May 2023

Just a few weeks ago, we were in Flagstaff, Arizona, for the Overland Expo West with thousands of attendees and Overlanders. We had such a good time we made it out to the event to see friends, vendors, and other businesses who have made incredible products in an industry that is so near and dear to our hearts. To top it all off, the event was surrounded by the great wilderness in the mountains of Northern Arizona. We saw many incredible Overland rigs, but here is a list of our favorite rigs at the 2023 Overland Expo West. 

When you look at Overland vehicles, it is normal for them to be heavy and overloaded with gear, but what if they didn’t have to be? What if they were minimalistic, lightweight, capable, and fast? What if they were part prerunner and part Overlander… maybe they are a prelander. Enter Jason Denny’s Ford F150 Raptor, the prime example of what a great overland vehicle should be. Complete with a Go Fast Camper, Rigd bike rack, and plenty of storage for an ice chest and some sleeping bags.

Jason’s Raptor is light, nimble, and capable of some serious speeds, and with speed is the need for a light with serious distance. The Raptor has the 2020 F150 Raptor Baja Designs Fog kit complete with the Next Generation SAE, S2s, and Squadron Pros. Behind the bumper is a Baja Designs 10″ Hybrid Laser Onx6 Plus , which is capable of throwing light 350% further than a traditional OnX6 light bar due in part to the two laser chips and Next Generation LED paired with our high-speed Spot optic to deliver a far-reaching yet smooth blend of light..

The Acela Monterra Camper is a robust truck that captured our attention at the Overland Expo West. Weighing nearly 20,000 pounds, this heavyweight vehicle is designed for challenging expeditions across the globe. It features Baja Designs LP9 lights and an array of Baja Designs Squadron Scene lights around the vehicle. 

The Acela Monterra is built to conquer tough terrains and enable adventurous explorers to create lasting memories as they gear up to start their global journey in the next year through Europe. Inside the truck, the sPOD BantamX power control module and touch panel allow for easy management of interior and exterior accessories, including scene lighting and other accessories. The custom Overlander Global, 16ft habitation box, offers a practical living space for extended journeys for Tiffany and her husband, Kurtis. 

Now, we sought a build that hit every Lighting Zone, and that was none other than our friend Chris from Pure 4×4. His 2020 Toyota Tacoma features a wide array of lights, everything from the classic Baja Designs Squadron Toyota Tacoma Fog Pocket Kit to Onx6 Light bars in the grill and even S2 Sport scene lighting. This truck hits all the Lighting Zones, everything from Zone 1 Dust and fog through Zone 8 Spot. 

One of our favorites of the show was the TAV Spec built 2017 Toyota Tundra, complete with a Total Chaos long travel kit, Bowen Customs custom bed, Sherpa roof rack, and the Skinny Guys Camper on the back. When we say this camper has everything and the kitchen sink on it, it truly does; there is even a cassette toilet in it. There is nothing better than pooping in peace instead of behind a bush. 

TAV really knocked it out of the park on this Tundra; for lighting, it really is the ultimate setup, complete with Baja Designs LP9s, LP6s, Squadrons and flush-mounted S1s on the bumper for cornering. Controlling all the lights is the BantamX HD Panel mounted in the cab. Skinny Guy Campers utilizes the wireless functions of the Bluetooth Bantam App to control all the lights from inside the camper if they need to. Overall this Tundra is one of the nicest second-generation Tundras that TAV has ever built. 

The 2023 Overland Expo West not only showcased these exceptional rigs but also served as a platform for like-minded individuals to connect, share stories, and celebrate their shared love for the great outdoors. It was an event that left a lasting impression and further fueled the passion for Overlanding among attendees.