Every overlanding video or photo you seem to see on the internet features a huge pickup truck or SUV kitted out with the latest and greatest gear. The problem is that such vehicles are very expensive to buy, expensive to run, and in most cases excessive.
I mean in the olden days the world was traveled on horses and foot – have we become so soft now that the only way to do it is with huge trucks with more comfort equipment than an actual house? Well, some of us might have.
In this article we will be talking small 4WDs and why they can be just as capable or even more capable than their huge counterparts to go overlanding.
Do You Need All the Gear?
photo by anmcdonnell via iStock
The reason most people need a big 4WD is that they have to put all that gear somewhere. However, is all that gear needed? In most cases no, and that’s the only issue I can currently find with overlanding – it has become somewhat of a social media trend.
Because it is now a social media trend our feed gets filled with kitted-out rigs which makes people believe that the only way to go overlanding is by having all the necessary gear.
A simple sentence can put everything into perspective though – some people hike for days upon end while camping at night. All their gear is stored in a backpack which they need to carry around everywhere. If they can take with them the essentials, a small vehicle can also do, and if you pack things correctly you will also have space for unnecessary comfort items.
A small vehicle only becomes problematic when more than 2 people are going to be traveling in it. Don’t get me wrong, it can still be done but it may not be as comfortable.
What Do You Mean by ‘Small Vehicle’ to Go Overlanding?
When I say small 4WD I really mean small, the best examples that come to mind are the Suzuki Jimny, Samurai, or the slightly larger Vitara.
If you cannot fit all your overlanding gear in a Vitara then you are definitely taking more than you need with you.
Are Small 4WDs Good Off-Road?
The Suzuki Jimny and Vitara are well known for putting to shame far larger 4WDs to go overlanding. My favorite of the two is the Jimny as it features a solid front axle which when combined with its small size makes it one of the most capable off-road vehicles on the market.
Of course, both the Jimny and old Vitara have low range and body on frame constructions; therefore, they can be seen as proper off-roaders.
Who Should Buy a Small 4WD to Go Overlanding?
photo by Huseyin Bostanci via iStock
If you are on a budget, live in a big crowded city and need a small vehicle that can also go off-road, or if you just want a cheap vehicle to try out overlanding to figure out whether it’s for you or not.
People who are on a budget should keep in mind that a small 4WD isn’t just cheaper to buy, it will also use far less fuel, is cheaper on tax, servicing is cheaper, parts are cheaper, even traveling with them on ferries can be cheaper as they take less space.
I hope the article above has helped you realize that you do not need to spend a huge amount of money on getting the latest and greatest 4WD. A small 4×4 such as a Suzuki can fit everything a single person needs to go overlanding with ease while being even more capable than its big counterparts.
Remember, that going out in a small vehicle is better than staying at home wishing you were out there.