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Why not an a motorhome. However, its design and features clearly define its purpose.

Azimoo Tepui is meant to go anywhere­, let you camp independently, provide undisturbed tranquillity, allow you to have fun and enjoy nature. So, mobility, independence, safety and comfort. These four qualities determine­ the character of a good expedition car, often referred to as an all-road car. To what extent are they ensured by the Polish manufacturer’s­ concept and product? Let’s find out!

Choosing a good truck chassis for expedition purposes is not at all that simple. Many factors are at play when it comes to making the right decision: appropriate weight, drive characteristics, reliability and adaptability to a function far removed from that dedicated­ to a heavy-duty vehicle, i.e. exclusively carrying loads. The idea is not to use a sledgehammer to crack a nut and to operate with power, capacity and driving parameters that are sufficient­ and not excessive.

Mobility and independence

This is how the Mitsubishi Fuso Canter 4×4 operates, acting as the base unit. The choice seems to be a very good one, as the chassis, in addition­ to the excellent 3.0-litre turbocharged engine with 175 hp and 430 Nm of torque­ at 600 rpm, allows additional modifications to improve driveability and off-road qualities. Thus, rear twin wheels were dispensed with, effective suspension­ was fitted and winches were installed at the front and rear of the vehicle. This term hides a secret – the vehicle is supposed to let us stay where we want, not where our expedition vehicle chooses to stay. So you need to be confident that you can get out of any ditch as easily as you drove into it. The Fuso Canter’s drive guarantees this – base 2×4 and 4×4 attached manually to the front axles are reliable­, plus a manual 5-speed gearbox and differential lock.

Included in the category of independence should be energy resources for camping­ and reliable means of communication with the world. As standard, the truck is equipped with a 100-litre fuel tank with the possibility of installing additional tanks up to 310 litres. This significantly increases the operational distance and guarantees that the living area stays warm, as­ Truma diesel is responsible for the heating. Electricity resources also include a sizable storage unit – 495 Ah with solar panel charging at a nominal 970 W, a 2.2 kW Honda electric generator, an inverter… Even a system that allows­ the starter to be started using the social part battery, in case the starter battery is discharged. A 300-litre clean water tank completes the picture of the self-sufficient expedition vehicle. The Tepui is homologated as an up to 6.5t vehicle, so it can be called a light truck.

Despite this weight limit, a remarkably rich electronic structure has been installed on board – communications, monitoring of the vehicle’s surroundings, status of on-board systems­, social media control, audio and video systems or even features for controlling functions via an app on the phone. Everything! So, on the roof­ of the cab you will find the ”links to the world”, satellite dish, GPS, DVBt, CB radio, inside a WiFi router, converter,­ isolation transformer and many other additions, the list of which in the vehicle specification­ will make your head spin. What is all this for? This is where the most important factor – the pleasure and satisfaction­ of travelling and therefore also of being “in the middle of the travel” – comes into play. A higher level of the aforementioned comfort­ and safety than a regular RV with N1 homologation, i.e. up to 3.5 t, ensures.

Comfort and safety

This is hardly surprising, as the advantages of heavy-duty vehicles, which can be adapted to the available payload, are well known. In this case, the potential of the weight category has been utilised­ to the fullest, achieving complete comfort of use. The Azimoo Tepui offers­ 10 m2 of living space, which includes a living room with kitchen and a private area with a bedroom, bathroom and toilet. The layout of the area is simple and functional, while the materials used guarantee­ durability and good condition for years of use. A residential “container” was constructed with a similar premise. Let us mention here that Azimoo, as a manufacturer, also offers bodies for virtually all trucks currently available on the market. Azimoo’s goal was to create a structure that is economical­, without thermal bridges responsible­ for the loss of heat and therefore energy. This is important not only in winter, but also in summer, when thermal insulation is meant to shield us from the heat. So the structure is glued finger-over-finger­ and clad in aluminium lagging, which is additionally riveted­ and reinforced at the joints. What else affects user comfort? Worth mentioning are the special Stratos driver and passenger seats with vinyl trim. This material allows them to be washed and cleaned without causing any damage, which is important in off-road conditions. The cab has been additionally soundproofed, and manoeuvring cameras, a digital mirror and a storage compartment that is also a refrigerator have been added. Cooking outside with the sun setting in the background? You’re welcome. The outdoor kitchen designed in a cargo drawer concept, shielded by a 270-degree­ corner awning, allows you to enjoy some well-deserved relaxation. And if you come to feel like showering under the sky, nothing will ­stop you. On the opposite side, you can install a fabric shower stall and connect the shower hose to an external outlet. The aforementioned safety is highly prioritised. The Tepui is equipped with a set of cameras to monitor the vehicle’s surroundings, and there is also the option of removing external ladders to make access to the vehicle more difficult. Monitoring is integrated with a range of electronic solutions for­ efficient control of functions. The Victron Energy Ve.Can system, which is the silicon heart of the vehicle, is responsible for coordinating the entire system.

Expedition titan

Yes, we are familiar with vehicles that are larger in size­ and have heavier chassis. However, when analysing the parameters of Azimoo Tepui, it is difficult to imagine a more fully equipped ­expedition vehicle, better designed ­to achieve the described all-road qualities, more favourably optimised.­ We are all the more pleased that such an outstanding technological and conceptual ­level is dictated by a Polish manufacturer!

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