With camping season right around the corner, you and your family may be considering investing in an RV or looking into upgrading your towing vehicle.
Several factors play into the best vehicles for towing an RV or camper, including towing capacity and payload.
However, it’s important to factor in other considerations about your towing vehicle as well, since you’re bound to use it for more than just hauling your RV.
Let’s take a closer look at some of these considerations along with the best vehicles on our list.
Vehicle Types for Towing
Typically, there are three main types of vehicles that people use to tow:
Each of these vehicle types has its pros and cons, and it’s key to consider all of them before making a concrete decision on such a big purchase.
Trucks are known for being tough, sturdy, robust, and reliable.
These vehicles are often used for hauling heavy loads, so they’re no stranger to the needs required to pull an RV.
Plus, these days, newer trucks come with all of the luxurious features you can find in other vehicles.
Even their fuel efficiency has increased over the years.
A truck will also offer you more storage space, as it boasts a wide-open bed perfect for storing luggage, camping gear, and more.
While the cabins of many trucks can be small and compact, larger trucks have roomier designs that allow you and your family to sit comfortably for long drives.
One of the biggest perks of using an SUV to tow your camper is the space.
SUVs are larger vehicles, so there’s tons of space inside for not only your family but all of your family’s stuff.
This can include luggage, personal items, coolers, camping gear, and more.
SUVs also provide more coverage and protection than a truck would.
While a truck bed leaves your possessions exposed to the elements, an SUV keeps everything safely tucked inside.
Finally, SUVs tend to get better gas mileage and fuel efficiency than trucks, even with the many improvements that truck models have made over the years.
Minivans may not be considered “cool” by today’s standards, but the truth of the matter is that these cars can pack some serious power, and they will offer the most space of any vehicle on the list.
You can fit more people while still leaving plenty of space for cargo.
A minivan is also likely to have more comfort options than other vehicles on the list.
And finally, this type of vehicle will have the best fuel efficiency, beating out both trucks and SUVs.
Features to Consider
Choosing a safe and effective vehicle for towing involves much more than just choosing the body type.
You should also consider this list of features:
- Payload/towing capacity
- Towing attachment
- Trailer brake controllers
- Engine cooling
- Camera connectivity
- Blindspot monitoring
Some of these features, such as towing capacity and towing attachments, are necessary to tow anything – let alone a whole RV.
Other features are simply helpful and can make towing a safe experience.
Best Vehicles for Towing an RV or Camper
We’ve reviewed and tested a wide range of vehicles to put together a helpful list of the best vehicles for towing an RV or camper in 2021.
Check out these excellent choices below.
As far as trucks go, you really can’t go wrong with any heavy-duty option.
But, we love the 2021 Chevrolet Silverado as a trusted manufacturer with tons of power.
The newest Silverado boasts a max towing capacity of 14,500 pounds with a payload of 3,979 pounds.
These numbers alone far outdo the competition.
On top of that, this fancy, new truck comes with all the bells and whistles.
It has multiple integrated cameras, tire pressure monitoring, and a heads-up display.
Plus, we have to admit, this truck just looks great on the road.
Jeep lovers and truck lovers alike can appreciate one of the newest models on the market, the Jeep Gladiator.
With the body of a Jeep and a truck bed to boot, what more could you need?
This vehicle is very tow-friendly, offering a 7,650-pound towing capacity and a 1,600-pound payload.
The EcoDiesel engine is great for fuel efficiency, and the vehicle itself is perfect for any off-roading adventures.
The body style provides the same internal space as a traditional Jeep, while the added bed feature lets you bring more along on your trip.
A heavy-duty SUV, the 2021 Ford Expedition comes with versatile trailer options, including features like integrated brake controllers and safe towing hardware.
The Ford Expedition is rated with a 9,300-pound towing capacity along with a max payload of 1,700 pounds.
The Expedition is a fantastic choice for towing because it comes jam-packed with luxury and comfort features along with its capacity.
It offers the best of both worlds with the ability to safely tow an RV while also holding you, your family, and your gear.
2021 Toyota Highlander
The Toyota Highlander is categorized as a light-duty SUV and features the same unibody frames that sedans and crossovers use.
While this means your Highlander has limited towing capacity, it also means you can get excellent fuel economy when towing smaller RVs or campers.
You can count on the Highlander to safely pull at 3,500 pounds or less.
Its payload max out is 1,400 pounds.
However, the non-hybrid version of this vehicle comes equipped with a V6 engine and reaches 5,000 pounds of towing capacity.
Though not a huge vehicle, the Toyota SUV does have a third row, leaving you with plenty of internal space.
Nissan NV Passenger Van
Minivans are limited to 3,500 pounds of towing capacity, and so they are easily compared to light-duty SUVs.
The 2021 Nissan NV Passenger van is an excellent choice for a large group looking to tow a smaller RV or camper.
The payload capacity of the NV ranges from 2,500 to 2,800 pounds, but it can be optioned to tow as much as 6,200 pounds.
It can also carry as many as 12 people, meaning it offers tons of space.
Choosing the best vehicle for towing your RV or camper is a critical decision.
You must make sure that the vehicle can handle the weight of your RV, while also taking things like comfort, space, and safety into consideration.
Use the list above to further your research and guide your buying process.