Driving Characteristics and Towing Tips

The driver can lose control when pulling a trailer if the correct equipment isWARNING
The driver can lose control when pulling a trailer if the correct equipment is not used or the vehicle is not driven properly.

For example, if the trailer is too heavy, the brakes may not work well—or even at all. The driver and passengers could be seriously injured. The vehicle may also be damaged; the resulting repairs would not be covered by the vehicle warranty. Pull a trailer only if all the steps in this section have been followed. Ask your dealer for advice and information about towing a trailer with the vehicle.

The vehicle can tow a trailer when equipped with the proper trailer towing equipment. For trailering capacity, see Trailer Towing . Trailering changes handling, acceleration, braking, durability and fuel economy.

With the added weight, the engine, transmission, wheel assemblies and tires are forced to work harder and under greater loads. The trailer also adds wind resistance, increasing the pulling requirements. For safe trailering, correctly use the proper trailering equipment.

The following information has important trailering tips and rules for your safety and that of your passengers. Read this section carefully before pulling a trailer.

Pulling a Trailer

Here are some important points:

► There are many laws, including speed limit restrictions that apply to trailering. Check for legal requirements.

► Consider using sway control.

See Towing Equipment .

► Do not tow a trailer at all during the first 800 km (500 miles) the new vehicle is driven.

The engine, axle, or other parts could be damaged.

► During the first 800 km (500 miles) that a trailer is towed, do not drive over 80 km/h (50 mph) and do not make starts at full throttle. This reduces wear on the vehicle.

► The vehicle can tow in D (Drive).

Use a lower gear if the transmission shifts too often.

See “Tow/Haul Mode” later in this section.

► Obey speed limit restrictions when towing a trailer.

► The vehicle is designed primarily as a passenger and load carrying vehicle. If a trailer is towed, the vehicle will require more frequent maintenance due to the additional load.

Driving with a Trailer

Towing a trailer requires experience.

Get familiar with handling and braking with the added trailer weight. The vehicle is now longer and not as responsive as the vehicle is by itself.

Check all trailer hitch parts and attachments, safety chains, electrical connectors, lamps, tires and mirror adjustments. If the trailer has electric brakes, start the vehicle and trailer moving and then apply the trailer brake controller by hand to be sure the brakes are working.

During the trip, check regularly to be sure that the load is secure, and the lamps and trailer brakes are working properly.

Towing with a Stability Control System

When towing, the sound of the stability control system might be heard. The system is reacting to the vehicle movement caused by the trailer, which mainly occurs during cornering. This is normal when towing heavier trailers.

Tow/Haul Mode

Tow/Haul assists when pulling a heavy trailer or a large or heavy load. The purpose of the Tow/Haul mode is to:

► Reduce the frequency and improve the predictability of transmission shifts.

► Provide the same solid shift feel as when the vehicle is unloaded.

► Improve control of vehicle speed while requiring less throttle pedal activity.

► Increase the charging system voltage to assist in recharging a battery installed in a trailer.

Press this button located on the console to turn on and turn off the Tow/Haul

Press this button located on the console to turn on and turn off the Tow/Haul mode. See Tow/Haul Mode .

The Tow/Haul light on the instrument panel comes on to indicate that Tow/Haul mode has been selected.

Tow/Haul may be turned off by pressing the button again, at which time the indicator light on the instrument panel will turn off.

The vehicle will automatically turn off Tow/Haul every time it is started.

Tow/Haul is designed to be most effective when the vehicle and trailer combined weight is at least 75 percent of the vehicle's Gross Combined Weight Rating (GCWR).

See Trailer Towing .

Tow/Haul is most useful when pulling a heavy trailer or a large or heavy load under the following driving conditions:

► Traveling through rolling terrain.

► Traveling in stop and go traffic.

► Traveling in busy parking lots where improved low speed control of the vehicle is desired.

Operating the vehicle in Tow/Haul when lightly loaded or with no trailer will not cause damage but there is no benefit. Such a selection when unloaded may result in unpleasant engine and transmission driving characteristics and reduced fuel economy.

Following Distance

Stay at least twice as far behind the vehicle ahead as you would when driving the vehicle without a trailer.

This can help to avoid situations that require heavy braking and sudden turns.

Passing

More passing distance is needed when towing a trailer. Because the rig is longer, it is necessary to go farther beyond the passed vehicle before returning to the lane.

Backing Up

Hold the bottom of the steering wheel with one hand. To move the trailer to the left, move that hand to the left. To move the trailer to the right, move your hand to the right. Always back up slowly and, if possible, have someone guide you.

Making Turns

Notice: Making very sharp turns while trailering could cause the trailer to come in contact with the vehicle. The vehicle could be damaged. Avoid making very sharp turns while trailering.

When turning with a trailer, make wider turns than normal so the trailer will not strike soft shoulders, curbs, road signs, trees or other objects. Use the turn signal well in advance and avoid jerky or sudden maneuvers.

Turn Signals When Towing a Trailer

The turn signal indicators on the instrument panel flash whenever signaling a turn or lane change.

Properly hooked up, the trailer lamps also flash, telling other drivers the vehicle is turning, changing lanes or stopping.

When towing a trailer, the arrows on the instrument panel flash for turns even if the bulbs on the trailer are burned out. Check occasionally to be sure the trailer bulbs are still working

Driving on Grades

Reduce speed and shift to a lower gear before starting down a long or steep downgrade. If the transmission is not shifted down, the brakes might have to be used so much that they would get hot and no longer work well. See “Automatic Engine Grade Braking” within Tow/Haul Mode .

The vehicle can tow in D (Drive).

Use a lower gear if the transmission shifts too often.

When towing at high altitude on steep uphill grades, engine coolant will boil at a lower temperature than at normal altitudes. If the engine is turned off immediately after towing at high altitude on steep uphill grades, the vehicle may show signs similar to engine overheating.

To avoid this, let the engine run while parked, preferably on level ground, with the transmission in P (Park) for a few minutes before turning the engine off. If the overheat warning comes on, see Engine Overheating .

On a long uphill grade, shift down and reduce the vehicle speed to around 88 km/h (55 mph) to reduce the possibility of the engine and the transmission overheating.

Parking on Hills

Parking the vehicle on a hill with the trailer attached can be dangerous. IfWARNING
Parking the vehicle on a hill with the trailer attached can be dangerous. If something goes wrong, the rig could start to move.

People can be injured, and both the vehicle and the trailer can be damaged. When possible, always park the rig on a flat surface.

If parking the rig on a hill:

1. Press the brake pedal, but do not shift into P (Park) yet.

Turn the wheels into the curb if facing downhill or into traffic if facing uphill.
2. Have someone place chocks under the trailer wheels.
3. When the wheel chocks are in place, release the brake pedal until the chocks absorb the load.
4. Reapply the brake pedal.

Then apply the parking brake and shift into P (Park).
5. Release the brake pedal.

Leaving After Parking on a Hill

1. Apply and hold the brake pedal while you:
1.1. Start the engine.
1.2. Shift into a gear.
1.3. Release the parking brake.
2. Let up on the brake pedal.
3. Drive slowly until the trailer is clear of the chocks.
4. Stop and have someone pick up and store the chocks.

Maintenance When Trailer Towing

The vehicle needs service more often when pulling a trailer.

See Maintenance Schedule . Things that are especially important in trailer operation are automatic transmission fluid, engine oil, axle lubricant, belts, cooling system and brake system. Inspect these before and during the trip.

Check periodically to see that all hitch nuts and bolts are tight.

Engine Cooling When Trailer Towing

The cooling system may temporarily overheat during severe operating conditions. See Engine Overheating .

    See also:

    Unlocked Door Anti Lock Out
    When on, this feature will keep the driver door from locking when the door is open. If off is selected, the Unlocked Door Anti Lock Out menu will be available and the door will lock as progr ...

    Timer
    This display can be used as a timer. To start the timer, press SET/CLR while Timer is displayed. The display will show the amount of time that has passed since the timer was last reset, not i ...

    AM-FM Radio
    For vehicles equipped with the MyLink or IntelliLink infotainment system, see the separate MyLink/ IntelliLink Features and Functions Guide for more information. Control Buttons The buttons used t ...