Durango tow vehicle questions

Sep 16, 2020
37
Macgregor 26D Mechanicville, NY
Good morning. Is anyone using a 3rd Generation (2014+) Dodge Durango, AWD, V6, with factory Tow Package to pull their Mac 26? Mine is a 1990 D.
Thanks
 
Jan 19, 2010
10,029
Hunter 26 Charleston
A quick google says the V6 has a 5000 tow capacity. The 26D weighs 2550 empty... add another #1000 for trailer and gear and you are still within a comfortable safety margin. If the boat feels a little squirrly while towing, check the tonge weight. You may need to shift some gear forward to get more weight on the tonge. Also, if you don't already have breaks on the trailer, consider adding some. It will make the experience of highway travel more pleasant.
 
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Feb 21, 2013
3,796
Hunter 46 Point Richmond, CA
Did you pass on the Toyota Tacoma 4 cyl truck? Tow capacity reportedly 5000 lbs per this link: 2014 Dodge Durango Specs, Towing Capacity, Payload Capacity & Colors | Cars.com . If you are buying a new or used tow vehicle suggest buying a 150/1500, 250/2500 or 350/3500 truck? I started out towing a 21 ft ski boat with a tandem trailer with a Ford Explorer and it did not have the towing/braking capacity and suspension to tow it safely. So traded it in for a full size Bronco. My current tow vehicle is a Ford F350 DRW that has towing and braking capacity and suspension for most anything I need to tow.

You might these threads on newer Durango V6 AWD tow capacity interesting:
Towing Capacity for 2015 Dodge Durango AWD without Factory Tow Package | etrailer.com
V6 w/o tow package - capacity and potential upgrades | Dodge Durango Forum
 
Jul 7, 2004
8,036
Hunter 30T Cheney, KS
Should be cake, but take @rgranger's advice on the brakes. I went thru the whole surge brake system on my '92 M26S. Seals deteriorate.
 
Feb 21, 2013
3,796
Hunter 46 Point Richmond, CA
..........If the boat feels a little squirrely while towing, check the tongue weight. You may need to shift some gear forward to get more weight on the tongue. Also, if you don't already have brakes on the trailer, consider adding some..........
Great advice.....hopefully your sailboat trailer has surge or electric brakes because without them your tow vehicle braking capacity will be challenging, especially on hills and long slippery boat ramps.
 
Sep 16, 2020
37
Macgregor 26D Mechanicville, NY
Did you pass on the Toyota Tacoma 4 cyl truck? Tow capacity reportedly 5000 lbs per this link: 2014 Dodge Durango Specs, Towing Capacity, Payload Capacity & Colors | Cars.com . If you are buying a new or used tow vehicle suggest buying a 150/1500, 250/2500 or 350/3500 truck? I started out towing a 21 ft ski boat with a tandem trailer with a Ford Explorer and it did not have the towing/braking capacity and suspension to tow it safely. So traded it in for a full size Bronco. My current tow vehicle is a Ford F350 DRW that has towing and braking capacity and suspension for most anything I need to tow.

You might these threads on newer Durango V6 AWD tow capacity interesting:
Towing Capacity for 2015 Dodge Durango AWD without Factory Tow Package | etrailer.com
V6 w/o tow package - capacity and potential upgrades | Dodge Durango Forum
 
Sep 16, 2020
37
Macgregor 26D Mechanicville, NY
Yes, I passed on the Tacoma. All of my research puts it at 3500 lb towing capacity. Whereas the Durango is 6200 lbs.
 
Apr 11, 2020
155
Hunter 170 Grapevine
FWIW, I tow my 26S with a Dodge Grand Caravan 3.6 litre V6. Towing capacity it 3600 lbs.

Gear includes 8 HP outboard, two anchors, three sails, stove, grill, cookware, tools, two 12V batteries, extra ropes, 3-gallon fuel tank and various odds and ends. I experience none of the issues mentioned, and do not feel as though I am overtaxing the vehicle. I have trailered it at 65 MPH well over 1,000 miles at this point in winds 15 MPH and stronger. 17 mpg downwind, 14 mpg upwind.
 
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Sep 16, 2020
37
Macgregor 26D Mechanicville, NY
Thx stickinthemud. Do you use a weight distribution hitch with anti sway bars?
 
Apr 11, 2020
155
Hunter 170 Grapevine
No. Have never felt the need for any such devices.

I am by no means an expert on this subject, but here is my take and my experience:

The MacGregor 26S and 26D are very lightweight boats, as 26' boats go. Overall much lighter than any comparably sized keelboat, and much lighter than power boats of significantly shorter length. I do not know how much experience others posting may have with this boat specifically. It is possible they are basing some of their opinions on other, heavier boats, but that is mere speculation on my part.

I bought the boat in August of 2020 from an couple in the St Louis area, and trailered it home to Grapevine, Texas. It trailered easily and I never experienced any swaying, whipsawing, or any other signs or sense of instability. It was pretty much like trailering the smaller boats I have owned, except that acceleration and gas mileage were negatively affected (but within reasonable expectations).

I was nervous all the way home, because all I had for a trailer ball was a cheap, lightweight 1-7/8" ball with a 1/2" stem. The ball was the proper size, but I have to admit I was chiding myself for not buying a more serious ball before making the trip. I breathed a sigh of relief as I back the boat into the driveway about midnight.

The wife and I just got back from an excursion to Lake Travis, which is a 450-mile round trip from Grapevine. Again, no problems.

So, either I am oblivious, just plain lucky, or the 26S that I have, as basically equipped, can be safely towed by a vehicle with a 3600-lb towing capacity without special equipment. It is possible that the wheelbase of the towing vehicle could affect how it interacts with the boat. Again, I can only speak to my experience.
 
Apr 14, 2021
43
looking looking mobile al
my wife has a 2016 durango, citadel v6, it will pull our 25' tritoon with no problem. I would tow our new to us 26D with ease.
 
Apr 14, 2021
43
looking looking mobile al
My wife just reminded me about the towing package. Do you have the factory towing? Factory towing in a Durango is 7k while aftermarket is closer to 2.5k. Factory comes with larger tranny cooler and a few other things.
 
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Sep 16, 2020
37
Macgregor 26D Mechanicville, NY
My wife just reminded me about the towing package. Do you have the factory towing? Factory towing in a Durango is 7k while aftermarket is closer to 2.5k. Factory comes with larger tranny cooler and a few other things.
Yes, I have the factory tow package. But with the V6 3.6 liter, I think that puts me at 6200 lbs.
 
Apr 14, 2021
43
looking looking mobile al
On our pontoon it has surge brakes. I don't know how well electric brakes and water will hold up.
 
Jan 19, 2010
10,029
Hunter 26 Charleston
On our pontoon it has surge brakes. I don't know how well electric brakes and water will hold up.
Everything I have read about electric breaks and salt water has been bad. Also, the electric breaks only activate if you have your foot on th break peddle. Surge breaks will "tap" anytime the boat tries to speed up on your tow vehicle. So if you coast and the momentum of your boat drives it forward, the breaks on the trailer will activate. I tow in the mountains so this is big for me. I will down shift on a long grade and I can feel the boat pumping the breaks... it really helps keep the boat behind the truck. Of course you can do that with electric by pumping your breaks.... and electric breaks are a lot less expensive... unless you have to replace them often due to salt ...
 
Jul 7, 2004
8,036
Hunter 30T Cheney, KS
Backing up with surge brakes can be tricky. You are pushing against the brake master cylinder