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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I'm considering towing stuff (a trailer with furniture, and boxes etc ) with my S60 R.
I'm going to be driving on the highway if that makes a difference.

But I know almost NOTHING about towing.

I know the car is supposed to be able to tow about 3,300 lbs but how do I even know how much I'm towing? Do I load the trailer and then get it weighed somewhere? Is there a certain type of hitch or something I'm supposed to buy? I'm not even sure how to attach it to the car, but I assume after I consult the owner's manual or a place like U-Haul or something I should know the answer to that.. I'm so lost haha :confused:
 

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The trailer will have a maximum weight. Stay under that. In general, you can estimate weights for the things you're towing. You could get a camper big enough for a family of four, loaded with gear, and still be under 3300 pounds.

How far do you plan to tow? A move 5 miles away is a lot different from a cross-country trip. Flat terrain a lot different from the mountains.

You'll want to get a class 2 or 3 hitch. Most class 2 receivers are 1.25 inch-squared, many accessories (cargo carrier tray, bike rack) are 2.0 inch-squared so you may need an adapter.

I had the dealer install the receiver and connect up the wiring on my new car. I've seen posts of people installing themselves. You'll need a unit that attaches to the "frame", not the bumper.

I've towed loads of wood in a utility trailer (1000 pound max) with no complaints. Carrying bikes on the back is easy.
 

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How far and what kind of trailer?

An S60 is not really designed to tow. It doesn't have the cooling capacity, especially transmission cooling. If you tow at the limit, you're starting a ticking clock on the transmission.

And the 3300lbs is with a braked trailer, unbraked is probably 1400 lbs. a 5x8 uhaul trailer is about 1100 lbs, and doesn't have brakes, so you have a weight of 300 lbs for cargo. And I think the max tongue load on an s60 is 185lbs, so your 3000lbs trailer will be tongue heavy and therefore will fish tail.

Look at the tow ratings on a sedan as a maximum statement, meaning nothing will break or fail apart, but brakes, transmission and suspension will start to wear at accelerated rates.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
How far and what kind of trailer?

An S60 is not really designed to tow. It doesn't have the cooling capacity, especially transmission cooling. If you tow at the limit, you're starting a ticking clock on the transmission.

And the 3300lbs is with a braked trailer, unbraked is probably 1400 lbs. a 5x8 uhaul trailer is about 1100 lbs, and doesn't have brakes, so you have a weight of 300 lbs for cargo. And I think the max tongue load on an s60 is 185lbs, so your 3000lbs trailer will be tongue heavy and therefore will fish tail.
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Orville, Thanks for all the info. I need to tow a 6x9 almost 3,000 miles. I was thinking of using a transmission cooler. The stuff I need to tow isn't very heavy, but It's long, A couch thats like 120lbs and other stuff. It should be under 300lb of cargo
 

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I wouldn't do it with our xc90 V8 with the factory transmission cooler. That's a lot of hours of heat build up. You'd be ahead to ship the couch or sell it before you move.

Volvos are just not designed for towing. I did similar with a 4000 lbs trailer and a land rover. Twice across the country and it did fine. But it has a transmission cooler in the radiator, an oil cooler and another aux transmission cooler, all factory and all standard.

If you do decide to do it, you'll want to get the cooler, and plan on towing at 55 mph. Your R will have plenty of power to yank that trailer around, but it will do it by heating up the transmission.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
If you do decide to do it, you'll want to get the cooler, and plan on towing at 55 mph. Your R will have plenty of power to yank that trailer around, but it will do it by heating up the transmission.
I'm thinking I won't tow with the R. but as a point of due diligence, Aprox how many mpg do you think I would get? It's normally 18/25.
I may rent a truck and tow the R but that's gonna burn even more gas I think
 

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fyi: a OEM trailer hitch has a class 3/4 2" mount, aftermarket only has a class 1 or 2 mount thats 1 1/4"

If you are moving, rent a one way uhaul with a trailer and tow the car. if the truck breaks down its not your truck, just a major inconvenience.
 

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I towed my Mastercraft inboard ski boat behind the VR (~2500lbs) - 5hr trip from where I purchased it.
CaR did great - but mileage was HORRIBLE - like 10MPG type of bad!
I was due for new rear shocks anyway and towed before replacing them.
Rear was VERY low but never bottomed out.
The pulling power was great on the highway - but given the option, I wouldn't tow something that big again behind the VR.
BTW I have the factory installed tow bar with a 2" mount.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
I towed my Mastercraft inboard ski boat behind the VR (~2500lbs) - 5hr trip from where I purchased it.
CaR did great - but mileage was HORRIBLE - like 10MPG type of bad!
Damn! Was it 2500lbs including the trailer? Nice looking car btw!
 

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I'm thinking I won't tow with the R. but as a point of due diligence, Aprox how many mpg do you think I would get? It's normally 18/25.
I may rent a truck and tow the R but that's gonna burn even more gas I think
I bet your truck gets 8-10 mpg, and your R gets 10-12 mpg. You'll be in constant boost, and that will suck gas.
 

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I have a CDL and have been towing with anything from cars smaller than a P2 Volvo up through 18-wheelers for a long time. The key when towing with anything is how you drive- it certainly depends on gas vs. diesel and auto vs. manual, but being in the proper gear, accelerating at a median rate and braking properly are all important. I tow with my V70 and I would recommend it without hesitation as long as you are within weight limits and drive accordingly. A lightweight single axle trailer with a few hundred pounds of furniture is in no way overloading the car. It's no different than having 4 or 5 people and luggage in the car; weight is weight, the transmission doesn't know the difference.

FYI I tow 2 jet skis on a trailer and a utility trailer at about 2500# with my 2.5T V70 auto and my lowest towing mpg has been 17.

To answer yur question, you'll need a receiver hitch (aftermarket i.e. Curt, Hidden Hitch or Volvo OE), an appropriately sized insert and ball, and a wiring harness. I bought the curt hitch for $130 online and the Volvo harness on sale for ~$65 from IPD. The hitch and harness is easy to install- a hitch shop or mechanic will have it on in less than an hour; I did it in my garage in the same.

To guage weight, break it down by each item. A small single axle trailer will weigh between 300 and 1000 pounds depending on construction. Estimate the weight of each item you're loading and add it all up to stay within the trailer GVWR and vehicle tow rating and tongue weight rating.

People tow with fwd cars every day all over the world. There's no need to buy in to the American "bigger is better" mentality that says you need a truck to tow a tiny trailer.

Best of luck.
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
A lightweight single axle trailer with a few hundred pounds of furniture is in no way overloading the car. It's no different than having 4 or 5 people and luggage in the car; weight is weight, the transmission doesn't know the difference.


To guage weight, break it down by each item. A small single axle trailer will weigh between 300 and 1000 pounds depending on construction. Estimate the weight of each item you're loading and add it all up to stay within the trailer GVWR and vehicle tow rating and tongue weight rating.

People tow with fwd cars every day all over the world. There's no need to buy in to the American "bigger is better" mentality that says you need a truck to tow a tiny trailer.

Best of luck.
That's what I was thinking. A car with a couple of fat a***s in the backseat shouldn't be much different than the few small light items I want to tow.
 
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