Best Rigs of Overland Expo East 2023

Photo By: Rick Stowe

No matter where you looked at Overland Expo East 2023, you were bound to find awesome rigs. From the exhibitor aisles to the campground and in the day parking area, overland rigs of every shape, size, and model were there to be inspected. We spent some time searching out some cool and unique rigs, and here’s just a small sample of what we found.

Kincer Chassis Custom 1975 Bronco

Photo by Rick Stowe

Photo by Rick Stowe

Photo by Rick Stowe

Kincer Chassis had more than one awesome rig in their booth, but it seemed this custom-built four-door Bronco was receiving the most attention. Chatting with their crew we learned that was actually one of their first builds that was built for a friend, and returned to this family-owned business after over a decade. It’s powered by a 351 Windsor crate motor that’s paired with a 6-speed transmission from an F150. The front axle is a Dana 44 with an ARB Air Locker, and there’s a Detroit Locker in the rear. Given the level of detail and craftsmanship in this build, we can’t wait to see what Kincer Chassis brings to the next Overland Expo. 

2024 Silverado ZR2 Bison

Photo by Rick Stowe

Photo by Rick Stowe

Photo by Rick Stowe

Photo by Rick Stowe

When we had the chance to test out the Silverado ZR2 in the desert around Joshua Tree, we quickly became fans of the off-road treatment this popular full-sized had received. Then, the off-road experts at AEV got their hands on it and turned the awesome up to 11. The already capable truck is now outfitted with front and rear steel bumpers that provide protection and trail-rated geometry. The AEV Salta wheels are tough enough to tackle any terrain. Underneath, five boron steel skid plates provide protection for the front differential, rear differential, transfer case, and fuel tank.

Ford F-150 Tremor

Photo by Rick Stowe

Photo by Rick Stowe

Photo by Rick Stowe

We weren’t able to catch up with the owner of this F-150 Tremor, but we commend them on the build. The addition of a SmartCap and Decked drawers provides plenty of gear storage and organization. The IKamper tent is well suited to this truck and provides a sizable living space. Honestly, it’s a bit surprising that we don’t see more of the F-150 Tremor trucks out and about. They’re a great option for hauling people and gear on the way to your next adventure.

Classic Defender for Family Adventures

Photo by Rick Stowe

Photo by Rick Stowe

Photo by Rick Stowe

Photo by Rick Stowe

Photo by Rick Stowe

There’s something to be said for a perfectly patinaed classic like this 1996 Land Rover Defender 300 TDI. This particular Defender was imported from Germany and now serves as an adventure rig for the whole family. Outside of sliders and a new turbo, it’s essentially the same as the day it rolled off of the assembly line. We love that this vintage Rover has been left practically stock with only a few modifications made over the years. There’s nothing wrong with keeping any rig stock. They’re still great for making memories. 

READ MORE: Best Toyotas of Overland Expo East 2023

LS Swapped Arkonik Defender

Photo by Rick Stowe

Photo by Rick Stowe

Photo by Rick Stowe

Photo by Rick Stowe

Photo by Rick Stowe

On the opposite end of the spectrum, we have this Defender from the experts at Arkonik. Starting with the obvious, that’s an LS3 from a Corvette under the hood. Needless to say, this Defender has left any notion of slow and steady far behind. It’s decked out with a FrontRunner roof rack that’s equipped with some low-profile integrated lights. The tube bumper and winch take care of recovery duties, and the BFG K02s provide plenty of traction in the muck. All of this is wrapped up in a classic color scheme that surely stirs notions of adventures in far-off places in the hearts of every overlander.

Trail Proven Bronco Ready

Photo by Rick Stowe

Photo by Rick Stowe

Photo by Rick Stowe

Photo by Rick Stowe

The Bronco Raptor is an absolute beast on the trail. You can check out our review here. It was awesome to see one wearing plenty of dust and mud on display in Toyo Tires booth. It’s outfitted with everything you need to venture further, and given the specs on this rig, we’ll say it’s safe to say faster as well. The full array of lights, winch-equipped high clearance bumper, hard case storage mounted to the roof rack, and comms and navigation on the dash just add to the build. 

Down to Mob Gladiator

Photo by Rick Stowe

Photo by Rick Stowe

Photo by Rick Stowe

Photo by Rick Stowe

Photo by Rick Stowe

If you follow along on the Down to Mob YouTube channel, then you know this Gladiator has really seen some adventures. The custom-built wedge camper provides a great shelter in a variety of conditions. Plus, the interior has some great custom touches. The Warn stubby bumper and winch make sure recovery and clearance aren’t an issue. At the back, a drop-down table and trash bag take advantage of every bit of spare space. 

Project M Equipped Prospector

Photo by Rick Stowe

Photo by Rick Stowe

Photo by Rick Stowe

Photo by Rick Stowe

Photo by Rick Stowe

The AEV Prospectors are a great option for full-sized overland rigs, and this one further expands its capability and comfort with the addition of some great kit. The Four Wheel Camper Project M provides a great space for anyone looking to fully customize their interior build-out. This one features some custom-built cabinets and MOLLE panels. On the exterior, a domed awning is easily removed to avoid snagging on tight trails. The Rig’d tire swingout makes a great option to have a cooking surface and oversized spare readily accessible when you need it.

Alaska Camper Single Cab Ram

Photo by Rick Stowe

Photo by Rick Stowe

Photo by Rick Stowe

Photo by Rick Stowe

We spotted this rig in the parking area and thankfully caught the owners to learn a bit more about the rig. This 2017 Ram Tradesman has been upgraded with a Carli Suspension, AEV Bumper and Fender Kit, and it’s rolling on 40-inch tires. The 1998 Alaskan Camper includes a diesel heater and Battleborn Batteries, a 2,000-watt inverter, and 200 watts of solar on the roof. It also has a hot water system that’s heated by the engine. For extended travel across a wide range of environments, this unique rig would be at the top of our list.

Off-Road Ready Porsche Cayenne S

Photo by Rick Stowe

Photo by Rick Stowe

Photo by Rick Stowe

Unfortunately, we weren’t able to catch up with the owner of this awesome rig that we found in the camping rig. However, we could tell from a quick walkaround that it is trail-ready. Sliders paired with front and rear recovery points are great for making it through those tight spots. The custom bar on the front is a great way to mount some additional illumination. Some nice ATs provide plenty of traction to pair with all of that horsepower. Bonus points for the full-sized spare on the swing out. Top all of that off with a nice tent from Roofnest, and you’re good to go. 

Gladiator Flat Bed Conversion

Photo by Rick Stowe

Photo by Rick Stowe

Photo by Rick Stowe

Photo by Rick Stowe

Since their debut, the Jeep Gladiator has been popular with the overland crowd. This rig takes it up a notch with a flatbed conversion topped off with an expertly organized cargo box. Some extra shade and weather protection is provided by the 270-degree awning. Down low, we noticed some Rock Slide steps rounding out the trail armor. The addition of the trailer makes a great combo for setting up camp and then heading out to explore without worrying about breaking everything down.

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