Unsafe to Tow? TFL investigates Magic Towing Dust


Did you know that currently there is no common SAE (Society of Automotive Engineers) standard for towing capacity when it comes to light duty trucks like there is for horsepower or even MPG?

Because of this pickup manufacturers (without making any mechanical change) will sometimes up their towing limits when competing trucks are introduced.

We call this Magic Towing Dust and we investigate the safety of this practice. In the United States, all of the car manufacturers have agreed on a common standard for calculating MPG and horsepower.

This means car and truck buyers can rely on the manufacturer’s numbers and compare apples to apples and not apples to oranges.

But when it comes to truck’s payload and towing – no such common standard exists.

This also means that truck manufacturers have as much Magic Towing Dust as they can sprinkle on a pickup.

Here are part 1 and part 2 of TFL investigates Magic Towing Dust.

Roman Mica
Roman Mica is a columnist, journalist, and author, who spent his early years driving fast on the German autobahn. When he’s not reviewing cars or producing videos, you can find him training for triathlons and writing about endurance sports for EverymanTri.com as our sister blog’s publisher. Mica is a former broadcast reporter with his Master’s Degree in journalism from Northwestern University.