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Old 11-23-2013, 07:37 PM   #1
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New Competition

Earth Cruiser of Australia is going to build its Outback Explorer here in the US. Built on a Mitsubibhi Fuso 4x4 chassis with a 3L diesel, there is a passthrough from cab to cabin. Though small, the vehicle features a dry bath and a slide out that looks like it may survive off roading due to the very short distance the slide extends. (First link may take awhile to load.)

http://www.earthcruiser.com.au/assets/p ... a_2012.pdf

http://www.prweb.com/releases/2013/9/prweb11132996.htm
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Old 11-23-2013, 08:26 PM   #2
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Re: New Competition

Wouldn't any slide out survive as you don't drive with them open?

I like FUSO and want to see more but I'd like a body closer to a van, Class B+ at most. That's very Class C meets box van, and for $140K I think I'd rather put 4x4 under an old Chevy or Ford, have some money for gas left over.
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Old 11-23-2013, 11:09 PM   #3
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Re: New Competition

Quote:
Originally Posted by jage
I like FUSO...
Have you ever driven one? For a few hours anyways and not just across town?

I just can't wrap my head around anybody driving a small cabover voluntarily.
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Old 11-23-2013, 11:42 PM   #4
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Re: New Competition

Quote:
Originally Posted by jage
Wouldn't any slide out survive as you don't drive with them open?
From what I've read in several places, washboard roads, endless potholes, etc. still take their toll on all the little parts in the extension system. Also, the system works best when you're perfectly level, something you get in pay campgrounds and often don't when boondocking. Using the slide in non-level conditions overstresses a mechanism not designed for that. Part of it is the slide mechanisms are designed to be lightweight. A slide for off-road conditions would need to be sturdier and heavier. Since this one seems to extend only a short distance, the stresses it has to take seem like they would be less.
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Old 11-24-2013, 07:16 AM   #5
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Re: New Competition

Nice to see more customer options appearing in this vehicle segment.

The Fuso setup would probably be good for empty nesters, of which there will be many over the next 15-20 years. I hope they do well in the US market.

But a two seat cabover is a total bust with kids or pets.

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Old 11-24-2013, 07:51 AM   #6
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Re: New Competition

No low range transfer case. No thanks. Love it otherwise.
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Old 11-24-2013, 01:18 PM   #7
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Re: New Competition

Quote:
Originally Posted by lndshark
No low range transfer case. No thanks. Love it otherwise.
That is a big issue.
But I just can't get over the box-style cab in the terrain I frequent. I have a hard enough time with my van. I will admit the fiberglass construction inside is very nice...like a boat. I think the shinning light of the Fuso is the bathroom/shower and how it's designed. Using the entry way as the shower is a great idea.
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Old 11-25-2013, 10:23 AM   #8
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Re: New Competition

I have spent time in cab-over trucks and I really like them, especially off-road. There is nothing else, except a motorcycle, that gives you that good a view of the road ahead of you. Being able to lean out of the window and look down at the front wheel directly below you as well as the front drivers side corner gives a really useful view when the road is tricky. It's also the most space efficient of any designs. (And to help me make my case, there's the new Nissan van...) Sitting right over the wheels in a real commercial freight vehicle is a bit bouncy but if that bothers you, perhaps you shouldn't be driving a truck?

They make these in crew cab versions and used to make them with a dual range transfer case. Not sure about availability elsewhere but I never saw a crew-cab 4x4 available here. Not sure why they limit the models they import so drastically. Perhaps they are still trying to protect the domestic 4x4 market?
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