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Old 25 May 2008
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Ignorant fool seeks advice

I'm starting to hatch a plan that will probably go nowhere but I'd like to explore the possibilities anyway...

I'm looking at a 4x4 truck for overlanding but have no idea what's good/bad/available and would appreciate any advice/opinions/experiences you would care to share.

Must have: 4x4, good ground clearance, indoor sleeping (no roof tents)

The few I've looked at have frighteningly poor fuel consumption - but then they've been from the 70s.

I don't have HGV license, but don't mind taking one if needed.

What should I be looking at?
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Old 25 May 2008
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It depends how much money you have to spend, how big a truck you want, and where you plan to go with it... this is mainly due to ease of shipping.

The 4x4 options are MAN, HINO, Mercedes, Scania, and many others. The old stalwarts are Unimog by Mercedes, Bedford MK's, and Pinzgauer....

Google these to get an idea as a start..


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Old 25 May 2008
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All of the Japanese truck makers (Isuzu, Hino (Toyota), Mitsubishi)have the less than 7.5tonne 4x4 cabover trucks available, usually about half the price of the European equivalents, and not too many Euro trucks in the less than 7.5tonne range (Merc Unimogs and Ivecos, Volvo??)

I've had experience with the small Isuzus and Mitsubishis, both capable offroad and quiet on road vehicles. Diesel engines, selectable 4x2 4x4, hi and low range gearboxes, PTO on the gearbox to run winches or other power tools. They dont have the ground clearance that the Unimogs have, or the host of locking diffs/interaxle diff locks/.........but they are not farm or logging vehicles either. Outside of Europe they are very common and parts and service backup are common.

The Mitsubishis were being sold by Mercedes in Europe at one time, Isuzu is one of the largest truck makers in the world - I'm not sure if Merc or Isuzu are the largest?
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Old 25 May 2008
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Bedford are cheap (x army 1s) but a pig to drive. Unimogs are not cheap but just about the best 4x4 you can get, will only do 15 -18 mpg thou.
Smaller Toyota troopy camper conversions are common here in Oz and are really good. Or you could extend or do some other type of conversion to a 4x4. The possabilties are endless there and depend on skill, money and time. I find its best not to go to other the top with it.
""Why cant we all just get along?"" - - No forget that ! why can't you all just get out of my way ?...
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Old 27 May 2008
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Here is our truck set up for outback and international travel. Based on a Toyota landcruiser 79 series 2002 model 4.2 di turbo.

Not expensive to setup or run. Setup cost about $A43,000, runs out at about 13L/100km on trip fully laden, about 3 tonnes.
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Old 27 May 2008
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Truck links

Try looking at this forum that Chris has previously posted - they have a really good dedicated truck section with different areas on different brands. Loads of useful posts in there.

Expedition Portal Forums - Powered by vBulletin - then look under the truck sections

Also for Unimog ideas try

The UK Unimog owner's meeting place.,

there is a link on the site to a load of overland mogs, try clicking on the pictures, you can then follow some of them to specific web sites.

Also try

mobile.de - der Automarkt für Gebrauchtwagen und Neufahrzeuge - Finden oder verkaufen Sie einfach und schnell Ihr Auto

Its like a german equivilent to autotrader. You can select english in the top right drop down box. If you look under campervans and then select brands that you know have trucks - eg you can select MAN from the drop down box, they don't have unimog in the drop down box but if you leave that as any and then type in Unimog in the text field next to it you can pull up a load of those. Also try typing things like Bucher Duro in the text field. Will give you an idea of whats out there.

Have fun

Edit - thats clever - I just typed the basic web addresses above and now its converted them to the above. Oh well.
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Old 28 May 2008
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Some great answers there - thanks guys!

I'd already found the uk unimog website and must say that's very tempting but big thanks to Toby for the expeditionportal link, plenty of food for thought there.
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Old 8 Jun 2008
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overland truck idea

we have a mercedes 911 truck from the german police; 4x4, plated at 7.4t so a normal driving licence can drive it. It comes with windows and doors already in place and the electrics are in the back are 12v, 24v and 240v all you need to do is fit out the rear. It does 18ltrs to the 100k which is not too bad for a truck. The windows come with security shutters and because the german police owned her- she spent her 30 year life doing only 600 miles a year, fully serviced and upgraded (needed or not) to EU h&s standard and was kept in a heated garage!
Down side is she's not a race horse and would need RoRo or flatrack but has perfect living space with a lot of character and can be found ALL over the world- so repairs and parts are easy. Africa, Asia and South America are full of them.
If you want to see photo's just email us or google MB911.
Good luck, happy hunting and remember- there is NO such thing as the perfect overland vehicle!
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Old 27 Jun 2008
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Toyota Hilux 2006 2 Door Pick Up

Light weight yet tough and carry over a ton AND STILL GIVE YOU 33 MPG and a top speed of over a ton!
Can sleep 2 in the rear. Turbo diesel 2.5 TDI common rail
Solid well proven vehicle with lots of kit (highlift jack/sand plates/snorkel/tow ball & straps, etc
White in colour, selectable 4x2 4x4, hi and low range gearboxes, air-con, cd player, CB, Jerries etc etc
Very well looked after 2006 Toyota Hilux 2 door with Truckman top
From new ran 2 missions to Mali and back
Available you know where from Mr Schiannini

Last edited by Bertrand; 27 Jun 2008 at 21:22.
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