Home is Where You Park it

The 6 Best Off-Road Trailers of 2018


June 9, 2018 Buying Guides By Photo by Patriot Campers

Last Updated January, 2018: This post has been updated with new picks for 2018.

There was once a time when exploring the great outdoors on wheels meant one of two things. You either went the minimalist route — drove your 4×4 off-road and camped in a tent route with nothing but the bare essentials — or you lived in the lap of luxury in a massive RV, parked at the trailhead and hoofed it to really explore the surrounding nature. Today, a beautiful market has developed at the intersection of condo-on-wheels-style RV adventures and the ol’ fashioned home-is-where-you-pitch-your-tent method. Off-road trailers are the answer.

Some you live in, some you live on, while still others act as an extended trunk complete with a mobile kitchenette, adding a bit of luxury to a weekend spent roughing it. Admittedly, some of the larger trailers can get reasonably ritzy, while others go totally spartan, stripped down to only what’s necessary. Regardless of how pampered you like to be, the best off-road trailers of 2018 will provide you the mobile campsite you desire.

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Table of Contents

The Short List

Best All-Around Off-Road Trailer: Patriot Campers X1

Winner of Best Camper Trailer of the Year five years in a row, the Patriot Campers X1 is an all-around package that provides luxury, comfort and utility, all in a compact, lightweight design. The galvinized chassis, marine-grade aluminum and independent coil trailing arm suspension with twin shock absorbers at each wheel means it will go almost anywhere your overlander can without seeming like it’s about to snap off at the hitch. And, as of 2017 the X1 is available in America through Patriot camper’s US distributor Exploration Outfitters.
Weight: 265 lbs
Dimensions: 11 feet, 6 feet wide, 5.8 feet high
Price: $36,990

Best Value Off-Road Trailer: Moby 1 XC Cross Country

It’s neither the biggest nor most affordable trailer on the list, but in terms of size and capability, pound for pound the Moby 1 XC Cross Country is the best trailer for its price point. The longer wheelbase version can hold a queen size mattress on the roof (as well as a fold-down tent); a half galley inside perfect for daily meal prep. At 1,500 lbs the compact trailer doesn’t ask too much of your tow vehicle, which, even if it’s a vintage four-wheeler, should have no problem with the Moby 1 XC Cross Country in tow.
Weight: 1,200 lbs
Dimensions: 9 feet long, 4 feet wide
Price: $14,500

Buying Guide

What’s in This Buying Guide

6 Best Off-Road Trailers of 2018

Best All-Around Off-Road Trailer: Patriot Campers X1

Winner of Best Camper Trailer of the Year five years in a row, the Patriot Campers X1 is an all-around package that provides luxury, comfort and utility, all in a compact, lightweight design. The galvinized chassis, marine-grade aluminum and independent coil trailing arm suspension with twin shock absorbers at each wheel means it will go almost anywhere your overlander can without seeming like it’s about to snap off at the hitch. And, as of 2017 the X1 is available in America through Patriot camper’s US distributor Exploration Outfitters.

Review: “Physics is a great thing. It cuts through any marketing BS and tells us the bigger and heavier something is, the harder it’s going to be to take offroading. If that’s the case, the inverse must be true. A lightweight, compact trailer with good ground clearance and very little overhang must be good offroad. To that end, the X1 GT won’t disappoint offroaders or physics as we currently understand it.” — Dan Everett, Camper Trailer Australia

Weight: 265 lbs
Dimensions: 11 feet, 6 feet wide, 5.8 feet high
Price: $36,990

Most Well-Equipped: Lotus Caravans Tremor

Verging on RV-status, the Lotus Caravans Tremor equates to a studio apartment on wheels. Wherever you end up towing the Tremor, you won’t be left wanting for anything — it takes the edge off truly roughing it with a full bed, a bathroom with a shower, gas stove, oven, sink and lounge area. If you want to take your home with you when you go exploring the farthest reaches of what America’s national parks have to offer, mountain bike or kayak during the day and sleep in relative luxury, the Tremor is the off-road trailer you want.
From the manufacturer: “Premium German-made composite paneling, combined with exclusive Lotus Caravans rolled checkerplate paneling are added for strength and moisture protection. The fully equipped kitchen with Laminex Diamond Gloss laminate bench tops and comfort lounge ensure five-star luxury. Standard features include a tropical-rated Dometic fridge, a Euro-style top load washing machine, a Thetford oven, and an Ibis low-profile roof air-con.”

Weight: 7705 lbs
Dimensions: 27.6 feet long, 7.6 feet wide, 9.6 feet high
Price: $53,000

Best Toy-Hauler: Turtleback Trailers Turtlebacker

The drawback to towing a camper trailer is that you can’t tow anything else. Sure, you can mount skis, boards, bikes and kayaks to the roof, but what about the bigger toys? The Turtlebacker doesn’t make you choose between a comfortable weekend in your camper and an adrenaline filled holiday with your side-by-side — it lets you enjoy both.
From the manufacturer: “Our newest offering is the Turtlebacker trailer, which is a dual-axle toy hauler built to combine the amenities of the Expedition Trailer ($21,995) model with the ability to carry ATVs, UTVs, Dual-Sports, two-Door Rock Crawlers and more. The base build includes a 42-gallon water tank, six-gallon water heater, shower, slide-out kitchen, stainless steel sink and stove, solar-ready electronics package and over 45 cubic feet of storage. The wide range of customizable options and add-ons further enhance the amenities and capabilities for any adventurer’s needs.”

Weight: 2,600lbs
Dimensions: 22 feet long, 8.5 feet wide
Price: $26,995

Best Value Off-Roader: Moby1 XC Cross Country

It’s neither the biggest nor most affordable trailer on the list, but in terms of size and capability, pound for pound the Moby 1 XC Cross Country is the best trailer for its price point. The longer wheelbase version can hold a queen size mattress on the roof (as well as a fold-down tent); a half galley inside perfect for daily meal prep. At 1,500 lbs the compact trailer doesn’t ask too much of your tow vehicle, which, even if it’s a vintage four-wheeler, should have no problem with the Moby 1 XC Cross Country in tow.
From the manufacturer: “The new XC model comes equipped with heavy-duty rubber torsion axle system for absorbing and dampening bumps and vibrations. The XC comes standard with all-terrain tires, higher ground clearances, heavy duty fenders with cargo racks and a strengthened frame for rough conditions. Like its sibling the XTR, the XC can be fully equipped for serious extended backcountry adventure travel.”

Weight: 1,200 lbs
Dimensions: 9 feet long, 4 feet long
Price: $14,50

Best Budget Trailer: VMI Offroad XTender Explorer

The VMI Offroad Xtender Explorer is the bare bones option. That’s not necessarily a bad thing, especially if you’re more of a fan of the minimalistic route. The Explorer equates to an extension on your trunk space for more gear and provides another platform for a second rooftop tent. Weekend jaunts up to the mountains or out to your favorite off-the-beaten-path fishing spot are where the lightweight, spartan Explorer proves its worth.
From the manufacturer: “Our base trailer, with all the quality attributes of the bigger models, can be used as a utility trailer, a camper with just the basics or tricked out to include the creature comforts. All of our trailers are built from the ground up on American soil with close attention to using American made materials. All Xtender trailers are built with aerospace and marine grade aluminum making them lightweight, strong and free of the corrosion and painting issues common with steel.”

Weight: 540lbs
Dimensions: 11 feet long, 6 feet wide
Price: $6,995

Most Ready-To-Go: Air Opus

Although setting up a modern tent is incredibly easy these days, the Air Opus goes one step further. The Air Opus inflates in under 90 seconds and is live-in ready. Think of it as an open-air porch with a grill and kitchen area that can convert into small a bedroom with two full-size mattresses able to sleep four, at night. The ease of setup is a key feature for the Air Opus but having what is essentially two rooms-in-one is certainly a highlight.
Review: “The Air Opus…will more or less self-deploy in about two minutes. How? It’s not quite magic, but it sure takes the effort out of things. Simply push a button, and the onboard air-compressor will inflate the so-called ‘air beams,’ which replace the standard hoops, until they become rigid enough to hold the tent securely in place, even in a gale.” Max Taylor, GoRV

Weight: 2,870 lbs
Dimensions: 18.5 feet long, 6.8 feet wide, 4.75 feet high
Price: $24,000

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