Benchmark Vehicles has caught our eye in the past with bold, bright-orange branding and vicious-looking off-road adventure vans. So we decided to dig a little deeper into its portfolio and see what the Portland, Oregon shop has been up to of late. One van that pops out immediately is the black-and-white (with strategic bright orange) "Swiss Army Sprinter," an aggressive adventure rig that's nearly as versatile as its namesake thanks to floor rails, five-person seating, a pop-up roof and large cargo-cradling slides in back.
Quads are great for traversing rough terrain, while golf carts are well-suited to short low-speed jaunts. So, what happens if you want a vehicle with the qualities of both? Well, that's where the Ripper ATV is designed to come in.
As usual, exotic supercars, race cars and vintage machines were the focus of this year's Goodwood Festival of Speed, but the event also hosted a very different debut. The new Extreme E race series, Formula E's unruly off-road brother, chose the venue to reveal the Odyssey 21 all-wheel-drive extreme rally racer. With a 550-hp battery-driven powertrain and 37-in tires, this thing is ready to travel the world, biting, grabbing and sliding its way across every type of earthly surface toward the ultimate in pure-electric bragging rights.
Among the many big trucks of Overland Expo, one particular green machine stood out. A collaboration between American truck manufacturer Acela and Dutch camper module maker Bliss Mobil, this particular expedition motorhome features exacting state-of-the-art engineering from bumper to bumper, roof to contact patches. Each company goes through great pains to push its product to the pinnacle of its respective segment, and the team-up results in a go-anywhere expedition vehicle ready to brave Arctic winters, make fresh water out of murky river, live astonishingly comfortably off-grid, and look pretty damn good doing it all.
Riding up almost vertical inclines, hopping over rocky obstacles or just coming to a dead stop in the middle of a log are among the many thrills to be had from motorcycle trials riding. Traditionally accompanied by the clatter of noisy engines, electric motos have recently added a quieter element to the skillful sport. France's Electric Motion has updated its line of electric motos with three Epure trials bikes and an off-road Escape model.
When Lamborghini introduced the 640-hp Huracán Evo back in January, the last thing we reckon most people were thinking was, "Boy, hope they build an off-road version." But that didn't deter Lambo from doing just that, developing the lifted, ruggedized Sterrato, a one-off concept car built for "exploring new horizons." Lamborghini smashes together inspiration from the Urus and parts from the Evo to create a car designed to dominate road and dirt.
Overland Expo celebrated its 10th anniversary this year, and the 2019 show proved more than ever that "overlanding" has exploded from barely-recognized travel alternative to aspirational lifestyle. The largest Overland Expo ever welcomed more than 22,000 attendees and 1,500 registered vehicles (and plenty of cool non-registered vehicles, too). We've seen the camper vans of the show, and here we take a tour of everything from neatly packaged utility vehicle campers, to big expedition trucks, to that amphibious Russian rover staring at you just above.
Extending a helping hand to the rootless and wanderlust-filled masses, Alabama startup Storyteller Overland launches a rugged, ultra-versatile 4x4 camper van in Mercedes Sprinter and Ford Transit flavors. With flexible multi-use furniture, the Mode 4x4 van reconfigures on the fly to adjust to the changing needs of driver and campers, working something like a rolling, habitable multitool. With solar-backed lithium power and a suite of equipment for all seasons, the Mode 4x4 travels the world in complete comfort, on pavement and off.