Has anyone towed a serious load with the model 3?

Has anyone towed a serious load with the model 3?

I'm curious to see what experiences people have with towing larger items. I'm considering buying a 1500 lb trailer to do some camping. I've seen some post's and videos about bike racks and saw ben when he towed a large trailer but not much else.

I'm not worried about range (guessing half) but more so about the rear suspension. Any thoughts? Thanks!

Rt002k | 6 marzo 2019

I once ate at Chipotle and then drove off in my Model 3. Does that count?

ElectricAlex | 6 marzo 2019

Model 3 is not set up for tow hitch yet, probably create issues if add a hitch is installed.

Would imagine they will later certify some tow rating, butnot right now.

Magic 8 Ball | 6 marzo 2019

Where it says in the owner's manual, DON'T TOW ANYTHING, is that of any concern to you?

coleAK | 6 marzo 2019

^^^. What magic said.

But Even if you did the range would be terrible. I have a buddy with an X 100D and towes an ultralite that is just under 2k lbs. he gets a 70% range hit. Last year we left Anchorage at the same time he started at 100% and made it to Talkeetna (~85 miles) at 7%. And that is a almost ccompletely flat drive and he was only going 55-60 mph so about the best range possible towing.

Jlomb436 | 6 marzo 2019


I'd love to hear something from Tesla. But 18+ months since launch, I'm not really holding my breathe on an announcement. I'm crossing my fingers in hopes that something comes up with the Y launch.


It certainly does. I'm looking for others experiences.


Thanks for the data points. I know range would take a hit, which is certainly a negative. I'm only planning on towing around maybe a 90 mile radius and there are a few nicely placed SC's in the area so I believe I'd be within a comfortable range for myself.

posinator | 6 marzo 2019
hpn | 6 marzo 2019

My coworker.. My car leaned to the right.


Sparky | 6 marzo 2019

@posinator; the ecohitch is a great design for a completely hidden towing option. And I know it is bolted between the crash bar and the frame of the car where the impact forces of the crash bar would be felt; i.e.: a highly stressed point. But standard engineering design creates a 50% overburden buffer, so with the hitch approved for 2000lb towing presumably the design fails at 3000lbs of linear stress. A good question would be, if the hitch gets overstressed does it fail or does the car deform?

Carl Thompson | 6 marzo 2019

I toed a serious load once when walking barefoot behind the stables.

don.lind | 6 marzo 2019

The range hit for towing would not matter at all for me. I just want to tow a 16 foot boat (1900 pounds) about 8 times per year, each time is an 8 mile round trip. It could eat 100 miles of range for each round trip... It wouldn't, I'm sure. But I wouldn't care.

I just want to get rid of the old Chevy Equinox (which can tow the boat). This "Model 3 can't tow" restriction is LITERALLY the only reason for keeping the Equinox. I've been reading about the EcoHitch... I dunno...

I really wish Tesla would "OK" some towing on the 3.

Jlomb436 | 7 marzo 2019

Posinator, thank you! Pretty awesome info.

And Don, totally with you. I'd feel more comfortable if it came form Tesla. I thought Tesla would announce something prior to EU launch but that didn't happen either.

jithesh | 7 marzo 2019

Yes I did. Took my wife in my Model 3 to hospital when she was in labor.. I am not joking.. It was really Serious.

spuzzz123 | 7 marzo 2019

Congrats jithesh but you may find yourself serving a long doghouse sentence if your wife reads the forums lol.

jamespompi | 7 marzo 2019

Was hoping maybe some tow clarification will come when model Y is unveiled. Possibly could have the same hitch/ mounting area

Sparky | 7 marzo 2019

@jamespompi; I was thinking the same thing. An SUV with no tow rating won't be a good seller so the Model Y will come with one. Based on the same chassis as the Model 3 it should be transferable criteria even if Tesla won't admit it.

coleAK | 7 marzo 2019

I’ve towed a lot over the years boats, race cars, atvs, campers,... Currently tow around 5000 miles a year with a 7k lb camper with my LX570. Boats in general are easy, lower towing weight and less surface area for the air to mess with. Also tow rating has more to do with frame, suspension, breaks than the motor. And unibody vehicles in general take towing hard, my brother has a diesel GL that is rated to 7k lbs that he has towed a <5k rPod for 4 summers and it has taken a beating. Also the 3 is relatively lite weight and has a short wheel base. Both disadvantages in towing.

Anyway if you were dead set on towing with the 3 just thinking about GVW I would keep it under ~1500lbs or so. If it’s a camper use a weight distribution hitch, look into a trailer break controller, and look into if rear airbags exist that would work. I used firestone airbags when I had my g500 with a WD hitch and it made a huge difference.

We have the EcoHitch Stealth for hauling bikes. With our Northshore-4 rack and 4 enduro’s loaded it is ~150 lbs of bikes+rack. And with 250 lbs of teenagers in the back it squats it pretty good. We only drive in town with the 3 and bikes <10 miles and =<45 mph. We take the LX when we travel for races but if we were taking the 3 I would look at air bags or stiffer rear springs.

finman100 | 7 marzo 2019

I installed the eco-hitch and have a small Harbor freight trailer from 15 years ago. They still sell them.

anyway no issues in hauling wood in the trailer, maybe 600 lbs? dunno exact. no driving issues, certainly no acceleration issues, and no stopping issues. Rear suspension did not lower enough to worry about as i try to load things over the trailer axle.

For reference, this is the EXACT trailer i used with a 2004 Prius and a 2014 Leaf. I towed 1,000 lbs of wood pellets during those times, as well as a full load of wet mulch, which seemed much heavier. you could tell you had a full trailer with those vehicles. The Model 3? doesn't work hard at all.

Granted, I am not taking this to the interstates at 75 MPH. or over mountains. Reasonable loads on flat slow(er) highways is all i need. Maybe 10 miles max away from home.

The Model 3 with the eco-hitch is exactly the utility i was looking for, barring a nice hatchback. but I'm adjusting to the sedan trunk.


Effopec | 7 marzo 2019

A friend of mine used to have an old VW rabbit diesel pickup, the engine was rated something like 75 HP. He used that to tow his go-cart trailer to tracks. Not sure of the weight, but loaded with extra tires, tools and supplies I'm sure it was over 1000 lbs. He said it would slow down to under 40 mph going over the grapevine - I'm sure other drivers loved him. So based on that, I'm sure you can tow a small trailer, where the cutoff is on weight where it comes a concern I don't know.

Jlomb436 | 7 marzo 2019

Yea, I'm not concerned about power or brakes. Definitely concerned with rear suspension and having that much weight on it. I was hoping maybe someone was actually towing something larger like a small travel trailer but it seems like most are smarter than I.

If I was towing something a couple hundred lbs, I wouldn't bat an eye. Two of my buddies in back would be more weight on the rear suspension that a small trailer. I may hold off on buying a hitch for it as well until there's more evidence or hopefully Elon surprises us this 14th.

sosmerc | 17 giugno 2019

Nice to hear that at least some folks are doing some towing with their Model 3. I tow a small aluminum trailer and my kayaks and paddleboards with my 2017 Volt and it seems to work fine. Just completed a 600 mile trip and my over-all average mileage was 35 mpg (combined use of electric and gas). Seems the Model 3 should work fine for a light duty application like this....though I'm sure range will drop about 20%. I sure wish that Tesla would add an optional tow package to the Model 3......I think the demand for it is there. Guess I will have to wait for the Model Y.

M3phan | 17 giugno 2019

I once loaded a serious toad. He wasn’t much fun.

kcheng | 19 giugno 2019

I've got a waverunner, 1000lbs total including the trailer, and I'd like to tow it with my Model 3, now that my old tow vehicle, Volt, has been traded-in. I'm waiting cause I know if I order a 3rd-party hitch, Tesla will come out with their official retrofit. Gotta be patient.