Tow Capacity/ Capability? - Kia Forum

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post #1 of 17 (permalink) Old 04-24-2019, 10:01 PM Thread Starter
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Tow Capacity/ Capability?

I had the 2017 LX AWD and recently upgraded to the 2019 SX turbo AWD, there is multiple hitch options available, ranging from 2500-4500LB capacity.. the owners manual for both vehicles still shows max of 2000LB tow capacity... is that just the rating for the factory made hitch or is there actually other reasons behind kia's 2000lb limit? Thanks!

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post #2 of 17 (permalink) Old 04-25-2019, 09:07 AM
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Towing requires not only power, but braking and suspension support. While both the LX and SX engines could pull more, the braking is especially weak for a big pull load. The tongue weight is also limited because of the suspension. I would not recommend pulling a heavy trailer with this car, even if it is an SX. It is just not safe. I put a class II hitch on mine and pull small loads and a bike rack. There is also a heavy duty class III hitch available, but pulling that heavy a load is something I wouldn't do. That said, the class III hitch has a 2" receiver and if you have a bike rack that needs 2", that would be your best bet.
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post #3 of 17 (permalink) Old 04-25-2019, 09:15 AM
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Towing capacity isn't based on how much a vehicle can pull. Most vehicles can pull much more than their "rated capacity". 99% of the time it's based on how much it can safely stop.

An AWD turbo model may have more braking capacity than the LX and therefore a higher tow rating.

Pay attention to the tongue rating for your hitch and suspension. People often overlook this and try to tow with an unbalanced load. Very dangerous condition.

I grew up in a farm and ranch area and I've seen trucks with poorly loaded trailers completely lift the rear of the pick-up off the ground by the tow ball... while driving down the road!
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post #4 of 17 (permalink) Old 04-25-2019, 09:34 AM
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Originally Posted by TexanEagleScout View Post
An AWD turbo model may have more braking capacity than the LX and therefore a higher tow rating.
As far as I can tell from part numbers, the brakes on all Sportage models of the same year are the same. That means the LX, EX, and SX have the same brakes. No higher towing capability.
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post #5 of 17 (permalink) Old 04-25-2019, 12:12 PM Thread Starter
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Thanks for the insight, the real end goal was a small camper (2800-3500max) with the hitch I was looking at rated 4500 (675 tongue). It would also be with a trailer brake system and upgrades to the current brake system before doing something this large anyway. Only downfall still being knowing what the suspension can support and what/if there is any upgrade possibility.
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post #6 of 17 (permalink) Old 04-25-2019, 01:32 PM
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Originally Posted by rvoll View Post
As far as I can tell from part numbers, the brakes on all Sportage models of the same year are the same. That means the LX, EX, and SX have the same brakes. No higher towing capability.
Actually the front rotors on all models except for the SX are 12.0" diameter. The SX comes with 12.6" diameter front rotors. Rear rotors are the same for all models.
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post #7 of 17 (permalink) Old 04-25-2019, 03:47 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tank_it54 View Post
Thanks for the insight, the real end goal was a small camper (2800-3500max) with the hitch I was looking at rated 4500 (675 tongue). It would also be with a trailer brake system and upgrades to the current brake system before doing something this large anyway. Only downfall still being knowing what the suspension can support and what/if there is any upgrade possibility.
Check out etrailer.com. They will have the answers you seek.

That's where I get my hitch related things.
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post #8 of 17 (permalink) Old 04-25-2019, 05:19 PM
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Originally Posted by ddhartma View Post
Actually the front rotors on all models except for the SX are 12.0" diameter. The SX comes with 12.6" diameter front rotors. Rear rotors are the same for all models.
That seems to be right, however, Rockauto lists both sizes for both models. But your statement makes more sense -- 320mm for the SX and 305mm for the LX/EX. That is still not anywhere near enough for a heavy trailer.
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post #9 of 17 (permalink) Old 04-25-2019, 05:31 PM
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Originally Posted by Tank_it54 View Post
Thanks for the insight, the real end goal was a small camper (2800-3500max) with the hitch I was looking at rated 4500 (675 tongue). It would also be with a trailer brake system and upgrades to the current brake system before doing something this large anyway. Only downfall still being knowing what the suspension can support and what/if there is any upgrade possibility.
Most manufacturers set the towing weight primarily by the strength of the drivetrain and the braking capability. While the SX 4cyl turbo has the torque, you really push the turbo with a heavy trailer. If you go beyond the manufacturers recommendations, you could void your engine/transmission warranty. Personally, I wouldn't pull a heavy trailer with the Sportage at any level -- it's just too small a car. I'd take an occasional risk with a heavier load if it is short in duration, like carrying home brick/rock from Home Depot. But I wouldn't do that on a long trip. As someone recommended, talk to the experts at etrailer and get their take on this....
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post #10 of 17 (permalink) Old 04-27-2019, 11:10 PM
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Not sure about LX/EX. but I read somewhere (forgot where) for SX, trailers over 1600lbs you need trailer brakes and lights. under 1600lbs you don't need that. It's not rated to tow over 2000lbs in north america. so you shouldn't do that.
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