Does no Towing Capacity Mean...

Discussion in 'Prime Main Forum (2017-Current)' started by inferno, May 18, 2016.

  1. inferno

    inferno Senior Member

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    • No Thule bike rack in the back?
    • No Thule box?
    • What about a regular bike rack?

    I love towing our Thule box with our PiP :D All-utility vehicle with plugin capacity...
     
  2. drash

    drash Senior Member

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    I look at it as a total gross vehicle weight limitation. Whether you tow it or haul it you should stay under that weight limit. With the liquid cooling that the motors and inverters have they would see the same stress whether you are towing or hauling.


    Unsupervised!
     
  3. mmmodem

    mmmodem Taste Tester

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    It's the same no towing as it is for a PiP. Since you ignored it on your PiP...
     
  4. wjtracy

    wjtracy Senior Member

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    Note also the other discussions about Gen4 towing...in EU, Toyota is saying you can tow with Gen4 due to better cooling in the engine design. Prime may be different but there you have it.
     
  5. Trollbait

    Trollbait It's a D&D thing

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    The online gen4 owner's manual for the US actually does warn against using hitch mounted anything, because the car's body wasn't designed for the stress from the added weight.

    The question is if cars getting a tow rating in Europe is a culture or sales issue, or because of differing tow limit standards and laws.

    The gen4's limit is 750kg in the EU. If the Prime receives the ability to tow for that market, expect it to be lower by the extra weight of the larger battery and charger at the least.
     
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  6. dbcassidy

    dbcassidy Toyota Hybrid Nation, 8 Million Strong

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    Look for a frame mounted add on hitch, do not exceed max payload rating, and you will be fine. I do this to carry the 2 bicycles on the hitch mounted bike carrier. Works great has proper structural support (frame, not body), and carrier swings down for hatch access.


    DBCassidy
     
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  7. wjtracy

    wjtracy Senior Member

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    ....at least that's 1650-lbs after units conversion
     
  8. Trollbait

    Trollbait It's a D&D thing

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    But still lower than non-hybrid cars there.
    I haven't seen an unbraked to braked trailer tow limit for the gen4, but I have for the Sonic/Aveo.
    In the US, the Sonic is two size classes below the Prius; I'd say it is more like one and half by actual measurements.
    In the EU, the Aveo has a 500kg unbraked and 1000kg braked(1100kg for the 1.4L turbo) tow limits.
     
  9. wjtracy

    wjtracy Senior Member

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    Apparently Prime has the carbon fiber (expensive) back hatch so probably want to treat that with kid gloves I suppose

    Gonna be hard to beat PiP1 for a mini-SUV plug-in, except on battery size you can beat it
     
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  10. DavidA

    DavidA Prius owner since July 2009

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    Re: bikes

    As mentioned above, with the special glass and carbon hatch (expensive) on the Prime, I would absolutely advise against carrying bikes with any bike rack model that straps to the hatch/glass and also straps to something near the bumper. I was always leary of that entire family of racks when I was a bike dealer - yet sold tons of them nevertheless. The weight of the bikes and the rack, and then hitting a bump in the road, the forces on the glass and hatch area can be tremendous. Think jumping up and down on a scale and seeing how high the needle (or LCD readout) goes.

    Due to those possible load situations on "iffy" car models, and I would include the Prime from what I know of it thus far, I would always recommend a hitch mounted bike rack type, despite the higher cost difference. Also much easier and safer for the bikes and car to use the trailer hitch mount. Seems the GenIV family of Prii can be fitted with the Curt or similar 1.25" hitch at a reasonable cost. There are several threads already started on this.

    I haven't seen a Thule or Yakima box on any GenIV yet, but if either company makes specific clips for the new Prii, then they've already tested and are confident the rack and boxes won't hurt the car. I would trust their judgement if it is, or will be, in their fit charts.
     
  11. Trollbait

    Trollbait It's a D&D thing

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    This is Toyota's stance on hitch mounted bike racks in the US on the gen4, "Toyota does not recommend towing a trailer with your vehicle. Toyota also does not recommend the installation of a tow hitch or the use of a tow hitch carrier for a wheelchair, scooter, bicycle, etc. Your vehicle is not designed for trailer towing or for the use of tow hitch mounted carriers."
     
  12. Redpoint5

    Redpoint5 Senior Member

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    Toyota doesn't recommend any of those things because they didn't specifically design to accommodate them, and likely didn't test for those applications. That leaves the decision making up to the customer to use their best judgement.

    I towed 2,000 lbs a few miles with my PiP and watched all of the temperature gauges using Torque. Monitoring temperatures gave me confidence I wasn't going to over heat anything. Driving conservatively, I left myself plenty of stopping distance.
     
  13. Trollbait

    Trollbait It's a D&D thing

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    I agree on the CYA aspect.
    The frustration is that the gen4 does have an actual tow rating in Europe while Toyota is saying don't put on a bike rack in the US.
     
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  14. inferno

    inferno Senior Member

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    Did they have this warning on the Gen 3? Because I see those everywhere...even Gen 3s towing small trailers!
     
  15. Trollbait

    Trollbait It's a D&D thing

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    There was the warning about towing or a zero pound tow rating for the gen2, and plenty of people towed with them. That is how it is with nearly all the actual cars sold in the US. No tow rating, but those not sold on the idea that they need a truck for a small trailer, tow anyway.
     
  16. DavidA

    DavidA Prius owner since July 2009

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    Toyota might be afraid that a tow hitch could affect their crash testing results in a real world incident. But then, if they recommend against such an installation, then wouldn't the liability rest mostly/totally on the vehicle owner if a hitch was installed, and then something bad happened in an accident due to the hitch installation?
     
  17. Trollbait

    Trollbait It's a D&D thing

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    Do US crash test regulations require separate testing for with and without tow hitch in the case of vehicles with tow capability?
     
  18. Bill Norton

    Bill Norton Senior Member

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    So don't load up your In-Laws or your bikes... JK
    In the EU In-Laws weigh less.

    Either baby your car or use it the way you need to.
     
  19. ETC(SS)

    ETC(SS) The other One Percenter.....

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    I'm trying to figure out a way to answer this question without sounding overly snarky, and I mean absolutely no insult here, but if you're asking the question as a 'go-no go' for towing with a Prius-sized-vehicle then you should probably not tow anything yet.

    There's a difference between towing limitations as defined by:
    Owners.
    OEMs.
    Sir Isaac Newton.
    Lawyers.
    (so called) Common Sense....which generally speaking.....isn't.
    The Department of Transportation (dot.gov)

    I've got 99,000+ miles in G3s, and I have some limited experience with towing with dot.mil, with dot.com, and with personal loads up to about 3000#.
    I pretty much know where the guard-rails are, and what a G3 can and cannot tow, and when, and where.

    You CAN tow small loads and bolt items onto the exterior of the car (i.e. bike rack) but unless you're familiar with towing, you should eschew this activity until you educate yourself on the subject....and by this I mean LEARN from multiple trusted sources, rather than internet blowhards (like me, some would say!) or things you learn from hanging around chat rooms.
    You can learn much, but you need to develop a good working feces detector to filter out the trash.

    Otherwise?
    Yeah....obviously you could wind up endangering yourself or the motoring public, that's a given.
    But.....what if some dealer decides to invalidate your warranty because there is a bike rack on your car?
    What if some Prius hating cop decides to harrass you for towing a garden trailer?
    What if you see a picture or a video of somebody towing a large mobile home with a Prius and decide that the lawyers and the OEMs (and dot.gov) is full of crap?

    Spoiler Alert: I pity the dealer that would try to invalidate a warranty for my car due to a bolt-on carrier or a hitch receiver.....just sayin' ;)

    Good Luck!
     
    #19 ETC(SS), May 20, 2016
    Last edited: May 20, 2016
  20. PT Guy

    PT Guy Active Member

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    Toyota didn't install a subframe suitable for a hitch because...weight? cost? space?

    Whatever the reason, it ain't there.
     
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