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Is There A Minivan That Can Tow 5000lbs? (What About Full Size Vans?)

Have you ever wanted to plan a trip with your entire family, with all the goodies packed for a mini-vacation? Well, a car isn’t sufficient and comfortable for a lot of people. With all of the packed items, you need a much larger vehicle that can accommodate you and your family. 

One issue with minivans is that they typically don’t offer a lot of towing capability but is that true for all of them? Is there any minivan that can tow 5,000 pounds? 

The only minivan that is on the market that can tow 5,000lbs is the Mercedes-Benz Metris that is able to tow exactly that amount. Any other vans that can tow that much or more are full size vans. 

The Mercedes-Benz Metris is almost identical in size to all of the other minivans that are currently on the market so being the same size as the other models but being able to tow almost 50% more is a great benefit if you tow much at all. 

Surprisingly the Metris has a base price of $31,390 which is far less than most people expect being that it is a Mercedes vehicle. 

The only other vans that can tow more than 5,000lbs are: 

  • Mercedes-Benz Sprinter (up to 7,500lbs)
  • Ford Transit (up to 5,100lbs)
  • Nissan NV (up to 8,690lbs) 
  • Chevy Express/ GMC Savana (up to 9,600lbs)

The four above vans can tow over 5,000lbs each however they are considered full size vans and not minivans which makes the Mercedes Metris the only minivan currently on the market that is rated to tow 5,000lbs. 

How much weight can a minivan tow? 

The amount of weight that a minivan can tow varies based on the minivan model. As mentioned above the Mercedes Metris can tow up to 5,000lbs making it the highest towing amount for a minivan by far but what about all the other minivans on the market? How much can they tow? 

The towing capacities for the minivans currently on the market are:

  • Chrysler Pacifica (3,600lbs) 
  • Chrysler Voyager (3,600lbs) 
  • Dodge Grand Caravan (3,600lbs)
  • Honda Odyssey (3,500lbs) 
  • Kia Sedona (3,500lbs)
  • Mercedes-Benz Metris (5,000lbs)
  • Nissan Quest (3,500lbs)
  • Toyota Sienna (3,500lbs) 

As you can easily see from the list above, all of the minivans  but one have a towing capacity of 3,500lbs to 3,600lbs. The only outlier is the Metris at 5,000lbs which is by far the larger towing capacity of any minivan. 

Which minivan has the most towing capacity? 

If you are planning on towing a heavier camper or trailer with a lot of things in it then you will likely want to know which minivan has the highest towing capacity. 

The minivan that has the highest towing capacity by far is the Mercedes Metris. It can tow up to 5,000 pounds while all the other minivan’s on the market are 3,500-3,600 pounds. 

As can be seen in the section above the Metris stands far above the rest of the competition in regards to towing capacity so if you always find yourself needing a bit more capability than most minivans have then a Metris is a great choice for you. 

What does your minivan need before it can start towing?

Towing anything can be a difficult task as it has an effect on both the way the vehicles handles as well as the power and acceleration that it has. 

There are two main things that your minivan needs to have before it starts towing anything. Those items are a properly attached hitch and the proper wiring. Some people also suggest connecting transmission cooler equipment that can help make sure that your minivan doesn’t have any issues with parts overheating. 

A hitch and wiring harness for the trailer is something that can be done either by the owner of the vehicle or by virtually any mechanic. There are many sets that are sold that include both the hitch and wiring setup to make it as easy as possible for an individual to install it themselves however if you aren’t comfortable doing that then you can typically hire someone to do it for $300-$400. 

No matter if you are planning on doing the installation yourself or hiring someone to do it, it’s important that you know exactly how it should be done so you can either do it right or check the work that was done by the person you hired. 

The last thing that you want is to be going down the road and the hitch or lights to have a failure because of improper installation. 

How should you select the hitch for your minivan?

Choosing the correct hitch gives the vehicle the right balance in regards to the trailers that the minivan will be towing. It will also decide how your vehicle handles corners, brakes, and sudden stops so having the right hitch and ball size is important for your minivan’s safety. 

So, before selecting the right hitch for your minivan, make sure you are very familiar with the weights and the ratings of your vehicle. The different types of hitches are frame-mounted hitch, weight distribution hitch, and the trailer hitch. Remember, if you do have to make any holes in your vehicle to install a hitch, do not forget to seal them. If they are not sealed, deadly carbon monoxide, water, and dirt can accumulate in your vehicle.

What are the weight and gross combination ratings of minivans?

Before the practical application of minivans, the engineers perform testing of engine acceleration, breaking parts, and thermal testing is done to test the strength of the structure and determine the gross combination rate. This ensures that the vehicle is safe and secure to transport passengers and used for cargo services. 

Also, you should keep in mind that the GCWR of your vehicle should not exceed the weight of the trailer.

Are safety chains for towing required?

You should always fix a chain between your vehicle and the other towing vehicle or trailer that you are hauling. The safety chain should be connected to the tongue of the trailer so that it doesn’t loosen and is less likely to get separated from the hitch. Also, do not let the chain drag on the ground to avoid unwanted noises or even starting fires from the sparks! 

Fill your trailers with 15% to 20% tongue weight to get the outside range to improve the movement of the trailer. Once the trailer and the safety chains are hitched properly to the minivan, you can start towing with your vehicle.


Many people don’t even realize that you can tow a small trailer or camper with all minivans but the Metris offers far and away the highest towing capacity at 5,000lbs. 

If you only need to tow a popup camper or smaller trailer you can do so with just about any minivan that is on the market but if you find yourself needing to tow a larger camper, boat, etc. then the Metris is the perfect minivan for you because of its 50% higher capacity!