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Parts Needed to Tow a Trailer with 2018 Subaru Outback

Question:

what do I need to tow a traile rwith my 2018 outback and how heavy a trailer can it tow? i have the 2.5 limited.

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Expert Reply:

According to an online owner's manual for your 2018 Subaru Outback the 2.5L can tow a trailer up to 2,700 pounds as long as the trailer has brakes. If it doesn't have brakes then the Subaru maxes out at 1,000 pounds. Additionally, there's kind of a weird statement that says "When towing a trailer on a long uphill grade continuously for over 5 miles (8 km) with an outside temperature of 104 degrees F (40 degrees C) or above", the towing capacity is 1,350 pounds.

If your trailer is within the capacity of the car then it's time to get it ready to tow. The hitch I recommend is the Draw-Tite # 76227. I like it because the crosstube is completely hidden behind the rear bumepr. All you see is the receiver opening underneath. Most of the other hitches you can see the enire crosstube under the bumper and it just doesn't look near as clean. The picture I attached shows what it'll look like. I've also linked the install details for you.

In addition to the hitch receiver you also need a ball mount with a hitch ball. I've linked our selection and an article to help you determine the correct one with your trailer.

For trailer wiring I recommend the Hopkins # HM11143885 because it has the highest amp draw of them for your Outback. I also like this harness better because the converter box mounts with two screws instead of just one or double sided tape. A lot of the time wiring harnesses fail is because the converter took a hit because it wasn't secured well enough. I've linked a video showing the install process for you.

If the trailer you'll be towing has brakes you're also going to need a brake controller. My new favorite is the Curt Echo, part # C51180. It plugs into a 7-way trailer connector and then pairs with your smartphone via Bluetooth. I had the chance to play with one just the other day and it was pretty awesome. You control it through a free app you download on your phone. You do need a 7-way trailer connector. The easiest way is to use the same Hopkins 4-way I already mentioned and convert it using our # ETBC7 kit. You don't even need to fully install the kit because the Echo only needs the 12-volt power wire and the lighting functions to be active. The # ETBC7 kit plugs into the Hopkins 4-way for the lights and then you'll need to connect the ground wire and run the black power wire to the Subaru's battery through the included circuit breaker. Then the Echo is ready to go.

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Charles S

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