20' Series Advice for upgrade from 16.49-1 to 20.63-1OB

Caledapho

New Member
Dec 27, 2012
17
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3
#1
Hey fellow Panda lovers.

Brief Background: I am a single mum of 3 boys, and we have done many road trips and holidays in our little Panda over the past 5-6 years. I am a confident driver, on and off road. And mechanically very practical, but not so much knowledgeable. My growing boys mostly prefer to sleep outside in their swags now, unless staying only the one night. And my eldest is about to get his drivers license too!

Ive just sold my little 16.49-1 Panda, and looking at a 2013 20.63-1, so thats about an extra 1000kgs Tare. I have a 2004 V6 Prado with lift kit and extra beefing (not sure what tho, lol) which towed the old van like a dream, had to remember it was following, lol, and barely noticed any extra fuel consumption either. I am going to 'update' the old girl (prado) soon too, but really didnt want to 'upgrade', as I love the Prados! But I realise that towing the 20.63-1ob (2247kg Tare) will be right on its max!:oops:

Just wondering if anyone else has done a similar upgrade, and how the extra weight (and length) affected the driving ease and fuel consumption?

Any advice is much appreciated:)
 

chartrock

Forum Patriarch
Staff member
Sep 26, 2010
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#3
You are right @Caledapho, many of the members are away and are probably not reading the forum very much. I can't help you as I have never owned a Prado. I did have a 14' expanda towed with a Navara and when we purchased the Journey with a GVM of around 2300Kg the Navara struggled so we moved up to a BT50. Fuel usage went up from 13-14 L/100 to around 15-16 L/100.
 
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Tucker

Well-Known Member
May 4, 2016
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Geelong, Victoria
#4
Hi I've got an 18:58-2 outback expands and towing with a d4d Prado and going g by my ATM it is over but I get a weigh bridge ticket to show I am under my tow cap of 2500 but the Prado does tow it easy but at the moment looking to upgrade car and van. With the 20 foot expands your ATM will be about 2722kg
Hope that helps
 

bigcol

Well-Known Member
Nov 22, 2012
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Swan Valley Perth
#5
welcome @Caledapho
is there any particular reason for going to the 20' van?
maybe an 18' with bunks maybe? especially as your boys are getting bigger and older

only as I think the 18' is a about the largest you can tow with the Prado legally, and I think @Tucker is correct - the 20's are closer to the 3T mark
and at that size, you are really looking at the more expensive range of tow vehicles with a 3.5T towing capacity

horses for courses, but I would suggest an 18" and keep your Prado if there is nothing wrong with it
 

Drover

Well-Known Member
Nov 7, 2013
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Cooloola Coast, QLD
www.expandasdownunder.com
#6
Hi I've got an 18:58-2 outback expands and towing with a d4d Prado and going g by my ATM it is over but I get a weigh bridge ticket to show I am under my tow cap of 2500 but the Prado does tow it easy but at the moment looking to upgrade car and van. With the 20 foot expands your ATM will be about 2722kg
Hope that helps
If you did get pulled over by the scalies they will still weigh you, the weigh bridge docket won't get you out of it . The number on the scale is what counts.
 
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Tucker

Well-Known Member
May 4, 2016
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Geelong, Victoria
#7
If you did get pulled over by the scalies they will still weigh you, the weigh bridge docket won't get you out of it . The number on the scale is what counts.
I understand that it is just good practice for myself that I know I am under my limit but with a new van possibly a new car will be needed
Cheers
 

Drover

Well-Known Member
Nov 7, 2013
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Cooloola Coast, QLD
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#8
I actually reckon that even when you upgrade everything once you head off your probably close to the wind again, its just the nature of touring..........I'm forever going over stuff to leave behind just to keep weight down, not because of the current scare campaign but for better economy......The roads I travel rarely see compliance revenue raisers, not enough traffic.
 

Caledapho

New Member
Dec 27, 2012
17
16
3
#9
16.49-1
welcome @Caledapho
is there any particular reason for going to the 20' van?
maybe an 18' with bunks maybe? especially as your boys are getting bigger and older

only as I think the 18' is a about the largest you can tow with the Prado legally, and I think @Tucker is correct - the 20's are closer to the 3T mark
and at that size, you are really looking at the more expensive range of tow vehicles with a 3.5T towing capacity

horses for courses, but I would suggest an 18" and keep your Prado if there is nothing wrong with it
Hey Bigcol.

One big reason is that Im not buying new and I live in WA, so second hand options are few. And there is a 20.63-1ob for sale over here at the mo, and its a little beauty!!

But the other reason is for my list of required inclusions to fit:p...
- Club lounge (or full 4/6 seater) to fit my big boys and myself comfortably, or squeeze in friends for game nights, meals, etc.
- Places or beds for all the boys to crash for the over-nighter stops (the older 2 prefer swags for longer stays)
- Well appointed kitchen, w large fridge and oven to feed my ravenous family without having to rely on take-away, extra esky/fridge, portable stove/bbq, etc.
- Full ensuite (w separate shower) for free camping

We loved our 16.49-1 for the big lounge and roomy kitchen, but we really need a much larger fridge, and would like an ensuite and outback so that we can go free-camping easier too!
Thanks for the advice tho, will see what is available in the 18" range:)
 
Jan 14, 2018
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Tom Price, WA
#11
Hi Caledapho, we are also in WA with a 2011 Prado GX and have just purchased a 2016 Jayco Expanda 18.58-2. We haven't collected yet but with a GTM of 2503 we are right on the towing capacity of 2.5 T. We completely understand about the lack of quality used caravans in WA. We saw ours and pounced because you just don't know when the model you're after will come up again. We quoted having a 20.63-1ob transported from Melbourne to Perth and it was over $4K. We have a 2 month trip of Australia planned to start at the end of March this year. I'm interested to follow this thread to hear from other owners.
 

Smirke

Well-Known Member
May 9, 2014
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Palmyra, WA
#12
we have a panda 21-64 OB (which is a collectors item now), and towed it with a 2012 patrol (Have 4 boys), and the car was also beefed up. Ended up selling the patrol and getting a cruiser as it was fine on the flat and downhill, but as we were doing a 'sort of ' lap that included the gibb, we wanted something with more power....just in case. Fuel's high and I must admit, the patrol felt more stable pulling the panda, but the cruiser has the power to overtake if needed, which isnt often thank goodness.
 
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Caledapho

New Member
Dec 27, 2012
17
16
3
#13
Thanks guys.
Im sadly coming to the conclusion that I will probs have to say goodbye to my lovely Prado; for a Ranger or something similar!?
But my budget only allows for a model thats 5-8yrs old. And I think the other manufacturers were still yet to catch onto the "family comfort" phenomenon (that Toyota was famous for) back then!?:( But I think the smaller vans are even more of a compromise!o_O
 

bigcol

Well-Known Member
Nov 22, 2012
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Swan Valley Perth
#14
you could do a "smirke" @Caledapho although not a new Van like she did
but
have a look Australia wide, and if you find something - have a road trip

yes we mostly know about Caravanland and the lack of competition for Jayco dealer in Wait Awhile

tis a pity to be rid of your Playdoh, what series is it? - 120 or 150?

buying a 5-8year old car.......... have a look at a diesel 100series, even an 80 series cruiser, although older than your Prado, is a good towing vehicle both with 3.5T towing

you can pick up good ones at a good price, with change to do repairs and modifications, and still be cheaper than a Ranger

just a thought
 

Smirke

Well-Known Member
May 9, 2014
1,662
2,889
113
Palmyra, WA
#15
you could do a "smirke" @Caledapho although not a new Van like she did
but
have a look Australia wide, and if you find something - have a road trip

yes we mostly know about Caravanland and the lack of competition for Jayco dealer in Wait Awhile

tis a pity to be rid of your Playdoh, what series is it? - 120 or 150?

buying a 5-8year old car.......... have a look at a diesel 100series, even an 80 series cruiser, although older than your Prado, is a good towing vehicle both with 3.5T towing

you can pick up good ones at a good price, with change to do repairs and modifications, and still be cheaper than a Ranger

just a thought
LOVE a road trip!!!!!
 

Caledapho

New Member
Dec 27, 2012
17
16
3
#17
you could do a "smirke" @Caledapho although not a new Van like she did
but
have a look Australia wide, and if you find something - have a road trip

yes we mostly know about Caravanland and the lack of competition for Jayco dealer in Wait Awhile

tis a pity to be rid of your Playdoh, what series is it? - 120 or 150?

buying a 5-8year old car.......... have a look at a diesel 100series, even an 80 series cruiser, although older than your Prado, is a good towing vehicle both with 3.5T towing

you can pick up good ones at a good price, with change to do repairs and modifications, and still be cheaper than a Ranger

just a thought
Hmmm... more decisionso_O... Do we drive over the ditch and buy a Panda? Or fly over and buy the tow as well? :p LOL
 
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Brougham

Active Member
May 22, 2016
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Perth, WA
www.customphoto.com.au
#19
We have a 17-56 (no ensuite) OB and it's about 2T tare and 2.5T fully loaded on the Prado's limit.
Towing wise, it's okay, but i will be doing some upgrades to both up the torque and drop the EGT's as towing on the little diesel's limit isn't great
I wouldnt tow any more weight that that, and with an ensuite model free camping, you need to allow for 2+ water tanks full of water as well.

I bought our Prado over east, I saved roughly $16k on a like-for-like model here, had it transported across for about $1k and then a $120 inspection to register it here. I flew over to inspect per-purchase, cost me $250 in Jetstar return flights. Perth sucks for cars & caravans buying power.
 

roteleks

New Member
Feb 2, 2018
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Brisbane
#20
Hi all, I've just joined this forum as I've just got my first ever caravan, The 2017 Expanda Pop top 17.56-2 OB. The tare weight is stated as 2145kg on the Jayco site. I've just picked up a Prado 2017 GXL too but its the model before the 3T upgrade to towing.. so its still at 2.5T. I'm just wondering if anyone has any advice on the weights of loading a van up... I know... 'how long's a piece of string?'... it will vary depending on what you take... but has anyone worked out a 'rule of thumb' approach based on basic bedding, kitchenware etc? I'll be careful not to fill all water tanks... (perhaps 1 or 2?). As I said I'm a total newbie so any advice (in addition to what I've learnt on this forum already) would be grateful. You seem like a nice bunch :)
 
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