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Best Bug Out Vehicle: The Ultimate Survival Vehicle

A bug out vehicle in the forest
Henry Silva
Written by Henry Silva

Are you in need of a vehicle to help you navigate the terrains during your outdoor escapades? Are you in need of something to use as a combat automotive in case the monetary system collapses? Are you in need of a vehicle that can get you to your bug out shelter such as a cabin in the wilderness? Do you plan on going to a deserted island to explore the impossible? Then what you need is a bug out vehicle to help you achieve your entire outdoor objective while you are out on your specified mission.

Now you might not be planning on any specific situation, nor should you be. In most cases, SHTF events would be catastrophic if you are found unprepared, but they are highly unlikely. Some events are likely to occur in your life and having the best bug out vehicle would be helpful in a major way. Once you get an idea of what your plans are like, you need to think of the scenarios, what you would be bringing, who is going to accompany you, and several other considerations depending on what your situation is.

Testing the Recon J8 bug out vehicle

Will you need an off-road car? What distance will you cover? What is the quantity of your bag out gear? What are your greatest threats you will encounter while on the route to your destination? These are some of the questions that will need to be answered. Just like a firearm, a vehicle is a tool that you can use for your survival in the wilderness. Some tools are much better than others when it comes to getting a particular job done, but this aspect may depend on your preparation and its usefulness.

NameEngineBest UsePrice
Earth Roamer XV-LTS6.7 L V8 Turbo DieselSightseeing, Camping, Living Off-GridCheck price on Amazon
Suzuki SX4Gas 4-Cyl 2.0 L / 121.7 cu inOutdoors, Sightseeing, CampingCheck price on Amazon
UNICAT500 HP Mercedes EngineOutdoors, Sightseeing, Camping, Living Off-GridCheck price on Amazon
CAMPA EVS170 kW 23 HP Performance 1,200 ccEmergency Management, Survival, AdventuringCheck price on Amazon
BMW R 1200 GS1,200 ccOutdoors, AdventureCheck price on Amazon
Jeep Wrangler3.6 L Pentastar V6Outdoors, Sightseeing, CampingCheck price on Amazon

Things to Consider Before Buying

A bug out car is more than an ordinary truck or vehicle which can get you from one place to another during times of crises. It is an important tool because you will use it for various applications while you are out on a mission or any other purpose.

Hummer H-1 in front of a hotel

You may end up sleeping in the vehicle, cooking in it, and undergoing other unpleasant events whiles you still in transit. To figure out which vehicle would be best for your bug out trip, here are some factors you need to consider.

Reliability

Your vehicle may click all the checkmarks, on your bug out car list, but if it’s unreliable and breaks down often, you will not get very far with it. Whatever car you choose, it’s advisable to go through it mechanically and get it to its top-running condition before spending your money on something you are not sure about its performance and reliability.

Ease of Repair

You may think this aspect is similar to reliability, but it’s not. The Honda Accord could be a superior, reliable car, but once it breaks down, it may be difficult to fix it. This makes it quite complicated, especially when you are in the middle of nowhere.

Bug Out Vehicle in desert

On the other hand, the Chevy truck or the 1970 F-Series may not be as reliable as a Honda, but there are plenty of spare parts, and the vehicle is easy to fix. When looking to acquire a bug out car, it is important to pick one that has some spare parts. While at it, grab a copy of the Auto Repair for Dummies and your particular vehicle’s repair manual.

EMP/CME

Contrary to popular belief, an electromagnetic pulse from a terrorist attack, the government, or the sun is somewhat likely. In fact, this may occur again from the sun as it has been the case for billions of years. Modern cars are operated using a computer. Computers do not like EMP. For generations, the military has been reinforcing their automobiles against it. Older cars would be EMP-proof.

A Bug Out Vehicle next to a house

The issue is that there has not been adequate testing on how susceptible automobiles are to EMP. This all depends on how huge an explosion it would be. In many cases, the car would shut off, and you would have to turn it on once again. In extreme cases, it will not start without replacing sensors and CPUs throughout the vehicle.

Fuel Types

Despite a few demerits, diesel fuels are always the best to use when bugging out. If you have to store it, diesel fuel with additives could last up to 10 times longer compared to gasoline. A lot of diesel engines are multi-fuel and can operate on other fuels including kerosene, home heating oils, moonshine, and the jet fuels where necessary. The diesel engines are also durable with a service life about twice the gas engines.

Mercedes-Benz Bug Out Vehicle

Additionally, these engines provide much better fuel economy compared to the gas engines. For all their merits, these kinds of engines will not function well in all weather conditions. If you are traveling through places where temperatures are freezing, diesel engines may fail to start or run at all. Some accessories that operate on electricity are available to keep your engine warm during the night.

Practicality

Practicality is essential when it comes to bug out vehicles. Some automobiles are excellent in some situation, but do not do well with others. Choosing the right car comes down to identifying something that is going to give the results you are expecting.

A man riding on BMW R 1200 GS 

All your plans are not relevant if the SHTF situation you prepared for is not the scenario that takes place, and you end up leaving your car on the roadside or at home. In that case, you would have wasted so many resources that would have been utilized elsewhere.

Size

If you are conscious about your budget and concerned about the availability of fuel, you may be tempted to select vehicles that are light in weight. While these automobiles may just be as useful as the heavier one, their engines, drive trains, and transmissions cannot match the off-road cars, their high-speed driving, or any other condition which you will have to deal with when bugging out.

Jeep Wrangler Test Drive

When considering your bug out car, it is important to remember that you are always better with a heavier machine. It may not provide much mileage to a gallon, but at least you will be comfortable knowing that the vehicle will not get stuck because heavier vehicles are designed to navigate over difficult terrain.

Best Products on Today’s Market

When choosing this type of vehicle, for your outdoor tours, it is imperative to ensure that the model you are considering, can drive through snowy, muddy, rocky, water or any kind of paths which other automobiles would find challenging and over-demanding. Here are our best picks:

Earth Roamer XV-LTS Earthroamer XV-LTS

Price: $225,000 – $300,000

Engine: 6.7 L V8 turbo diesel

Specific features: Ford F-550 4×4; lariat trim; 330 horsepower; 6-speed automatic transmission; 1200 watts solar; 12,000 watt hours batteries; 5 gallons, black water cassette; 26 gallons gray water; 85 gallons fresh water; 90 gallons fuel; up to 4 sleeping and up to 6 seating.

Best use: Outdoors, sightseeing, camping, living off-grid

Description: Let me begin by mentioning that this bug out car is pretty much amazing. If you have five individuals or less and you need to reach your bug out location, this would be an excellent way to take you there. Basically, the Earth Roamer XV-LTS Bug Out Vehicle is an improved bed camper truck that is attached to the Ford Super Duty F-550 chassis and tricked out completely.

This ultimate survival tool comes with two turbo diesel engine, ten thousand kg towing capacity, a backup solar power with large battery, eighty-five gallons of fresh water, cassette waste management, dual water filtration and propane free appliances (as everything runs on diesel).

This vehicle is also fitted with heavy duty tires, full-size spare tire, brush guard, 9,500 and 16,500 pound rear and front winch respectively, on board air compressor, and a ninety-gallon fuel tank. With its numerous features, this rig is an actual beast. The many features that come with this vehicle make it ideal for off-road and bugging out trips.

PROS:

  • The vehicle is designed for roaming the world, you can take it to the extreme of environments and it will still survive.
  • The perfect style for living off-grid, without electricity or water for as long as the supplies can last.
  • Has enough room that can accommodate 4 people when sleeping and 6 people when sitting.
  • It is a well-equipped bug-out-vehicle with bathroom, air conditioning, ventilation, heating, and electricity to mention a few.

CONS:

  • If you are an Octomom with eight or more individuals, this may not be your best choice.

Check the price on Amazon

Suzuki SX4 Suzuki SX4

Price: Approx. $18,000

Engine: Gas 4 – Cyl 2.0 L/121.7 Cu in

Specific features: 4 cylinder engine; 4 wheel disc brakes; 4-speed a/t; adjustable steering wheel; gasoline fuel; exterior (power mirrors, intermittent wipers, daytime running lights); and interiors (cruise control, power windows, pass-through rear seat, a/c air conditioning, and audio).

Best use: Outdoors, sightseeing, camping

Description: A sleek outside design, implying that to have a vehicle that is designed and manufactured for your bug our mission and still, you could utilize the Suzuki SX4 Bug Out Vehicle for taking a tour around town without having it scream it’s a survivalist.

Above all, this car provides comfort with excellent air condition, extreme maneuverability, and comfortable seats you would certainly drive it effortlessly. When creating this bug out automobile list, the amazing design and appearance, as well as resilience, are what made us include the Suzuki model to the list of the ultimate survivor. With this model, it is possible for you to drive in and out of town without anyone thinking you are intrusive, coming out from a crowd of regular vehicles.

What makes this automobile a strong bug out tool is that Suzuki, like any other bug out car, can drive you across a tough, muddy, rocky, or snowy terrain. When and if the terrain is covered in snow, you will need to add snow tires so it may go smoothly, but this is also the case with any other automobile.

The Suzuki SX4 has a lot of space to have you packed with all you need, although some find the Earth Roamer more attractive if there are so many things that need to be carried during the bug out tour. Regardless, Suzuki offers sufficient room for water, food, tent, and other essential supplies you would require.

The only downfall manufacturers have noticed with this vehicle is that its fuel capacity is small, so you are required to fill it from time to time. When you are out on a bug out mission, you will need to make sure that fuel reserves are in place, especially when long distances are involved.

PROS:

  • The car’s sleek exterior design is engineered for bug-out missions; it can prevail even in wet conditions.
  • The interior features A/C air conditioning, which provides the much needed comfort during a long drive in the hot sun.
  • The elegant design does not alert people of your plans or what mission you are engaged in as you pass through towns.
  • It has enough room to pack the most essential accessories for your trip.

CONS:

  • It has a small fuel capacity, meaning that you will have to refuel frequently when engaged in a long-distant expedition.

Related: Consider buying the Bosch ICON 13A Wiper Blades. They may come in handy when the factory-installed models get damaged on the trail.

Check the price on Amazon

The UNICAT The UNICAT RV

Price: Approx. $600,000

Engine: 500 HP Mercedes engine

Specific features: Integrated storage compartment; integrated air conditioner; central heating system; freeze-resistant water tanks; solar system; 26-gallon fridge; and U-shaped seating unit  to mention a few.

Best use: Outdoors, Sightseeing, Camping, Living Off-Grid

Description: If spending money on an exceptional tool is never an issue for you, then the UNICAT Expeditionary Vehicle is just what you need. This one is a monster!

Although it provides numerous variations of its models, the 6 by 6 AMERIGO International that has a bike/motorcycle rack on its back is the best option to select. Constructed on the International Truck 7400 chassis, the UNICAT would certainly crush anything that gets on its way.

As it is expected with its “Expeditionary Vehicle” title, this car comes with satellite communications, 112 gallons of water, 2 x 120 gas tanks with a two-thousand mile range, and all-wheel drive. There are also theft proof windows, extra retractable cylinder locks and bolts to secure its doors, solar power, and many more features.

Despite these numerous advantages, the UNICAT also has some disadvantages, although not many. The Expeditionary Vehicle, more than the Earth Roamer and the Suzuki is an expensive car. At eight MPG, you will be consuming much of the fuel, but gain, there are 2 X 120 gallons tanks that will need to be completed before the vehicle can stop moving.

PROS:

  • It is made of a formidable RV design that can take on the worst of terrains, including deserts.
  • It is built for the ultimate survival because the exterior is engineered with all the protective features needed, including wheels, windscreen and body.
  • It can withstand sand storms and prevent burglary thanks to the sixty millimeter thick double sealed doors.
  • Lavish interior features luxurious accessories that offer you ultimate experience home-away-from-home and comfort.

CONS:

  • Too expensive for medium or low income earners.

Related: You can buy the Renogy KIT-BUNDLE50P Solar Panel Kit for additional solar energy for your UNICAT RV.

Check the price on Amazon

The CAMPA EVS The CAMPA EVS

Price: Approx. 65,000

Engine: 170kW/23 HP Performance

Specific features: removable main compartment container; fully fitted oak kitchen package; hot water shower; a GPS system; electric fridge/freezer; mobile communication system; pelican protective cases; 17-gallon water and fuel tanks; and CAMPA rooftop  tent.

Best use: Emergency management, survival, adventuring

Description: The CAMPA EVS Vehicle System is a state-of-the-art automobile that is designed for the outdoor enthusiast, military officials, and the disaster management personnel who are in need of a self-contained automotive system. A lot of the features you will find in the CAMPA trailers have been included in the Expeditionary Vehicle System. Designed and constructed on a 4×4 Toyota Tacoma Chassis, this car presents a perfect marriage of carrying capacity and efficiency.

Additionally, it has so many cool features, from the Katadyn water purification system, to ammo boxes, with an all application attitude. CAMPA USA makes extraordinary expeditionary truck trailer that has a pop out tent which would find intriguing. The trailer may be an excellent addition to your SUV or pick-up truck.

The CAMPA EVS is more fuel efficient compared to larger trucks and has a well thought out design for survival scenario alongside the features you will need to be out in the wilderness for a long period. It is also fitted with a full kitchen and has an upgrade in its off-road ability. The only down fall is the limitation in the number of passengers you can carry. Moreover, the vehicle could limit your capacity to tow, and its tent setup could be challenging in adverse weather conditions.

PROS:

  • A well-engineered out-of-doors vehicle suited for emergency management, survival, military, and adventure..
  • Has considerably large water and fuel tanks of 17 gallon, which can sustain you for a significant period of time.
  • It is incorporated with GPS and mobile communications systems for effective communication.
  • Lavish interior for the ultimate outdoor experience, especially when off the grid.
  • It comes with the CAMPA rooftop tent that is equipped with zip-in kitchen compartment.

CONS:

  • Only suitable for a limited number of people.

Related: We recommend you buy the WindyNation SOK-200WP-P20L Solar Panel Kit along with the vehicle. You can use the solar panel kit to power the truck when off-grid.

Check the price on Amazon

The BMW R 1200 GS The BMW R 1200 GS

Price: Approx. $20,000

Engine: 1,200 cc

Specific features: 895 mm seat height; 101 by 73 mm bore/stroke; 130.8 mph top speed; 81kW at 7,750 rpm power; and optional electronic adjustment.

Best use: Adventure  

Description: The BMW R 1200 GS Bug Out Vehicle is designed and built with extreme in mind. Compared to other motorcycles, its cruising range of over 400 miles and its 8.7-gallon fuel tank makes it possible for the bike to go a long way before getting thirsty.

With 110 Hp and 1200cc, the motorcycle will take and your luggage (including the reserve gas) almost anywhere. The bike also comes with top case and reinforced aluminum side bags for extra storage.

For one person, the BMW R 1200 is a great survival vehicle. It has an excellent off-road capability, is fuel efficient, fast, and can double as an everyday automobile if you are a motorcycle enthusiast. The only disadvantage of using this bike as a bug out tool is its limited carrying capacity as it’s only suited for one person. This masterpiece is built to survive horrors of the trail while you are out in the wild exploring the world. It can actually take on almost any terrain at ease.

PROS:

  • The design presents new hallmarks for maximum performance and experience, including superior unique and dynamic.
  • It is incorporated with an uncompromising stable suspension for transferring maximum performance on the trail.
  • The bike has flexible ergonomics, which allows the rider to have a full experience of the new escapade at ease.
  • This is the bike to buy when you want long-lasting reliability, durability, and performance for the money.

CONS:

  • Only suitable for one or two people

Related: You should buy this motorcycle along with the LEGO Technic Kit, which contains a detailed dashboard, windshield, and spoke wheels among other things.

Check the price on Amazon

JEEP Wrangler Jeep-Wrangler

Price: $20,000 – $30,000

Engine: 3.6L Pentastar V6

Specific features: Radio 430n; wrangler unlimited storage; high-quality stereo sound; remote keyless entry system

Best use: Outdoors, sightseeing, camping

Description: As an extraordinary vehicle, the Jeep Wrangler is a bug out automobile that the well suited for off-road expeditions. Its capacity inadequacies are substituted by the truck’s ability to maneuver and reach anywhere the ATV can go.

Another significant advantage of this vehicle is the availability of its aftermarket parts including tires and under armor protection. A great advantage of the Jeep Wrangler is its unrivaled off-road capability. Additionally, the truck has great aftermarket parts; you can use to build an ultimate survival vehicle with an excellent range.

The Jeep can also cover difficult and changing terrain at good speeds and can pull a trailer. Just like most off-road cars, the Jeep Wrangler requires fuel. However, it has a limited carrying capacity and is hard to sleep in when you are outdoors. If you want unlimited outdoor performance, then the Jeep Wrangler is the ideal choice. It is the ultimate machine for the trail.

PROS:

  • The Jeep Wrangler is built for the trail; whether it’s mud, water, or rocky terrain, it will go through without difficulties.
  • It has a robust body that is engineered to last; so, you will always see and experience the worth of your investment.
  • It includes a lavish and durable interior, long-lasting differential covers, and an outstanding set of other features.

CONS:

  • It can only accommodate four sitting people.

Related: We recommend you buy the Bosch ICON Wiper Blade. You might need them after a series of adventure through muddy terrains, and it is also easy to install compared to other wiper blades.

Check the price on Amazon

The Wrap Up

You should remember that acquiring a bug out truck, is a lifetime investment. For that reason, you need to make a wise decision so you can get great value for whatever amount you will be spending on the truck. The above information will give you an idea of what features you need to consider when looking for the best bug out vehicles.

Jeep Wrangler Rubicon Unlimited 2016

So what is your opinion about the ultimate bug out trucks? Do you own any BOV? Do you have any other models you think should be included in the list above? You can post your views and opinions in the comment section of this page. We will be waiting to hear from you!

ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Henry Silva
Henry Silva

Henry was hiking since he was 4. He was lucky enough to be born in Boulder, Colorado and enjoy Rocky Mountain National Park hikes growing up. His favourite is Longs Peak, which rises to 14,259 feet (4,346 m) above sea level. It is the highest point of the park. Henry likes to explore new hikes and spend his spare time in the wilderness.

  • Jerry Richards

    My BMW R1200GS motorcycle was definitely made for the thrill seekers and adventurers. When I want to explore the great outdoors but I don’t feel like hiking, I take my BMW R1200GS with me. It gets me to the most remote locations and can maneuver most tricky paths that a car cannot.

    • Henry Silva

      If you’re alone and don’t have a family with you, then this motorcycle is just what you need as a bug out vehicle. Since the capacity for carrying things is quite small, make sure you have a sturdy and durable backpack for all your needs.

  • Eddy Phillips

    I have always enjoyed my solo hikes with friends but I now have a family and I would love to go camping with them as soon as our son is big enough to go with us. I know I will need a strong vehicle for this so I have been saving for it. I still have about a year to get the vehicle but I wonder which one would be the best for my family of three.

  • Henry Silva

    I think it’s a matter of preference. You have to ask your family what they think before you can make a good decision. Regardless of which type of vehicle you finally choose, those listed above are top of the line.

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