Patriot's latest indestructible off-road camping trailer brings more versatility
Just months after debuting the X1-H with integrated hard-top tent, Australia's Patriot Campers is breaking its tent options wide open. In place of an integrated tent, the all-new X1-N features a built-in roof rack for use with any roof-top tent (RTT). The X1-N can sleep the whole family in a large fold-out tent or a fast-moving couple in a quick-popping two-person hardshell. And as always with the Patriot badge, it can roll virtually anywhere, over whatever rock, mud, snow, sand, running water or general rubble the path throws its way.
Existing Patriot X1-series trailers use Patriot's own tents, designed for fast set-up and expandable space. With the X1-N, the company recognizes that some buyers might prefer to use an aftermarket tent, especially with a roof-top tent market that continues to boom.
Actually, X1-N users don't need to use a roof-top tent at all, as the basic X1-N trailer is a brutish rolling gear box topped with the new aluminum X-Rack, a roof rack with rails and crossbars covering the entire trailer top. Like any good roof rack, the X-Rack can grab hold of everything from roof-top tents, to gear carriers to lashed luggage, allowing users to select their choice of tent and/or use the X1-N as a lighter, simpler gear-hauler for carrying bikes, kayaks and other equipment into the outdoors.
Patriot is closer to reverse-engineering the wheel than reinventing it with the X1-N, since many a rugged, boxy off-road utility trailer is topped with a standard or available roof rack rather than an integrated tent, allowing the buyer to turn it into a camper with a roof-top tent or just use it as a gear box. What Patriot has really done, then, is give future X1 shoppers more flexibility in selecting a tent than they have with its existing products while offering an X1 platform that's as good for hauling bikes or stand-up paddleboards on a day trip as it is at serving as a base camp for a longer camping trip or expedition.
Patriot already offers the smaller, lighter X2 trailer with the option of a roof rack in place of the standard integrated tent, and now it essentially does the same for the signature X1 series.
And it's not hard to understand why. The market is quickly innovating new, convenient roof-top tent options, so some would-be Patriot buyers would undoubtedly rather have some flexibility in tent choice. Patriot's own X1 tent can sleep up to five with the optional kids room annex, but some might prefer a simpler, faster single tent design sleeping everyone under the same roof. In fact, Patriot has sourced a variety of simpler tent options for customers, including two from what we consider one of the most innovative RTT makers out there: iKamper.
The iKamper SkyCamp 4 is one of our favorite roof-top tents (and we'll have a forthcoming review to tell you more about why). It combines elements of both hardshell and fold-out design, setting up and breaking down in minutes and sleeping a family of four (or three adults) under a single roof. iKamper's newer X-cover sleeps that same family of four and has a set of integrated crossbars on its lid so that the family can carry bikes, kayaks and other large gear to camp.
Patriot also offers the James Baroud Evasion, a compact, fast-deploying hardshell RTT for two adults, and the TJM Yulara, a folding soft-shell two-sleeper.
Below its revised top, the X1-N features the same X1 combination of ultra-rugged construction and creature comfort-loaded design. It comes standard with an L-shaped kitchen with dual-burner stove, sink and fridge slide (fridge/freezer sold optionally), gas hot water heater, 155-L water tank, 270-degree awning with strut-assisted lift, electrical system with dual gel batteries, and 2,000 L of storage, including Patriot's "Man Cave" front storage box with available BBQ swing-out.
The X1-N has a hybrid galvanized steel/aluminum Rigilite interlocked chassis and aluminum monocoque body. It rides on 33-in mud-terrain tires wrapped around 16-in PCOR wheels and cushioned by an X-Cruise independent airbag suspension, packing a standard full-size spare on the back. A Cruisemaster DO35 hitch coupler secures it to the tow vehicle and offers a full 360 degrees of articulation. The 12-foot-long (3.7-m) trailer weighs 1,830 lb (830 kg) dry and has a gross vehicle weight rating of 3,500 lb (1,600 kg).
Thanks to the loss of the integrated tent, the X1-N becomes Patriot's least expensive camping trailer, starting at $AU39,990 in Patriot's home country and US$30,900 in the United States. Patriot celebrates the launch with the special edition X1-N "Desert Ops" model with retro vinyl graphics slapped over a "sandy taupe" powder-coated body, 35-in tires, a pair of Maxtrax recovery boards, larger 12-in electric drum brakes and a special badge. Those 20 limited edition models will also be available in both Australia (AU$40,990) and the US (US$31,900). Patriot promises the matching Land Cruiser "Desert Ops" SuperTourer shown in its photos and videos will be available soon.
If you have eight minutes to spare and some added interest in the X1-N, Patriot founder Justin Montesalvo always does a good job going over the details: