Spending time together in the RV can be a romantic experience for any fun-loving and adventurous couple. But, sometimes you can’t take the whole RV with you to go exploring in town. This is where having a “Toad” Vehicle that hitches onto the back of your RV will come in handy.
I have gathered the qualifications that should be considered for a Toad Vehicle alongside FIVE of the most popular RV Toad Vehicles and compiled a list for any couple looking to purchase their very own Toad Vehicle.
Here are a few of the most common toad vehicles for flat towing behind a camper:
|Model||Weight||Drive System||Transmission||Price (New)|
|Jeep Wrangler||4200 lbs||4WD||Automatic||$38,000|
|Jeep Liberty||4180 lbs||2WD/4WD||Automatic||$27,000|
|Toyota Corolla||2840 lbs||FWD||Automatic||$19,500|
|Ford Fusion||3750 lbs||AWD||Automatic||$23,000|
|FIAT 500||2440 lbs||AWD||Automatic||$16,500|
For most couples, a smaller, yet lightweight car is the best for towing on the back of the RV. Brands such as Jeep and Toyota offer some of the most popular “Toad” vehicles for couples on the market. Similarly, one must consider the drive system on the vehicle and how it can be towed.
Why Should Couples Choose a Toad Vehicle?
Specifically for couples who have been cooped up in an RV for an extended period of time, it makes sense to purchase a vehicle for towing behind.
Toad Vehicles are super handy when the time comes for exploring.
Young and Old, couples who are out on the road together usually love to explore together.
But RVs and exploring don’t always tend to go hand in hand. RVs are large and bulky, making them difficult to drive on residential roads or in smaller downtown areas.
Toad Vehicles are usually small and lightweight usually with just enough room for two, making them perfect for those occasions when couples want to go into town.
However, couples who are interested in towing a vehicle behind them in the Motorhome need to make sure they are picking something safe and reliable. Especially when it comes to the actual towing process.
How Should Couples Choose their Toad Vehicle?
For couples who are just beginning their journey, to picking the proper car for them on their RV Trip, there should are at least four main qualifications they should consider in the car first.
- Drive System
Each qualification will help couples understand what kind of car works better as a towing vehicle and why. The qualifications will play a big role in deciding what car works best for each couple.
Why is it important for towing? The Weight of the car is extremely important for towing. Every RV has a weight limit to what it can tow. As such, a heavier car will have a heavier pull on the back of an RV.
Cars with a heavier pull would be less cost effective and fuel efficient for an RV.
Also, weight is dependent on the control of the car itself when being towed by the RV. If weight is improperly distributed, control of the car can be lost.
Why is it important for towing? The actual Drive System of the car is anything that contributes to how the car should be moving. Depending on what kind of Drive System a car has, the weight of the car may be distributed incorrectly and the car could lose control or be ruined from towing.
The drive system of a car can be broken down into several components, but we will just focus on the very basics.
4WD – (Four-Wheel Drive) There are many forms of 4WD, but the very most basic form means that all four wheels of the car are in use and is powered by the car itself.
AWD – (All-Wheel Drive) The AWD is always on, unlike the 4WD. The AWD is constantly helping the car to decide which wheels should be in motion relative to the car and the road conditions.
2WD – (Two-Wheel Drive) 2WD is used in situations (typically inclement weather) where two wheels of the car should be doing more of the work than the other two wheels.
FWD – (Front-Wheel Drive) The Front-Wheel Drive is a specific kind of the Two-Wheel Drive. It is exactly what it sounds like, meaning the front two wheels of the car are mainly what is pushing the car ahead. FWD is usually used in most family cars as it helps control the car when harsh weather hits the roads.
RWD- (Rear-Wheel Drive) The Rear-Wheel Drive is another type of Two-Wheel Drive. RWD is used in situations where the front two wheels of the car need to be used to navigate direction while the back wheels propel the car.
Why is it important for towing?
Transmission is extremely important for towing as some models will only be able to be flat-towed if they have either a manual or automatic transmission.
Depending on how a couple is towing their car and what gear the car is in at the time, the transmission can heat up and not be able to cool down. This could damage the transmission as it does not get the lubrication it needs.
Why is it important for towing? This should be a no brainer, but couples should be considering cars that they can actually afford.
Couples should be taking not only the initial value of the car itself, but how much more it will cost them when considering gas, or should anything go awry with hauling the car along the way.
Price also depends on the model of car itself.
If couples are looking for something that they can use for off-roading, then chances are the car they are looking at will be a bit more pricey due to its durability.
Now that we understand how to shop for our Toad Car, which models are popular for couples?
Top Five Most Popular Toad Vehicles for Couples
1. Jeep Wrangler
‘This is an awesome vehicle. My husband bought the Wrangler Sahara 2 door last year. I have been saving ever since to get the 4 door for myself. We tow his behind our Class A RV and it’s a charmer. I just bought the Sahara Unlimited soft top 4×4. I’m in love. By the way, I am also almost 72 years old. The looks, ride, interior, exterior, ease of use, and eye catcher on the road is exciting. The Turbo gives me an acceleration on the road I haven’t experienced in years. All I can say there isn’t an ounce of disappointment anywhere with this car. No wonder there are so many Jeeps on the road. I’m thrilled to join the crowd!”Review on Cars.com
Cons: This model is the heaviest of the Five listed in this article – weighing in at about 4200 lbs. on average. This Model is also the priciest of them all.
The Wrangler itself does not do well when it is towed with two wheels touching the ground, such as is seen when using a tow dolly.
However, the Jeep Wrangler is perhaps the most popular Toad vehicle on the market today. And for good reason.
Pros: A majority of couples love the Wrangler because of its durability and design which makes it great for off-roading and exploring outside of town.
The Wrangler’s Four-Wheel Drive System allows it to be able to get around in those areas a normal car would not usually be able to get through without getting stuck.
The Jeep Wrangler is a great car for the couple who loves to go out and explore on their camping trips, rather than staying cooped up in the Camper all day long.
However, this model brags that it is even more perfect for spending the day driving around town.
The Jeep Wrangler offers the perfect amount of space for couples, with seats that can easily be folded back to make room for anything and everything that needs to be packed in the car for the day’s trip.
The Wrangler also offers several different “top” options that can easily be removed for access to a better outdoor view.
All in all, most couples tend to enjoy the Jeep Wrangler for the ride. It’s just plain fun to drive. Couples can take it almost anywhere and the Wrangler will get the job done.
This vehicle itself includes its own hitch receiver – already prepared to be towed after whatever kind of motorhome any couple may own.
Rather than using a Dolly to tow the Jeep Wrangler, couples who purchase this car should take the time to install a Tow Bar to Flat Tow this car.
Flat-Towing is the preferred method for towing the Wrangler by the vast majority of Jeep customers since it seems to be the safest option for the car.
But, in some cases, a couple may also be able to get away with towing their Wrangler on an Enclosed or Flatbed Trailer for extra security.
2. Jeep Liberty
“I bought my Liberty Latitude new in 2012 and I love it! I was looking for that, now rare, truck-based SUV body style with a capable 4WD (I live in the snow belt, tow a boat, and park on a slippery slope in my back yard from May `till December + or -)… Over one year, and 15000 miles later, I still find excuses to take her for a ride. I’ve had no problems’. none. My liberty has all the bells and whistles (love those heated leather seats), and is a very capable boat hauler. It’s and handles very well. It’s just plain fun to drive. Yes, the gas mileage sucks’ literally, but is about the same as the other vehicles I’ve owned since the seventies, and much better than some. I’ve simply adopted the mantra:” It’s a Jeep. I didn’t buy it for the gas mileage.” It’s too bad they are no longer made.”Customer Review on Cars.com
Cons: Although no longer in production, the Jeep Liberty features many similar features to that of the Jeep Wrangler including storage and its off-roading capabilities.
For those wanting to tow it along behind the RV, it would be best to install their own brake system and tow bar.
It appears some customers complain the Liberty provides a bumpy ride for both driver and passenger, and that earlier models of the liberty are a bit of a gas guzzler. However, this does not always seem to be the case with later models such as the 2012.
Pro: While similar to the Jeep Wrangler, the Liberty’s off-roading capabilities are a touch better than the Wrangler’s.
The Liberty offers both a Two-Wheel Drive system and a Four-Wheel Drive system – offering more options than the Wrangler. These options are what make the Liberty easier to maneuver while off-roading.
Coming in at an average of about 4180 lbs, the Jeep Liberty is just shy of weighing the same as the Jeep Wrangler. The design of the Liberty itself is considered more attractive than the Wrangler as well.
While not quite as popular as the Wrangler, this would make a great car for any happy couple living on the road.
This is also a durable model, Jeep Vehicles are almost always built to last. In most cases, they really do last for a long time.
This particular model offers an anti-sway capability for the couple’s personal towing experience.
This particular model should also be recommended for adventurous couples who love to go out and hike the trails and have some fun outside of the RV for the day.
Couples who are wishing to tow the Jeep Liberty behind their RV should keep in mind that this particular model should be flat-towed using a Tow Bar.
In fact, most places will claim that the Wrangler and Liberty are actually “Made” to be Flat-towed. But this doesn’t mean they necessarily can’t be towed in any other way.
In fact, the Liberty can sometimes be loaded onto a Flatbed Trailer, keeping all four wheels off the ground.
3. Toyota Corolla
“I have had my Toyota Corolla for a couple of years now and I have not had a single problem with it. It’s great on gas and I drive on the interstate a lot and it does great there too. I have always been partial to Toyota, as I used to sell them, so thankful I finally own one!! My car has great features, all electric windows and so forth, built-in navigation and Bluetooth so I can talk on the phone handsfree. It’s also very roomy even though it’s a smaller car. It has a huge trunk and it has all the safety features that define the Toyota brand. It’s just right for me. I will drive it until the wheels fall off, literally!!”Customer Review on consumeraffairs,com
Pros: The Toyota Corolla is ideal for any couple who is looking for a safe, yet compact car for a reasonable price. This car is featured as the second lightest of all of the models on this list just above the FIAT 500.
Newer Models of about 2018 are priced at about an average of $19,500 – making this the cheapest option on the list as well.
Newer models of the Corolla feature Safety Steering alongside eight individual airbags all around the car itself.
Besides its quirks, Couples will find that despite its small appearance on the outside, the Toyota Corolla actually offers plenty of storage space for a couple in the back seats and with a spacious trunk.
The Corolla is a spacious car with a backseat for anything that a couple may need to use for storing or perhaps for friends or even a pet to bring along for the ride.
The pull on the RV itself won’t be that bad, either. Since the Corolla is so lightweight, its pull does not make much of a dent on the fuel for the RV.
This car does best when it is towed on a Tow Dolly. The Corolla should NOT be towed with all four wheels down on the ground.
Cons: The Toyota Corolla must be installed with a manual transmission if it is to be towed behind the RV, but luckily that is not usually a problem for this particular model.
Some newer models of the Toyota even offer a stick-shift transmission already. It all depends on the model that the couple is buying.
Some couples may shy away from towing the Corolla, this reason, however, those who know how to drive a manual will find that this makes for a great Toad all in all.
However, cars with a manual transmission tend to require less maintenance than those requiring an automatic.
So, the requirement of a manual transmission is really a pro and con all wrapped up in one.
Overall, there are a couple of other quirks about the Corolla when being used as a ‘Toad” Vehicle. However, couples can and should be consulting the owner’s manuals of the vehicle of their choice for any and all exceptions.
4. Ford Fusion (Hybrid)
“Overall, I like it. Excellent mpg for a midsize. I like how seamlessly the EV motor and the hybrid engine work together. Great electronics. I live in a cold-weather area, and I like how the engine starts and takes over in cold temps and goes to EV when the vehicle is warm. (Lower teens at least). I have learned to be patient when climbing in severe elevation (1k to 7k). Understandable.”Customer Review on Edmunds.com
Pros: The Ford Fusion Hybrid is featured as Fuel Efficient and extra safe, making it the perfect choice for towing.
A fuel efficient model means less strain on the Motorhome itself, and less money spent on extra fuel that would have been expended on the Toad vehicle.
The Ford Fusion offers a couple of different models, including those that are Hybrid. Hybrid Models can actually be Flat-towed behind a couple’s RV. However, this is not recommended for more standard models.
The Ford Fusion is right in the middle considering both weight and price but comes highly recommended by RVers as a safe Toad vehicle.
Most couples who choose this as their Toad are more likely to not notice the weight of the car. This is great, it means it’s not a strain on the RV or the car, itself to tow.
Another great perk is that this car offers a smooth ride to both driver and passenger, alike.
Couples interested in towing the Ford Fusion as their Toad Car have a choice of towing it in two distinct ways.
Couples should choose between using a Dolly to tow their Ford Fusion or simply installing a Tow Bar to Flat Tow the car.
Couples should choose the option that works best for their car to keep it safe as can be.
Cons: However, one issue with the Ford Fusion not often mentioned anywhere is its tendency toward “Active Brakes” which stay on even when the vehicle itself is not turned on.
The vehicle itself seems to tow well, however with newer models featuring a navigation system it is recommended that the couple purchasing this car also invest in a towed battery charger.
It seems that the navigation system of this car seems to drain the battery quite a bit.
5. Fiat 500
“Overall this is a great small car. It is roomy and comfortable on the inside with plenty of room in the backseats too. The dash setup shows all the important information clearly and easily read. Your speed is shown up as a number about 1/2″high. The car gets good gas mileage in town as well as on the highway. We have had many compliments on the car”Customer Review on Cars.com
Cons: Similar to the Toyota Corolla, this car’s transmission actually determines how the FIAT 500 should be towed. If the couple’s FIAT has an automatic transmission, then the FIAT should be towed with a Dolly.
Depending on the style of FIAT that the couple has determined appropriate to their needs, they may find that they need a certain bracket to tow it properly.
However, the best way to tow the FIAT is to tow a model with a manual transmission so that the car can have all four wheels on the ground.
However, couples who do not like or do not know how to drive stick shift way not decide to tow this car.
Pros: If couples are looking for a car that comes in a variety of different styles including Sport, Italian Styled Pop, or even Lounge – then the FIAT 500 is for them.
The FIAT 500 is a car that can easily be flat towed if need be behind the couple’s Motorhome.
The FIAT 500 comes in a wide range of styles, all with a picturesque exterior that is attractive to many younger couples.
This small car is the lightest weight and cheapest of all of the models featured on this list.
The price of the FIAT 500 is perfect for couples who are looking for an inexpensive car.
The FIAT is also perfect for couples who are not looking to carry a whole lot with them through their ride downtown. Although this car brags a “surprisingly spacious interior“
This seems to be the case with most FIAT owners, who seem to agree that the interior of the car offers plenty of room for them and whatever they happen to be carrying with them that day.
Due to the FIAT’s lightweight, this car should also be the easiest of all for any motorhome to pull. The size of the FIAT makes it more fuel efficient, making it the most cost-effective option still when adding in the price factor for fuel.
Similar to the Ford Fusion Hybrid, those couples with a FIAT 500 have the choice of towing their vehicle in two separate ways.
Couples can either load their FIAT onto a Dolly with two wheels touching the road and two that do not touch the road.
Or couples can choose to Flat Tow their FIAT 500 by going through the steps of installing a Tow Bar and properly attaching the car to the back of the RV.
Does towing a car cause damage? If all wheels remain on the ground (such as if the car is in park) there can be tons of damage to the car itself. Damages can affect the transmission of the car. If considering towing your car, it is recommended that you keep the car in neutral during the towing process.
Is it legal to tow a car with a rope? Towing a car with a rope is legal in some places in the U.S. it is not legal in others, and is generally not recommended by most professionals. It’s best to check your state laws before towing your car with a rope.
When towing a car, what gear should it be in? Generally, most cars should be okay to be towed when shifting the gear into neutral and taking it off the parking brake. However, it does sometimes depend on if the car itself is 4WD or 2WD.