Selecting tow vehicle for 18'Bushtracker van

Submitted: Sunday, Oct 19, 2003 at 23:04
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We are in the planning stages for our proposed 18' Bushtracker van and need to select an off road vehicle. Our previous was a true lemon (2nd hand Range Rover) which we towed an off road Camp O matic 4x4 trailer. Looking for comfort ride and lots of leg room with good safety features- presently considering the Landcruiser 100 series 4.7 V8 (petrol) Your imput appreciated. Helen & John
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Reply By: Motley - Sunday, Oct 19, 2003 at 23:06

Sunday, Oct 19, 2003 at 23:06
Helen and John, I know that you won't be disappointed with a decision to move to a Bushtracker from a camp trailer. We have a 20' BT we collected earlier this year and to paraphrase the Marketing Dept - "It's go-anywhere luxury!!" We tow ours with a Lexus LX470. It has the same 4.7L V8 engine as the LC100. Our vehicle is a 2000 model and the only thing I would prefer is the newer model because the auto transmission has an extra gear. I think the new LC100 has the five speed transmission. If so, that would overcome the only reservation I would have. When towing, you chew through fuel, but there is plenty of power on tap. Many BT owners tow with F250s and they are beasts! A great vehicle for towing, but our rationale was to have a capable tow vehicle with the ability to unhitch and "go bush". Because the LandCruiser is smaller than the F250 I believe it has better off-road flexibility than the F250, but that's a personal thing. Bottom line? For an 18' BT, the LC100 Petrol V8 is a competent tow vehicle in my opinion Good luck

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Reply By: Deleted User - Sunday, Oct 19, 2003 at 23:07

Sunday, Oct 19, 2003 at 23:07
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Reply By: Rockgoc - Sunday, Oct 19, 2003 at 23:08

Sunday, Oct 19, 2003 at 23:08
We chose to buy a LC 100 Series diesel manual and had a turbo fitted to it (simply because we could not get our hands on a second hand one for love nor money!) We also had heavy duty springs and shockers fitted and then had poly airbags fitted on the rear as well. We are yet to pick up our BT (March) but feel we are well prepared for the job of towing it. Good luck with your search! Cheers From Jan & Ian
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Reply By: Paul and Barb - Sunday, Oct 19, 2003 at 23:09

Sunday, Oct 19, 2003 at 23:09
Hi Helen & John
I purchased a new Landcruiser 100 series turbo
diesel in July 2002 with the idea of towing a BT in the future. We picked up our
van in mid August this year, 18ft. 2580kg unladen weight, with 4 full water
tanks and gear we have to be over 3000kg. (We ordered the van with suspension to
suit 3500kg.) I have been very happy with the towing ability of the cruiser,
auto with overdrive. The only modification made to the cruiser was to fit
slightly stronger rear springs which raised up the back by 30mm, the front
torsion bars were tweaked to bring the front height up a bit. Economy around
town is 12 litres/100klm and towing the van is 21

Paul & Barb
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Reply By: TripnTaps - Sunday, Oct 19, 2003 at 23:10

Sunday, Oct 19, 2003 at 23:10
Thanks all for your feedback re 100 series Landcruiser. We figured the unit would handle the towing fine as you said and given that we havn't finalised what we can afford to put into our van till we select a tow vehicle ($'s only go so far) it was the running costs that has had me concerned with the V8 as our everyday vehicle as well. We were not prepared to go to the expense of a new TD LC and as regular servicing is so important with a diesel are reluctant to buy Diesel 2nd hand. I talked John into having a look at a Jeep G. Cherokee Laredo 2.7CRD (Common Rail direct diesel) yesterday which has a tow capacity of 3.5 tonnes which is a lot more economical than the LC V8 as a comparitive and we thought it was a pretty neat unit. Has anyone heard bad negatives about the GC. In e-mail discussion with Steven from BT he said the 'windage and aerodynamic profile' was a relevant consideration I assume when selecting a tow vehicle. I'm making this decision more difficult probably because of the daily running costs of the V8 and because I liked the new imporved LCPrado and Steven from BT opinion was it wasn't up to the job definately for a 18' and just Ok for a 16'. (I dont expect to have these worries with the BT cause you all seem pretty pleased with yours) Chow.... Helen
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Reply By: Noosa Fox - Sunday, Oct 19, 2003 at 23:11

Sunday, Oct 19, 2003 at 23:11
Helen, We spoke to a couple at the weekend who own a Kedron caravan and had a 3-4yr old Jeep but had to sell it because it didn't have the required ball weight to tow the van. They now have Landcruiser T/D. The Jeeps that I have seen appear much narrower and front seat passenger and driver are nearly touching each other, not like in the Landcruisers, Patrols and F250's etc. Have you considered the Patrols, they are a lot cheaper than Landcruisers, as they don't have as many features, but are a good tow vehicle. We have several Patrol owners in the BOG group. I do know that the Patrol 4800 petrol is VERY thirsty. With the Jeep & Prado because they are physically smaller than the Landcruiser and Patrol, you are more likely to have the vehicle become unstable when large trucks go past at speed, than you are with the longer wheel base vehicles. The larger the tow vehicle, especially weight and wheel base, the more stable it will be as a tow vehicle. Ask any man, size is important. Brian
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Reply By: TripnTaps - Sunday, Oct 19, 2003 at 23:12

Sunday, Oct 19, 2003 at 23:12
OK, Ok Brian I get the message - its not just a boy thing.... thanks for the advice and I will do my homework on the Nissan as well the Landcruiser ... Chow ... Helen
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