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Hi all,

 

I'm looking into sourcing an Alphard / Vellfire which will be used for family trips and towing a small track car a few times per year. I currently have an old van and an estate car and am hoping to combine both cars into one. That's the plan anyway.

 

I've trawled the towing threads on here and elsewhere, and feel pretty well versed on capacities, etc. 

 

My trailer combo will be right up at 1500kg, which is what I believe most towbars will be rated for and is at the top end of Alphard capacity.

 

Could anyone offer any advice from a reliability perspective on the CVT in the 2.4 vs the traditional box in the 3.5? Is one going to fair better than the other?

 

Or should I just go get a Caravelle lol

 

Cheers

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My 2010 Vellfire 3.5 tows my track car on the trailer fantastic, I barely know its there. Done loads of track days with it over the last couple of years and its been great. Pulls like a train, those big hill on the A55 into North Wales are nothing to it.

 

Super comfy, cruise control, automatic etc. Just what I want to drive half way across the country after a track day. Loads of tyres and tools etc go in the back no problem, and if it rains my van ends up being the hospitality suite for a bit.

 

Keep in mind the Alphard/Vellfire doesn't have a chassis plate with any defined axle weights or towing capacity. It is not a type approved vehicle thus it never had those type approval features. Quite what VOSA would do if they ever pulled me over will be interesting as I don't think there is any guidance or ruling on it.

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Many thanks for the reply threepot. That's excellent news and exactly what I'd use mine for (rarely). Did you fit any additional cooling for the transmission? I've seen it being recommended but haven't seen anyone actually fit a cooler yet. 

 

Assuming you're referring to Anglesey - made the trip last year (from Ireland) - what a circuit and what a setting. Hope to get back again ASAP.

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I've just booked yesterday to do Anglesey again on Monday 6th May, fingers crossed we get some fair weather. The view and outlook makes it a really nice day I think, and the layout is mega with those high speed rights and the tight stuff up top.

 

Totally standard gearbox, and these ones with the later 6 speed automatic transmission seem like the better gearbox, but time will tell.

I had to make a towbar as buying one was proving difficult, but I posted all about it here:-
 

 

Edited by threepot
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I found your post previously. It was very helpful, thanks.

 

Looks like a couple of suppliers (pf jones & towtrust off the top of my head) have started fabricating them now which is good. I can weld but not good enough that I'd trust it to a towbar.

 

Are you running upgraded rear springs or anything else I should consider?

 

 

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On 3/22/2024 at 1:03 PM, Coog said:

Hi all,

 

I'm looking into sourcing an Alphard / Vellfire which will be used for family trips and towing a small track car a few times per year. I currently have an old van and an estate car and am hoping to combine both cars into one. That's the plan anyway.

 

I've trawled the towing threads on here and elsewhere, and feel pretty well versed on capacities, etc. 

 

My trailer combo will be right up at 1500kg, which is what I believe most towbars will be rated for and is at the top end of Alphard capacity.

 

Could anyone offer any advice from a reliability perspective on the CVT in the 2.4 vs the traditional box in the 3.5? Is one going to fair better than the other?

 

Or should I just go get a Caravelle lol

 

Cheers

 

Have you read the threads about the vin plate issues with towing ?

 

Does the 2.4 have a CVT ?

I thought it was a conventional 4 speed auto.

 

The 3.5l V6 is 2008 onwards, prior to that a 3.0l V6.

 

There are discussions in this forum regarding "To tow, or not to tow" and also the pros and cons of the 4 cylinder versus the V6.

 

You can search from your home page.

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8 hours ago, Rojie said:

 

Have you read the threads about the vin plate issues with towing ?

 

Does the 2.4 have a CVT ?

I thought it was a conventional 4 speed auto.

 

The 3.5l V6 is 2008 onwards, prior to that a 3.0l V6.

 

There are discussions in this forum regarding "To tow, or not to tow" and also the pros and cons of the 4 cylinder versus the V6.

 

You can search from your home page.


 

Hi, yes I have and I understand the rules regarding plating and intended market outside of the EU. Do you have anything to add?

 

I’m satisfied that there are no legal implications but perhaps there may be mechanical limitations on what I can use the car for. 
 

My understanding is that 08 on 2.4’s were CVTs. Happy to be corrected. I’ve not seen anything posted about comparing each engine and transmission from a longevity perspective, hence my question and this post in the ‘08 on section of the forum asking specifically about 3.5 & 2.4 versions (not 3.0 which is an earlier model). 


have you any advice to share? It would be much appreciated! 

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If we're talking tow vehicle and AH20, whilst absolutely nought wrong with a 2.4, CVT won't be a great idea for towing I wouldn't have thought.

 

3.5 also will have more guts and probably the right way to go, probably overkill really but given they are the only two engine choices.

 

As others have mentioned however, no idea on the towing capabilities of these things.

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4 hours ago, Coog said:


 

Hi, yes I have and I understand the rules regarding plating and intended market outside of the EU. Do you have anything to add?

 

I’m satisfied that there are no legal implications but perhaps there may be mechanical limitations on what I can use the car for. 
 

My understanding is that 08 on 2.4’s were CVTs. Happy to be corrected. I’ve not seen anything posted about comparing each engine and transmission from a longevity perspective, hence my question and this post in the ‘08 on section of the forum asking specifically about 3.5 & 2.4 versions (not 3.0 which is an earlier model). 


have you any advice to share? It would be much appreciated! 

 

I have not read anything about longevity comparisons either.

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Ours is a remapped (to 192bhp) 2.4 cvt. 

 

Not sure how it would tow, the box (like any cvt) will try and give you Max torque from the gear ratio. So best way to drive them is lower throttle inputs and ride the torque wave. Mashing the throttle does now but make lots of noise. The manual over ride is pointless, it doesn't lock the gear ratios really, that said it might make a decent job of limiting the final drive if you are towing.

 

It might tow ok, but I would be looking for a v6 with the fixed ratio 6sp box if I was you. 

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After a little research on CVTs I thought I would pass on that they are not best suited to towing.

 

Furthermore, they are unlikely to cope favourably with an identical load when compared to a conventional automatic.

 

I agree with Adam. The heavier the load you expect to tow, the more you should consider an automatic.

 

In the case of a Gen 2 that leaves the only, sensible, choice as the 3.5l V6.

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Thanks Rojie - I've put a deposit down on a 3.5 V6 a few days ago and hope to collect it next week.

 

I am fortunate enough to have my own workshop with a lift so can install the towbar myself and can service the U660E gearbox at the same time in order to keep things reliable.

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