What Is a Class III Hitch?

by Shannon Keen

A class III hitch is one of several hitch types used to tow trailers, boats, campers and other vehicles. The class of hitch determines how much weight and the type of vehicle it can tow.

Weight Limit

A class III hitch can be used to tow a vehicle weighing up to 5,000 pounds. Anything over 5,000 pounds requires a class IV hitch or higher. A class II hitch is usually used for vehicles under 3,500 pounds.

Type of Vehicle

Class III hitches cannot be used on all types of vehicles. Class III hitches are designed specifically to fit vans, SUVs and mid-size pickup trucks. These are the vehicles best suited to tow the amount of weight that class III hitches are built to handle.


Class III hitches usually have a rectangular receiver that mounts to the frame of the towing vehicle. Some class III hitches are designed to fit the bumper shape of a specific vehicle, but universal fit class III hitches are also available.

About the Author

Based in central Pennsylvania, Shannon Keen has been writing since 2003. She writes for various websites, specializing in film, literature and gaming. Keen started writing for her high school newspaper and went on to win a Gold Key in the Pennsylvania Scholastic Writing Competition. She is pursuing a degree in English literature at Harrisburg Area Community College.

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Photo Credits

  • photo_camera camping,trailer image by Greg Pickens from Fotolia.com