Toyota Sienna Forum - siennachat.com banner
1 - 12 of 12 Posts

· Registered
Joined
·
55 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
Did another flat tow this past weekend. This time we towed the drift car corolla ~800 miles with a full load of gear and a friend!

Cloud Wheel Tire Sky Car


Van did alright towing. No issues really, even with the weight un-braked.

(Disclaimer: Prior to this run I’ve flat towed similarly with rental trucks then also did this same setup with the van for shorter trips last year to get a feel as well. All of my testing went great and made me feel confident to give this a run. I did have back up measures ready incase issues did come up as well.)

Tire Wheel Car Vehicle Sky


Automotive tail & brake light Car Vehicle Automotive lighting Hood


Trip was from Livermore to Apple Valley Speedway out near the Mohave Desert. The route was 580 > 5 > a little bit of grapevine > 138 > 15
About 386 miles each way.

Gas mileage, I averaged 24mpg using regular mode mostly. I experimented briefly with following a big rig (at a safe distance), eco mode, and folded my mirrors in (lol) and was reading 31mpg.

Only areas where I had “issues” was on the 15 miles of grapevine I had to climb. The motor was pushing hard hard on the climb when attempting to keep with traffic at ~55mph. I dialed it down to 45mph and climbed with the big rigs in the slow lane. No problem keeping speed up the 6% incline.

Map Water World Parallel Atlas



No issues on the return trip either. The downhill spot on grapevine was a breeze. If anything I felt like the hybrid regenerative braking was a good addition to have on top of the huge brakes and engine braking.

View attachment 60809
(Made it okay to the airbnb, other corolla buddy had the same idea for his Lexus)




View attachment 60818

Walkthrough video of the flat tow setup:

And bonus drifting clips

Few other dudes on 5 also got the memo





(flamesuit on for the concerning comments about “how I’m doing it wrong”, etcetc).
 

Attachments

· Registered
Joined
·
55 Posts
Discussion Starter · #2 ·
Some notes on the trip.

On the initial loading for the van, I had majority of the heavy stuff loaded in the back of the van. This did cause the rear to squat a bit. On the return trip I loaded the heavy stuff in the middle seats and that seemed to work better.
Though the flat tow setup is no initial weight on the tongue, this just made me feel better seeing less squat.

Future trips I’ll probably get one of those air lift springs for the rear to help with squatting.

More bonus pics

Vehicle Sky Wheel Car Mountain

Clothing Footwear Shoe Automotive tire Asphalt

Tire Sky Car Wheel Automotive tire

Land vehicle Sky Wheel Car Tire



Tire Wheel Motor vehicle Vehicle Automotive tire

Tire Sky Wheel Car Land vehicle

Sky Tire Vehicle Wheel Automotive tire
 

Attachments

· Premium Member
2014 Sienna LE
Joined
·
799 Posts
I've never tried drifting, but that looks like a bunch of fun!

I personally prefer having braked trailers when towing, for safety. I'm never worried about stopping distance with a properly braked trailer. I'm more worried that the people tailgating me and not paying proper attention will rear end me if I need to do an emergency stop, mostly for the hassle factor since that would automatically be their fault/liability if they did.

I'm more amused that you saw not one, but two different people towing what appear to be identical model vehicles with their own vehicles!

I'm guessing you have either stronger than OEM springs, or an air bag? Doesn't look like your van is squatting much, even with all that weight.
 

· Registered
Joined
·
55 Posts
Discussion Starter · #4 ·
I've never tried drifting, but that looks like a bunch of fun!

I personally prefer having braked trailers when towing, for safety. I'm never worried about stopping distance with a properly braked trailer. I'm more worried that the people tailgating me and not paying proper attention will rear end me if I need to do an emergency stop, mostly for the hassle factor since that would automatically be their fault/liability if they did.
Drifting is the best! Highly recommend it!

Good call out on the braked weight and liability concern. This is also something I’ve thought over and have accepted the risk (for now). I only tow like this maybe twice a year. And on those drives I make sure everything is solid-solid (hence my concern on the slight squat). I’ll eventually get a trailer dolly with brakes and use that for future events. For the time being until I can find space for one (and a reasonably priced on), I’ll do this. Actually, might just rent one next trip. Hmm…

I'm guessing you have either stronger than OEM springs, or an air bag? Doesn't look like your van is squatting much, even with all that weight.
Stock springs! 100% stock van! (Except the curt tow bar).
 

· Premium Member
2014 Sienna LE
Joined
·
799 Posts
I probably won't get into drifting, but I have thought many times about getting a set of motorcycle leather gear and going to a track with my bike.

Speaking of towing, there was a guy on a motorcycle forum I was on, who did track with a dedicated track bike. Rather than towing his track bike to the track with a car, he used his Honda Goldwing to tow the track bike on a small trailer. 🤣
 

· Registered
Joined
·
18 Posts
Thank you for sharing and I love your passion for motorsports.

I also join track days from time to time, but my track car was much heavier than yours (3100lbs, 2018 Civic Type R). I loaded the race tires and floor jacks in the backseat + trunk. It's barely enough. In your case, your van works as the support vehicle, which gives you a lot more options and space. This is certainly a luxury I don't have. By the way, I have been to Sonoma, Laguna Seca and Thunderhill. All are world-class tracks!

This is great stuff and thanks for sharing !!
 

· Registered
Joined
·
387 Posts
Display mpg’s.

Calculated is like… 20ish. But I lost track after hitting traffic and getting frustrated with 15. I also kept hitting reset on my odometers to see what display was showing during my experimenting.
I was just curious because I'm thinking about using my van to pull a 18ft SeaRay openbow. Currently, I am using a 2007 w164 Mercedes diesel (but diesel is so expensive now). So maybe use the Sienna ?
 

· Registered
Joined
·
25 Posts
I was just curious because I'm thinking about using my van to pull a 18ft SeaRay openbow. Currently, I am using a 2007 w164 Mercedes diesel (but diesel is so expensive now). So maybe use the Sienna ?
That boat weighs about 2,600-2,800 pounds. A single axle trailer probably weighs just a bit less than 1,000 pounds. The maximum towing capacity of gen-4 Sienna, according to Toyota, is 3,500 pounds.

It can be done if you're going to the lake 25 miles away, but I sure wouldn't tow it at any greater distances, especially when mountains are involved.
 
  • Like
Reactions: Mikeyee and 20swrt

· Registered
Joined
·
55 Posts
Discussion Starter · #12 ·
That boat weighs about 2,600-2,800 pounds. A single axle trailer probably weighs just a bit less than 1,000 pounds. The maximum towing capacity of gen-4 Sienna, according to Toyota, is 3,500 pounds.

It can be done if you're going to the lake 25 miles away, but I sure wouldn't tow it at any greater distances, especially when mountains are involved.
Probably better idea to try it out, go small distances and get a feel for it. Then if the trip was a success and any hiccups were easy to manage and the van held up okay, take it another step further.

Maybe even have a buddy follow with the truck and if there are any challenges, you got the truck to swap with.
 
1 - 12 of 12 Posts
Top