Jump to content

Custom Search




Welcome to the C-MAX Hybrid Forum


Sign In  Log in with Facebook

Create Account
Welcome to the C-MAX Hybrid Forum. You must register to create topics or post in our community, but don't worry this is a simple free process that requires minimal information for you to signup. Here's some member benefits:
  • Start new topics and reply to others
  • Subscribe to topics and forums to get email updates
  • Get your own profile page and make new friends
  • Send personal messages to other members
  • Create photo albums and post images. . .more!
Click here to create an account now
 
Guest Message by DevFuse

Get you C-MAX Hybrid Registered in the official Ford Authorized Registry. More here.


Photo

Suitability for occasional towing


  • Please log in to reply
24 replies to this topic

#1 OFFLINE   mikeash

mikeash

    New Member

  • C-MAX Hybrid Member
  • 2 posts
  • Region:U.S. Northeast
  • LocationVirginia
  • Current Vehicle:None

Posted 29 June 2013 - 05:33 PM

I may be in the market for a new car soon and the Energi sounds about perfect for me, with one potential problem.

 

I have a trailer that I need to tow on a very occasional basis, maybe once or twice a year. The trailer is about 1,200lbs. It's a bit tricky, because I don't tow it often enough to justify buying a beefy car to tow it, but I can't always predict when I'll need to tow it, so renting a tow car for the day of isn't really practical.

 

I'm perfectly fine with reduced speeds and efficiency while towing. I don't expect it to be a super-strong tow vehicle, I just need it to work. If fuel economy drops to 10MPG with the trailer, that's OK. I just need it to not catch fire or explode.

 

Any thoughts on whether this is a good idea or not? Direct experience with similar loads would be, of course, awesome, but I'd love to hear any advice anyone might have.









Lose this advertisement by becoming a member. Click here to create a free account.


#2 OFFLINE   ArizonaEnergi

ArizonaEnergi

    C-Max Hybrid Member

  • C-MAX Hybrid Member
  • 428 posts
  • Region:U.S. Mountain
  • LocationArizona
  • My C-MAX's Year:2013
  • Current Vehicle:C-MAX Energi 302A

Posted 29 June 2013 - 08:52 PM

I've towed a 1,500# trailer with a Honda Element, and a 3,500# one with a Honda Odyssey, but both those vehicles have tow ratings to meet those weights. The C-Max doesn't, and the manual specifies "never tow a trailer with this vehicle".

I don't know the specifics, but the calculations that go into determining the towing capacity must include horsepower, torque, transmission capabilities, cooling system, brake sizes, wheel sizes, frame strength, and vehicle load capacity. It may be this vehicle could have a towing rating, but Ford didn't want to offer that as a feature in a car this small.

That said, a hitch can be added and a light, small trailer could possibly be towed safely and easily for short distances at low speeds. The Europe C-Max (non-hybrids, difference engines and trannys) are rated for towing, but they have a different drivetrain and possibly other strutural differences. Euro models towing capacity: http://www.config.fo...yyhmodelspc.htm

The big question is do you really want to take a chance with a vehicle not rated to tow that is somewhat, or very, expensive to buy and to fix if something went horribly wrong? It would certainly void the warranty.

If I had a need to tow a light trailer a small distance at street speeds I would probably do it.

Edited by ArizonaEnergi, 30 June 2013 - 08:48 AM.


#3 OFFLINE   KAL Cmax

KAL Cmax

    C-Max Hybrid Member

  • C-MAX Hybrid Member
  • 70 posts
  • Region:U.S. Northeast
  • LocationMA
  • Current Vehicle:2013 C-Max SE

Posted 29 June 2013 - 09:59 PM

I would go about renting a pickup from UHaul to tow when needed. I know it isn't the most convenient though.

Towing would most likely void any motor, transmission and any other drivetrain issue that would arise since it is not rated. Although you could say the hitch is for a bike carrier only...

Edited by KAL Cmax, 29 June 2013 - 10:03 PM.


#4 OFFLINE   fotomoto

fotomoto

    C-Max Hybrid Member

  • C-MAX Hybrid Member
  • 1,297 posts
  • Region:Decline
  • LocationSouth Texas
  • Current Vehicle:C-Max SEL

Posted 30 June 2013 - 08:26 AM

There's a couple of good threads on hitches.  The Ford and Toyota hybrid powertrain systems are very similar but with the Prius version having less power than the CMax yet many owners have towed light loads with it.  FWIW



#5 OFFLINE   ArizonaEnergi

ArizonaEnergi

    C-Max Hybrid Member

  • C-MAX Hybrid Member
  • 428 posts
  • Region:U.S. Mountain
  • LocationArizona
  • My C-MAX's Year:2013
  • Current Vehicle:C-MAX Energi 302A

Posted 30 June 2013 - 12:51 PM

Here's a guy providing a shipping service using his Prius to tow a small trailer. http://greentechnologytransport.com/ Apparently a lot of people with Prius' are towing light trailers, and some not so light, with them.


Edited by ArizonaEnergi, 30 June 2013 - 12:51 PM.


#6 OFFLINE   viajero

viajero

    C-Max Hybrid Member

  • C-MAX Hybrid Member
  • 81 posts
  • Region:U.S. Southern Plains
  • LocationAustin TX
  • Current Vehicle:C-Max Energi

Posted 30 June 2013 - 04:44 PM

There's no wiring harness on the C-Max, so if your trailer has lights or brakes they won't work.



#7 OFFLINE   mikeash

mikeash

    New Member

  • C-MAX Hybrid Member
  • 2 posts
  • Region:U.S. Northeast
  • LocationVirginia
  • Current Vehicle:None

Posted 01 July 2013 - 07:30 PM

Thanks a lot for the feedback, everyone. Looks like my current car is going to live for a little while longer, so this is no longer an immediate concern, but all great stuff to know.



#8 OFFLINE   sarasotarepub

sarasotarepub

    New Member

  • C-MAX Hybrid Member
  • 1 posts
  • Region:Decline
  • LocationFlorida
  • My C-MAX's Year:2013
  • Current Vehicle:C-Max

Posted 30 August 2014 - 02:00 PM

Well, this thread answers my question on towing using my C-Max.



#9 OFFLINE   scottwood2

scottwood2

    C-Max Hybrid Member

  • C-MAX Hybrid Member
  • 576 posts
  • Region:U.S. Great Lakes
  • LocationMetro Detroit
  • My C-MAX's Year:2014
  • Current Vehicle:2014 C-Max SE, 202A, Winter Package

Posted 30 August 2014 - 04:40 PM

There's no wiring harness on the C-Max, so if your trailer has lights or brakes they won't work.


Hi

That seems really different. How does power get back to the taillights? Or are you referring to a oem built-in trailer plug?

#10 OFFLINE   scottwood2

scottwood2

    C-Max Hybrid Member

  • C-MAX Hybrid Member
  • 576 posts
  • Region:U.S. Great Lakes
  • LocationMetro Detroit
  • My C-MAX's Year:2014
  • Current Vehicle:2014 C-Max SE, 202A, Winter Package

Posted 30 August 2014 - 04:45 PM

I don't think size is an issue here. I have towed with a Escort before and it was rated at 1000 lbs. I would guess it is the drivetrain.

Other concerns would be voiding your warranty and liability if anything were to happen while towing.

#11 OFFLINE   Melanie Page

Melanie Page

    New Member

  • C-MAX Hybrid Facebook
  • 1 posts

Posted 14 September 2014 - 08:54 AM

My husband thinks my C-Max will haul his motorcycle on a trailer built for two bikes across two states, I don't think this is advisable....he says it can haul 2500-3500 lbs. Really? Need more info...

#12 OFFLINE   ptjones

ptjones

    C-Max Hybrid Member

  • C-MAX Hybrid Platinum Member
  • 3,151 posts
  • Region:U.S. Southern Atlantic
  • LocationNewnan, GA
  • My C-MAX's Year:2013
  • Current Vehicle:2013 C-MAX SEL

Posted 14 September 2014 - 11:43 AM

My husband thinks my C-Max will haul his motorcycle on a trailer built for two bikes across two states, I don't think this is advisable....he says it can haul 2500-3500 lbs. Really? Need more info...

That seems a little much to me, maybe a 1,000lbs or so, but I can tell you that you don't need to worry about overheating it. CMAX has plenty of cooling power. :)

 

Paul



#13 OFFLINE   ArizonaEnergi

ArizonaEnergi

    C-Max Hybrid Member

  • C-MAX Hybrid Member
  • 428 posts
  • Region:U.S. Mountain
  • LocationArizona
  • My C-MAX's Year:2013
  • Current Vehicle:C-MAX Energi 302A

Posted 14 September 2014 - 11:56 AM

My husband thinks my C-Max will haul his motorcycle on a trailer built for two bikes across two states, I don't think this is advisable....he says it can haul 2500-3500 lbs. Really? Need more info...

I think it could do it but at what harm to the transmission, suspension and breaking system? That said, I think American car makers choose to not assign towing capabilities to many vehicles that could easily tow and they intentionally understate the towing limit for some reason, either liability or they just don't want to reduce their pick-up truck, etc. sales.

I towed an 1,800# trailer with a Honda Element rated at 1,500#, and a 3,500# trailer with an Odyssey rated at 3,500#. I could easily move the 3,500# around my driveway by hand, so the effort in towing is not that great, with air resistance being a big issue, but stopping puts stress on the brakes and the transmission does heat up from the effort (most require supplemental radiators for towing), something the C-Max is not equipped to deal with.

He should rent a pick-up or other vehicle to tow his trailer IMHO.

Edited by ArizonaEnergi, 14 September 2014 - 11:57 AM.


#14 OFFLINE   ptjones

ptjones

    C-Max Hybrid Member

  • C-MAX Hybrid Platinum Member
  • 3,151 posts
  • Region:U.S. Southern Atlantic
  • LocationNewnan, GA
  • My C-MAX's Year:2013
  • Current Vehicle:2013 C-MAX SEL

Posted 14 September 2014 - 12:06 PM

I think the transmission would be the weakest link of all the parts. You could probably get away with if you were going at slow speeds and short distance. :)

 

Paul



#15 OFFLINE   kostby

kostby

    C-Max Hybrid Member

  • C-MAX Hybrid Member
  • 553 posts
  • Region:U.S. Great Lakes
  • LocationIndiana
  • My C-MAX's Year:2013
  • Current Vehicle:C-MAX Hybrid SE

Posted 14 September 2014 - 08:51 PM

Quoting the 2013 C-MAX Owners Guide 3rd printing, page 248:

 

TOWING A TRAILER

WARNING: Never tow a trailer with this vehicle. Your vehicle is not equipped to tow. No towing packages are available through an authorized dealer.

 

Attached File  Screen Shot 2014-09-14 at 9.43.10 PM.png   19.19KB   3 downloads

 

Quoting 2014 C-MAX Hybrid Owners Manual version 1, page 182:

 

TOWING A TRAILER

Never tow a trailer with your vehicle. This powertrain is not designed to tow. 

 


  • wab likes this

#16 OFFLINE   ptjones

ptjones

    C-Max Hybrid Member

  • C-MAX Hybrid Platinum Member
  • 3,151 posts
  • Region:U.S. Southern Atlantic
  • LocationNewnan, GA
  • My C-MAX's Year:2013
  • Current Vehicle:2013 C-MAX SEL

Posted 15 September 2014 - 08:56 AM

 

Quoting the 2013 C-MAX Owners Guide 3rd printing, page 248:

 

TOWING A TRAILER

WARNING: Never tow a trailer with this vehicle. Your vehicle is not equipped to tow. No towing packages are available through an authorized dealer.

 

attachicon.gifScreen Shot 2014-09-14 at 9.43.10 PM.png

 

Quoting 2014 C-MAX Hybrid Owners Manual version 1, page 182:

 

TOWING A TRAILER

Never tow a trailer with your vehicle. This powertrain is not designed to tow. 

 

That is the safe way to go. :)

 

Paul



#17 OFFLINE   dcarley

dcarley

    New Member

  • C-MAX Hybrid Member
  • 1 posts
  • Region:Canada Ontario
  • LocationCanada
  • My C-MAX's Year:2014
  • Current Vehicle:C-Max Energi

Posted 25 October 2014 - 07:14 AM

I tow a 4 x 6 utility trailer full of firewood about 2x a month.  Recently I towed a Kubota for 20k each way with no issue.  Not sure how heavy that was but I know it was very heavy.  I also have a bike rack that I use weekly.  The only issue is I have not yet found anyone that can hook up a wiring kit to it.  I only can travel in the daylight hours with the trailer.  If anyone has an update on that issue it would be appreciated.

Attached Files



#18 OFFLINE   BoomerGer

BoomerGer

    New Member

  • C-MAX Hybrid Member
  • 38 posts
  • Region:Decline
  • LocationSunny, Southern CA
  • My C-MAX's Year:Decline
  • Current Vehicle:Focus

Posted 18 November 2014 - 12:04 AM

Well now DCarley, how did that 'Max tow that rascal?  Any hard pulling, overheating, braking problems?  Any unstability, etc?



#19 OFFLINE   SPL Tech

SPL Tech

    C-Max Hybrid Member

  • C-MAX Hybrid Member
  • 286 posts
  • Region:Decline
  • Locationhome
  • My C-MAX's Year:Decline
  • Current Vehicle:c-max 2013 SL

Posted 29 November 2014 - 01:30 AM

I've towed a 1,500# trailer with a Honda Element, and a 3,500# one with a Honda Odyssey, but both those vehicles have tow ratings to meet those weights.

LOL, that's an SUV and a van. That doesent even compare to a hybrid car. The CMAX is not rated to tow anything. It would probably be a better idea to buy a cheap ass $500 truck off craigslist and use that for the occasional tow.


Edited by SPL Tech, 29 November 2014 - 01:31 AM.


#20 OFFLINE   SPL Tech

SPL Tech

    C-Max Hybrid Member

  • C-MAX Hybrid Member
  • 286 posts
  • Region:Decline
  • Locationhome
  • My C-MAX's Year:Decline
  • Current Vehicle:c-max 2013 SL

Posted 29 November 2014 - 01:32 AM

Here's a guy providing a shipping service using his Prius to tow a small trailer. http://greentechnologytransport.com/ Apparently a lot of people with Prius' are towing light trailers, and some not so light, with them.

I once used an F350 to tow a 50,000 lb semitruck and 77' trailer. Just because it can be done does not mean it wont damage the vehicle. Proof of someone doing something is not proof it is a good idea, or it will work in the long term.








Custom Search




0 user(s) are reading this topic

0 members, 0 guests, 0 anonymous users

Privacy Policy TERMS OF SERVICE ·