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Base Plates and Equipment Needed to Flat Tow 2012 Explorer with Adaptive Cruise Control Behind an RV


Would I use model # 4427-1A for a 2012 with adaptive cruise control also?


Expert Reply:

The Roadmaster # 4427-1A base plate kit is indeed compatible with your 2012 Ford Explorer. I have confirmed this with Roadmaster for you.

According to my research, the 2012 Explorer is capable of being flat towed, but you'll want to confirm that for yourself by consulting your owner's manual, as there are specific procedures you'll need to follow so nothing's damaged.

In addition to the base plates, you'll also need the towbar, wiring for the Explorer so its taillights work along with those of the RV, safety cables and a supplemental braking system.

For a tow bar, I'd recommend the Roadmaster Falcon 2, part # RM-522. The Falcon 2 features automatic centering and automatic locking arms that make hitching and unhitching simple, even on terrain that's not perfectly flat. For safety cables, I'd recommend the # RM-643.

When the tow bar is installed, you'll want the towbar to be within 3 inches of level. The base plates will be 21-1/2 inches off the ground when installed, so depending on your hitch height you might need a high-low adapter. You'll need to determine the height difference between the hitch on your RV and 21-1/2 inches and then choose the proper high-low adapter to place the tow bar within 3 inches of level. I'll link you to our selection of high-low adapters.

To wire the vehicle, you can use a magnetic mount kit like the Roadmaster # RM-2120 or a permanently wired system like the Roadmaster # RM-154 diode kit. Either choice has its pros and cons. The magnetic mounted lights are easy to use, but some folks don't care for having the wires flapping around all over place. The magnetic mount kit doesn't require any cutting or splicing into the taillight circuits of the tow vehicle. The Hopkins Kit installation is a bit more involved, but once it's installed, you'll just plug in and go. An umbilical like part # HM47065 would work for either system. If you use the Hopkins kit you also need a Brake-lite relay # RM-88400.

For a braking system, I really like the Stay-IN-Play DUO # SM99251 because you don't need to remove it or set it up each time you're towing or going to drive the Explorer.

I'll link you to the parts I've recommended, as well as to some FAQ articles that you'll find helpful.

expert reply by:
Mike L

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