Solarized Land Cruiser 4x4 camper could be the Outback's sweetest rig
Two famed "Cruisers" of off-roading are about collide in a new Extreme expedition vehicle. EarthCruiser's Australian HQ will be putting a wedge-top camper atop a Toyota chassis, combining the Land Cruiser's legendary capability with added cab comfort, an off-grid solar power system and a cozy two-sleeper motorhome cabin with everything a couple needs to brave the elements. The Extreme is certain to rise to the top of many an adventurer's short list of desirable RVs for extended tours that encompass city centers, forgotten badlands, quaint villages, fiery desert and more.
Still in the works, the Extreme (XTR) is poised to be something of an honorable mention for our list of 4x4 micro-RVs and is actually smaller than the EarthCruiser featured there. Unlike the German-designed Desert-Tec 78 Series Land Cruiser on that same list, the Extreme starts off as a 79 Series pickup chassis. Instead of having to cram two people into the back of a high-roof SUV, then, EarthCruiser will build out a more spacious living module, a solution that's not quite so cute and tiny as a live-in SUV but sure to be more comfortable as the days and weeks of a long trip march on. With a 4.2-tonne (4.6-ton) gross vehicle weight rating, the XTR will become the most compact chassis-mounted motorhome in EarthCruiser's current lineup, slotting in just under the 4.5-tonne (5-ton) G-Pro Escape.
Before EarthCruiser gets to work securing its module to the Land Cruiser's bones, it'll add a 2-in (5-cm) suspension lift, larger leaf springs, differential and axle upgrades, and entry steps. It'll also throw on an 80-L underbody water tank (200-L optional) and offer the option of supplementing the 79's own 130-L fuel tank with an extra 110 liters. A snorkel will sit comfortably along the A-pillar, helping the 202-hp 4.5-liter turbo-diesel V8 breathe, and the seats will come neatly trimmed in leather.
The camper box itself will feature EarthCruiser's fully molded composite construction with a pop-up roof adding ample headroom above. To squeeze everything inside the limited cubic footage, EarthCruiser plans to push the main 61 x 84-in (155 x 215-cm) bed up into the pop-top. Downstairs, the floor plan calls for a rear corner kitchen with diesel cooktop, sink and fridge/freezer. Just forward from there, the two-seat dining area will have an indoor/outdoor table and convert over into an extra single bed.
Like larger EarthCruisers, the XTR will have an entryway wet bathroom, a solution that ensures particularly dirty adventurers can get clean without traipsing through the entire motorhome. A slide-out toilet will be included.
According to the preliminary spec sheet, the XTR will also include a 400-Ah lithium battery, touchscreen command center, 540-watt solar charging, 3,000-W inverter, and diesel air and water heating. A front pass-through will allow occupants to move between driver cab and motorhome without ever stepping outside.
The XTR is still under development, but EarthCruiser tells us pricing will start at AU$240,000 (approx. US$151,000) for the complete truck. Plans call for the first model to be finished by July. We'll take a closer look once the finalized details and photos are released.