Can a Prius pull an Airstream? (7 cars than can)

In this blog post, we will answer the following question: Can a Prius pull an Airstream? We will discuss the towing capacity and features of the Toyota Prius. We will also see what is the average weight of an Airstream trailer and what cars are the best for towing it. 

Can a Prius pull an Airstream?

No, a Toyota Prius cannot pull an Airstream trailer. The maximum towing capacity of a Prius is 1598 lbs, while the average Airstream trailer weighs between 3,000 and 5,000 lbs. The numbers just don’t add up! See the table below for more details. 

Toyota Prius Towing Capacity


Toyota Prius Towing Capacity
Towing Capacity
Toyota Prius Hatchback (2015 onwards) 1.8 VVTi Active 5d CVT Auto1598 lbs
Toyota Prius Hatchback (2015 onwards) 1.8 VVTi Business Ed Plus (15-inch alloy) 5d CVT1598 lbs
Toyota Prius Hatchback (2015 onwards) 1.8 VVTi Business Edition 5d CVT Auto1598 lbs
Toyota Prius Hatchback (2015 onwards) 1.8 VVTi Business Edition Plus 5d CVT Auto1598 lbs
Toyota Prius Hatchback (2015 onwards) 1.8 VVTi Excel (15-inch alloy) 5d CVT1598 lbs
Toyota Prius Hatchback (2015 onwards) 1.8 VVTi Excel 5d CVT Auto1598 lbs
Toyota PRIUS HATCHBACK 1.8 VVTi Active 5dr CVT1598 lbs
Toyota PRIUS HATCHBACK 1.8 VVTi Active 5dr CVT [Nav]1598 lbs
Toyota PRIUS HATCHBACK 1.8 VVTi Business Ed Plus 5dr CVT [15-inch alloy]1598 lbs
Toyota PRIUS HATCHBACK 1.8 VVTi Business Edition 5dr CVT1598 lbs
Toyota PRIUS HATCHBACK 1.8 VVTi Business Edition 5dr CVT [Nav]1598 lbs
Toyota PRIUS HATCHBACK 1.8 VVTi Business Edition Plus 5dr CVT1598 lbs
Toyota PRIUS HATCHBACK 1.8 VVTi Excel 5dr CVT1598 lbs
Toyota PRIUS HATCHBACK 1.8 VVTi Excel 5dr CVT [15-inch alloy]1598 lbs

What can a Toyota Prius tow? 

The fourth generation of the Toyota Prius is the first in 19 years that the world’s best-selling hybrid has been in operation to be able to equip a trailer hitch. Sold as an accessory at dealerships and can tow up to 750 kilos of weight (1598 lbs). 

This trailer hitch is found as an original accessory in the dealerships of the Japanese firm for a price of $475 without taking into account the price of the assembly. To this must be added $238 for the 7-pin electrical connection, a figure that rises to $277 in the case of needing the 13-pin connection.

Thanks to this new rear hitch, not only can it be towed from a caravan that weighs a maximum of 750 kilos, but it can also be fitted with functional supports for transporting bicycles, for example, an accessory that the Japanese firm also offers for this new Toyota Prius for $359 and that allows transporting two bicycles. There is also another folding that costs $556.

To say that this hitch can be disassembled and stored in a cover when not in use so that its support is not visible and best of all, it does not affect the refined aerodynamics of this efficient vehicle that continues to surprise us. 

Best small campers for your Toyota Prius

Finally, here are a few recommendations of small campers that a Toyota Prius will be able to tow more than easily:

Caretta  Trailers- The oldest brand on the European market, the Caretta caravan from Turkish manufacturer Basoglu debuted in 2008 taking inspiration from the American style. The range includes four models: the flagship Caretta 1500 version, a 4 × 4 version and two utility vehicles (Cargo and Shop).

Hero Camper – This Danish caravan is characterized by a body height above the standard of the “mini” type, offering at the same time more roominess. The galley, however, remains in the rear, protected by a tailgate. It is equipped with a sink, storage space and a place for a refrigerator. 

Hundred Miles Teardrop trailer – This Toulouse manufacturer started production in 2018 and has since offered its caravans not only for sale but also for hire. The originality of the product lies not only in its construction (aluminum sandwich panel) but also in the particular style with the painted wooden wheel fenders. Another find is the indoor table option.

Micro Teardrop Trailer – This Breton manufacturer offers a catalogue with customization possibilities. The offer is based on the Micro, the Teardrop, the 4 × 4 Prestige, not to mention the Mini, which can be towed by a trike or a sidecar. There are also two new features, in a larger box: two versions for 3 and 4 people, with bunk beds.

My Tiny Camp – Locally purchased wood and aluminum, insulation and paints that are non-aggressive for the body: My Tiny Camp is positioned as an eco-responsible caravan, made in France and that you can maintain yourself. Like its counterparts, it can be equipped with much optional equipment.

How much does an Airstream trailer weigh?

Airstream trailers come in many different sizes to suit the needs of each camper. The exterior length of the trailers ranges from 16 feet to just under 35 feet. This length is important to consider for towing capacity. 

All Airstream motorhomes are 8 feet 5 1/2 inches wide on the outside and 8 feet 1 inch wide on the inside. Each unit is 9 feet 7 1/2 inches tall on the outside and ranges from 6 feet 4 1/2 inches to 6 feet 7 inches tall on the inside.

Here’s how much every Airstream trailer weighs: 

  • Basecamp– 2,585 lbs
  • Nest– 3,400 lbs
  • Sport– 2,860 lbs
  • Flying Cloud– 3,852 lbs
  • Signature– 4,761 lbs
  • Serenity– 4,761 lbs
  • Globetrotter– 6,074 lbs
  • Tommy Bahama– 4,200 lbs
  • Classic– 7,788 lbs
  • Bambi– 3,000 lbs
  • Caravel– 3,500 lbs. 

What cars can pull an Airstream?

We suggest the following seven vehicles for pulling an Airstream:

  1. Ford Expedition – Producing 470 pound-feet of torque, the 3.5-liter EcoBoost V6 in the new 2018 Ford Expedition is stronger than many V8s thanks to its twin-turbocharged engine. 9,200 pounds is no problem for him when equipped with the high performance towing package.
  1. Grand Cherokee –  The 2018 Grand Cherokee can pull up to 7,200 pounds thanks to its various HEMI V8s, which produce 360, 475 and 707 horsepower (although it’s hard to imagine a Trackhawk hitched to a trailer!).
  1. Jeep Cherokee – Another Jeep! When equipped with the 3.2-litre Pentastar V6 producing 271 horsepower, the 2019 Jeep Cherokee is unbeatable among small SUVs. It can tow a load of up to 4,500 pounds, enough to put much larger vehicles to shame.
  1. Lincoln Navigator – The newest Lincoln Navigator packs the same 3.5-liter EcoBoost V6 as the Ford Expedition. Its power is 450 horsepower and torque is 510 pound-feet, but different equipment and settings put its towing capacity at 8700 pounds.
  1. Porsche Cayenne – Both the new 2019 Porsche Cayenne and the 2018 Land Rover Range Rover Sport (above) are able to tow loads totalling 7,716 pounds. In the case of the second, you can choose between a supercharged V6 and V8 as well as a turbodiesel V6.
  1. Audi Q5 – The next-generation Audi Q5 isn’t just good looking and fun to drive. With its 2.0-litre turbo four-cylinder engine generating 252 horsepower and 273 pound-feet of torque, it is capable of pulling up to 4,400 pounds. Who needs a V6?
  1. Ford F-450 – In its SuperCrew 4×2 version with a 6.7-litre turbo diesel V8 developing 440 horsepower and unmatched torque of 925 lb-ft, the Ford F-450 can tow up to 24,000 lbs!

Conclusions

Towing an Airstream with a Toyota Prius is not possible. If you tow too much weight, the rear of the car will be pushed up and the front is pushed in. The result is that the grip deteriorates, the trailer becomes more unstable and the range of the low beam is shortened.

Take all things into consideration before hitting the road, and if you have any questions about the content, do let us know!

FAQ on Can a Prius pull an Airstream?

Can you tow a small trailer with a Prius?

Yes, you can tow a small trailer with a Prius. The 2015 and onwards Toyota Prius models have a towing capacity of 725 kilograms/1,598 lbs, which makes it capable of towing a lightweight caravan or small camper. 

Can you put a trailer hitch on a Toyota Prius?

You can put a trailer hitch on a Toyota Prius, but if you haven’t a clue about installing a hitch, it is best to ask help from a Toyota authorised mechanic. 

How do you put a Prius in neutral when towing?

When towing, you can shift a Prius in neutral by hitting the power button twice without your foot on the brake then put your foot on the brake to put it in neutral. 

Can a Prius pull a Scamp trailer?

No, a Prius cannot pull a Scamp trailer, or it will certainly struggle. The Prius allows a light towing of less than 725 kilograms (1598 lbs). Experts in caravans and trailers agree to recommend for the moment the use of hybrids for towing, as they offer the best performance without limitations in this type of car. Still, a Scamp trailer may be just over the limit for a Prius. 

Can you tow with a Prius?

Yes, you can tow with a Prius. The fourth generation of the Toyota Prius is the first in 19 years that the world’s best-selling hybrid has been in operation to be able to equip a trailer hitch. Sold as an accessory at dealerships and can tow up to 750 kilos of weight (1598 lbs). 

References