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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
So, we all know our Compass's have an awful towing capacity of 2000 pounds...

Are you guys strict with this, or towing more than 2k?

I am looking to tow a travel trailer between 2300-2600 pounds (dry weight). Would you recommend this? Or is there anyway to make towing this much easier? It would be used for vacations semi-frequently (3-4 trips, 600-1200 miles, a year).

Thoughts?
 

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What year Compass? Regardless these aren't good tow vehicles.

I agree with @mikes. IMHO and with no experience, if you have a 2nd gen Compass it would probably do better than a 1st generation Compass, but I'd be very cautious of making any Compass pull at or over capacity.

Short distances are probably OK, but remember you are stressing it. I pulled a good-sized cargo trailer about 100 miles with my 2014 Patriot 2.0/5-spd, but I stuck to rural state highways and took it very easy and gave it a rest part way. There were some modest hills, but the weather was cool. The most I've towed otherwise is my 5x10 cargo trailer with my riding mower on it. I think I'm under capacity but I can tell it's working harder than usual and being such a light vehicle the added weight affects braking and cornering, too.

If you're dragging your trailer over the mountains or for long drives on a hot interstate, I'd say no-go. Also remember that the capacity includes passengers and cargo. Mom, Dad, two kids and their luggage count against that 2000lb capacity.
 

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passengers and cargo ... count against that 2000lb capacity.
No, not really. From the manual (specific, but this stuff is standardized across vehicles):
The GVWR is the total allowable weight of your vehicle. This includes driver, passengers, cargo and tongue weight... The GTW is the weight of the trailer plus the weight of all cargo, consumables and equipment (permanent or temporary) loaded in or on the trailer...
The GTW is 2000, and doesn't affect the GVWR. The tongue weight (max 200) does count against the GVWR and RAWR. It adds more than 100% to the RAWR, because the hitch ball is well behind the axle, so it acts as a lever and adds more the the rear and lightens the front. To really know how much you have to work with, you'd have to visit a scale. For many vehicles, you'd max out the axle rating first when loaded.
 

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Remember, weight is only half the equation, front cross section and aerodynamics of the trailer matter a great deal. If the trailer is 8 ft I would say it is a hard no. If the trailer is no more than 6 foot and has a nice rounded front that won't cause a lot air resistance / turbulence, then read on.

I would also insist on taking the trailer out for test run.

I have a 2018 (Latitude I think) with the 6 speed manual transmission and the tow package.
I recently pulled a trailer with a motorcycle on it, roughly 1300 lbs, from Illinois to NJ and back in cool weather.
I spent a fair bit of time in 4th gear in the hills of Pennsylvania to keep the speed above 60.
Revs were not near red line, the times I checked (not often) there was no temperature increase for the engine.
My gas mileage dropped from 28-31 mpg typical for highway to 18-19 mpg.
On the way there I was doing 75 mph on the flat.
I had a nasty headwind most of the way on the back so my plan to see how a lower speed effected mileage was foiled :).

If you do decide to try:
trailer brakes.
transmission cooler.
set top gear appropriately (I'm thinking 2 gears down).
cruising speed no greater than 65 mph.

My guess is that at 55 mph it would do fine,
certainly acceleration through 50 mph using a manual was fine for me, I was shifting at higher revs but it felt / sounded fine and I wasn't any slower than usual.
 

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After pulling a trailer with my lawnmower around where I live in Alabama, I say this is a horrible idea. There are a few steep hills and my second Generation Compass struggled. Don't even ask about the time my mower shifted to the rear of the trailer on a rainy day. The one time I forgot to strap down the mower is the one time I was caught in the rain. I've had tires blow out on the interstate that were easier to control to a stop.
 

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After pulling a trailer with my lawnmower around where I live in Alabama, I say this is a horrible idea. There are a few steep hills and my second Generation Compass struggled. Don't even ask about the time my mower shifted to the rear of the trailer on a rainy day. The one time I forgot to strap down the mower is the one time I was caught in the rain. I've had tires blow out on the interstate that were easier to control to a stop.
:eek:
 

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It is a 3300lb economy car, designed with a rugged chassis and 4x4, but still a 3300lb economy car. I disagree that 2000lbs is an awful towing capacity. I have a 2019 Latitude with a 6spd manual, not OEM tow package car but I put an OEM hitch in, and having towed up near that 2000lb threshold I can say that, when loaded properly the car has no issues with that kind of use. I can't speak for automatic transmission models, but I can imagine it may be a less pleasant experience.
 
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