Elon Musk has kept a tight lid regarding additional information on the highly-anticipated Tesla Model X. All we really know is that it will come with all-wheel drive standard, offer three rows of seating, and it’ll have those nifty falcon-wing doors. The Tesla Model X will also have a towing capacity, though just how much we don’t know…though a Tesla executive let slip that the Model X will have a Class III towing capacity and will tow “close to 10,000 pounds.”
That Tesla exec was Jim Chen, VP of Regulatory Affairs who was speaking at the Georgia Technology Summit back in April. He makes his comments at around 9:40 in the video linked here (embedding was disabled…) after discussing the falcon-wing doors on the Model X. After noting that this was not a much-discussed feature, Chen says; “This vehicle will have Class III towing capability. That means over 5,000 pounds, actually close to 10,000 pounds of towing capability.”
And he’s not wrong. A Class III rating allows for a Gross Trailer Weight (GTW) of up to 8,500 pounds. So if you have a 1,500 pound trailer you can lug around another 7,000 pounds of whatever. While not quite 10,000 pounds that Chen quotes, a Class III hitch can handle a wide variety of loads, including a medium-sized travel trailer or a decent-sized fishing boat.
Previous spy pictures have revealed a Model X mule towing a trailer good for over 4,000 pounds GTW, so I’m not surprised to hear that the Model X should have a Class III rating. What that will do to range remains to be seen, but a Class III hitch is on par with what most conventional SUVs are capable of. In other words, you sacrifice nothing by choosing the Model X over a gas-powered competitor.