In October 2018, our small group has grown by one member. After much back and forth, we have bought a new touring car. And what a thing! 😉 Here we would like to introduce you to our beloved travel vehicle MOOSE.
A somewhat older, gray, Italian lady, who is now with us through world history. There are a few small external blemishes, but also a lot of charm. Although Moose is not the fastest with around 85 bhp, she is still solid and unbreakable all the time.
In the summer of 2018 we met her for the very first time. It was a rainy afternoon. And in the midst of other off-road vehicles, delivery vans and new motorhomes, she stood there. Looking back, it was probably love at first sight.
I (Valeria) still remember the first test drive. Lukas and the car salesman in the front and me in the back on the dusty back seat. I stroked the gray, soft padding. I let my eyes wander through the vehicle, saw small cracks and dents and rusty screws. And for some rationally inexplicable reason, it felt just ‚right‚.
After the test drive, we decided against Moose. Too old, too weak, too expensive … but somehow she did not let us go. And it was probably fate that she would still be in the same car park a few months later on our second visit. She had been waiting for us.
And now, about 1 year and 30.000km later, it still feels right.
So much for Moose and how our paths crossed. But Moose would be worth half as much for us as a motorhome if she did not drive around a wonderful little snail shell.
Our small living room was not there from the beginning.
When we bought our travel vehicle Moose, we got a used, small roof tent for our first trip. With the Pickup-rooftop tent combination we traveled to Morocco. We closed the cargo area with a hardtop. The roof tent combi was okay, for us but not really the yellow of the egg.
And so we bought a used, small, self-built camping cabin right after our trip to Morocco. We were very, very fortunate to find a reasonably priced, reasonably well-maintained cabin that a) fits our pickup and b) was not too far away with about 4 hours drive.
So we packed the straps and drove to Milan. In the farthest corner of a huge warehouse full of scrap wagons that the Italian-Romanian mechanics wanted to repair and then sell, she stood: our new home.
Small on the outside, surprisingly spacious inside with everything you need: bed, table, kitchenette, storage space, windows. She was perfect. Well, almost anyway.
Before charging, we had to cut out a hole about 10cm deep on both sides of the cabin, so that it would fit on our cargo area at all.
And then we had them, our dream combination 🙂 What followed was an exciting trip to Albania, the Italian Islands of Sardinia and Sicily, an adventurous desert trip to Tunisia and countless hours of work to optimize the car and gradually rebuild the cabin to our liking.
Oh by the way, our car got the name ‚Moose‚ because of the license plate, which starts with „M O“ (but actually stands for the Italian city „Modena“) and because we found from the beginning that the car is really big and strong and indestructible looked – just like a moose 😉 haha
For the technology fans, here are some numbers and information about our travel vehicle Moose and the already completed repairs/changes:
- 1990 Toyota Hilux LN105 Doublecap
- 2.4 Suction diesel
- switchable 4×4 with freewheel hub
- Limit Slip differential on the rear axle
- 287.000km at purchase (now about 317.000km)
- BF Goodrich Mud Terrain KM3 (at purchase, the car had tubular and snap ring rims)
- Dotz Dakar rims
- Reinforced suspention (Ironman suspention 300kg payload)
- Spacers (3,8cm)
- Increased tidal depth (snorkel, raised height 5cm, differential and gear vents increased, air intake and electronics sealed with silicone)
- Extra battery 74ah with automatic relay
- The floor covering (leather + wet flow) we have completely torn out and painted the floor with protective varnish. We have decided against a new, complete floor covering and only small floor mats (as you get in the hardware store) placed in front of the seats. Thus, the soil can always dry well at low water crossings, you avoid rust and you can easily get to the drain plugs.
- LED headlights (to save energy) + 2 additional headlights
- Dashcam incl. reversing camera
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