For me the tradeoff's aren't worth not having 4x4. The cost is minimal compared to the cost of the truck, trailer, diesel for trips, etc...
You might say you'll never need it, but it seems to me our wants and needs change over time. I'd be really disappointed if I bought a 2x4 truck to tow my 5-er, and then one day couldn't go somewhere I wanted to go because I didn't have a 4x4.
When I bought my 5-er, I never thought I'd take it offroad. We use it mainly in Glamis and always camp on the pavement or hard-packed dirt. Then one day we got ambitious and decided to camp on the beach. Without 4-wheel-drive, we'd have been stuck for sure. But with it (and the tires aired down) we drove down the beach, no problem at all.
Obviously I'm for having 4wd, but my question is this: compared to what you pay for the truck & trailer, how much more does 4-wheel-drive cost? And compared to what you spend on campgrounds & diesel to get there, how much does the additional maintenance really cost?
2003 Country Coach Intrigue, Cummins ISL 400
Toad: 2006 Jeep Wrangler Unlimited (LJ) toad, with just a few mods...
Other rig: 2005 Chevy Silverado 3500 Duramax Dually / Next Level 38CK Fifth-wheel Toy Hauler w/ quads, sand rail, etc...
Commonly asked question that really boils down to the type of camping you do most often. It's an easy choice for us since we prefer boondocking, and without 4wd capabilities, we would not have been able to access, and more importantly, leave some the isolated campsites we love.
I do like 4X4. Especially with a dually. Reason is that a dually acts like it has two rear ski's in snow. And that is one place where you want more weight per square inch of footprint. Dually is nice sometimes. But sometimes not too.
You can compensate by adding expensive snow tires to all 6 wheels. You can add extra weight to drag around when you need it. And remove it when you don't. But bottom line is 4 wheel drive is just more convenient.
And I am one of those that have used it when towing, and in campgrounds. Once that I remember was backing my 13,000 pound 5'r up a wet gravel hill to turn into a narrow camp site. And there have been times it has gotten me UNSTUCK too. And it has never got me stuck. Because I most always use two wheel drive to drive in.
I see little extra maintenance, or cost in MPG.
And to address what Supercharged posted above...never mind. A waste of bytes.
Do you think Napoleon would won if he had 4x4? But a horse is a 4x4 I guess.
We have used our 4x4 a few times to get up a gravel campground spot when leaving. The incline and loose gravel caused me to flip the switch and pulled right up the small grade. Kept me from digging a hole with my wheels. Getting a run in certain situations are not always an option. Just my .02 cents.