vehicles from now on?

Anyone that tows trailers knows that long wheel based vehicles are the safest tow vehicles to pull heavy loads with.

I'll just bet they're pushing all of these folks to the dually pickups, but gee, they don't have a wagon like storage area in the rear seating area. I'm just blowing off steam, but I never seem to be able to find an avenue to the Corporations to tell them what I really think. Have you been able to find a contact e-mail address?

Sorry, I guess the Tea Party still has me primed.:)

Wayne

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Wayne, I saw exactly the same thing with exactly the same thought. What do I use to tow my 27 foot trailer when a "large " SUV is based on a Ford Taurus platform??? It is plain unsafe to use a small dog to handle a large tail. I love my Dodge truck, (the gas mileage is horrible), it is wonderful and comfortable for towing with a full load so I make the sacrifice. Are the "powers that be" going to try to mandate us out of existance yet another way???

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

There will still have to be tow vehicles made. What may be missing are those nice vehicles that can function as a tow vehicle and a semi practical everyday "grocery getter" on a regular basis as well.

Not to mention our current SUV's will probably still be able to work for us reliably for another 10 or so years anyway.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I would not worry too much--the Suburban is not going away, nor is the Expedition.

The Explorer and Grand Cherokee will still be able to tow up to about 5000 lb and a sharp new Dodge Durango is about to be introduced.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

With all due respect sir, it is not what they CAN to but what they can tow SAFELY. I see far too often a smaller vehicle which is rated to tow a certain weight but when it is towing that weight and has to stop in an emergency situation it is far out of its league. My continuing concern is that when a downsized Explorer (on a Taurus chassis for crying out loud) is placed in that situation problems will occurr and we will again hear about how unsafe it is for non commercial vehicles to be towing anything. And I am sitting here complaining about a vehicle big enough to tow Crosleys!!!! What about you guys towing Cadillacs and Packards???

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Well, the comment was made that they still make the Suburban...which of course is true...but the engines keep getting smaller.

I'm looking for a replacement for my 1996 2500, with the 454 engine. That's about 7.4L. See a used one, fairly new on a lot, when I say to salesman "oh, it's a 6L" well, what's wrong with that they ask......I still believe the old racer's saw "there's no replacement for displacement." I realize that engines have been improved and so forth, but hit a big hill towing a heavy Packard in an enclosed trailer, and you want those cubic inches working for you.

I've resisted going the diesel route, although I know that's available, and those engines, too, are much improved.

So, what year was the last year of a large engine available in the Suburban? A really large, equivalent to the 454............and there's a reason I need a Suburban, not a truck...but that's a whole nother story.......

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
West, It's an explorer - he obviously uses the roof rack :)

LOL!!!!

I've seen Crosleys hauled about every way possible and have hauled quite a few in the bed of a full sized pickup. Fellow member Barry Seel and I hauled 3 home from Western Pa with a pickup and a 20 foot trailer (you figure it out, all 3 were wagons that measure almost 12 feet from bumper to bumper!!) I specifically bought my trailer so I could haul 2 at a time inside. One friend hauls his Farm O Road in the back of his pickup all the time (60 inch wheel base, it's snug but fits great). My favorite is still the guy who bought a partially wrecked (hit from behind) full sized motor home and rebuilt the back section into a mini garage to haul his Crosley inside and still had a motor home.

The point here is transporting show cars safely with tow vehicles that are smaller than they are. If they take away the possibility for getting tow vehicles for recreational activities, they take away our hobby. Unlike some others, I have no objection to buying an oversize cab pickup for this purpose ( I have a small farm and enough use for a truck on a regular basis), but there are those of our friends that want something a little more "creature comfortable" to use as a dual purpose for when they are not towing. It appears that those are going to cease to exist!!! I believe Linc400 mentioned on another thread the "downsizing" of the late 70's. Well it is happening again!!!!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Unlike some others, I have no objection to buying an oversize cab pickup for this purpose ( I have a small farm and enough use for a truck on a regular basis), but there are those of our friends that want something a little more "creature comfortable" to use as a dual purpose for when they are not towing. It appears that those are going to cease to exist!!! I believe Linc400 mentioned on another thread the "downsizing" of the late 70's. Well it is happening again!!!!

That's what I'm talking about Dave. If I tow only 10 times a year, why would I want to have extra insurance, registration, and property tax fees on two vehicles. A suburban can be used for daily shopping, grocery store runs, what have you, whereas, a large dually pickup is not suited for those duties.

I just feel that here lately, the powers that be are not listening to us, or maybe they just don't care. They seem to forget that, for the most part, us old people are the only ones that are saving money for high dollar purchases like these.

Wayne

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

They seem to forget that, for the most part, us old people are the only ones that are saving money for high dollar purchases like these.

Wayne

Wayne;

How old fashioned of you.....saving money to buy something you want. Next thing you will tell me that you actually PAY for what you buy. Just stand back, cry discrimination (there is a definate bias against us "somewhat more mature" folks), and let the government bail you out!!! As an old boss of mine used to say "It's not my world anymore"!!!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

To those lamenting the changes to the Explorer, let's not forget that the Explorer has NEVER been a "full size" SUV. Everyone here should be old enough to remember that the Explorer is the descendant of the Bronco II, which in turn was originally based on the Ranger small pickup. Yes, the Explorer has grown, but it is NOT the full size SUV in the Ford lineup. More to the point, 99% of Explorers don't tow anything heavier than a small utility trailer and the only time they go off-road is if the driver accidentally backs over the landscaping on the way out of the driveway.

As for the loss of the big block Chevy, I also was saddened when production was stopped, but keep in mind that the current truck 6.0 makes more horsepower and torque than the 7.4 or 8.1 ever did, and gets better mileage to boot. It's also smaller and lighter. What's the problem exactly?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

A good tow viehicle need not be a dually. A 2500 or 3500 deisel is the only way to tow, they can be bought in a 4 wheel configuration, and they get better mileage than gas vehicles. I have heard no positive comments about the newer diesels, since they were changed for EPA reasons, but nothing, nothing at all, tows like a diesel. 145,000 miles on mine and still runs like new. If it ain't loud and smells, is ain't a truck.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

One can look at the numbers on the new engines, and everything seems fine, the 6.0 has, on paper, good horsepower and torque.

So, one day the local dealer has a newer Suburban for sale, 3/4 ton and 4 wheel drive and the new 6.0. I took it for a test drive, hooked up my enclosed trailer, loaded my Pierce in the trailer, and drove it on hills and freeway as a unit.

Whatever the numbers say, the 6.0 DOES NOT have the easy pulling power of the 454 in my '96 Sububan. That's my problem with the newer engines. Yes, it will do it, but not, in my opinion and testing mentioned, as well............

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

The solution seems simple enough. Decide on what your ultimate towing truck would be and buy it now, used in pristine condition. How long are you going to need it? I am thinking 10 years at the most for a lot of us. This country is full of excellent slightly used vehicles. Get one and maintain it faithfully and it will give all the service one needs. I have never felt the need for a new vehicle in 50 years of driving, and have never had any trouble finding a great car any time I decided it was time for another one. I know, good we all don't think that way or the industry and good used vehicles would have disappeared long ago. jim43

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I've always bought my Suburbans used, and agree with you. I normally keep them at least 10 years.....but it's getting harder and harder to find a 3/4 ton, 4 wheel drive, big engine Surburban, with relatively low miles, that's 3-6 years old. When one buys used, you are buying miles, so buying something with more than 100K doesn't make sense.

I'm looking.....

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Whatever the numbers say, the 6.0 DOES NOT have the easy pulling power of the 454 in my '96 Sububan. That's my problem with the newer engines. Yes, it will do it, but not, in my opinion and testing mentioned, as well............

Pulling power is not just engine numbers, it is also transmission and final drive ratios. Did you verify that the new truck you drove had a comparable final drive ratio to the one in your Suburban? Most new vehicles have higher (low numerical) final drives to meet CAFE limits. You can special order steeper gears, but the trucks on the lot are unlikely to have them, again because nearly all buyers of these vehicles use them as station wagons and not heavy tow vehicles.

Of course, I wouldn't buy a new one anyway. My 99 Chevy crewcab dually has 216K miles on it, got a new trans this spring, and will probably get a new engine in a year or so. Amazingly, the exhaust system is still factory original.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

All good points, no, I didn't look at the gear ratios, and should have. I've considered doing a major overhaul of my '96, engine and trans seem fine at 160K, steering is getting loose, and it has some small things wrong with it, seat stitching coming loose and such. Probably be money ahead to fix those things, and just use the truck for towing.

I did put a new radiator in it a couple months ago. Developed a leak, went to my trusty radiator shop, fellow laughed and said "can't help you, it's got a plastic tank on it..." So new is the only option...

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Probably be money ahead to fix those things, and just use the truck for towing.

That is absolutely true. I did a complete front end and brake rebuild on mine about two years ago. Just priced an equivalent replacement truck (2010 3500 crewcab dually 4x4) with the diesel and it was over $52K list. :eek:

$2700 for the trans and $5000 for a crate 454 doesn't sound so bad.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I saw that bullet proof Suburban, wow! Bet that's one heavy truck, with armor and bullet proof glass..........this would be a good truck to go looking in those hard-to-get-in junkyards....like the one where I walked up to the house door and there was a note on the door...."you knock, you wake me up, I shoot you in face"........

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Wonderful news, huh?

It seems to me that every vehicle that old people (Yeah, I'm including me:rolleyes:)enjoy owning are being fazed out because of some misguided perceptions about fuel mileages. So, what do we use for tow vehicles from now on?

Anyone that tows trailers knows that long wheel based vehicles are the safest tow vehicles to pull heavy loads with.

I'll just bet they're pushing all of these folks to the dually pickups, but gee, they don't have a wagon like storage area in the rear seating area. I'm just blowing off steam, but I never seem to be able to find an avenue to the Corporations to tell them what I really think. Have you been able to find a contact e-mail address?

Wayne

I find it interesting how the author of the article was able to turn the positive news of increased large SUV sales into "The Big SUV's Death Rattle". I guess that is how authors attract eyeballs (on web sites & TV) or sell newspapers & magazines.

I got some wonderful news a couple of years ago that the maker of my SUV would not offer a V8 option for the new model of the SUV I drive. They cited low sales of the V8 model as one reason for not offering it. The largest engine offering in the new model has a tow rating 2,000 pounds less than my current vehicle. They also announced a 4 cylinder engine for the new model which weighs over 5,500 lbs. Funny, after only one year of sales, they have discontinued the 4 cylinder model due to extremely LOW sales. Since they currently offer two different V8 engines (4.6L & 5.7L) in other vehicles there may be hope they might come to their senses and put a V8 in the current model and increase the tow capacity (not holding my breath). Also interesting to note that at least for now they do offer the V8 and higher tow rating in two other SUV models they sell. Unfortunately, those models cost $16K and 35K more than the model I have.

When I was shopping for a tow vehicle a few years ago I wanted something that could serve a number of my needs. Towing, winter driving duty, hauling household items, hauling more people more comfortably, etc. For me, most pickup trucks at the time failed to meet those needs and cost $20-30K more.

At some of the AACA Meets this year I noticed that I am not alone when it comes to towing smaller, lighter trailers with an SUV. Not everyone needs or wants a large, dually pickup. Unfortunately, the future plans of automakers does not bode well for those of us with those needs. Time will tell how this works out.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Are the "powers that be" going to try to mandate us out of existance yet another way???

You've all known this was coming for years. I started posting on the main forum about this in 2007, when President Bush signed the Energy Independence and Security Act ( Energy Independence and Security Act of 2007 - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia ). I was telling you then to start buying up tow vehicles because they were going the way of the do-do.

It's a simple fact: none of us can burn gas the same way we did last year, and none of us will be able to burn it next year like we are now, all for reasons that are a he!! of a lot more important than our toy cars. Me included. Choosing not to appreciate those reasons won't change them or make them go away.

XXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXX

And if having 2 vehicles, one for towing and one for the 98% of your life when you don't tow things, sounds too expensive, just wait a few years. That next Suburban is going to cost at least double what the last one did very soon. God only knows what the gas to run it is going to cost. Maybe stooping to having a car to use to save on the Suburban for when it's really needed has benefits that justify the insurance/plates/etc., or at the very least will justify those costs soon.

Suburban sales have risen 22% this year, but they're still off by 50% from what they were just 3 years ago. And no regulation/law/etc. from those people we elect had anything to do with it yet. The people buying them this year know it's their last chance and (probably) they really need one. But even at that, it's a trickle compared to the old salad days of 2004.

The world has changed.

Edited by R W Burgess
unnecessary, unkind comments (see edit history)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

It looks like its time to buy up some older suburbans and stash them away,I will always build my own tow vehicles since they dont make them the way I like them any more. The manufactures want to sell the options in groups instead of individually now and since I like vehicles without all the power goodies I buy the older trucks and repower them with bigger motors and add what I need for options and nothing more,right now I am building a 66 f250 for my tow vehicle and wish I would of bought the next generation (67-72) crew cab to build so more people can come along on the trip. It would be nice to have something like a suburban but I need a truck so my next hauler will be a crew cab.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now
Sign in to follow this