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Discussion Starter #1
Here is the problem. There are three major elements to the car you drive. 1) Great handling, i.e., fun to drive and that means a sports car. 2) Reasonable fuel economy. Oil is NEVER going to get any cheaper – I haven’t seen any dinosaurs around lately and the oil there is, seems to be mostly located in countries that don’t like us very much. 3) Ability to tow my 17.5 ft boat because life is not worth living if you can’t get out on the water every so often.

This creates a classic problem, of the three elements listed you can get, at best, any two. You can get a sports car that is fun to drive and gets good gas mileage but you can’t tow. You can get a Ford Explorer, it can tow but gets poor mileage and rolls over a lot. I could go on, but you get my point.

I drive a Chevrolet Corvette. Fun to drive, reasonable mileage and I used to tow our first, smaller boat. Now we have a Key West 176 Bay Reef which weighs in at 2,200 lbs with trailer and the usual load of gas and gear and it exceeds the tow limit for my car. We have done the research and have come up with the FX 35 as the only car to meet our needs and have all three elements. The only question remaining before we buy the car is, IS IT REALLY A TOW VECHICLE? By that I mean will the transmission survive towing the aforementioned boat 10% to 15% of the time? We tow to the Georgia Coast, the Florida Everglades, the Tennessee River, etc.

I’ve read the posts that talk about one-time towing or towing under 1000 lbs but here is my question. Will the FX 35 survive given the towing we plan to do? Any long-term towers out there want to share their experiences – both good and bad.
 

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I bet that 1) it will "survive" with no mechanical problems, and that 2) you will wish you'd gotten the FX45.
 

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The FX should easily tow that with no issues atleast the AWD will can't speak for the RWD. I have towed a 4,700lb Uhaul trailer from Atlanta to Va Beach twice with no issues driving about 80mph also.

So yes it should be fine with your boat.

Yes I know your not suppose to tow more then 3,500lbs but had to get it up here so it worked, also the second trip I was lowered on my Eibachs and still no issues.
 

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I don't even have a 45, and I would suggest getting a 45 over the 35. The 35 has enough power to haul a few people around and some cargo, but you're gonna want that extra torque for a 2,200 lb boat!
 

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Haha I remember even racing my little brother from a stoplight with the 15ft U-haul trailer half full (prob about 2500lbs) and still beat him. NOw he has a Scion xB but still with a trailer hehe glad I didn't rip off my bumper!
 

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We tow our 20' Seadoo Challenger 2000 without any issues (other than fuel economy)

We get about 12-14mpg when towing. Surge brakes on the boat trailer help a lot also.

Steep boat ramps are not a problem with the AWD.

Paul
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Thank You all for the Advice

Thanks folks. I appreciate the responses and we will most likely purchase the FX35.

I am still a little concerned about the transmission, however. There is no transmission fluid cooler available (that I know of). If this was a serious tow vehicle, I believe they would have a "tow package" available consisting of a transmission cooler, stiffer rear suspension and perhaps slightly lower gearing.

I'm sure there is enough torque, even with the ‘35. When towing I don't expect to participate in any drag races, etc.

Thanks again for the comments.


Ron
 

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We regularly use our 45 to tow a small utility trailer with about 2000 lbs of compost in it. Tows like theres nothing back there. If you plan to tow regularly, i'd opt for the 45 for the extra grunt. You will feel the difference.
 

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johnmax said:
We regularly use our 45 to tow a small utility trailer with about 2000 lbs of compost in it. Tows like theres nothing back there. If you plan to tow regularly, i'd opt for the 45 for the extra grunt. You will feel the difference.
+1, go for the 45!
 

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To answer your question, NO, the FX is NOT a tow vehicle.
HOWEVER - I have a Coleman pop-up camper (about 2500 pounds) as well as a utility trailer that I have towed 3 motorcycles with. Cant he FX do it, YES. Designed as a tow vehicle - NO.

Most other SUV's / Trucks that ARE tow vehicles have tranny coolers, power steering coolers etc. As well as a stronger frame. FX does not have any additional coolers.

I still tow my camper and the bikes!
 

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Discussion Starter #11
Thanks everyone, from the picture, you all can see we are giving it a shot. See me in 100,000 miles and ask how the transmission is doing then!!

By the way, my hitch place can add a transmission fluid cooler for a few hundred bucks - sounds like cheap insurance to me. What do you all think - add a cooler??
 

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Hi, Guys! We have been debating over this topic for so long now that I feel the NEED to consult with you and get your practical advice on it. I know, I know, I've read few related topic about towing with FX35, however, there are still doubts. The thing is that after calling our dealer for INFINITI, they told us different things. Such as: we can't tow with this car, it is not "designed" to tow things because it doesn't have an actual frame. So, to the point that they refused to put a hitch on it, you know... I AM JUST DESPERATE RIGHT NOW - PLEASE GIVE ME YOUR OPINION, I DO NEED IT BADLY!! Our trailer is very light, it's GROSS weight is only 3,330lbs and this trailer's HITCH (tongue?) weight is 230lbs. So, if you go by numbers - we are fine, right? I know that it is recommended to have the additional brakes installed for that trailer just to be safer on the road with braking and overall control. Someone told us that we can damage the transmission on our FX35. Do you think this might be the case with only 3,330 lbs Trailer?? Another point, we maybe going through uphill and downhill of about 40 degrees. GUYS, what you THINK??? Thanks everybody for giving those tips! P.S. I don't want to sell my car because "I can't tow my light trailer of 3,330lbs".
 

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Tatyana said:
The thing is that after calling our dealer for INFINITI, they told us different things. Such as: we can't tow with this car, it is not "designed" to tow things because it doesn't have an actual frame. So, to the point that they refused to put a hitch on it, you know...
Wow, I mean I've heard of dealerships not knowing what they were talking about, but this tops the cake. Why would Infiniti sell a tow hitch specifically designed for the FX at their dealerships, and have their dealerships install said tow hitches if the FX was not designed, or at least compatible, with towing?

Back on topic, I think you would have no problems towing your trailer with the 35, since the gross weight and tongue weight are near/within specs. The only thing that spikes my concern is your comment "uphill and downhill of about 40 degrees". That's pretty **** steep, and I'm not sure if any vehicle short of a Ford F350 is going to pull that weight without an issue. So I'm not too sure right now. :?
 

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Discussion Starter #14
Hmmmm 3,330 lbs is NOT a light trailer and from the sound of the inclines, it appears that you are going to be towing through the Swiss Alps.

I think you are pushing the limit for this car. A one-time tow maybe OK but I don't think regular towing of this load through the inclines you describe is a good idea. Unfortunately, you can only tell that you're ruining the transmission after many thousands of miles. And I would not, by the way, listen to anything the salesman says. Let me guess, right after telling you that the FX35 is not for towing, did he try to sell you the full sized Infiniti SUV?

We tow a lot with the car. Live in Atlanta, tow the boat to Tennessee, the South Carolina Coast and all the way to the Everglades. The boat, motor and trailer weigh in at 2,200 lbs with a tongue weight that I can lift myself. So far, so good. We did have a transmission fluid cooler added since over heated transmission fluid is number one car killer while towing long distance.

As I say, it is hard to tell if the car will survive. We had a Lexus RX300 and did ruin the transmission at about 100,000 miles, presumably by towing. We got the FX cause it's beefier.

Ask me again after 100,000 miles on the FX if it is indeed a good tow vehicle.
 

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First off, a 3,300 pound trailer is not "light." It is over 1.5 tons and only 900 pounds shy of the weight of the FX.

I would only consider towing a 3,300 pound trailer with the FX if the trailer had brakes. Without trailer brakes, there is no way I would tow a 1.5 ton load while relying solely on the FX's braking system. I tow two jet skis with a combined "wet" weight of about 1100-1200 pounds and I can definitely feel the load when braking. Acceleration isn't a problem, it rarely is at least on flat terrain.

As for transmission strain, the FX isn't designed to be a tow vehicle so yes, I think the transmission will experience more wear than a Pathfinder or other truck based SUV towing the same load.

If I remember right, the OEM hitch mounts using twelve bolts. It is very secure, I believe the hitch is actually a class III but only marketed as a class II. The hitch is not the weak point.
 

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Discussion Starter #17
I'll take a look around for some pictures. Yes, it is quite a sight at the boat ramp!

I bought the car new in 1999 and at that time I sailed an 18 foot racing cat. The cat and trailer only weighed in at around 800 lbs. The catamaran was long and sleek and looked great in back of the Vette, lot's of waves going down the road.

Funny story about getting the hitch installed. The car was a week old when I took it to Pat Rogers Hitch House for the hitch. Mrs. Roger's people had installed all my previous hitches. I drove in and asked her if she was SURE they could do a hitch on a Vette. "Don't worry, we just drill some holes and...". "DRILL HOLES IN MY NEW CAR!!!" I said. Now I was pacing up and down the waiting room like an expectant father. Mrs. Rogers reached into the cash register and handed me $5. "There is a Mexican Restaurant next door, take this money and buy yourself a Margarita. By the time you come back, we'll be finished." I did and she was. They did a great job.

Once I got the flats boat (1200 to 1400 lbs) I still was towing with the Vette. Towed the boat home from Port St Joe, Fl. Only problems I have are coming up the ramp with the boat on the trailer. The car is a six speed and first gear is good up until 70 mile per hour but not so good in the low end. I smell clutch burning every time. I guess I take a month of life off the clutch each time I pull the boat out of the water but it's worth it.

I'll check for pictures.
 

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Guys, we finally decided to put a Class II hitch on our FX35. We are in the process of finding the right people to do it. We are ordering original (manufacturer's) wiring for a hitch that another place (not Infiniti dealership) will install. We now puzzled by trying to find Manufacturer's (Infiniti) electric brake controller to use additional brakes on the trailer. Any SUGGESTIONS, tips? Do you think we can use any other brand electric brake controller? Do you think it will work with Infiniti wiring? Thanks everybody for answering!! 8)
 

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I thought weight distributors were pretty well universal? Don't they just insert into the receiver and then connect to the trailer?
 
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