What Can A Minivan Tow? (How Much Can They Tow?)


What Can a Minivan Tow?

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When it comes to vehicles offering a great towing capacity, minivans aren’t exactly the first vehicles that come to mind. However, minivans can actually tow a decent amount with most minivans being able to tow around 3,500lbs. 

With a maximum towing weight like that minivans are able to tow a wide variety of items. 

Some of the items that minivans can tow are:

  • Campers
  • Boats
  • Horse trailers
  • Utility trailers
  • Small cars

As long as the total weight of the trailer doesn’t exceed the towing limit of the minivan then it will be able to tow it. That means that minivans can’t tow giant campers but it can easily tow a popup camper or small camper. 

A minivan also couldn’t pull a massive pontoon boat or houseboat but could easily handle a fishing boat or even a small pontoon boat. 

A minivan comes with a pretty decent towing capacity on top of offering other benefits. Not only does it offer comfortable seating for 7-8 passengers and a huge cargo-carrying space, but it also can tow a lot of different things as long as you are careful to not go over the weight limit. 

There is even a minivan (the Mercedes Metris) that has a towing capacity of 5,000lbs which pushes minivans to be able to haul a lot of the same things that an SUV can. 

Minivans allow you to tow anything from a small boat to a huge trailer again, as long as you stay below the maximum towing rating of the vehicle. From towing your necessary goods to hauling cargo, the best minivans will make your task much easier. 

You must also remember that besides towing, minivans are often used by commercial drivers as passenger vans. They come with all the modern-day amenities, providing passengers with a comfortable and luxurious experience. The advantage of using a minivan in towing large items is that with its great size its pulling capacity is also pretty good. 

In the rest of this article I will go into more detail about towing with a minivan and some important things that you should know before you ever get started. 

How much weight can a minivan tow? 

Yes, minivans are built and equipped to tow things. Modern-day minivans can tow up to 5,000 pounds on a trailer if properly equipped but the actual amount that a minivan can tow varies from model to model. 

The Chrysler, Dodge, and Volkswagen minivans, for example, are capable of towing up to 3600 pounds. Other models of minivans like the Toyota Sienna and Kia Sedona can tow a bit less at up to 3500 pounds. If you are wanting to tow the most possible weight with a minivan you will want to take a look at the Mercedes Benz Metris that can tow a maximum of 5,000 pounds easily putting it head and shoulders above the other minivans on the market. 

For towing things with your minivan you will need to attach a towing hitch to your vehicle. You also need a wiring harness and a transmission oil cooler or any other equipment as recommended by the  minivan’s manufacturer. Some minivans even come with a towing package consisting of a trailer hitch, heavy-duty engine cooling, wiring harness, and load-leveling suspension. If you don’t get these with the minivan when you buy it, you will need to buy these towing essentials separately and either install them yourself or have it done by a professional. 

Before hitching any trailer to a minivan you should go through the owner’s manual in detail. You can also consult a mechanic to make sure you have done it correctly. Before you go ahead with the pulling of heavy items, make sure you have attached everything properly as improper towing can cause damage to the vehicle or worse, accidents while driving down the road.

Before attaching the item that you will be towing, there are other factors you need to remember. The weight of the item, the towing capacity of your vehicle, max tongue weight, and accommodation capacity all influence the maximum amount that your vehicle can handle towing.

The terrain can also be a determining factor as driving up and down mountains can cause a lot more straining your minivan than towing something across flat areas. 

How to know if a minivan is properly equipped for towing?  

To find out whether your minivan is strong enough to tow heavy items, look for a few things while buying a minivan. You must check to see if they offer a heavy-duty suspension package, tow package, max towing package, and see whether the towing equipment like hitch receivers, oil coolers, etc. are provided. The transmission oil cooler helps protect the transmission when it receives high pressure due to the towing of heavy loads. At such extreme points, the cooler keeps the transmission cool and prevents the breakdown of the oil. 

Some manufacturers also provide heavy-duty suspension materials like sway bars and shocks. These help owners control the vehicle when under heavy pressure by keeping the tires securely planted on the road. Also, they restrict the rear end squat when towing heavy items. Various manufacturers offer various towing packages so some will provide a few extra towing types of equipment like upgraded axles, gas tank, trailer brake controllers, etc. while others won’t provide any of that. 

Just make sure you know what you are getting before buying a minivan. 

Even if you can’t afford to buy minivans that come with a towing package, you should still ensure that it’s equipped with the basic requirements which make it powerful enough to tow heavy loads. A simple glance at the owner’s manual will help you know what your minivan can and cannot handle. 

What can a minivan tow? 

Now, I have been saying that a minivan can tow heavy-duty goods or loads. Below is a list of a few heavyweight items which modern minivans are designed to tow but remember that all items aren’t the same. 

Just because minivans are designed to haul campers doesn’t mean that the can handle towing one that is 20-30ft long. Always be sure to stay below the maximum weight threshold. 

  • Camper

Also called a travel trailer, camper or caravan (in some places), minivans can easily tow it all. These are carried along with the vehicle to enable the passengers to sleep at night comfortably. Yes, a minivan can tow a camper but its towing capacity depends on several factors. The vehicle must have the correct hitch and high-performance rate to pull such a heavy vehicle and it obviously can’t pull giant campers that weigh tens of thousands of pounds. 

Typically you can haul a camper that is up to about 16 feet long before you will start to have weight issues with your minivan. 

  • Horse trailers

As per The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, minivans, SUVs, and pickup trucks are equipped to pull trailers. However, there’s no specific mention of any particular type of trailer. A lot of large minivans are known to tow horses or horse trailers easily. 

A minivan should be able to pull a 3 or 4 horse trailer when it’s empty but if you are planning on putting horses inside too then you would likely only be able to tow a one or two horse trailer with horses before you are towing too much. 

  • A boat

There are many different boats on the market so it’s important to know what type of boat your minivan can handle. All minivans can easily pull fishing boats without any problem but in general if the boat is under 15 feet in length your minivan ought to be able to tow it. 

Just make sure to check out the exact weight of the boat including the trailer before you attempt to tow it with your minivan. 

Which are the best minivans which can tow the most weight? 

The below-mentioned list contains the names of minivans having the maximum towing capacity: 

Mercedes Metris 

If high towing ability is what you want out of your minivan then you need to take a look at the Metris. With the ability to tow 5,000lbs it has the highest towing capacity by far. 

 Toyota Sienna

A great AWD option, the Toyota Sienna comes with a powerful engine and a maximum towing rating of 3600 pounds. It also comes with a safety package and includes features similar to that of the Kia Sedona’s safe towing package. 

 Honda Odyssey

It terms of towing, this minivan is equipped to tow about 3000 pounds of weight. It comes with an extremely powerful engine choice. It is the best minivan when it comes to infotainment technology and minivan’s safety. If you choose one of the two range-topping trim levels, the elite, and the touring models, you can get a towing capacity of 3500 pounds. 

Kia Sedona

The Kia Sedona’s 272 horsepower and 248 pound-feet of torque make it ideal for pulling anything weighing 3500 pounds or less. Its engine also comes with a new eight-speed automatic transmission, which has further improved its performance. This model is equipped with advanced towing features like automatic emergency braking, adaptive cruise control, and blind-spot monitoring. 

Conclusion

However, you must know that just because you own a minivan doesn’t mean you can tow any trailer. Several things come into consideration and you need to calculate certain figures before you attach a trailer and start towing it around. 

As long as the weight of the camper or trailer is within the towing limits of the minivan, you can tow it without damaging the vehicle’s engine and other parts. Usually, a minivan is equipped to tow anything ranging from fishing boats to campers without difficulty. 

In short, a minivan might not be as fancy as an SUV but it offers amazing towing capacity, practicality, gas mileage, and comfort. 

What Can a Minivan Tow? 

When it comes to vehicles offering a great towing capacity, minivans aren’t exactly the first vehicles that come to mind. However, minivans can actually tow a decent amount with most minivans being able to tow around 3,500lbs. 

With a maximum towing weight like that minivans are able to tow a wide variety of items. 

Some of the items that minivans can tow are:

  • Campers
  • Boats
  • Horse trailers
  • Utility trailers
  • Small cars

As long as the total weight of the trailer doesn’t exceed the towing limit of the minivan then it will be able to tow it. That means that minivans can’t tow giant campers but it can easily tow a popup camper or small camper. 

A minivan also couldn’t pull a massive pontoon boat or houseboat but could easily handle a fishing boat or even a small pontoon boat. 

A minivan comes with a pretty decent towing capacity on top of offering other benefits. Not only does it offer comfortable seating for 7-8 passengers and a huge cargo-carrying space, but it also can tow a lot of different things as long as you are careful to not go over the weight limit. 

There is even a minivan (the Mercedes Metris) that has a towing capacity of 5,000lbs which pushes minivans to be able to haul a lot of the same things that an SUV can. 

Minivans allow you to tow anything from a small boat to a huge trailer again, as long as you stay below the maximum towing rating of the vehicle. From towing your necessary goods to hauling cargo, the best minivans will make your task much easier. 

You must also remember that besides towing, minivans are often used by commercial drivers as passenger vans. They come with all the modern-day amenities, providing passengers with a comfortable and luxurious experience. The advantage of using a minivan in towing large items is that with its great size its pulling capacity is also pretty good. 

In the rest of this article I will go into more detail about towing with a minivan and some important things that you should know before you ever get started. 

How much weight can a minivan tow? 

Yes, minivans are built and equipped to tow things. Modern-day minivans can tow up to 5,000 pounds on a trailer if properly equipped but the actual amount that a minivan can tow varies from model to model. 

The Chrysler, Dodge, and Volkswagen minivans, for example, are capable of towing up to 3600 pounds. Other models of minivans like the Toyota Sienna and Kia Sedona can tow a bit less at up to 3500 pounds. If you are wanting to tow the most possible weight with a minivan you will want to take a look at the Mercedes Benz Metris that can tow a maximum of 5,000 pounds easily putting it head and shoulders above the other minivans on the market. 

For towing things with your minivan you will need to attach a towing hitch to your vehicle. You also need a wiring harness and a transmission oil cooler or any other equipment as recommended by the  minivan’s manufacturer. Some minivans even come with a towing package consisting of a trailer hitch, heavy-duty engine cooling, wiring harness, and load-leveling suspension. If you don’t get these with the minivan when you buy it, you will need to buy these towing essentials separately and either install them yourself or have it done by a professional. 

Before hitching any trailer to a minivan you should go through the owner’s manual in detail. You can also consult a mechanic to make sure you have done it correctly. Before you go ahead with the pulling of heavy items, make sure you have attached everything properly as improper towing can cause damage to the vehicle or worse, accidents while driving down the road.

Before attaching the item that you will be towing, there are other factors you need to remember. The weight of the item, the towing capacity of your vehicle, max tongue weight, and accommodation capacity all influence the maximum amount that your vehicle can handle towing.

The terrain can also be a determining factor as driving up and down mountains can cause a lot more straining your minivan than towing something across flat areas. 

How to know if a minivan is properly equipped for towing?  

To find out whether your minivan is strong enough to tow heavy items, look for a few things while buying a minivan. You must check to see if they offer a heavy-duty suspension package, tow package, max towing package, and see whether the towing equipment like hitch receivers, oil coolers, etc. are provided. The transmission oil cooler helps protect the transmission when it receives high pressure due to the towing of heavy loads. At such extreme points, the cooler keeps the transmission cool and prevents the breakdown of the oil. 

Some manufacturers also provide heavy-duty suspension materials like sway bars and shocks. These help owners control the vehicle when under heavy pressure by keeping the tires securely planted on the road. Also, they restrict the rear end squat when towing heavy items. Various manufacturers offer various towing packages so some will provide a few extra towing types of equipment like upgraded axles, gas tank, trailer brake controllers, etc. while others won’t provide any of that. 

Just make sure you know what you are getting before buying a minivan. 

Even if you can’t afford to buy minivans that come with a towing package, you should still ensure that it’s equipped with the basic requirements which make it powerful enough to tow heavy loads. A simple glance at the owner’s manual will help you know what your minivan can and cannot handle. 

What can a minivan tow? 

Now, I have been saying that a minivan can tow heavy-duty goods or loads. Below is a list of a few heavyweight items which modern minivans are designed to tow but remember that all items aren’t the same. 

Just because minivans are designed to haul campers doesn’t mean that the can handle towing one that is 20-30ft long. Always be sure to stay below the maximum weight threshold. 

  • Camper

Also called a travel trailer, camper or caravan (in some places), minivans can easily tow it all. These are carried along with the vehicle to enable the passengers to sleep at night comfortably. Yes, a minivan can tow a camper but its towing capacity depends on several factors. The vehicle must have the correct hitch and high-performance rate to pull such a heavy vehicle and it obviously can’t pull giant campers that weigh tens of thousands of pounds. 

Typically you can haul a camper that is up to about 16 feet long before you will start to have weight issues with your minivan. 

  • Horse trailers

As per The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, minivans, SUVs, and pickup trucks are equipped to pull trailers. However, there’s no specific mention of any particular type of trailer. A lot of large minivans are known to tow horses or horse trailers easily. 

A minivan should be able to pull a 3 or 4 horse trailer when it’s empty but if you are planning on putting horses inside too then you would likely only be able to tow a one or two horse trailer with horses before you are towing too much. 

  • A boat

There are many different boats on the market so it’s important to know what type of boat your minivan can handle. All minivans can easily pull fishing boats without any problem but in general if the boat is under 15 feet in length your minivan ought to be able to tow it. 

Just make sure to check out the exact weight of the boat including the trailer before you attempt to tow it with your minivan. 

Which are the best minivans which can tow the most weight? 

The below-mentioned list contains the names of minivans having the maximum towing capacity: 

Mercedes Metris 

If high towing ability is what you want out of your minivan then you need to take a look at the Metris. With the ability to tow 5,000lbs it has the highest towing capacity by far. 

 Toyota Sienna

A great AWD option, the Toyota Sienna comes with a powerful engine and a maximum towing rating of 3600 pounds. It also comes with a safety package and includes features similar to that of the Kia Sedona’s safe towing package. 

 Honda Odyssey

It terms of towing, this minivan is equipped to tow about 3000 pounds of weight. It comes with an extremely powerful engine choice. It is the best minivan when it comes to infotainment technology and minivan’s safety. If you choose one of the two range-topping trim levels, the elite, and the touring models, you can get a towing capacity of 3500 pounds. 

Kia Sedona

The Kia Sedona’s 272 horsepower and 248 pound-feet of torque make it ideal for pulling anything weighing 3500 pounds or less. Its engine also comes with a new eight-speed automatic transmission, which has further improved its performance. This model is equipped with advanced towing features like automatic emergency braking, adaptive cruise control, and blind-spot monitoring. 

Conclusion

However, you must know that just because you own a minivan doesn’t mean you can tow any trailer. Several things come into consideration and you need to calculate certain figures before you attach a trailer and start towing it around. 

As long as the weight of the camper or trailer is within the towing limits of the minivan, you can tow it without damaging the vehicle’s engine and other parts. Usually, a minivan is equipped to tow anything ranging from fishing boats to campers without difficulty. 

In short, a minivan might not be as fancy as an SUV but it offers amazing towing capacity, practicality, gas mileage, and comfort. 

Matthew Robbs

I have been working on cars since I was a kid and I love taking a vehicle that isn't working and bringing it back to life. I have owned quite a few cars over the years and looking for information about different vehicles is still hard online so that is why I started this website.

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