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, but only one game, Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas, similarly offers such a feature.
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.
In GTA 2, 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. With the Transporter trailer, the player has the ability to place any car on the trailer, using one of the cranes located in each district. When a gang car is placed on the truck, it loses its gang markings.
The game features three forms of trailers:
- Container, a container trailer.
- Tanker, a tanker trailer for liquid loads.
- Transporter, a flat bed trailer, some of which may carry actual vehicles.
GTA San Andreas
GTA San Andreas is the only game after GTA 2 to reintroduced 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 if physical force (i.e. jackknifing, dislodging due to rough terrains or jumps, excessive speed, etc.) is applied.
- 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 trailer.
- Articulated Trailer, a trailer designed to carry solid loads. The trailer is available in three forms, two fully covered and one hopper.
- Tanker Trailer, a fuel tank trailer featuring Xoomer livery.
- Farm Trailer, a plow intended to be pulled by a Tractor.
- Utility Trailer, an utility trailer not normally accessible in the game, intended for the Utility Van.
- Tug Stairs, a mobile staircase commonly found in airports, and intended for the Baggage.
- Baggage Box, a luggage box (available open or closed) commonly found in airports, and intended for the Baggage.