How Much Weight Can A Tesla Tow?


How Much Weight Can A Tesla Tow?

How Much Weight Can A Tesla Tow?

A Tesla electric vehicle can tow between 3500-5000 lbs (1588-2268 kg). The Model X tows the most weight, followed by the Model Y. Upgraded wheels and weight lower the maximum towing capacity. Towing with the Model 3 or Model S is not recommended. 

Planning to tow a boat, RV or trailer with your Tesla EV?

Depending on the model, a Tesla electric vehicle can tow between 3500-5000 lbs (1588- 2268 kg). 

In order to tow safely and efficiently though, you will also need to know about:

  • maximum towing capacity
  • maximum tongue weight
  • tire size
  • brake controllers
  • tow packages
  • charging while towing 

Towing Capacity and Tongue Weight

Maximum Towing Capacity is the maximum weight the vehicle can pull.

Maximum Tongue Weight is the maximum downwards force from the tongue of the trailer on to your hitch. In other words, it’s the amount of your loaded trailer weight that sits behind the rear axle of your vehicle.

How Much Can a Tesla Model X Tow?

White Tesla Model X

The Model X has Tesla’s highest towing capacity (of those currently being produced). 

The Model X and the Model X Plaid can both tow up to 5000 lbs (2268 kg) with the 20” Cyberstream Wheels, bringing it up to a maximum tongue weight of 500 lb (230 kg).

However, if your Model X is using the upgraded 22” Turbine Wheels, then your tow weights are slightly reduced. The maximum towing capacity decreases to 3500 lb (1588 kg) with a maximum tongue weight of 350 lb (158 kg).

If you plan on towing more then 3500 lb with your Tesla Model X, don’t get the upgraded wheels!

Tire SizeMaximum Towing Capacity Maximum Tongue Weight
20” Cyberstream Wheels5000 lbs (2268 kg) 500 lb (230 kg)
22” Turbine Wheels3500 lb (1588 kg)350 lb (158 kg)
Model X (EVehiclePro.com)   

Brake Controller

For the Model X, Tesla recommends a separate braking system on trailers with a loaded weight of over 1000 lbs (450 kg). This will require you to install a separate brake controller.  The brake controller we recommend is the Tekonsha 90195 P3 Electronic Brake Controller

Tow Package

The Tesla tow package comes standard on the Model X and the Model X Plaid. The tow package includes a 2”x 2” (5 cm x 5 cm) hitch receiver that can also support an accessory carrier such as a bike rack. 

Tesla’s tow package includes a trailer light connector for trailers with rear lights.

How Much Can a Tesla Model Y Tow?

The Model Y is smaller than the Model X and can only tow relatively small loads or a lightweight trailer.  The tow capacity of the Model Y is not only dependent on the tire size but also on the weight inside the vehicle. 

These numbers are based on a 150 lb passenger or 150 lbs of personal belongings inside the vehicle, such as luggage.

The Model Y Performance with 21’’ Überturbine Wheels

With up to 5 passengers, the Model Y Performance can tow up to 3500 lbs (1588 kg), with a maximum tongue wight of 350 lbs (159 kg). When the third row is added and a total of 6 or 7 passengers are in the vehicle, the towing capacity drops to 1200 lbs (544 kg) with a maximum tongue weight of 120 lbs (54 kg).

Tire SizeNumber of Passengers (150 lbs (68kg) each)Maximum Towing Capacity Maximum Tongue Weight
21” Überturbine WheelsUp to 5 3500 lbs (1588 kg)350 lbs (159 kg)
21” Überturbine Wheels6 or 71200 lbs (544 kg)120 lbs (54 kg)
Model Y Performance (EVehiclePro.com) 

The Model Y Long Range with Standard 19’’ Gemini Wheels 

With up to 5 passengers, the Model Y Long Range can also tow to a maximum capacity of 3500 lbs (1588 kg) with a maximum tongue weight of 350 lbs (159 kg).  When the third row is added and a total of 6 or 7 passengers are in the vehicle, the towing capacity drops to 2000 lbs (907 kg) with a maximum tongue weight of 200 lbs (91 kg).

Tire SizeNumber of Passengers (150 lbs (68kg) each)Maximum Towing Capacity Maximum Tongue Weight
19’’ Gemini WheelsUp to 5 3500 lbs (1588 kg)350 lbs (159 kg)
19’’ Gemini Wheels6 or 7 2000 lbs (907 kg) 200 lbs (91 kg)
Model Y Long Range 19” Wheels (EVehiclePro.com) 

The Model Y Long Range with 20’’ Induction Wheels 

When the 20’’ Induction Wheels are used on the Long Range Model Y with up to 3 passengers, the Model Y can tow  up to 3500 lbs (1588 kg), with a maximum tongue wight of 350 lbs (159 kg).  When a 4th or 5th person is added to the Model Y, the maximum towing capacity drops to 2,300 lbs (1,043 kg) with a maximum tongue wight of 230 lbs (104 kg). When the third row is added and a total of 6 or 7 passengers are present, Tesla warns that “towing is not permitted”.

Tire SizeNumber of Passengers  (150 lbs (68kg) each)Maximum Towing Capacity Maximum Tongue Weight
20’’ Induction Wheelsup to 33500 lbs (1588 kg)350 lbs (159 kg)
20’’ Induction Wheels4 or 52,300 lbs (1,043 kg)230 lbs (104 kg)
20’’ Induction Wheels6 or 7Towing not permitted
Model Y Long Range 20” Wheels  (EVehiclePro.com) 

When purchasing a Tesla Model Y be very careful of the tire size if you plan to tow with it. 

Brake Controller

For the Model Y, Tesla recommends a separate braking system on trailers with a combined loading weight of more than 1650 lbs (750 kg). This will require you to install a separate brake controller.  The brake controller we recommend is the Tekonsha 90195 P3 Electronic Brake Controller

Check out this video from OMGWATT, where he installs the Tekonsha 90195 P3 Electronic Brake Controller in his Tesla Model Y.

Tow Package

The Tesla tow package is extra on the Tesla Model Y and Model Y Performance. The tow package includes a 2”x 2” (5 cm x 5 cm) hitch receiver that can also support an accessory carrier such as a bike rack. 

The towing package includes a trailer light connector for trailers with rear lights.

How Much Can a Tesla Model 3 Tow?

Tesla does not recommend towing with a Model 3, nor do they install a hitch on the Model 3. However, in the UK, European Tesla does offer a tow package for their Model 3.   

We do not recommend that you install a hitch or tow with your Model 3, but we are supplying the information here for informational purposes only.  

The Tesla Model 3 with 18’’ Aero Wheels or 19’’ Sport Wheels and up to 5 occupants in the vehicle, has a maximum towing capacity of 121 lbs (55 kg).

The Tesla Model 3 Performance with 20’’ Überturbine Wheels (carrying two occupants in the front and no more than 2 in the rear) has the same maximum towing capacity of 121 lb (55 kg). If there are two occupants in the front and three in the back, the maximum towing capacity is reduced to 22 lb (20 kg).

Cybertruck

When Tesla releases the Cybertruck, it will become Tesla’s highest capacity towing vehicle. No official numbers have been released, but Tesla reports that it will be able to tow a 5th wheel trailer. Rumours suggest the Cybertruck will have a towing capacity of anywhere from 10,000 to 14,000 lbs (4536-6350 kg).  We will have to wait for the official release to get the true numbers.

Which Tesla is Best for Towing?

Of the vehicles currently being produced, the best Tesla for towing is the Model X. With 20” wheels, the Model X can tow up to 5000 lb (2268 kg). 

Can You Tow an RV with a Tesla?

Towing an RV with a Model X

The Tesla Model X can tow a travel trailer RV up to 5000 lbs (2268 kg).  That includes your personal belongings such as clothing, food, pots, pans, dishes, grills, games, etc.

If you’re planning to purchase an RV, we recommend looking for one with an RV weight of 4500 lbs (2041 kg). 

Here are some examples of the many RV travel trailers that the Model X can tow:

  • Grand Design Imagine XLS 17 
  • Airstream “Bambi” Sport 22

The Youtube channel RVBlogger has a great video on “5 Awesome Travel Trailers with Bathrooms Under 5,000 lbs” you may want to check out.

Towing an RV with a Model Y

The Tesla Model Y can only tow lightweight RV trailers under 3500 lbs (1588 kg). Again the combined weight includes all your added accessories and personal belongings. There are still a few RV trailers in this category such as:

  • Forest River Wolf Pup 16FQ  
  • Prime Time Avenger 16RD

When towing an RV, its very important not to overload your trailer. You may think you need to bring every pair of shoes you own, but an overloaded trailer could be disastrous.

Can I Tow a Tesla Behind My RV?

Towing a Tesla behind an RV can only be done using a car hauler, such as a flat bed. According to the Tesla owner’s manual, it is critical that all four wheels are off of the ground. Ideally, a flatbed truck or trailer should be used to tow.

Never transport your vehicle with the tires in a position where they can spin. Doing so can lead to significant damage and overheating. In rare cases extreme overheating may cause the surrounding components to ignite.

Can My Tesla Pull a Boat?

Yes. The Tesla Models Y and X can pull a boat as long as you stay within the required weight limits. Check out godownsize.com to see a list of motorboats, sailboats and other types of boats suitable for a Model X (under 5000 lbs) and Model Y (under 3500 lbs). Just remember to add the weight of the trailer to your boat to get your total towing weight!

Charging a Tesla While Towing a Trailer 

Charging your Tesla while towing can be a bit of a hassle as most charging stations are designed to be backed into.

Charge Before You Connect Your Trailer

We recommend that you charge your Tesla completely before leaving and prior to connecting the trailer. This will allow you to go the greatest distance before having to charge.  

Pull-Through Superchargers

Pull-Through Superchargers

Finding a trailer-friendly supercharger could be difficult. 

Some superchargers are pull-through, making is much easier to charge while towing. 

Regular Superchargers

In other cases, you may get lucky and pull into a quiet supercharging station and can park perpendicular to the chargers. You’ll be taking up a few spots, but you don’t have to disconnect your trailer. 

If you do pull in perpendicular and block a few charging stations, don’t leave your vehicle unattended in case you need to make room for other Teslas to charge. 

Charging a Tesla while towing

Front-Forward Superchargers

Several charging stations are starting to install a front-forward charging spot. This spot is designed so that you can drive forward into the parking spot and the charger is located on the side. This works great when towing, but will require that you back up your trailer in order to leave.

Front-Forward Superchargers

Disconnect Your Trailer

The very last option is to disconnect your trailer from your Tesla. Not all charging stations have a spot to park your trailer near by, so you may need to leave your trailer a little distance away.  Some Tesla users have reported that parking lot owners who notice a trailer with no tow vehicle will assume the trailer is abandoned. We recommend leaving a sign on your trailer stating the trailer is NOT abandoned and you will be right back.

How Far Can a Tesla Tow?

It is impossible to give definite distances that a Tesla can tow. There are many different factors that affect this calculation such as: 

  • the weight being pulled
  • the shape of the object being pulled 
  • how much drag is created by its shape
  • wind conditions
  • terrain of your drive

Most Tesla users report a loss of 50% or more of their non-towing distance when towing weights close to the vehicle’s maximum towing capacity.  When towing, keep an eye on your ‘Energy’ trip screen (picture) and have potential charging stations planned out. 

Tesla Towing Tips

  • When towing with any Tesla, ensure that Trailer Mode is always active. Trailer mode will activate automatically when the Tesla detects a trailer is connected to the electrical connection.  Trailer Mode can be also be activated on the touch screen if needed.
  • It’s important to note that while towing, some autopilot and full self-drive features will be disabled such as Autosteer, Summon and Lane assist.
  • Remember that towing a trailer will result in a significant decrease in range. So plan on charging more often while towing.

Before you tow

  • Make sure the hitch is properly secured in the Tesla receiver and the hitch pin is secure
  • Ensure the trailer is correctly seated on the ball hitch
  • Raise the trailer jack and move it out of the way if possible
  • Lock the coupler latch and secure the latch pin
  • Attach your safety chains to the rear of the Tesla
  • Connect the wiring harness and test the brake lights and both turning signal lights
  • Before pulling away, do a circle check and ensure everything is secure
  • Enjoy towing with your Tesla!

EVehiclePro.com – 𝐑𝐞𝐚𝐥 𝐓𝐞𝐬𝐥𝐚 𝐃𝐫𝐢𝐯𝐞𝐫𝐬. 𝐄𝐱𝐩𝐞𝐫𝐭 𝐀𝐝𝐯𝐢𝐜𝐞.

Recent Posts