Best Campers to Tow With an Electric Vehicle
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Many electric vehicles on the market don’t have what it takes to tow a conventional travel trailer. That’s because pulling a traditional camper cuts an EV’s range significantly. In fact, most EVs lose about 30 to 60 percent of range, even when towing the smallest trailers. Thankfully, the RV industry is making impressive progress when it comes to building fully-electric travel trailers for towing with electric cars.
And if you’re looking to rent a travel trailer that can be towed by an EV, check out these lightweight options on Go RV Rentals.
Now, this post will discuss the best trailers for EV towing, including the new generation of all-electric camper trailers that are self-propelled. In addition, we will look at a few traditional ultralight campers you can pull with your electric car. And if you’re looking for the best electric vehicles for towing campers, we will share a few solid options. Further, we will highlight the towing capacities and range of different EVs, including Teslas.
First, Can You Pull a Trailer With an Electric Car?
Yes, you can tow a camping trailer with an EV. However, not all electric cars are engineered for towing. Before hitching up, you’ll need to know your electric car’s tow rating and the trailer’s gross vehicle weight. Also, check if the automaker has tested and approved the EV for towing.
If the automaker hasn’t authorized it, you risk voiding your warranty and insurance. Generally, Electric SUVs and trucks come with the best towing features, such as a high tow rating, a hitch, and special software to make towing smooth, efficient, and safer.
If you prefer driveable electric motorhomes, read our complete guide on the best electric RVs in the market today.
Best Self-Propelled Electric Travel Trailers for EV Towing
Indeed, the best travel trailers for towing with an electric car are those capable of propelling themselves. These self-powered campers are equipped with a powerful battery and an electric motor that allows the trailer to independently push itself forward. Effectively, this reduces the burden of the towing vehicle, allowing it to maintain its original range.
Here are the top self-propelling electric travel trailers:
The Airstream eStream Travel Trailer is a camper concept equipped with a motor that enables it to move using its own battery power. Measuring 22 feet long, this silver bullet boasts a futuristic chassis, excellent aerodynamics, and advanced battery, motor, and control technology that optimize the towing experience. In addition, its expansive solar rooftop offers an on-grid experience even when camping out in the boonies. Impressively, you can remote control it for easy positioning at the campground.
Dethleffs E.Home Caravan
Dethleffs E.Home Caravan is an electrically driven travel trailer made in Germany. This prototype has been tested in real life across 240 miles of Alpine mountain passes. Remarkably, it does not affect the range of the EV pulling it. On features, it comes with 40 kWh batteries and two electric motors, each with a rating of 30 kW of continuous power. In addition, its batteries can provide power for your camping needs.
Colorado Teardrops Boulder Electric Travel Trailer
The Colorado Teardrops Boulder is not only easy on your tow vehicle, but it also offers backup power for your EV. Yes, this 12-foot camper is capable of recharging your EV, thus extending its towing range. It packs a generous 75 kWh of batteries, weighs 2,200 pounds, and accommodates 4 people in its fully insulated cabin. If it sounds interesting, the starting price of this EV-recharging camper trailer is $67,000.
Lightship All-electric Travel Trailer
The idea of building an all-electric trailer that can propel itself when being towed has been widely discussed in the last few years. Until recently, the Lightship Electric RV Trailer was a mere concept under development by a team of Tesla alumni. On March 8, 2023, they launched Lightship L1—a sleek, aerodynamic pull-behind camper that has a self-propulsion system. The 27 foot L1 electric RV trailer has a futuristic design that departs from the traditional box shape of traditional campers. Indeed, the all-electric Lightship trailer offers an easier route to explore the country without relying on fossil fuels. Campers who want to tow with EVs no longer have to worry about losing their vehicle’s range. It’s ideal for electric SUV and truck owners, plus those with gas-powered tow vehicles, as it doesn’t reduce RV MPG.
Lippert Edison EV Towable Chassis
Another self-driving camping trailer is the Edison chassis by Lippert, a company that produces around 80% of the RV industry’s trailer chassis. The engineers are trying to build a trailer chassis that has its own drive system. In addition, it will have a regenerative braking system, and you can control the trailer remotely.
OzX Corp Concept Hybrid Camper Trailer
Another travel trailer that’s pioneering the electrification of towable RVs is the OzX Corp. This Australian self-propelling hybrid trailer concept has its own motive power, minimizing the load on the tow vehicle. Furthermore, the drive system will allow you to maneuver the trailer to and from the vehicle and muscle through tough off-road conditions.
Bowlus Volterra All-Electric Travel Trailer
Although the Bowlus Trailer can’t propel itself, it’s fully electric. It boasts a sophisticated power bank that delivers a whopping 17 kWh. Even better, this 27 feet e-trailer features an emergency EV charge system that extends the range of an EV tow vehicle by up to 65 miles. The battery charges automatically as you drive and while at the campsite. Further, it comes with Starlink satellite internet to provide you with reliable internet no matter how far you venture off the grid. Expect a GVWR of 4000 pounds and a starting price of $310,000.
Polydrops P17 Electric Travel Trailer
EV owners who don’t fancy towing a range-killing camper will be happy to find the Polydrops P17. This 2-person electric towable RV is specifically designed for EVs and comes standard with a 4.8 kWh lithium-ion battery pack on the floor. Moreover, you can upgrade to a larger 9.6 kWh battery pack. You also have the option to pick between 260 or 520-watt solar panels. The creators claim it maintains 75 to 80 percent of your EV’s original range. It goes for $30,590.
Traditional Type Campers You can Pull with an EV
While the majority of traditional camper trailers aren’t very high-tech, a few are light enough to tow with an electric car without drastically impacting range. Here are a few top options to consider:
Aliner Grand Ascape
Weighing 2500 lbs when on a full load, the Aliner Grand Ascape is one of the best trailers for pulling with an EV. It has a teardrop profile helping reduce drag when on the road. Despite the low weight, it’s 14 feet long and offers about 10 feet of living space. Additionally, it has a solar panel on the front that generates 50 Watts.
SylvanSport GO Camping Trailer
The SylvanSport GO is a lightweight camper created for electric vehicle owners looking for a more EV-friendly solution. It has a very low profile when towing, providing little wind resistance, and its top is engineered to smoothly channel airflow. At the campsite, it expands to create a large living area for four people. Interestingly, it weighs just 840 lbs, yet it can haul up to 810 lbs.
Alto Safari Condo R1713
The Alto camper is lightweight, aerodynamic, and built to last. The designers’ goal was to build something with the lowest possible drag using green materials. In fact, many of the trailer’s parts are built with recyclable materials. On amenities, it has sleeping space for 3 to 4, a GVWR of 2 700 lb, and a retractable roof that opens up the interior.
Best Electric Vehicles for Towing Trailers
Below, we will quickly highlight the top EVs for towing trailers, their non-towing driving range, as well as each electric car towing capacity. Notably, our list will only feature electric SUVs and trucks as they are engineered with towing in mind.
Also, the non-towing driving range figures we are providing are the estimated distances you can drive on a full charge without a trailer. Attaching a trailer will most likely reduce the range depending on the type of camper you’re pulling, its weight, and the driving terrain.
Best Electric SUVS for Towing Campers
- Hyundai Ioniq 5 BEV – Offers a 1,650-pound maximum trailer weight rating and a 256-mile range per full charge.
- Nissan Ariya – Has a towing capacity of 1500 lbs and a driving range of up to 304 miles.
- Kia EV6 BEV – Tow rating: 2,300 lbs and a range of 310 miles.
- Cadillac Lyriq BEV – Towing capacity: 3,500 lbs, and a driving range of up to 308 miles.
- Audi E-Tron AWD BEV – Maximum towing capacity of 4,000 lbs and a 212-mile range.
Best Electric Trucks for Towing Camping Trailers
If you’re wondering which electric vehicle has the largest towing capacity, consider the following EV trucks:
- Chevrolet Silverado EV – Towing capacity: 10,000 lbs and an impressive range of 400 miles
- Ford F-150 Lightning – Towing capacity: 10,000 lbs, and 230 to 320 miles of driving range depending on battery type.
- GMC Sierra EV – When this truck becomes available in early 2024, expect a maximum tow rating of 9,500 lbs and a 400-mile range on a full charge.
If you’re looking for an electric car for towing that’s smaller than an SUV, check out the Polestar 2. It has a tow rating of 2,000 lbs and 270 to 300 miles of range. For a hybrid that can tow a significant load, the BMW X5 45e is a solid option. It can pull up to 5,952 lbs.
Tesla Towing Capacity and Range Numbers
Without a doubt, Tesla is one of the most famous EV companies. But what do Tesla vehicles have to offer for those with towable campers? Here are the numbers you need to know:
- Tesla Model X – Towing capacity: 5,000 lbs and a 330 to 360-mile range.
- Tesla Model Y – Towing capacity: 3,500 lbs and a 300 to 330-mile range.
- Tesla Cybertruck – The tesla truck towing capacity is 14,000 lbs, while the range is 500 miles.
Notably, Tesla doesn’t offer a towing option for the Model S as it isn’t approved for towing.
Rivian Towing Capacity and Range Numbers
Rivian is another top electric vehicle manufacturer that’s revolutionizing the EV industry. Wondering how much a Rivian EV tows? Here are the stats:
- Rivian R1S – Towing capacity: 7,700 lbs and a 260 or 316-mile driving range, depending on battery type.
- Rivian R1T – The towing capacity of Rivian truck is 11,000 lbs, while the range is 260, 314, or 400 miles, depending on battery size.
Electric Camping Trailers: A Greener Way to Travel
Pairing an electric vehicle with a light and self-propelling all-electric travel trailer is an excellent way to reduce your carbon footprint while traveling. Of course, you’ll also save on fuel at a time when gas prices are at an all-time high. Worried that you won’t find charging infrastructure when camping? Many private campgrounds, and even state and national parks, are now incorporating dedicated EV charging stations.