I am about to purchase a Commander with all the options I've been looking for - right color, the whole bit - only problem is no towing package. Does anyone know whether this is something that can be added as an aftermarket accessory? Or is the towing hitch integrated into the frame - thus, you either can have at purchase or not at all. Thanks in advance for any information you can give me.
You can physically have parts put on that'll let you "tow", but it won't be the same unless you change a whole lot. The hitch is obvious, next would be the wiring harness. Also, the 'tow package' includes a tranny cooler and different gears.
Our's (which had the class IV towing package) also has a 'tow' button on the center dash panel that basically locks out overdrive. You can add some of or all of these to tow, but the price will be a lot more than the factory option.
I found out that it could be added for $499 plus tax - that is the 7 way wiring and Class IV towing hitch. Are you saying though, that the gear ratios would not be set up right to tow? Would it not be wise then to try and tow a 4000lb boat with the 4.7L V8 if the towing package was installed aftermarket?
The towing package doesn't change the axle gearing - there is only one gear for the 4.7L and it's a 3.73. Most of the structure for the hitch is already there, so one small bolt-on part to fit the 2" hitch insert will complete that. I believe that transmission coolers are standard also. Make sure it has the mechanical engine fan.
If it's at a dealer try to work the tow package into the deal. Good luck.
As pointed out in this thread, the TOW button on the dash ONLY locks out the 5th gear. You can do the same thing with the "selecto" gear shift (or whatever it's called.)
What I don't like about the TOW switch is that everytime I stop (and turn off the ignition) while on a towing operation. it's necessary to reengage the TOW switch again on startup. For some reason, it always defaults to off when the ignition is switched off. Pain in the *** when towing my boat.
I DON'T understand why it doesn't operate the same as the backup aid. You turn that off and it stays off until you turn it back on.
FYI, the manual also recommends limiting operation with high tow loads and in mountains to 3rd gear as the highest gear. So, in many cases, the TOW switch might as well not be there.