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Traveling and seeing new things is one of the best parts of RVing. But with a normal RV, you’re stuck on the beaten path. If you want to truly see it all, you’re going to need an off-road RV.
With an off-road RV, you can go anywhere and everywhere, no matter the conditions. Let’s take a look at just what makes an off-road RV and at the best off-road RVs in every category.
What is an Off-Road RV?
Off-road RVs are RVs that are equipped with features like:
- Higher clearance
- Off-road tires
- Upgraded suspension
- Four-wheel drive
- Skid plates, side rails, and other added protective components
These features let off-road RVs take on uneven rocky terrain, poor traction, and anything else that nature throws at them.
Off-road RVs are also frequently off-grid RVs, designed not just to drive off-road but survive off the beaten path for extended periods of time.
Due to this, many off-road RVs have features like powerful cooling, heating, and insulation to make them liveable even in extreme weather conditions. They commonly have solar power systems and large water tanks so you can stay off-grid longer.
What’s the Best RV Type for Off-Roading?
Without a doubt, the best RV type for off-roading is overland vehicles. These heavy-duty RVs are commonly built on a truck chassis, such as the Mercedes, Freightliner, or Ford truck chassis. They typically feature off-road tires, upgraded suspensions, and all-wheel-drive systems.
The living areas of overland vehicles are constructed of extremely durable materials to stand up to outside conditions no matter how extreme.
9 Best Off-Road RVs in Every Category
Not everyone has the resources to purchase these extreme overlanding vehicles. The good news is that there are plenty of off-road RVs in most categories that can take you off the pavement, into the backcountry, or even to those extreme off-road destinations you want to go.
1. Best Off-Road Teardrop Camper- Colorado Teardrops Summit Pinnacle
- UVW: 1,850 lbs.
- Tongue Weight: 220 lbs.
- Length: 14.42 ft.
- GVWR/GAWR: 3,500 lbs.
- CCC: 1,650 lbs.
- Sleep: 2-4
Many teardrop campers for 2 people have off-road RV packages that increase the tire size and tweak the suspension. Those are great for getting off the pavement or heading into some decent backcountry trails filled with tree roots. The Colorado Teardrops Summit Pinnacle has what you need to go extreme off-roading and sleeps 4.
The 17-inch off-road tires are supported by axle-less independent Timbren suspension, giving the camper a 21-inch clearance. The Lock N’ Roll articulating hitch fits directly into your tow vehicle’s receiver, making ball hitch issues a non-issue. The steel frame and aluminum shell holds insulation that’s twice the average R-value for most RVs.
To learn more about RV R-Values check out our Travel Trailer and RV Insulation Guide: R-Values Explained.
The Summit Pinnacle comes with a queen sized memory foam mattress. Along the front cap are 2 twin bunks with mattresses. The rear interior wall has plenty of storage as well as the kitchen hatch. You can power it all with a solar generator or however you want.
2. Best Off-Road Pop-Up Camper- Taxa Outdoors Cricket
- UVW: 1,800 lbs.
- Tongue Weight: 245 lbs.
- Length: 15 ft.
- GVWR: 2,700 lbs.
- CCC: 900 lbs.
- Sleep: 2 a + 2 k
Pop-up campers are a killer choice for going off-road. They’re a great choice if you have a light-duty tow vehicle like a mid-size SUV. Our pick for the best off-road pop-up camper is the TAXA cricket.
The TAXA Cricket is a lightweight and rugged pop-up camper that features a unique NASA-inspired design. The Cricket maximizes the efficiency of space with a full-size bed that converts into a dinette.
Plus an optional hanging kid’s berth that adds two hanging child-size bunks. The compact Cricket still has room for a full kitchen with a stove, fridge/freezer, and plenty of storage.
Besides the berth, the Cricket can also be upgraded with a portable toilet, roof load bars, and a 5,000 BTU air conditioner.
This off-road pop-up camper comes pre-wired for a complete solar system. You’ll find it comes with a solar input, charge controller, and battery compartment.
3. Best Off-Road Truck Camper- Hallmark Milner Overland
- Category: 1/2 & 3/4
- Length: 11.67 ft.
- Center of Gravity: 31-inches
- Cargo Bed: Short & Standard
- UVW: 1,212 lbs.
- Sleep: 2-4
The Hallmark Milner Overland is a molded fiberglass truck camper that comes from a legendary RV manufacturer. Hallmark has a decades long reputation as one of the leading manufacturers in the truck camper sector. The Milner Overland is an off-road RV version of their popular half-ton soft shell truck camper model.
The gray with bamboo door cabinetry comes standard, but customers can customize the exterior paint, fabric, and also add on many additional features. Yet it’s already pretty well decked out with a Truma heater, heated lithium batteries, acrylic windows, and 215W of solar on the roof.
4. Best Off-Road Hybrid Camper- Opus OP15
- UVW: 5,159 lbs.
- Tongue Weight: 410 lbs.
- Set-Up Length: 23.34 ft.
- Travel Length: 21.42 ft.
- GVWR: 6,393 lbs.
- CCC: 1,640 lbs.
- Sleep: 2-4
Hybrid campers combine all the best parts of hard-bodied camper trailers and pop-up campers to create an expandable and super versatile towable RV. Without a doubt, the best off-road hybrid camper is the Opus OP-15. The Opus OP-15 is a fully loaded off-road hybrid camper for the whole family.
Inside, you’ll find a king-size bed and twin bunk beds to accommodate a family of four. The slide-out exterior kitchen features a 4-burner stove, fridge/freezer, and plenty of prep space. And for entertainment, the OP-15 has an HDTV with included antenna.
The OP-15 is engineered with an independent trailing arm coil suspension system with dual shock absorbers, massive ground clearance, and off-road tires for maximum off-road capabilities. It’s extra tough thanks to its fully galvanized and welded chassis and drawbar.
This hybrid camper also has great off-grid features, with a 300W solar system powering three 100Ah AGM batteries, which can be upgraded to lithium batteries. Plus, 60 gallons of fresh water to ensure you can stay clean and hydrated for days on end.
5. Best Off-Road Travel Trailer- Black Series HQ21
- UVW: 6,733 lbs.
- Tongue Weight: 1,000 lbs.
- Length: 26.2 ft.
- GVWR: 10,000 lbs.
- CCC: 3,267 lbs.
- Sleep: 2-4
Travel trailers are the most common towable RVs, and there are lots of off-road RVs to choose from in this category. Without a doubt, the ultimate off-road travel trailer is the Black Series HQ21 Travel Trailer.
Off-roading is a way of life in Australia, so it’s no surprise the best off-road travel trailers come from there. Black Series is Australia’s largest high-end all-terrain RV brand, and the star of their lineup of travel trailers is the HQ21.
The Black Series HQ21 is the ultimate off-road travel trailer, combining a super rugged exterior with a spacious, comfortable, and elegant interior.
The HQ21 is built with an armored chassis off-road independent suspension system. An aluminum frame with aluminum composite panels make this off-road RV a lightweight but durable build.
This RV also has a waterproof indoor/outdoor speaker system to provide stereo sound around your camper. The lights, speakers, and other electrical systems are powered by four 150W solar panels and 400Ah of battery capacity.
Inside, you’ll find a kitchen with a three-burner stove, microwave oven, and fridge. The HQ21 also has a full bathroom with a flush toilet and an interior shower with a hot water system, plus an outdoor shower.
For sleeping, there’s a queen bed, plus a convertible lounge booth, giving sleeping space for up to 4. For all-season comfort, the HQ21 has a 16,000 BTU furnace and a 13,500 BTU rooftop air conditioner. To help you stay out as long as possible, you’ll also find a massive 63.4-gallon fresh water tank.
6. Best Off-Road Fifth Wheel-Escape Trailers 5.0
- UVW: 3,910 lbs.
- Tongue Weight: 646 lbs.
- Length: 21.8 ft.
- GVWR: 5,500 lbs.
- CCC: 1,590 lbs.
- Sleep: 2-4
One of the best features of fifth-wheel RVs creates the biggest problem when taking them off-road: their length. If you’re going to go off the pavement with a fiver, short mid-profile fifth wheels are best. Our choice for the best off-road fifth-wheel RV is the Escape Trailers 5.0.
The Escape 5.0 is a super lightweight fifth-wheel trailer that’s great for going off-road and off-grid. Thanks to its aerodynamic one-piece fiberglass construction, tandem axle, and low center of gravity, the Escape 5.0 has excellent stability and fuel economy, plus reduced wind resistance.
The Escape 5.0 is a spacious and comfortable RV loaded with features, including:
- Rear stabilizer jacks
- 12 ft. 3 in. manual awning
- Exterior bubble levels for easy leveling
- Wet bath with shower and flush toilet
This off-road fifth-wheel also has tons of optional features like:
- 12 ft. power awning
- Power tongue jack
- Body lift kit
- Solar panels
And these are just a few of the extensive upgrade options you choose from to customize your Escape 5.0 so that it’s exactly to your liking.
7. Best Off-Road Class B Motorhome-Storyteller Overland Beast MODE
- Engine: Mercedes BlueTec 3.0L V6 Turbo Diesel
- Length: 21 ft.
- Tow Capacity: 5,000 lbs.
- Chassis: Mercedes-Benz Sprinter 2500 4×4
- GVWR: 9,050 lbs.
- Sleep: 2-3
Class B motorhomes, A.K.A. camper vans, are one of the most versatile classes of RV around, with tons of off-road RV options. Our pick for the best of the best in off-road Class B motorhome is the Storyteller Overland Beast MODE 4×4.
The Storyteller Overland Beast MODE is the ultimate adventure van with many innovative features.
The Beast MODE uses the 144” wheelbase 4×4 Mercedes-Benz Sprinter 2500 high roof. Outside, you’ll find a roof rack with a wind deflector, a side mount ladder, and a power awning.
Inside, you’ll find a Dreamweaver bed that converts into a work surface, plus a convertible sofa bed. For comfort, there’s a cabin air conditioner, diesel-fired heating system, and sheep’s wool insulation. There’s plenty of storage with a rear garage cargo area and removable cabinetry.
The Beast MODE 4×4 features a full kitchen with a dual voltage fridge/freezer, microwave, and portable induction cooktop. There’s also a portable toilet and indoor shower system.
The RV is powered by a 90W solar panel (expandable up to 600W) and an M-Power 12kWh energy storage system. You can share all that power with others, or use it to power your workstation or anything else outside the van, thanks to its external 27A power output.
8. Best Off-Road Class C Motorhome-Tiger Bengal
- Truck: Ford, Chevy, Dodge*
- Engine: Gas or Turbo Diesel*
- Length: 21-24 ft.*
- Tow Capacity: Varies*
- Buyer Option= *
- Cab: Ext/Dbl or Crew*
- Chassis: 350/3500 series pickup truck*
- GVWR: 10,000 lbs.
- Sleep: 2-3
The Tiger Bengal has been one of the best off-road RVs since 1991. The Bengal is an adventure Class C motorhome built on your choice of a Ford, Chevy, or Ram one-ton 4×4 truck chassis. Customers can also choose if they want the extended/double or crew cab and a gas or turbo diesel engine.
The Tiger Bengal incorporates four-wheel drive, skid plates, all-terrain tires, and an optional upgraded suspension system to increase its off-road capabilities. Inside, you’ll find a comfortable, contemporary interior with a fully equipped galley and wet bath.
This off-road truck camper also comes standard with 100 watts of solar, 220Ah of AGM battery capacity, and a Cummins Onan 2800 watt generator. You can upgrade the power setup with extra batteries and/or increase the solar panel system.
9. Best Off-Road Expedition Vehicle- EarthRoamer HD
- Engine: Ford 6.7L V8 Turbo Diesel
- Length: 35 ft.
- Clearance: 12-inches
- Chassis: Ford F-750 4×4
- GVWR: 37,000 lbs.
- Sleep: 2-4
There are many off-road RV options in the expedition vehicle category. The EarthRoamer HD is a full-on overland vehicle that’s equipped for anything you can throw at it.
Built on a heavy-duty Ford F-750 4WD chassis with a vacuum-infused carbon fiber body, this RV is built tough to withstand even the harshest conditions. The Earthroamer HD features truly amazing capacities for everything you need to stay off the grid:
- 115 gallons of diesel
- 250 gallons of fresh water
- 2,000-watt-hours of battery power
The Earthroamer HD is also equipped with a massive 2,100W rooftop solar system to power the battery bank. It’s got other great standard features like a hydraulic leveling system, in-floor radiant heating, and two roof-mounted air conditioners.
The EarthRoamer HD is a four-season RV thanks to its climate control, closed-cell foam insulation, and single-piece body.
Final Thoughts on the Best Off-Road RVs
Off-road RVs feature tough construction and unique features like higher clearance, off-road tires, and upgraded suspensions to take on the challenges of the path less traveled. They’re typically well equipped for off-grid living, with large water tanks, solar power systems, and more.
The best off-road RVs are overland vehicles, but no matter what category of RV you’re looking for, there’s an off-road RV for you. With any of the choices on our list of the best off-road RVs, you’ll be ready and well-equipped to get off the beaten path and go wherever the adventure takes you.
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2. RV Boondocking Beginner Tips and “How-To” Guide
3. 8 Easy Ways to Get Water When Boondocking
4. Can Solar Panels Really Power an RV Air Conditioner?
5. 5 Best Stealth Camper Vans for Living Off-Grid
About the Author
Jennifer is a full-time RVer and part-time van lifer. She is one half of DashboardDrifters.com and the founder of RVSpotDrop, a web service for full-time RVers.