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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi all - <p>We've ordered a MY2010 3.2R-design AWD and probably won't see it until late August, maybe early September. The Volvo web site shows that the towing capacity of the 3.2 is 3,790 pounds and the V8 AWD is 4,960. Those specs are for the 3.2 with FWD. I wonder..... is it the same for the 3.2 AWD version?<p>We are considering the purchase of a Coleman/Fleetwood pop-up tent camper, the Saratoga model. It has a GVWR of 3,500 pounds and unloaded weight of 2,910. It appears to me that the 3,500 GVWR is within the towing capacity of the 3.2. I know - having the V8 model XC90 would be nice, but not an additional $8,000+ nice. <IMG NAME="icon" SRC="http://www.vwvortex.com/vwbb/eek.gif" BORDER="0"> <p>Anyone in this forum towing similar equipment with a 3.2 AWD?<p>While doing a forum search I noticed one poster mentioning that it would be a good idea to have a transmission cooler installed (I believe this was on an XC90 V8 for towing). Is that trans cooler something Volvo offers? If not, who makes/offers 'em and what is the approximate cost to purchase and install? Would it be needed/required for our 3.2R-design to tow a camper like we are considering?<p>And lastly, what about the trailer hitch - is the one Volvo offers sufficient for our needs, or should we consider a third party, beefier hitch?<p>Thanks, Jim
 

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Re: XC90 3.2 Towing Pop-up Camper - Multiple Questions (W6JHB)

I think you are cutting it too close. <p>In the GVWR, you have to figure the loaded weight of the camper (all that camping stuff, food, clothing, toys) AND all the weight of the people and contents of the car. 2 adults = 300#. 2 little kids are another 100#. <p>Water weighs just over 8 pounds per gallon. The Saratoga has 20 Fresh water plus 20 gray water plus 8 black water. Another 400#. <p>What else are you taking? A generator? Bicycles, kayaks, tables, chairs, firewood, propane, an AC unit on the popup?<p>Driving is not the issue, STOPPING is the problem. <p>If you are overloaded, you will have sway. You might lose control on the highway. Going downhill will be dangerous. Going uphill will be a strain. <p>Will your insurance pay off in the event of an accident if you are found to be at fault due to overloading? I hope you have a reputable RV dealer who won't sell you a popup that will overload your car. <p>You bought a Volvo for its safety. Don't be foolish and exceed the weight recommendations of the manufacturer. <p>To me, $8000 is nothing compared to the lives of my family. <br>
 

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Re: XC90 3.2 Towing Pop-up Camper - Multiple Questions (W6JHB)

All xc90 AWD have the same towing capacity I believe.. 5000lbs. V8 doesnt have better<br>brakes than a 3.2 so the towing ratings are the same. My 2.5 AWD has a 5000lb rating.<p>Load the trailer properly and you wont have sway, but it will be a load for the car. Make sure you have<br>a few hundred pounds of trailer tongue weight. Rule of thumb is 10% or the total trailer weight<br>on the ball of the tow vehicle from the trailer. So in your case about 300 lbs.<p>Volvo calculates towing with just the driver in the car. Anything added in the car takes away<br>from the towing number. So just take what you need. 600lbs of load capacity can be chewed up<br>real fast.<p>Dont fill the water tanks unless you need to, and do it as close to your destination as you can if you need<br>them filled. Travel with just a few gallons of water for washing up or if you get stranded. Do the<br>shopping close to your destination, make a list of what you need before you leave. These will save<br>you several hundred pounds that dont need to be hauled most of the way. Bikes only add a <br>100lbs or so, not a big deal. Drain your tanks when leaving, most all camping spots have a <br>dump station or hookups. No need to haul any waste water.<p>Keep pots and pans to a minimum and dont pack what you dont need... Only need a few of<br>them. Plastic plates for reuse, a set of 4-6 of forks/spoons/knives. Need more? Use plastic.<br>The lady doesnt need 10 pairs of shoes for a camping trip. Boots, tennis shoes, water shoes should<br>be enough.<p>Each spring go through<br>the trailer and take out what you havent used. Pack multi-tools, screw drivers with several<br>attachments. When loaded, take it to a truck stop and weigh the car and trailer. Have all<br>the passengers and most of what you will take. Do this also<br>with the trailer as it is new, and the car full of fuel and with the driver in it. This way you can<br>see how much you have really added. (and if you need to take stuff out)<p>Volvo hitch is fine, but you can get a more hidden hitch... From Reese or Hidden Hitch.. Most are<br>similar, find one at a good price. They are very easy to install. You will probably have to install<br>a wire harness for the trailer lights and battery charging.<p>You will be pretty heavy, within 500-1000lbs of the max. Take it easy, slow early, dont race up<br>the hills. Keep things as lite as you can until you are close to your destination.<p>Wouldn't hurt to have a additional cooler, if you live in mostly flat then it may not be an issue. If you<br>will tow in the mountains then it may be a good choice.<p>Have fun and pack light.<p>
 

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Re: XC90 3.2 Towing Pop-up Camper - Multiple Questions (dmd)

Good info and suggestions - thanks!!! One question though, is <U>where were you able to get the info on the 5000 pound towing capacity of the 3.2 AWD?</U> The V8 AWD is listed as close to 5k, but the Volvo web site doesn't show the 3.2 AWD capacity - just the 3.2 FWD at 3970 pounds.<p>We used to have a MY04 XC90 T6 that we had the Volvo trailer hitch installed at the dealership. The design was such that they had to cut away part of the plastic bumper to make it work. Hope the 2010 design has been adjusted so THAT isn't needed! <IMG NAME="icon" SRC="http://www.vwvortex.com/vwbb/eek.gif" BORDER="0">
 

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Re: XC90 3.2 Towing Pop-up Camper - Multiple Questions (W6JHB)

Every other AWD XC90 has been at 5k, even my 2.5. I would doubt that the 3.2 AWD<br>would be different. Towing on the xc90 is limited by brakes, dont see that the 3.2<br>would have less brake power.<p>The key is the AWD vs the FWD. AWD units all have the 5k limit, the FWD have less.<p>try as best you can to get the weight no more than 4k to leave some room between the max.<p>After market hitches usually do not require trimming the bumper.<p><br><BR><BR>
<i>Modified by dmd at 6:59 PM 5-25-2009</i>
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Re: XC90 3.2 Towing Pop-up Camper - Multiple Questions (dmd)

Again, thanks for the reply & info.<p>I spoke with our dealership's sales manager yesterday and he confirmed the 5k limit on the 3.2R AWD. He said it would handle that particular camper, marginally, providing (1) it isn't loaded to the gills with equipment, food, water, etc - just as you said, (2) we don't try to break speed records going up long inclines, and (3) use caution (and brains) on mountain downhills.<p>I'm probably going to have them change the order from the 3.2R to the V8. While the max towing limit is the same, the brakes on the V8 model ARE larger. And, since we will be driving up some lengthy inclines to the Sierras and Cascades several times a year, I'd sooner have something with a little more muscle.<p>Turns out that the cost to go with the V8 won't be as expensive as I initially thought, because the 2010 lineup does NOT include a V8 R-design. That will reduce the difference by about $1,500.<p>In any case, your suggestions about not loading up at home are most excellent, and certainly will help us keep that camper well under the towing limit! <IMG NAME="icon" SRC="http://********************/smile/emthup.gif" BORDER="0">
 

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The transmission cooler can be installed by your dealer if you plan to tow often. I don't recall the price I got a couple of years ago but I think it was in the $600-$700 range. <p>At the time I had just bought a 23' twin-engined jet boat and was using the XC90 to tow (boat+trailer = 4,300 lbs.) XC90 pulled fine but I was concerned about long-term reliability (but since I knew I wanted a bigger boat I went out and bought a Super Duty diesel so no concerns now.)
 
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