10 Best Expedition Vehicles
Life’s an adventure, that’s what people always say. Some find it thrilling to shoot the rapids in the Grand Canyon...
Life’s an adventure, that’s what people always say. Some find it thrilling to shoot the rapids in the Grand Canyon while others consider scaling a rock face in the Andes to be the most daring they will ever go. Regardless of your kind of adventure, whether it is through the jungles of Borneo or the Amazon, in the ever-shifting sand dunes of the Sahara, or even in the switchbacks of magnificent Kilimanjaro, there’s really one thing you’ve got to have – one of the best expedition vehicles on the planet.
Sure, your trustworthy commuter sedan can help you punch the clock or even bring your kids to their baseball game, but it surely doesn’t have the mettle to conquer the planet’s most unforgiving terrains where the real adventure lies. It is only with expedition vehicles that you can get the kind of adventure you’re yearning for. And we’ve got 10 of them right here, just for you.
Mercedes-Benz Zetros 6×6 Custom Camper
They don’t call the Zetros the most badass RV on the planet for nothing. This all-wheel-drive behemoth can take almost anything that life may throw under its humongous, construction-type, militaristic tires. It’s an expedition truck like no other, complete with unparalleled living arrangements that even the famed limousine buses of Hollywood can never compete with. Taking its cue from a cab-behind-engine layout, this off-road camper has sensational traction that will leave you wondering if you’re driving an expedition camper or the latest version of the German Leopard.
The Zetros powerhouse is derived from MB’s Axor and Actros series of heavy-duty work trucks with a 6-cylinder engine. Its 326-HP engine doesn’t sound formidable, but its torque is definitely something else. You’re talking about a dizzying 1,000 ft-lbs at 1,200 to 1,600 RPM. Inside its camper is a unique blend of everything the 21st century has to offer; although modified a bit to withstand the badass conditions that are typically found in everyday all-terrain, off-road adventures. This is one behemoth that will take you to where no other vehicle would dare go.
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Global XRS 7200
One look at the Global XRS 7200 and you’ll know that this expedition RV is going to conquer places. Designed as the ultimate in motorhomes, this is an off-road camper that is specially geared for global expeditions. It’s a 6×6 drive behemoth that looks more like the mobile command center of a tactical unit, fully capable of traversing the roughest, deadliest terrains with relative ease. It’s one of those expedition vehicles that let you live in perfect comfort whether you’re high atop the Himalayas or deep in the heart of the Congo.
The exterior may look like that of a battle-tested vehicle, but its interior is nothing less than cozy and plush. Being an all-terrain motorhome, the 18-ton Global XRS comes with all the fine things of 21st century living including a multimedia entertainment system that looks more like a mini club in South Florida. There’s even an innovative lithium-ion system that is powered by the integrated solar panels topside. It’s the kind of expedition truck that lets you forget that place you fondly call home.
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Starting off with a venerable Ford F-550 4WD chassis and mated to an efficient and powerful turbo diesel engine, the EarthRoamer 4×4 truck camper is a beastly camper that is designed to bring your home a lot closer to where the adventure is. It does have the looks of an all-weather, four-season beast but what many do not realize is that it is a self-sufficient mobile home complete with a renewable energy technology that powers everything inside its modestly-curated interior. Sure, it’s not an accommodation on the Ritz Carlton, but even 5-star hotels cannot give you the kind of adventure that the XV-LTS can.
With air ride suspension giving you superb leveling and off-road handling, this expedition camper is perfect for navigating the perilous terrains of India or the unforgiving landscape of the Outback or anywhere else you think it’s great to define your adventure. Its off-grid capabilities belie the home-like, ultra-modern features inside. This is one of those expedition vehicles you’d definitely want to get if you’ve got a gang of not more than 8 adventurers.
SportsMobile Classic 4×4
It doesn’t look like any of the adventure vehicles that you may have already seen, but the SportsMobile Classic 4×4 does come with the beefed-up look of The A-Team’s 1983 GMC Vandura van; although this one comes with sportier and higher suspension and meaner tires for the kind of thrill that you may have in mind. The Classic doesn’t have the GMC, however. What it does have is the E-Series Cutaway of Ford. It molded the Cutaway body with super-sturdy steel-reinforced fiberglass shell to give you one really tough off-roading van.
It’s got an integrated penthouse top which elegantly drops flush into the Classic’s fiberglass shell, giving it a more streamlined look. It comes with heavy-duty components that are carefully selected and mated to each other to give the discerning off-road adventurer the chance to live life in its raw form. Powered by a 6.8-liter V10 with a Torqshift 5-speed transmission, the Classic may not be a race car, but it can really get your heart racing as you explore the farthest reaches of the earth without having to worry about anything else.
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Drawing inspiration from the Unimog, the Mog Home Ziegler Adventure is an extra-class off-road camper that gives you the freedom to enjoy nature at its finest, wherever that may be. It combines the automotive expertise of Mercedes-Benz with the adventurous spirit of Ziegler to give you an expedition truck that is as comfy as your sedan but is as tough as an off-roader. And like all-wheeled toys for the big boys with the MB badge, safety and comfort are definitely at the top of the list.
The Mog Home is always ready to take you and your family to a thrilling ride in the great outdoors. It’s a reliable expedition vehicle that comes with really clever use of mobile space to give you the modern comforts of home in a four-wheeled mobile platform. It’s an off-road home, fully capable of bringing you to your family’s next-great adventure wherever this may be.
Applied Minds KiraVan
Most creators of the best expedition vehicles draw inspiration from their adventures or what they wish to accomplish with their overland vehicles. For the creator of the Applied Minds KiraVan, Bran Ferren, the motivation is not really that far from home. In fact, it is home. Considered to be the most audacious global expedition vehicle ever designed and built, the KiraVan was created simply because Ferren wanted to take the little apple of his eyes to go camping.
Ferren’s travel duties in Afghanistan and his creative streaks with Disney provided him with the right tools to design the perfect expedition camper for his 4-year old daughter, Kira. This go-anywhere vehicle weighs a hefty 23 tons and comes fully loaded with all the adventures that little girls like Kira would definitely want to have. It’s a highly mobile Disneyland for very young adventurers and explorers. It’s also the equivalent of the Swiss Army knife because of the smorgasbord survival features that are embedded into its design. It can conquer a 45-degree incline and run nonstop for 2000 miles without ever refueling. There are even drones for recon and 7 communication masts to go with the tractor, motorcycle, and custom composite trailer that come with the KiraVan. Now that’s living life to the fullest.
Designed and created by Japanese truck-maker Isuzu and based on its venerable FTS 800 4X4 workhorse, the SLRV FTS 800 Expedition Vehicle is a medium-sized truck with just the right size of tires, ample ground clearance, and a chassis that is built to take whatever adventure you may have in mind. On the outside, the FTS 800 4X4 truck camper looks like a really mean beast fresh out from the perilous terrains of Afghanistan or Iraq. On the inside, it’s all comfy and modern complete with a large dinette and kitchen, a separate ensuite, and an island bed that will cradle your haggard body.
Powered by a 6-cylinder, 24-valve SOHC, the FTS 800 is a rather tame expedition RV that is more at home on gravel roads than on pavements. And while it may have the excellent suspension to go with its truck-sized tires, don’t expect to scale Mount Aconcagua with it. What it does offer is touring comfort that is quite unheard of from a brand that is well-known for hauling almost anything.
Iveco Daily 4×4
From the Land Down Under comes the Iveco Daily 4×4, one of the best overland vehicles that have been making waves not only in the community of outdoor adventurers and explorers but also in the energy and mining industries as well as emergency services. Six years since its introduction, this rolling towering metal monolith continues to elicit craning necks, double takes, broad smiles, and that characteristic thumbs-up that tells you how awesome your ride looks. This is an expedition truck that doesn’t let you fly under the radar simply because of its imposing size and rather an odd look.
It may be an ugly duckling in the crowd of handsome-looking four- or six-wheeled behemoths, but the Daily 4×4 lives up to its badge. It’s got triple differential locks plus two reduction gears that boast of an amazing 1:101 crawler gear ratio. The ground clearance doesn’t disappoint either, but what you will definitely love are its wading depth and angles of approach, departure, and ramp over.
Land Rover Defender Icarus by Alu-Cab
The original Land Rover Defender is an already-formidable off-roader that let’s let you conquer the world. However, there will always be situations when you’d want more. With the classic styling and stance of a Land Rover, the Icarus by Alu-Cab is a heavily souped-up Defender that comes with a roof tent conversion mechanism that easily deploys within seconds. The Defender isn’t exactly a spacious limousine or a classic RV that you can call home, but it does give you a high-enough platform to rest on while taking in the vast expanse of the African savannah at night. It’s a mobile tree house sans the foliage.
This two-person sleeper comes with some modest yet truly useful technologies to make anywhere feel like home or at least your backyard shed. The conversion kit doesn’t detract on the Defender’s vertical clearance so you can still navigate your way through the densest forests without fear of ripping the roof from over your head. There’s slide-out solar power to provide juice to your equipment and devices. The fold-away stove can easily turn any landscape into a crafty kitchen of sorts. The Icarus expedition camper doesn’t look much, but it sure is a sleep-ready campsite whatever stretch of land it decides to rest on.
Bliss Mobil Expedition Vehicle
Designed for individuals who are in search of unexplored frontiers that remain on the planet’s backcountry, Bliss Mobil Expedition Vehicles are a collection of global expedition vehicles and adventurers that can take almost anything the planet can throw at it. It’s the vehicle for the Armageddon, the type of ride and a protective shell that doomsday and Apocalypse believers will want to take. These adventure vehicles come in different shapes and sizes, courtesy of its Dutch creators. Regardless of the configuration, Bliss Mobil can be relied upon to deliver resilience and self-containment no matter where the unmarked trail may lead.
These terrain conquerors are built with optimum strength, using only premium quality steel to form its frame. Monocrystalline solar panels are integrated topside while a roof terrace provides a perch for getting yourself drawn closer to Mother Nature. There are a number of other amenities that are perfect for living away from civilization, making the Bliss Mobil expedition vehicles a truly one-of-a-kind self-contained, self-sufficient mobile home.
Expedition vehicles come in all shapes and sizes. And while some are true conquerors, others are more homey but with an attitude. Regardless, these global expedition vehicles can surely make your adventures worthwhile.
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- American Expedition Vehicles – Wikipedia