Subaru and Jayco Starcraft

Submitted: Sunday, Mar 28, 2021 at 16:50
ThreadID: 141306 Views:5068 Replies:3 FollowUps:5
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Just wondering if anyone has experience with towing a 12ft Jayco Starcraft with a Subaru Forester. I've got a 2009 petrol at the moment but looking at upgrading to a Subaru Forester2016 diesel before purchasing the Jayco. Thanks
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Reply By: Gbc.. - Monday, Mar 29, 2021 at 18:56

Monday, Mar 29, 2021 at 18:56
There are plenty of tow tests with the diesel sube towing those conservative weights without issue. I camped next to a gent at the Bunya Mountains who had one and towed his A Van up from the McClagan side with no issue. There are plenty of “no caravans or trailers past this point” signs on that road, it is quite steep. He had done 2 laps of Oz in his without issue - he is a travelling author. The latest ones are up to 1800kg tow and 700 kg payload which embarrasses a lot of “real” 4wd wagons.
AnswerID: 635782

Follow Up By: Helen G3 - Monday, Mar 29, 2021 at 19:01

Monday, Mar 29, 2021 at 19:01
Thanks for that good to know.
FollowupID: 913466

Reply By: RMD - Monday, Mar 29, 2021 at 22:57

Monday, Mar 29, 2021 at 22:57
I know the vehicle will/may tow 1800kg but there are some items to consider or get advice about. My daughter's earlier Petrol Forester had Self levelling rear shocks. Great for normal use but may not suit or be able to control a heavy load. Gbc mentioned newer ones have 700kg rating but, in reality, that is not with a caravan attached. Over undulating bitumen roads, the mass of the van WILL impose far greater load to the rear of the Suby and subsequent rear axle movement might bottom the suspension. The shocks have to dynamically control the mass of everything. Not Good if bottoming happens. Of course driving style and awareness are controlling factors to avoid that. Somewhere a balance of load and van load/ball weight has to be arrived at so all is well for you to travel safely. Simply hitching, because it can physically pull it along isn't the issue.
Not too much ball weight, Many vans have plenty of that, but it may not be what the Subaru likes, so find out maximum towball weights and try to not get too near the maximum of the Subaru's ability. ie, have some reserve. Correct loading of the van with ample ball weight is desirable.
AnswerID: 635783

Follow Up By: Helen G3 - Tuesday, Mar 30, 2021 at 08:18

Tuesday, Mar 30, 2021 at 08:18
Thank you for the response it's appreciated and I'm looking at other vehicle options as well to compare as it's a big investment to get a van and vehicle so I want to get the choice right.
FollowupID: 913470

Follow Up By: RMD - Tuesday, Mar 30, 2021 at 12:39

Tuesday, Mar 30, 2021 at 12:39
Seeing you are open to other vehicles, perhaps an Isuzu MUX would also do the job well. It allows for adding extending mirrors to see past the van and will tow the starcraft with ease and possibly be as efficient or better on fuel. Is the Subaru a manual or a CVT /auto. You are better with a TRUE auto, not a CVT if towing and manoeuvering anywhere. My concern would be the history of failures of Subaru CVT, "Continuously Variable Transmissions' which are also loaded more when towing. Modern true auto's are very reliable items with a 70 years + history of development and refinement. Google Subaru CVT/auto failures.
The MUX is around 220mm longer and also has a similar size longer wheelbase for towing stability and commands a higher view than a Subaru. There are other vehicle brand options as well. Many Boxer Subaru's develop leaking head gaskets on under side of both banks and is what Subaru dealers ALL look for when trading them in to decide value, so have a knowledgeable competent mechanic look for the possibility IF deciding on a Subaru second hand anything.
FollowupID: 913473

Reply By: Dean K3 - Wednesday, Mar 31, 2021 at 18:16

Wednesday, Mar 31, 2021 at 18:16
Just a observation the folks neighbor made she had a newer model Forester can't recall what mdoel but certainly newer than 2009.

She purchased a A van which weight not much compared to some carvans out in market, and low behold it couldn't even reverse the Avan up her driveway into the carport.

Plenty of clutch slipping for it to occur had it tested and was all within specs.

ended up trading it in on a Hyundai SUV model can't recall.

Personally id be going up to size for better towing capacity and stability.

Just this afternoon I looked at a older model nissan xtrail towing a smallish caravan (base of greenmount hill base of darlign scarp West aust) rear wheel arches was certainly lower to ground than front
AnswerID: 635807

Follow Up By: Helen G3 - Wednesday, Mar 31, 2021 at 19:43

Wednesday, Mar 31, 2021 at 19:43
Yep thank you I've decided to upsize for sure and now looking at a slightly bigger van as well. Really appreciate the comments.
FollowupID: 913499

Follow Up By: RMD - Wednesday, Mar 31, 2021 at 22:32

Wednesday, Mar 31, 2021 at 22:32
My daughters Forrester was not very slow in LOW and made heavy work difficult. To get firm manoeuverability, or getting out of that, "down by the creek" spot after a shower of rain, a more capable vehicle may be required. All depends on what usage the rig will be asked to perform when deciding which vehicle and capability.
FollowupID: 913508

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