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TruckCabSX-GTA2-withTransporter

A Truck Cab SX pulling a flat bed Transporter trailer, which in turn is carrying an unmarked Z-Type in GTA 2.

Towing refers to an ability in Grand Theft Auto games to tow or pull an object, specifically a trailer or vehicle, using another vehicle. The feature is first made possible in Grand Theft Auto 2, when semi-trailer trucks possess the ability to pull trailers. The feature is also present in Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas and Grand Theft Auto V. The trailer is also seen in other Grand Theft Auto games, but they cannot be towed.

Description

Attachments with trailers simply require the player reverse their vehicle into the front of a trailer until the camera readjusts itself to center on both the hauler and the trailer, confirming the coupling is complete. When pulling a trailer, the vehicle will possess poorer performance due to the need to pull extra weight, especially with regards to steering as the vehicle is now longer. Players have the option of detaching trailers after attachment.

GTA 2

All in all, GTA 2 features three forms of trailers, one of which is somewhat useful in actual gameplay. The Truck Cab and the Truck Cab SX represent the game's only two semi-trailer trucks, and are also the only vehicles in GTA 2 capable of attaching to and pulling trailers. Players may detach a trailer using the attack key or button.

Trailers sustain damage like other vehicles, and also emit fire the same way when heavily damaged, even exploding when destroyed, posing a danger to the player if they are pulling a trailer that is in bad condition. This danger is very likely to happen in certain missions: Benson Burner!, Operation Z! and Grand Theft Auto!, all of which require the player to tow a car across town.

GTA San Andreas

Tanker-GTASA-withtrailer

A Tanker truck with a "Tanker Trailer" attached in GTA San Andreas.

GTA San Andreas is the first game after GTA 2 to reintroduce the ability to pull loads. The game mechanics of attaching to and pulling a trailer is roughly the same as in GTA 2, but trailers may decouple from a vehicle using a specific command or if physical force (i.e. jackknifing, dislodging due to rough terrains or jumps, excessive speed, etc.) is subjected to the trailer. However, there is no single button to detach the trailers. There is a glitch in the PS2 version where taking a picture of the attachment will detach the trailers but the glitch is fixed in subsequent versions.

Along with the game's three semi-trailer trucks (the Linerunner, Tanker and Roadtrain), the game also introduces a different range of vehicles with roughly the same capability, including:

  • The Tow Truck, which employs an adjustable boom at the back to pull any large vehicle.
  • The Tractor, which uses an adjustable tow hitch to pull smaller hauls or large vehicles.
  • The Utility Van and Baggage, which feature a stationary tow hitch to pull smaller hauls.

The trailers themselves consist of a more varied range of items, some of which are not available unless they are spawned using a third-party trainer. In total, GTA San Andreas features eight types of trailers: Four semi-trailers and four specialized trailers.

All trailers in general are capable of exploding entirely if severely damaged or flipped over, but specialized trailers have several other peculiarities, including functional headlights and taillights that light up at night or in a dark location, and the ability to emit smoke if sufficiently damaged (Including those that would never burn, much less explode). This is because all trailers are classified as vehicles, although they are defined with a different classification to other road vehicles.

Truck trailers are prominently used in the Trucking side missions.

GTA Chinatown Wars

In GTA Chinatown Wars, there is a Tanker. There are also a couple of missions that require either pulling up or detaching a Hellenbach or another object, either with a Recovery or a Reefer.

GTA V

The ability to tow trailers returns in GTA V, with mechanics almost identical to those in Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas. Any semi with a hitch in the back can be reversed into most trailers, which will then automatically attach themselves. The player can unhook the trailer at any time, even while moving, which can offer a performance boost if needed or aid a getaway if executed properly. On highways, most often outside of Los Santos, semi trucks hauling various forms of cargo can be seen in traffic. Beyond commercial hauling, the Tow Truck returns, with the ability to move vehicles. Pick-up trucks have the ability to tow small to mid-size trailers. Sadler and Bison pick-ups are equipped with a tow hitch. Some trailers present in the game are boat trailers and a portable electricity generator. If a boat trailer with a boat is reversed into water, the boat starts to float and becomes usable.

List of trailers

GTA 2

Image Name Description
Container-GTA2 Container A container trailer.
Tanker-GTA2 Tanker A tanker trailer for liquid loads. Not to be confused with a Tanker truck (Early Ray Larabie design).
Transporter-GTA2 Transporter A flat bed trailer. With the Transporter, the player has the ability to place any car on the trailer using single, unmarked cranes located in each district of the city; likewise, vehicles on trailers can be unloaded using the same cranes. When a gang car is placed on the truck, its gang markings disappears for as long as it is on the trailer.

GTA San Andreas

Semi-trailers
Image Name Description
ArticulatedTrailer-GTASA-artict1-front
Articulated Trailer A trailer designed to carry solid loads. The trailer is available in three forms, two fully covered (artict1 and artict3) and one hopper (artict2).

artict1: Fully-covered full-sized trailer. May spawn with company logos on its sides.

artict2: A hopper trailer, slightly resembling a dump loader. It contains a load of black material inside of it.

artict3: Looks like the Artict1, except for a flat space at the rear. It's possible that this trailer was meant to be pulled by the Roadtrain.

ArticulatedTrailer-GTASA-artict2-front
ArticulatedTrailer-GTASA-artict3-front
TankerTrailer-GTASA-front
Tanker Trailer A fuel tank trailer bearing Xoomer livery. Tanker trucks always uses these trailers. Can be spawned with a cheat.
Specialized trailers
FarmTrailer-GTASA-front
Farm Trailer A cultivator intended to be pulled by a Tractor, complete with functional chisels that move as the Farm Trailer is in motion. The Farm Trailer can be found at a farm in Tierra Robada near the Bait Shop, although no Tractors can be found in the desert. It is also found at the Blueberry Acres farm near Blueberry in Red County. It can also be found at the east side of the farm buildings across the water, west of Palomino Creek
UtilityTrailer-GTASA-front
Utility Trailer A black utility trailer intended for the Utility Van. The trailer is not normally available in game, and can only be spawned using a third-party trainer or car spawner. The reason for its lack of availability in-game is unknown. Strangely, at night, a headlight can be seen shining on the underside of the trailer, possibly the result of a glitch [1].
TugStairs-GTASA-front
Tug Stairs A mobile staircase commonly found in airports, intended for the Baggage and ideal for access into an AT-400 where a permanent platform is not available. Its high center of gravity may often lead it to topple over during high speed cornering. It is classed as a vehicle as a Heat Seeking Rocket Launcher can lock onto it and if shot at enough it will explode like an ordinary car. Strangely, it may also explode if tipped over on its roof.
BaggageBox-GTASA-bagboxa-front
Baggage Box A luggage box commonly found in airports, and intended for the Baggage. Available open (bagbox a) or closed (bagbox b), and may also be attached to other Baggage Boxes or the Tug Stairs. The Baggage Box also features its own steering axle, allowing it to take corners sharply.
BaggageBox-GTASA-bagboxb-front

Grand Theft Auto V

Grand Theft Auto V includes several trailers, along with unusable objects that simulate a trailer. However, there are 12 interactive trailers, plus 3 alternate variants:

Small trailers
Image Name Description
Trailer-GTAV-Front-Boat Boat trailer Pulled by Sadlers and Bisons. They usually spawn with boats on board. The player can back the trailer into water and use the boat. This can commonly be found in Sandy Shores and the Grand Senora Desert. Any boat detached from this trailer cannot be reattached again.
Trailer-GTAV-Front-Utility Utility trailer Spawn frequently being towed by Sadlers and Bisons. Carries objects that can fall out if the trailer is flipped or hit with enough force. Always labels Trailer 200.
Trailer-GTAV-Front-Generator Generator trailer Pulled by Sadlers and Bisons. The generator trailer is used to supply electricity in remote areas, but is useless in actual gameplay.
Big trailers
Image Name Description
Trailer-GTAV-Front-RefrigeratedBlank Articulated trailer Standard variation with a rectangular design, similar to GTA San Andreas trailers. Also bears companies, such Up-n-Atom Burger, Cluckin' Bell, and Pißwasser. Most of them can be found around the entire state.
Trailer-GTAV-Front-Container Container trailer An unmarked shipping container that always comes a bit oxided. Sometimes appears next to the roads.
Trailer-GTAV-Front-ContainerLongExtended-container-trailer-empty- Extended container trailer An unmarked orange shipping container on a blue elongated trailer. Pulling it with a Docktug will cause glitches. One can be found at Vespucci Helipads. Another variant of this trailer are an empty one, as seen in Scouting the Port.
Trailer-GTAV-Front-AutoCarrier Car trailer Sometimes spawn with cars on board. These cars are locked, as there's usually not enough space to open a door. However, it is possible to get into these cars. They are tied down, so the only way for them to be drivable is if the truck is flipped on a hill. The rear door on the trailer can be opened if the character jumps in on the side and walks toward the rear of the trailer. Once opened, the hatch can not be closed.
Trailer-GTAV-Front-RONTankMillitary-trailer-gtav Tanker trailer Used to carry gasoline. Can explode if shot enough times, potentially bearing danger to a player hauling it. Shooting a hole in the tank makes it leak of gas which can be ignited by shooting. These trailers can often be found when driving in Paleto Bay and are most commonly found in orange with the RON Gasoline logo on it. A camouflaged variant is used by the military for aviation supply.

It can be found on most of the Filling Stations or, for the military variant, only at Fort Zancudo.

Trailer-GTAV-Front-Flatbed Flatbed trailer Flat trailers found empty. Log trailers and curtainside trailers are variants of flatbed trailers. These are easy to carry things.
Trailer-GTAV-Front-LogFlatbedLog-empty-trailer-gtav Log trailer Flat trailer with logs stacked on it. Usually found in Paleto Bay and the Chiliad Mountain State Wilderness. Sometimes can be found empty, but these cases are rare.
Trailer-GTAV-Front-CoveredLumber Curtainside trailer Covered flatbed with tarp side walls. Always comes in blue.
Trailer-GTAV-Front-SandRake Sand rake A trailer that can attach onto the Fieldmaster and is used to groom and clean beaches. These lack wheels. One can be easily found at the beach, next to a Fieldmaster.

While 12 interactive trailers are normally seen in the game, there are 5 Special trailers, which only appears in some missions and cannot be found anywhere.

Special trailers
Image Name Description
Fame-or-shame-trailer-GTAV Fame or Shame trailer An Artic trailer which is marked with the talent show name. Only appears in the mission of the same name, pulled by a Phantom. Unlike the Artic, the front side (where the truck's rear wheels is located), is slighty lifted up.
Big-boat-trailer-gtav Big boat trailer A trailer that haul large boats, along with the pick-up variant. Once appears in the mission Father/Son, carrying Michael's Marquis. Cannot be interacted with because it is actually driven by an NPC. On the right, carries a mast of the Marquis and looks light and thin.
Driller-trailer-GTAVSuper-flatbed-trailer-gtav Super flatbed trailer A special variation of the flatbed trailer, which has longer and wider body structure, small lights and 3 double axles. Appears in missions where vehicles are carried to heist setups. The mission Driller uses a civilian variant, while the mission Minisub a camouflage variant is used.

When spawned, is clearly empty, because the minisub variant has permanent tarpaulin, even if the minisub was removed.

XL-trailer-frieght-gtav Super flatbed trailer XL A longer variant of the previous one. It is only seen in the mission Sidetracked, and is used to carry the train locomotive on a freight flat trailer. It is the longest trailer in the game, since others are shorter than a train locomotive. It cannot be interacted with because it is actually driven by an NPC.
Ortages-trailer-house-gtav Ortega's trailer Ortega's trailer only appears moveable during the mission Mr. Philips and also appears as a vehicle when you manage to spawn it, it will appear in the player's hangar if done so. Despite being a trailer, it cannot be towed.

However, there are 2 unused trailers that can be spawned. Is unknown why these are deleted.

Unused trailers
Image Name Description
Grain-Trailer-gtav Grain Trailer A trailer that can attach onto the Fieldmaster and is used to carry grain.
Hay-Bale-tractor-trailer-gtav Hay Bale A trailer that can attach onto the Fieldmaster and is used to transport hay around the farm.

Trivia

  • In Online, other players can ride on top of certain trailer types. This can be used to transport more than two people while driving a semi, but low structures, and crashing can sometimes knock players off while on the trailers.
  • In the beta version of GTA San Andreas, there used to be a shorter, green colored 'artict3' trailer. The name of this trailer in gta3.img is 'rdtraint', suggesting that this trailer is used to be pulled by a Roadtrain.
  • In GTA V, the Car Carrier can be seen hauling cars. The cars can be taken off, only if the trailer is rolled over. Cargobobs cannot be use due to the fact the Cargobob will rip the tires off a car and render the car useless.
  • Known pickup trucks that can tow small-midsized trailers in GTA V are the Bobcat, Bison, and Sadler.
  • In the Beta, the Tanker Trailer has red scheme instead of RON scheme. However, they can still be found in the game, but they cannot be towed.
  • Any trailer will disappear when the player leaves far away. This is since trailers are considered as second vehicles (likely as second cars towed by Tow trucks).
  • If carried by a Cargobob at the night, lights will turn on.
  • The trailer featured in Driller is actually a designed trailer with a fake Cutter; unlike the Minisub variant, which the Submersible can be detached from the trailer with a Cargobob.
  • San Andreas is the only location in the 3D and HD universes to feature the ability to tow trailiers or other vehicles.
  • If you are driving a Semi with an attached trailer, either by stealing one with a trailer already attached or attached a trailer none is attached, then switched to another character and then back to the same character that you have used to steal a semi(for example, stealing a semi with an attached trailer while playing as Trevor then switching to Franklin or Michael and back to Trevor), the trailer will instantly disappear. This possibly implies that the trailer may have already been detached off-screen by that protagonist. This is much more possible if the character that you have switched to is not wasted or busted, and if the character that you used to steal a semi with a trailer is on the Driver's seat at the time that the player switches characters. The semi, minus the trailer will be parked nearby during or after the switching cutscene on various locations replacing the character's default vehicle, or will be parked on the driveways of the character's respective safehouses.
  • In GTA San Andreas, the player can store up to two semi-trucks with an attached trailer in the Hangar in the Verdant Meadows Safehouse. If the player attempts to store a third truck with an attached trailer, a message that does not allow the player to store additional vehicles will appear much like when attempting to store a fifth vehicle in a garage that can only store four. This possibly implies that the semi and the attached trailer counts as two vehicles.

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