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billcain

Towable Electric Vehicle?

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Hi,

Does anyone manufacture a electric auto that is towable. If so, what is the weight of the car?

As you know, brakes are not required on vehicles 3,000 lbs or less.

Thank you for your help.

Bill Cain Barrie Ontario

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A trucker friend told me that brakes are required in Canada for all axles on the ground of a towed vehicle. He has been refused entry at the border trying to deliver a new trailer.

If you consider a Prius enough of an electric I tow mine on a dolly.

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Hi Bill,

Welcome to the FMCA forum!

With the Canadian laws regarding that all the axles require brakes if on the road makes for some interesting issues. From what I have regarding the Chevy Volt (Not sure about the Prius) the front brakes are regenerative and the car needs to be towed on a dolly. They use a vacuum assist hydraulic braking system on the rear, that would need to be active to ensure maximum breaking.

You might find this link interesting and in part written by a gentleman from Ontario. Regarding the brake light activation on a regenerative breaking system(s).

http://evworld.com/blogs.cfm?authorID=61

Rich.

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My information is that brakes are not required if towed car is less than 3000lbs. This applies to all provinces and US states except British Columbia. Some one in staff at Cincinnati gave me the

proper references. Bill Cain

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Has nothing to do with electric, but in 2007 I was in Victoria Canada, and saw my first Smart Car. It was a diesel model and three different owners swore they got 70 mpg, this really got my attention, and I wanted one to pull behind the motorhome. I started looking and none was available in the US, did not meet epa regulations. When the US version came available in 2009, I was very disapointed

because it was a gas version and only specked at 42 mpg., good thing still is the roll cage is still rated one of the safest on the road, and weighs less than 1800 pounds.

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Has nothing to do with electric, but in 2007 I was in Victoria Canada, and saw my first Smart Car. It was a diesel model and three different owners swore they got 70 mpg, this really got my attention, and I wanted one to pull behind the motorhome. I started looking and none was available in the US, did not meet epa regulations. When the US version came available in 2009, I was very disapointed

because it was a gas version and only specked at 42 mpg., good thing still is the roll cage is still rated one of the safest on the road, and weighs less than 1800 pounds.

My Prius gets 50 plus mpg and it seats 5. I have got as much a 56 mpg from Phoenix to Lk Havasu.

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We have a 2013 Smart Electric Car we use for day-to-day commutes. It cannot be towed wheels down, it has to be towed with all four wheels up on a trailer. We have a 2014 Winnebago Vista 26HE behind which we plan to haul our Smart car around. I have been researching trailers- the Smart Electric weighs in just shy of 2,100 pounds. The battery pack on the Smart Electric weighs in at 330 pounds. I am still researching trailer options- I know I plan to have a trailer with brakes. Still trying to decide if I want an open trailer or enclosed trailer.

The Smart Electric gets 128MPG equivalent. With a full charge and ambient temps 70-80° F/ 21-26° C I have a range of 75-83 mile/120-128km depending on how efficiently I drive.

It comes with a portable charger which runs of 15A 110V circuit so charging the car while camped either off shore power or off the generator is simple.

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I just bought a Ford C-Max Hybrid which is towable 4 down.

Note that the Blue Ox Patriot brake needs to be reprogramed for a hybrid & can't be set higher than 3. Blue Ox website has programming instructions.

I intend to install a charge line with a cigarette lighter end in the car to power the Patriot & not involve the hybrid's electrical system.

Larry Mutch

06 Fleetwood Excursion

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Last winter we were faced with replacing our 2007 Saturn used as our tow vehicle. We wanted something with a little more room and required that it be under 4000 lbs. with an automatic transmission and towable 4 down. We had it narrowed down to two vehicles, a Ford Fusion Hybrid, and a Honda CRV. Since our van we had at home was also on its last legs we opted for the CRV. But we were very impressed with the Ford Fusion hybrid. Both vehicles had extensive simple instructions in the Owners Manual regarding towing.

We were all set to get the Hybrid as both of our sons have ford fusions and we were please with the comfort level. As I stated it was the matter of convenience for us. The Fusion is based on the same principles as the C-Max only with a larger cabin.

Hope you are successful

Tom Hancock

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Tom Hancock - Toward the end of 2012 I bought a 2012 Fusion Hybrid specifically for towing behind my Class A motorhome. Unfortunately due to my wife's illness and ultimate death in December 2013, I was not able to use it. However, this year I have started towing and I must admit that the Fusion tows exceptionally well. Unfortunately, Ford has a technical issues which I am trying to get them to admit to which basically allows the starter battery to go dead after about 3 to 4 hours of towing. This requires the need to jump start the vehicle before it is useable.

They have provided several possible resolutions but they support none of them which to me makes the vehicle un-towable unless one is only going on short trips (less than 3 hours). They have not even suggested a line from the RV to the battery to keep the battery charged. I am looking for a factory supported resolution to the problem since the owners manual states that all one has to do is put the car in neutral and the key in accessory position. Nothing else is required per the manual.

If anyone has any suggestions, please let me know.

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I leased a 2013 Ford Cmax Energi plug in hybrid last December. The lease payments are less than the gas bills on my former toad, a Tahoe plus it weighs 2000lbs less. I tow it behind a Winnebago 43Q Tour mostly from our Oregon base around the western US. At the moment I have not installed supplemental brakes as it seems to stop just as well as when towing the Tahoe which had the Roadmaster air braking system. The Cmax Energi weighs just under 4,000lbs.

The owners manual says it's ok to tow four wheels down but does not say that the 12 volt battery will discharge in 4 hours when towing.....after raising a fuss with Ford they finally suggested to stop every 3 1/2 hours and run the car for 30 minutes...finding that unacceptable, but glad we leased it rather than bought it, we hooked up a 12 volt charge cord from the MH to the Ford 12 volt battery (with a inline fuse) which has worked very well.

The Ford goes 19-23 miles on electric power only plus another 500-600 miles on a 14 gallon tank of fuel in hybrid mode. My Mileage ranges from 45 to 95 mpg with an average of 75-83 mpg. The more you use the plug in only range, the higher your average mpg will be. For us the 20 mile range works surprisingly well. Takes 7 hours of 11amp 110 volt service to fully charge it. When boondocking we have charged the car with our solar roof panels going through our 110 volt inverter.

The Cmax is the right size for a second car, a Fusion Energi would be more comfortable for our only car.

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Try Roadmaster for a switch that will allow you to tow and not run your battery down. I purchased one from them for my 2012 Honda CRV so that I could tow and not have a dead battery. I was able to install it myself. Very easy procedure if you're able to lie on ground and reach under dashboard to locate the fuse that you need to remove and install the switch wire, reinsert fuse into that line and drill a hole in dashboard. Easy fix.

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Try Jeep, they understand towing and their 4x4's that have a neutral in the drive link, are ready. They have a full time 12v plug in the console. Also, the cig lighter can be made hot full time by moving a fuse to a different position, check your manual. I have towed Wrangler, Grand Cherokee, and 2014 Cherokee.

Want mileage? The VW Passat Diesel gets 48 MPG and tows well on a dolly. You'll need short 2x6's to load or you can remove the front air dam. The plus, you'll get the mileage AND you'll have a real car. My old brake buddy works for all applications.

A hint, when going over 12 to 14K foot mountains and your Towed is over 3,500#, ( I-70 west of Denver), drive the Towed and use it as a scout car for problems and pull off places. The passage will be quicker and use less total fuel. .....empty water and sewer tanks help as well.

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Be careful with Ford Fusions as I have read many posts about damaged transmissions even though Ford says you can tow it 4 wheels down. I decided not to take a chance and traded my 2011 Ford Fusion for a 2014 Jeep Wrangler Sport. Although it is still early in the game, it is one of my better decisions and no worries about problems with transmission.

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Wow, you people can get off topic. The question was "Does anyone manufacture a electric auto that is towable"? Nothing to do about Canadian laws, hybrids, etc. I'm going to go with a no answer at this time.

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8 minutes ago, dhealey said:

Wow, you people can get off topic. The question was "Does anyone manufacture a electric auto that is towable"? Nothing to do about Canadian laws, hybrids, etc. I'm going to go with a no answer at this time.

No one that I know of because of the electric motors that recharge the battery when the brakes are applied. 

Think the big issue is setting up the wiring to keep from damaging the motor(s), with them turning with no place to dump the current being generated.

Like DD Mentioned, he pulls his electric car on a trailer.

Rich.

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dhealey,

Welcome to the Forum.

Yes sometimes folks wander from the original post. But most of the time they are asked to return to the OP.

Did you happen to notice this is a 6 year old posting. And in all that time the OP has only made 3 postings.

Keep with us.

Herman 

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dhealey.  Welcome to the Forum!

If you read the original post, it's a question and a false statement, depending on where you live!

I know off no 100% electric auto anywhere in the US other than Tesla or Outside, unless it's a Golf Cart.

No Electric car can be towed 4 or 2 down!

As Herman & Rich said.

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