Winnie Finds a Toad


Finding just the right dinghy to follow behind Winnie (our Winnebago Itasca Suncruiser motorhome) took us a bit of time and consideration.  Winnie has a gas engine with a 5,000 pound hitch weight.  That means we need a light weight vehicle that is also a comfortable ride.  The heavier the vehicle the less personal belongings we would be able to take along with us.  Not going over the recommended total carrying capacity is important for both safety and insurance purposes.  At least that is the way we understand it.  If we are wrong, please let us know.

Many full-time RV’ers love to go off road and need a rugged ride to accomplish that.  We are more sightseeing “glampers” (glamorous campers).  Our vehicle needs to get us to good restaurants, local sights, souvenir shops, grocery stores and laundromats.

Another requirement we have in our toad is the ability to tow 4-down.  We prefer not to use a dolly and have another item to store or add weight.  We also are looking for the simplest and easiest way to hook up, tow and go.  We don’t want a vehicle that needs to have the battery disconnected or other inconvenient processes.

We currently have a 2014 Ford Focus that we could use as our toad.  It meets all of our requirements except one-it has cloth seats.  You see, we have a pug.  She is a small, sweet, cute, loveable pup, but a shedder.  Anyone familiar with pugs knows how much they shed.  I think they take the blue ribbon for the dog breed that sheds the most.  Every single hair sticks in the cloth seats and refuses to be vacuumed up.  So, we need a vehicle with leather seats, easy to clean and pug friendly.

We considered any make or model vehicle under 4,000 pounds, able to tow 4-down. We narrowed our search down to the Ford Focus, debating whether to either keep our 2014 (not our 1st choice) or purchase a new 2016 or 2017.  When we looked at the 2016’s the 2017’s had not come out yet.  We thought we would wait until they did come out and order just what we wanted.  When the information on them became available we realized Ford had changed the tow requirements.  The 2017 Ford Focus now needs to have the battery disconnected to tow 4-down.  Not good.

Narrowing our search down to the 2016’s meant we needed to speed up our search before the new ones were gone.  Luckily we were able to get exactly what we wanted; leather seats, platinum white with a sun roof.  Isn’t she a beauty!  I think we will name her Pearl.

Until next time,




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