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3.4L V6 Towing MPG

Discussion in 'Towing' started by Savington, Apr 13, 2009.

  1. Apr 13, 2009 at 2:08 AM

    Savington [OP] New Member

    Apr 13, 2009
    Looking for a bit of real-world info on mileage while towing. I've done a few searches and have turned up lots of 4.0 V6 info, and a few people who tow at 70mph and then complain about the mileage. :confused: I read through the towing bible which has a bunch of great info, but very little on mileage unfortunately.

    I've been daily driving my turbocharged Miata for a couple of years, but I am getting ready to put a roll cage in it and turn it into a dediated track car. I'm looking at a couple of options for a combination tow rig/daily driver, and one of them is a 1st gen Tacoma. I can't afford a 2nd gen truck, so even though I know the 4.0 V6 would be better suited for towing it's out of my reach right now. The trucks I am looking at are all 5-speeds (don't want to deal with a tranny cooler or reliability issues while towing), long-bed extended cab trucks. I'm interested in a V6 Tacoma because I don't think a V8 truck will obtain the highway towing mileage I want to get to, and the diesels I have looked at are all F250s or 1-ton Dodges that would be a big pain to drive every day.

    The Miata weighs about 2200lbs, so along with an open trailer I'm estimating around a 4500lb load. If you tow a boat, or something similar sized/weight at REASONABLE speeds (60mph or so), what sort of mileage do you get and how does the truck handle it? I was hoping to get 14-15mpg towing and 18+ around town - am I insane to think this is possible? I'll be towing a lot, at least 500+ miles a month, but it'll be mostly flat highway.
  2. Apr 13, 2009 at 12:12 PM

    maverick491 Towing Guru

    Apr 30, 2007
    South Jersey
    07 4x4 Access Cab, TRD off road, 6 cyl, 6 spd
    Activator III brake controller, Extang Fulltilt toneau, Factory bed mat, Extra D-rings in the bed, 2ndary air filter removed, Garmin Ique GPS, Eco-2, AFE Pro Dry-s filter, USASPEC PA12-toy, Pioneer 3-way speakers, SG II on Blendmount, Gulf States Alarm added.
    The 18+ around town is going to be the iffy part. It can be done, but a gen 1 v6 5 speed, in general only sees 19-20 on the highway running solo, so I 18 mpg around town may be possible depending on your shifting technique and the weight of your right foot.

    The Miata on an open trailer is far more aerodynamic then my enclosed car hauler and my travel trailer, which turn in roughly 11-12 MPG when driven correctly. When I pull my father's boat 1989 20' SeaRay 200, I get roughly 15MPG on the highway, and I'd suspect that the miata will be even more aerodynamic and out of the wind than a vintage boat.

    However, this is only conjecture as I have no concrete numbers on the boat towing, but I am sure that someone who spends more time with an open or boat trailer can chime in.


  3. Apr 15, 2009 at 5:32 PM

    j4x4ar3 Well-Known Member

    Feb 13, 2008
    First Name:
    Austin, TX
    05 DC 4x4 - TRD Off Road - White
    Round Step Bars, Bed Mat, Cargo Bars w/Thules ski and bike attachments, JVC MP3 Head Unit, TRD Cat Back Exhaust, roadmaster active rear suspension, more when $$$ allows
    I tow a 5300# 26' long travel trailer. MPG as a daily driver is between 20-22mpg. Towing my trailer has ranged from 8-12mpg depending on headwind and number of grades. Average is 10mpg when towing though for most of my trips. That's pretty average for any truck that's not a diesel.. take a look at the RV forums as RV.NET and you'll see about the same numbers from the full size gasser trucks.
  4. Apr 17, 2009 at 8:32 AM

    mvega1969 Well-Known Member

    Nov 15, 2007
    '17 Tacoma DC LB 4X4 TRD Off Road.
    I tow a 3,000+ pounds rv, along with a lot of extras (outdoor goodies, fishing, hunting) and again depending on the wind direction and using "D" I can go from 12.8 to 16 MPG at 65/70 MPH with-in a 2050 to 2500RPM. I base my RV towing at Texas roads... very plain, not that much grades, on pronounced grades you will experience 2700 RMP at 55MPH and a sloooooow motion driving.

    Hope this help you.

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