VIDEO: Tug A Truck Is Just A Traction Contest

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Tug a truck is nothing more than a traction contest.

Tug a truck is nothing more than a traction contest.

I’ve written in years past that Tug-A-Truck is stupid. I believe that only a fool would risk destroying a trucks’ powertrain just to “tug” another truck across some line.

But Tug A Truck is also stupid because the winner of a tug-a-truck contest is always the vehicle with the best traction.

Need proof? Here’s a Dodge diesel (with some pretty good weight in the back, it looks like, as it’s sagging) beating an unloaded semi, because the semi couldn’t find traction.

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This stupid “tug a truck” concept is just about traction. How else could a half-ton truck out-pull a big rig, a vehicle that’s designed to pull 80,000lbs? As you can see, the rig has no traction at all, which makes sense considering that all the rig’s weight is over the front wheels.

Another example? Here’s a VW SUV out-pulling a Chevy Duramax that’s wearing some fancy rims and off-road tires:

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Neither of these videos proves anything about a vehicle’s power, a driver’s skill, etc. All they prove is that traction is sort of important when you’re trying to move…and that proves that “Tug-a-Truck” is stupid.

Filed Under: Auto News


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  1. mk says:

    totally agree, best tires/traction wins almost every single time.

    similiar in a way of drag racing. Usually the one who gets the jump off the line better start or driver’s abilities matters the most most of the time.

    i’ve seen ecoboost v6 ford vs. tundra and most of the time boils down to a drivers race, both are pretty quick.

  2. RIck says:

    The red Duramax in the first video had a lot of work done to it and i’d bet it has over 1k lb. ft. of torque. He had his 4wd locked and as you pointed out, the tractor trailer with rwd, has no weight on its rear axle. That Duramax is a strong truck to be able to pull such a heavy T/T with such authority.

    The second video has the Touareg V10 diesel which is very powerful. That truck has the older, stronger AWD and low center of gravity. I can understand it pulling the high-centered Chevy with its high lift and large diameter tires, both of which contribute to towing and traction loss.

    I was pulling away in traffic one afternoon on a slight incline while in my SC Tundra and got into the throttle. I noticed a VW Touareg in my rear view mirror that was keeping up with me initially. I had to really get into the throttle to put some distance between us. At the next light I made sure I got behind him and my suspicion was confirmed. His SUV was the older V10 TDI diesel. It is a formidable engine and a shame the Germans are not bringing those powerful diesels here anymore.

    I’m hoping Toyota puts one in the Tundra!

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