What Makes the Best Overlanding Rig? Pickup vs. SUV vs. Van

What Makes the Best Overlanding Rig? Pickup vs. SUV vs. Van

Overlanding will give you an adventurous tale to tell people upon your return and plenty of memories to inspire you to go out into the world again. However, to achieve success in this endeavor, you will need the assistance of a reliable vehicle. Of all of the cars for overlanding, the best are a pickup truck, van, or SUV, and you will need to decide which one will work best for you.

Similarities and Differences

All of these vehicles have great qualities that make them viable options for transportation. Pickups haul cargo in the truck bed and tow trailers; SUVs store items on their roofs; and vans have plenty of interior space for people and things.

All of these vehicle types are similar in their ability to carry luggage and multiple items but differ in their storage methods. Roof rack hardware is compatible with all three vehicles, each having a specific roof rack that will fit its frame.


Pickups are some of the best overlanding rigs because of their size and space. Pickup trucks will haul heavy cargo across multiple terrains thanks to their high ground clearance and rear-wheel drive. The truck bed works great for storing items and offering a place to sleep or set up a tent.

However, there isn’t much room in terms of passenger seating, except for the driver and passenger seats. The rear-wheel drive is a standard feature on pickups and may come with its obstacles if you encounter any mud or ditches that cause your rear tires to get stuck.


Sports Utility Vehicles, or SUVs, are excellent rigs for overlanding. The all-wheel drive is perfect for navigating treacherous terrain and will push your vehicle through with exceptional efficiency. The SUV works well for traversing flatlands or even sandy deserts with the help of special tires.

SUVs mostly rely on the trunk or the roof to hold items. The roof needs to have a roof rack to carry the most cargo possible, and installing this might be inconvenient to some people.


The van is a reliable and straightforward vehicle known for its spacious interior and ability to seat multiple people. The van will carry various items inside it and leave plenty of space for the driver. Certain vans, such as minivans, have seats that fold down and give you more space.

The van is excellent for traveling and transporting items, but it lacks the necessary components for offroading. Overlanding involves a lot of exploration of different terrain, and the majority of vans do not have the tires or height clearance to handle uneven paths or large rocks.

All of these vehicles are potential modes of travel for your overlanding journey. Estimate your needs before heading out into nature and use the best car for you.

Reading next

The Different Types of Roof Rack Accessory Mounts
Top 5 Overlanding Accessories for Your Tundra

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