Build or Purchase: The Ideal Overlanding Vehicle

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Overlanding, a blend of off-roading and camping, has seen a surge in popularity in recent years. The allure of exploring remote landscapes and the sense of adventure it offers is hard to resist. But one key decision every overlanding enthusiast must make is deciding whether to buy a ready-made overlanding vehicle or build one themselves. Read on to learn more about the ideal overlanding vehicle and whether you should build or purchase your own SUV.

The Benefits of Purchasing Your Overlander

Purchasing a new SUV that’s already equipped with overlanding features is a convenient and time-saving option. These vehicles come preloaded with the necessary gear, such as storage systems, rugged exterior stylings, exterior and interior reinforcements, off-road tires, and suspension upgrades, all designed to withstand the rigors of overlanding. This means you won’t have to spend countless hours researching, sourcing, and installing equipment, which carries a steep learning curve for beginners. Additionally, these vehicles often come with manufacturer warranties, providing you peace of mind should anything go wrong during your adventures.

Another advantage of purchasing a ready-made overlander is the assurance of compatibility. Manufacturers ensure that all installed features work seamlessly with the vehicle’s design, minimizing the risk of any mechanical issues caused by incompatible add-ons. Moreover, the resale value of these specialized vehicles is quite high due to their growing popularity. Popular overlanding SUVs for the 2024 model year include the Ford Bronco Black Diamond, Toyota Sequoia TRD Pro, and Subaru Outback Wilderness.

The Advantages of Building Your Own SUV

Building your own overlanding vehicle not only allows for customization to meet specific needs, but it can also be quite cost-effective. Instead of investing in a brand-new, pre-equipped overlanding vehicle, you can utilize your existing SUV and gradually enhance its features. This approach provides the opportunity to purchase parts separately, which often proves cheaper than buying a fully outfitted vehicle. You have the flexibility to spread these costs over time, purchasing and installing components as your budget allows, thereby lessening the financial strain.

The beauty of overlanding is that just about any durable SUV can be transformed into a capable off-road machine. In fact, many overlanding enthusiasts utilize overlanding upgrades for their Volkswagen SUVs. In essence, you don’t need to start with an expensive, high-end model as your base. You can begin with the ride you have and incrementally upgrade it, creating a perfectly functional and personalized overlanding vehicle without breaking the bank.

Which Is Right for You?

The decision between buying a pre-equipped overlander and building your own ultimately depends on your personal preferences, budget, time constraints, and technical skills. If you prefer convenience, have a generous budget, and wish to hit the trail immediately with a warranty-backed vehicle, then a pre-equipped overlander might be your best bet. However, if you’re cost-conscious, enjoy DIY projects, and have the time and inclination to learn about vehicle mechanics, then building your own overlander could be a more rewarding and affordable choice.

Remember, overlanding is all about the journey. Whether you build or purchase your ideal overlanding vehicle, the most important thing is that your rig supports your adventurous spirit and takes you where you want to go.

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Written by Henry Johnson

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