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2V6 Automatic Galaxy/ Sharan/ Alhambra Towing Experience


Dino D
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Hi all,

Very new to this, yet to buy a caravan but looking at 6 berth triple bunk vans like Adria Altea.

Have a young family (6,4,2). Will be going from Kent to France/Italy/Spain and of course short trips in UK.

Should be 5/6 passengers us bicycles and the usual luggage. ..

 

So we already own a Ford Galaxy V6 petrol (2002 24v 204bhp model with 5sp tiptronic auto).

It's covered 112k and been very reliable and still performs well with all the extras we can wish for.

It is likely that before towing it will need an auto gearbox overhaul as it's showing signs of possible slip but that is still to be diagnosed.

Even though that'll cost 2k it's still less than buying another car with potential problems. ..but I'm open to changing it is wise.

 

Up until now fuel economy hasn't been much of an issue as it does only 5k miles a year and was much cheaper to buy used than diesel variants.

Currently at 'motorway' speeds with a 3/4 load it achieves 25-28mpg. Could be less as that is the computer read out which is variable. ..

I'm expecting it to drop to around 20 when towing and loaded up.

What has been others experiences of this particular model?

 

I've read good things about the diesel variants apart from the usual turbo issues, DMF, auto box and other 'nighles' these otherwise great cars have. Not much about the V6 though, I guess they pretty rare as I hardly see any about and there are only ever a handful on autotrader. .big petrol engines are scary I guess!

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coilpack failure
timing chains (specifically the upper rail guide)
Hydraulic lifters causing lifter tick sometimes
secondary airpump failure

MAF

 

http://forums. vwvortex. com/showthread. php?3206033-Common-Issues-to-24v-VR6-motors

Edited by dreadly

An eye for an eye only ends up making the whole world blind.

Mahatma Gandhi

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I've no experience of the Galaxy in any variant whatsoever, but I think you will be struggling to get 20 mpg from a big petrol unit pulling/carrying those type of weights. The age of the vehicle also will put strain on the parts mentioned above etc. Especially if you're travelling to far off destinations abroad. If you were only towing occasionally and staying fairly local then would be a good reason to stick with the Galaxy. If I we're you I'd spend some time researching this forum to get an idea of what weights people are towing and read their comments etc. Although I don't remember reading too many about petrol Galaxies!! But don't let that put you off - get a caravan and enjoy!

 

C

Kia Sorento XS - Abbey Freestyle 470SE

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i towed with a 2. 3 Galaxy with a lighter van at 1300kgs, being totally honest i hated it, the car hated it. Mine had low mileage, been very well looked after, but up hills on motorways to maintain 50mph i was in 3rd gear. That would return below 20mpg towing. It may have had the BHP but that's not where it matters on towing. Torque, lots of torque.

I compared a Merc E320 CDi with a A6 4. 2 V8 Quattro. .....towing 1800kgs, Merc literally shrugged off the extra weight due to its massive torque figure. literally you reigned it in to keep it below 60mph and would return 26-27mpg.

The Audi despite its huge power, you still knew it was on the back, and returned 15mpg towing and 22mpg not towing.

Currently i run a 2003 Kia Sedona, don't notice the van on the back, gives me 20mpg towing and into the 30's when solo. They have no real issues apart from injector failure and diesel pump, but there are a few out there that have had the repair, and the newer pumps don't suffer. I swapped out my Galaxy and bought the Kia AND had money to spare yet the Galaxy was older. Worth a look as more space in the Kia.

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I tow 1500 kgs with a 61 plate 2. 2 TDCI auto Smax and it averages between 22 and 25 mpg with the van following.

 

It tows very well but I would imagine as has been said you would be reving the nuts off a petrol engine to keep moving which will hammer the economy and also make for an unrelaxing drive.

 

 

Mike

VW Touareg 3. 0L V6 262 R Line with a Unicorn IV Segovia trying to keep up!

 

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Thanks for the replies.

I'm familiar with list if potential issues with this car and have attended to some things but that is a nice comprehensive post on Vw vortex, thanks.

The Galaxy does wang more looking after than a Honda for example but even on my Hondas I've replaced coils, had auto transmission issues, driveshafts, bearings, etc. All cars need looking after even ones with 'bullet proof' reputations but granted a galaxy is more maintenance but then no hands offers what it does (at the same price used).

 

Re the 2. 3 galaxy - that engine is very different to the 2. 8. I believe the 2. 3 is a very old ford unit and it seem to give consumption like a V6 with power and torque of a 2. 0 (142 Bhp and 150lb). It's also not a very smooth unit and makes it known when it's being revved.

The 2. 8 is a 24v VW VR6 unit with 204bhp and 195lb with a fairly linear delivery

The mpg figures between the 2. 3 and 2. 8 are close on appear but I believe real works the 2. 3 needs a lot of work when loaded so sometimes worse than the 2. 8.

Hence I steered clear of that engine.

 

My experience fully loaded with 7 adults with the 2. 8 is that it pulls the same as when empty, no need for revving more than when it was empty. If anything it feels better under load than when empty (when empty it feels almost to eager and the firm suspension smoothed out with some weight).

I only go above 2,5k rpm if needing to overtake or going at 'motorway' speeds in top gear.

Even when you do rev it it is very smooth and not frantic - it's not like revving a 4 cylinder (I've had plenty if Hondas!).

I've piloted a manual version (6sp) on unrestricted roads with 7 adults (larger ones I should add!) and the bus would sustain 100mph plus without leaving 6th gear. Very effortless.

My 5sp auto revs higher in top gear (60mph is around 2,5k rpm) and is very quiet at that speed but still has plenty in reserve, you really drive these with your toes rather than foot otherwise you sitting at 100mph, cruise control helps.

I've rented a new shape 2. 2 tdci Powerhshift and the experience was the same fully loaded-simply effortless and plenty in reserve. If funds allowed I'd likely have that on the drive (but some reservations about the automated manual box it has).

 

Given its an older car I take care to ensure it's serviced and some preventative maintenance goes along way hence thinking to refresh the gearbox before towing (and fitting an oil cooler).

 

My thinking is that longer European road trips are more motorway a based so much less stressful on the car than lugging it around the Downs in Kent for example?

 

I've looked at the Kias and to change to one I those would mean spending more than what I spent on the Galaxy + an autobox rebuild. The 2. 3 and 1. 8t Galaxy models seem sell for a lot more used due to perceived economy benefits.

The Kia is interesting but to me even more interesting would be a Previa but they lack the poke I believe (unless you get a rare v6 import).

Even the Kia and the Previa suffer from autobox failures at low and high mileages though. ..

Regardless if car my view on autoboxs in used cars is that you should bank on having to overhaul it and if you don't it's a pleasant suprise. ..!

 

Thanks for the all the input, nice to hear from a friendly group with experience, hopefully there is one person out there who has towed with my model of galaxy too!

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I've rented a new shape 2. 2 tdci Powerhshift and the experience was the same fully loaded-simply effortless and plenty in reserve. If funds allowed I'd likely have that on the drive (but some reservations about the automated manual box it has).!

The 2. 2 TDCI has a standard 6 speed torque converter box as the Powershift can't handle the torques the 2. 2 puts out.

 

We have that engine and gearbox combo in the Smax and I can't fault it having gone from a 3. 0 litre V6 in a grand Cherokee (other than it does not sound as nice. ....)

VW Touareg 3. 0L V6 262 R Line with a Unicorn IV Segovia trying to keep up!

 

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Ok, it must have been some other size TDCI then, just said tdci on the back and went well but I'm pretty certain it was Powerhshift by the te way it behaved. Could have said poweshift somewhere, was 3yrs ago.

Good to hear that they still have torque converter boxes.

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I have a 2003, 115 bop, tdi galaxy auto. This is the legendary VW PD lump which is an incredibly efficient engine, it's so efficient that in winter time a separate heater starts up, burning diesel directly to heat the car, there isn't sufficient waste heat from the engine. I haven't towed my caravan but I have towed a heavy plant trailer with an equally heavy council type mower on the back, probably north of 2 tonnes. There's plenty of torque on the 115, the only weakness is the autobox is on the limit apparently, that said ours has done 130,000 with no issues. It always manages mid 40's around town and high 50's to low 60's on a run. Towing the trailer it was down in the 30's.

All I can say about the vw powered galaxy diesels is that they're incredible 310nM torque is way higher than any petrol engined ones and is EXACTLY what you need for towing, low down grunt.

Edited by nme2no1
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Ok, it must have been some other size TDCI then, just said tdci on the back and went well but I'm pretty certain it was Powerhshift by the te way it behaved. Could have said poweshift somewhere, was 3yrs ago.

Good to hear that they still have torque converter boxes.

The powershift ones have that embedded on the gear shifter so it was probably a 2. 0 litre TDCI engine if so.

VW Touareg 3. 0L V6 262 R Line with a Unicorn IV Segovia trying to keep up!

 

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I have a 2003, 115 bop, tdi galaxy auto. This is the legendary VW PD lump which is an incredibly efficient engine

Would it be more preferable to go for the 130 BHP version - is this the same engine?

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A diesel model may be on the cards but the thing is my V6 cost around a third of the equivalent spec and condition diesel auto.

The V6 'only' has 195lb (264nm) of torque in comparison. I don't think that torque figure is on the low side for towing?

Apart from the power/torque how did the diesel owners find it is a tow vehicle? I imagine the engine choice ha little impact in handling, stability etc?

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Dealer lent us a V6 when we were waiting for our 130 Galaxy and the consumption was scary,couldnt get 20 mpg on motorway if your getting 26/28 your doing well. Our 130 regular gives over 40mpg with main use now of wifes shopping i'd consider a change if I were you,

Bailey Indiana S. 6 and Hyundai i800 auto

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Dealer lent us a V6 when we were waiting for our 130 Galaxy and the consumption was scary,couldnt get 20 mpg on motorway if your getting 26/28 your doing well. Our 130 regular gives over 40mpg with main use now of wifes shopping i'd consider a change if I were you,

It all depends on your annual mileage I guess. If you do a lot of miles then a massive consumption may be a factor but if you do 5k a year then spending extra on fuel in order to get a nice vehicle at almost 50% less may well be a good idea.

An eye for an eye only ends up making the whole world blind.

Mahatma Gandhi

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A diesel model may be on the cards but the thing is my V6 cost around a third of the equivalent spec and condition diesel auto.

The V6 'only' has 195lb (264nm) of torque in comparison. I don't think that torque figure is on the low side for towing?

Apart from the power/torque how did the diesel owners find it is a tow vehicle? I imagine the engine choice ha little impact in handling, stability etc?

One of the things that makes a tow car really good is a short overhang from the rear wheels, the Galaxy couldn't get the wheels much nearer the back. Another aspect is length, the longer the tow car, the better it is, again the Galaxy is not a short vehicle and finally the weight, it's not a light weight either. These three points combine to make the Galaxy a superb stable tug, you will have no worries on that front.

 

The torque aspect is not just the figure but at what rpm it develops it, diesels develop it low down, add to this mix the conventional autobox with a torque converter, you have colossal torque available at less than 2000 rpm.

 

You may pay a premium for a diesel, it's with good reason!

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A diesel model may be on the cards but the thing is my V6 cost around a third of the equivalent spec and condition diesel auto.

The V6 'only' has 195lb (264nm) of torque in comparison. I don't think that torque figure is on the low side for towing?

Apart from the power/torque how did the diesel owners find it is a tow vehicle? I imagine the engine choice ha little impact in handling, stability etc?

To give you an idea our 2. 2 TDCI bangs out 420 n/m torques with 200 BHP on tap through a 6 speed auto.

 

Tows very well and still gives some a shock when you open it up with the van on the back. Solo it really shifts.

 

Mike

VW Touareg 3. 0L V6 262 R Line with a Unicorn IV Segovia trying to keep up!

 

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While I was looking for a Galaxy a few years ago, I saw and enquired about a 2. 3litre model. Luckily, the salesman was a personal friend and knew that I wanted to use it for towing and he warned me to avoid it like the plague. He knew that I was planning to replace my Pajero because of its legendary appaling fuel consumption and told me that the 2. 3 petrol Galaxy was nearly as bad as the Pajero for fuel consumption. A week or so later he put me onto a 1. 9litre diesel Galaxy on an 03 plate, (which I bought). It was 4 years old with about 45k on the clock. Brilliant tug which gave me 50mpg+ solo and low 30s towing, (1400kg caravan). Had it for 3 years until the turbo started to go.

Edited by Townie

2014 SsangYong Rexton W towing a 2017 Sprite Major 4EB. (After June 9th).

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Hi guys,

 

Thanks for all the feedback.

Yes I know a diesel is 'better' but what I'm trying to find out is how people have faired with the V6.

It's what in be and cost a fraction of a diesel (which have their own issues including autobox, turbos etc and ultimately all cars need work).

For the mileage I do and cost to purchase a top spec Ghia the V6 is 'better' for me right now.

I want to avoid this going down a diesel vs petrol thread, the internet is full of those!

 

Pleased to hear that the physical make up of the galaxy makes a good tug.

 

Would love to hear how people have got one with towing with one. I know they are a rare on the road but like most big petrols hugely underated because of perceived costs - I look at the overall ownership costs as well as consumption.

 

I have had many petrols and big ones too even when pounding tennotirways doing 20k + a year. Previous cars include 3. 0l BMW for big motorway miles - again cost to buy compared with a 320d made sense an driven well consumption was ok (I did put that on lpg and paid for itself fast).. Other car is 2. 0petrol CRV - again so cheap and wife does less than 5k a year with it so make senses.

 

I'll check my spreadsheet again but if I recall correct the V6 costs around 800 per year in petrol vs the diesel equivalent (for the amount and type of miles we do). So not a big deal given I saved around 3-4k if bought a diesel in the same spec, mileage and condition as my V6.

 

Both models have potential expensive issues be it MAF, transmission, turbo, wipers motors, aircon, DMF, DPF etc etc so no big benefit either way you go on that front.

 

I'll look up the torque curve an figures maybe that will help assess torque availability but really the ultimate test is to hear from someone who did it.

Or maybe some who has towed with this engine in a Passat, Bora etc can comment (Audi 2. 8 is different engine but very similair power and torque, I guess same can be said of BMW 2. 8 and some others).

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Hi

I had the same engine in a VW caravelle its let down was the gearbox, but yours is different.

My advice would be to get a proper oil cooler fitted that will help keep the gearbox oil cooler.

 

Mine did 18mpg towing 1400kg and about 25-30 at 60mph.

 

I also owned the 2. 5 tdi version, but the petrol was far better for cruising and went faster.

 

My caravan was a Adria twin axle.

 

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Right then here goes, just to balance the diesel opinions and yes I do tow with a modern turbo diesel I know.

 

I've had many towcars over the last 28 years of caravanning quite a few modern turbo diesels but also quite a few 2. 5, 2. 9 and 3. 0 V6 petrols.

 

Most V6 petrols will have peak torque at 3k to 4k rpm but peak figures only tell half the story, the VR6 VW has a fairly flat torque curve as do most larger capacity V6 petrols.

As they are higher revving the gearing is usually 20-25% lower than the diesel so in every gear you have 20-25% more torque at the wheels per engine output.

 

I can give a direct example. I had a 2. 0TDCi Mondeo and 3. 0V6 Petrol Mondeo back to back, both pulled a 1500kg Swift Challenger.

 

The diesel had 236lbft,@1800rpm the petrol 186lbft @ 3250rpm. Now with these figures most would be pointing you towards the diesel. But the diesel had 130bhp and tall gearing,, the petrol 204bhp and shorter gearing.

 

Now the diesel never felt totally happy with the van, first gear required careful balancing of throttle and clutch, through the gears required skilled use of the gears to keep in the 1800-3250rpm sweet spot for torque and the tall sixth gear was almost useless unless it was flat or downhill at 60mph+. Reverse often resulted in a smelly clutch.

In comparison the 3. 0V6 was effortless, low first gear meant effortless getaways, the wide spread of torque meant I could hold revs if required and sixth was very useable. Yep sometimes I did rev to 4500rpm when overtaking on steep hills but it's a glorious sounding V6 petrol, it's a pleasure to do that! But most of the time the 3. 0V6 was more than happy at 2k-3k rpm

 

The only downside is the fuel but if you can live with that due to low annual mileage then all well and good.

 

Would I advise changing the V6 Galaxy for a 130/140bhp 1. 9Tdi / 2. 0TDCi model? No not really, if yours is running OK then shelling out an extra £3k to run a diesel is barmy, you will never see that back and won't see a massive leap in towing performance. A gearbox overhaul and an extra oil cooler may be the best option.

 

Obviously shelling out tens of thousands on a modern 200bhp diesel will see a massive increase in towing performance but I don't see the thread starter doing that.

 

Lee

Edited by logiclee

Yeti 2.0TDi EU6 150 DSG 4X4 L&K, Octavia TSi Manual, Fabia TSi DSG, Swift Challenger.

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Hi

I had the same engine in a VW caravelle its let down was the gearbox, but yours is different.

My advice would be to get a proper oil cooler fitted that will help keep the gearbox oil cooler.

 

Mine did 18mpg towing 1400kg and about 25-30 at 60mph.

 

I also owned the 2. 5 tdi version, but the petrol was far better for cruising and went faster.

 

My caravan was a Adria twin axle.

 

Hi,

The caravelle looks a much bigger vehicle an less aerodynamic so 18mpg seems quite good for that.

Was it LWB? How many people did you have in it usually when towing?

Which gearbox did you have in it?

Also was it a Synchro.

 

Yes oil cooler is a good idea for any auto I think, doesn't look expensive to do either.

Edited by Dino D
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I've been looking at the difference between a petrol & diesel XC90. There is about a £1000 to in some cases £2000 premium for the diesel over a similar year, spec & mileage petrol V6. So at an average £1500 premium, we are thinking the petrol might be the way to go as thats an awful lot of fuel & in the time we own it & with only doing around 6000 miles a year now we'd actually be better off with the petrol version. Plus i won't be banned from central London when the diesel ban comes in to force in a couple of years. We don't tow any more as we have the motorhome.

Edited by Woodie106

I refer you to the Rt Hon Member for the 19th Century.....................pictured just to the left of your screen..................

 

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Right then here goes, just to balance the diesel opinions and yes I do tow with a modern turbo diesel I know.

 

I've had many towcars over the last 28 years of caravanning quite a few modern turbo diesels but also quite a few 2. 5, 2. 9 and 3. 0 V6 petrols.

 

Most V6 petrols will have peak torque at 3k to 4k rpm but peak figures only tell half the story, the VR6 VW has a fairly flat torque curve as do most larger capacity V6 petrols.

As they are higher revving the gearing is usually 20-25% lower than the diesel so in every gear you have 20-25% more torque at the wheels per engine output.

 

I can give a direct example. I had a 2. 0TDCi Mondeo and 3. 0V6 Petrol Mondeo back to back, both pulled a 1500kg Swift Challenger.

 

The diesel had 236lbft,@1800rpm the petrol 186lbft @ 3250rpm. Now with these figures most would be pointing you towards the diesel. But the diesel had 130bhp and tall gearing,, the petrol 204bhp and shorter gearing.

 

Now the diesel never felt totally happy with the van, first gear required careful balancing of throttle and clutch, through the gears required skilled use of the gears to keep in the 1800-3250rpm sweet spot for torque and the tall sixth gear was almost useless unless it was flat or downhill at 60mph+. Reverse often resulted in a smelly clutch.

In comparison the 3. 0V6 was effortless, low first gear meant effortless getaways, the wide spread of torque meant I could hold revs if required and sixth was very useable. Yep sometimes I did rev to 4500rpm when overtaking on steep hills but it's a glorious sounding V6 petrol, it's a pleasure to do that! But most of the time the 3. 0V6 was more than happy at 2k-3k rpm

 

The only downside is the fuel but if you can live with that due to low annual mileage then all well and good.

 

Would I advise changing the V6 Galaxy for a 130/140bhp 1. 9Tdi / 2. 0TDCi model? No not really, if yours is running OK then shelling out an extra £3k to run a diesel is barmy, you will never see that back and won't see a massive leap in towing performance. A gearbox overhaul and an extra oil cooler may be the best option.

 

Obviously shelling out tens of thousands on a modern 200bhp diesel will see a massive increase in towing performance but I don't see the thread starter doing that.

 

Lee

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