What makes a car eligible for camping or adventure?
Best camping vehicles should have three minimum qualities – Space, Power & Towing. It should offer excellent space for passengers as well as for language. The engine should be robust and offers 4X4 if possible. In terms of towing, it should be capable of towing some weight (in case – travel trailers or boat trailers).
I think you are one who often travels in woods and exploring corners of the country. Travelling for such purpose requires a reliable travel companion that is capable enough to get you out from any terrain and still packs you in luxury. And if you are one who travels with family, then you should definitely ask for safety with other features that family might need during camping tour.
Well, I’ve noted five best cars for camping, live-in and adventure needs. Let’s get going!
Best Cars for Camping, Live-in & Adventure Facilities
1. Jeep Wrangler
You cannot forget Jeep when it comes to camping or adventure. The off-roader is capable of tackling any situation and crawls all impossible surface with ease. The manufacturer offers Jeep Wrangler in different models with tons of accessories.
Like other cars, Jeep doesn’t come with practical cargo space. You have to utilise rear seats for all luggage requirements. However, Jeep offers adaptable cargo feature which only packs gear & essential items.
Most exciting feature in Jeeps is water-resistant & washable interiors. Yes, you can enjoy the mud trails all day and clean it thoroughly.
Moreover, the manufacturer offers different kinds of camping & off-roading accessories to match your use.
Depending on the variant, Jeep Wrangler offers a towing range between 2000 to 3500 lbs. This towing range allows towing any small travel trailer that comes under Jeep’s range.
In terms of safety, the Wrangler uses high-strength steel frame & rigid chassis as the core of safety structure. Besides it has traction & stability control, forward-collision warning system, adaptive cruise control, parking assist, ABS with brake assist, blind-spot monitoring system, front & side-impact airbags as some of the most critical systems that will keep you safe.
Jeep Wrangler Specifications & Features
- Engine: 3.6L Pentastar V6 engine
- Power: 285 hp @6,400 rpm
- Torque: 260 lb-ft @3000 rpm
- Transmission: 8-speed automatic
- Drive: Four-wheel drive
- Fuel Efficiency: 17 mpg (city) & 23 mpg (highway)
- Seating Capacity: 5 adults
- Price: Starts from $28,295*
2. Subaru Forester
Forest is another best camping vehicle in Throttlebias’ list. The mid-size SUV has a blend of best fuel economy & capabilities of a 4×4 SUV. It comes with 8.7 inches of ground clearance, and with X-Mode, you can even optimise all-wheel drive for different terrain settings like snow, dirt, and mud.
Inside, Subaru Forester offers 111.9 cu. ft of passenger volume. This space is more significant than other rivals SUVs like – Honda CR-V, Ford Escape, etc. This space is quite enough to use as a sleeping platform. Guess what? It easily sleeps 2 adults, making it one of the best SUV for camping sleeping.
In terms of cargo, you get up to 76.1 cu. ft of space which can easily accommodate two campers with sleeping bags and other essentials items which you might need during camping.
The Forester has a maximum towing capacity of 1,500 lbs. This towing capacity is not sufficient for towing mid-size trailers. However, you can check some of the best lightweight travel trailers under 1500 lbs.
Most exclusive technology in Forester is EyeSight Driver Assist. This system monitors traffic movement and warns before any mishap. Not just that, it optimises cruise control according to the traffic and applies brake as well. Guess what? It comes as standard across models.
Subaru Forester Specifications & Features
- Engine: 2.5 L 4-Cylinder SUBARU BOXER
- Power: 182 hp @5,800 rpm
- Torque: 176 lb-ft @4,400 rpm
- Transmission: 6-speed automatic
- Drive: All wheel drive (symmetrical)
- Fuel Efficiency: 26 mpg (city) & 33 mpg (highway)
- Seating Capacity: 5 adults
- Price: Starts from $24,795 & $27,795 for premium
3. Toyota 4Runner
The 4Runner is the heritage of toughness which is serving for over 35 years. Whether its mountains, mud or even water crossing, Toyota 4Runner can get you out of any terrain.
It offers 33 degrees of approach & 26-degree departure angle to keep you going. With 9.6-inch of ground clearance, you can focus on driving more than thinking about ground obstacles. That’s not all, 4Runner comes loaded with all off-road essentials like locking rear differential, crawl control, kinetic dynamic suspension, and multiple drive modes.
In safety, Toyota motors used reinforced body-on-frame construction. The SUV also gets advanced features like pre-collision system with pedestrian detection, dynamic radar cruise control, lane departure alert and automatic high beams. Other systems like vehicle stability control, 8-airbags, side-impact door beams & ABS are standard.
Except for toughness, Toyota 4Runner offers lots of space inside. You can fit your camping items, gears, and other essentials items inside the 89.7 cu. ft. of space.
Most interesting highlight in 4Runner is power rear glass & a 120V AC power outlet. So, with the help of power rear glass, you can access the cargo space without opening.
The Toyota 4Runner is capable of towing up to 5000 lbs, all thanks to efficient drivetrain & chassis. This means you are eligible to tow travel trailers under 5000 lbs, making it one of the obvious picks for your family.
Toyota 4Runner Specifications & Features
- Engine: 4.0 L VVT-i DOHC
- Power: 270 hp @5,600 rpm
- Torque: 278 lb-ft @4,400 rpm
- Transmission: 5-speed ECT-i with sequential shift mode
- Drive: Part time 4WD
- Fuel Efficiency: 16 mpg (city) & 19 mpg (highway)
- Seating Capacity: 7 adults
- Price: Starts from $36,340
4. Honda Ridgeline
After SUVs, pick-up trucks are apparent pick when it comes to camping & adventure. The Honda Ridgeline is one of the practical & capable camping vehicles available in the market.
The SUV can accommodate five adults comfortably & offers enormous cargo space. You get a lockable dual-action tailgate which opens down for loading and side to access the trunk. Beneath, there is 7.3 cu. ft. in-bed trunk with a drain plug to put all you water gears.
Not just that, the truck bed offers a 150-watt/400-watt power outlet that allows plugging tools like an air compressor, power tools or even a TV. You can also check the importance of truck bed covers.
The Honda Ridgeline offers AWD with ITM (Intelligent Traction Management). This unit offers four drive modes which are designed to counter different road conditions like snow, sand & mud.
Most interesting feature is an industry-first Truck-Bed Audio System which allows you to play favourite music outside of SUV.
The manufacturer offers various camping accessories like roof rails with crossbars, kayak attachment, bed extender, cargo net, in-bed trunk cargo dividers & etc.
Just like 4Runner, the AWD Ridgeline is capable of towing up to 5,000 pounds whereas 2WD trims can tow up to 3,500 pounds. All thanks to unibody/rigid structure & a 280-horsepower V-6 engine.
Honda Ridgeline Specifications & Features
- Engine: 3.5 V6 24-Valve SOHC i-VTEC
- Power: 280 hp @6000 rpm
- Torque: 262 lb-ft @4,400 rpm
- Transmission: 9-Speed Automatic Transmission (9AT) with Shift-By-Wire (SBW) and Paddle Shifters
- Drive: 4WD/2WD
- Fuel Efficiency: 19 mpg (city) & 24 mpg (highway)
- Seating Capacity: 5 adults
- Price: Starts from $33,900
5. Chevrolet Suburban
The Chevrolet Suburban is America’s best-selling family SUV. It is the biggest & best camping package that can easily sit up to 9 adults.
The luxury SUV offers excellent cargo space of 121.7 cu. ft which can be extended up to 144.7 cu. ft., making it an ideal space of family trip, shopping trips & camping sleeping.
Passengers comfort has always been the priority of Suburban SUV. Features like 12-way power-adjustable heated and cold front bucket seats, 14 charging points, heated steering wheel, etc.
The SUV offers a cool feature which is first in the segment. For instance, you have a power sliding center console which slides back up to 10 inches and gives space to store small items. Not just that, being full-size family SUV there is fine leg as well as headroom.
Except for ABS, 4X4 & EBD, the Suburban comes loaded with tech. You can pick various packages that include features like adaptive air ride suspension, hill descent control, hill start assists, trailer sway control, etc.
Feature you should check is Magnetic ride control which monitors each wheel independently and adjusts suspension every fraction of a second—giving you the smoothest ride possible.
Thanks to the 3.5L V8 powerful engine, Chevrolet Suburban can tow up to 8,300 pounds which makes it tow mid-size travel trailers. Keeping this towing power in mind, Suburban makes in the list of best SUVs for towing a travel trailer.
Chevrolet Suburban Specifications & Features
- Engine: 5.3L Ecotec 3 V8 as standard
- Power: 355 hp @5600 rpm
- Torque: 383 lb-ft @4100 rpm
- Transmission: 10-speed automatic
- Drive: 4WD
- Fuel Efficiency: 15 mpg (city) & 19 mpg (highway)
- Seating Capacity: 9 adults
- Price: Starts from $65,500