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jerseyjoe said:
I come from an era where passenger car towing around here was normal. With people my age retiring I don't see many buying an extra vehicle just for towing. The towing option for a 1968 Chrysler included a receiver, did not find a mention about the diff ratio heavy rear springs, police brakes and a trans cooler and gave a capacity of 5000 lbs, Cost $57, if you add an increase of 20 times the amount that would still be a bargain today. Lets face it only Jeep and Durango offer any capabilities SUV category. While fuel economy being OK but not in the passenger car range and not the best for crowded parking lots. With every division being responsible for profit I think a towing option should be available. The 8 speed trans gives the opportunity for a towing diff while returning great fuel economy. Maybe its time for a station wagon again, that could lead to a sedan. Again I've read complaints about "Chrysler passenger vehicle" towing capabilities.
A few points:
In 1968, truck saturation of the marketplace was only approx. 7%, today it's 50-51%.
Cars were then Body on Frame, today they are Unitbody.
Cars then had solid rear axles, today they are Independent Suspension.
Cars then had little emission requirements, cars today are highly regulated.
Cars then had no CAFE requirements, cars today have 27 mpg.
Cars then were RWD, cars today are mostly FWD.
Cars then were big and heavy, cars today are relatively smaller.

The statement that the rating is conservative, might be true, but it implies you can tow more, and that is a dangerous misperception.
If you exceed the rating and are involved in an accident, your insurance company will likely not defend you and leave you high and dry for damages and liability, so do not ever exceed the rating.

Lastly, towing with a car is unsafe and how we avoided more towing disasters than we had in the 1960's is a miracle.
To properly and safely tow one needs brakes, sway control, heavy duty cooling, heavy duty electrical and low rpm torque.
None of those are now found in modern cars.
 
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