(Photo credit to our customer, Brett Kirby)
As we all know, 2020 was full of challenges. But in spite of the obstacles of last year, we have produced some of our best work. The difficulties pushed our creativity and brought in some of the most outstanding customers we've ever had. The majority of these vans were designed with the intent to "get away" and "escape" for a while, but each contained unique, individualized features for different types of adventures. Here’s a quick look back at some of our best builds of 2020.
Gary and Elizabeth’s Sundance Kid
Gary and Elizabeth quickly became some of our favorite customers which made building their van even more special. Aside from being one of the most adorable couples on planet earth, both Gary and Elizabeth are golf enthusiasts who were looking for an easy way to travel around the country and pursue their passion. With that in mind, this van was designed to comfortably fit the two of them and protect their golf equipment. This meant making some modifications to our standard floor plans.
To give our customers what they were looking for, we switched the 130L Isotherm fridge and 40”galley from the usual driver's side to the passenger side. This allowed for a 6 drawer dresser with an all-quartz countertop to conveniently fit rear of the driver giving the interior more storage space and a homey feel.
We also decided to upgrade to a 400W solar panel system and 410AH lithium batteries, to supply all their power needs. The van also featured a toilet installed in the rear and a power awning mounted on the outside of the van to extend comfort to the exterior.
Additionally, a specially designed vertical cargo space fit with Rhino Lined panels was placed in the rear for easy access to clubs and equipment. Gary and Elizabeth love their new vehicle and have already taken a few trips! The couple also runs a blog to keep everyone updated on their adventures, and we’re excited to see where they take their new ride.
Riggs’ 170 Calamity Jane
Each OHV build is totally customizable. Customers tell us what they're looking for and then we bring that vision to life. So when our good friend James came to us looking for a vehicle that could easily stow and transport dirt bikes, we were stoked about making something we've never made before. He and his wife are both big motocross fans and wanted something that could carry them and their bikes to racing competitions and weekend getaways. This was a new challenge for us that produced an incredible build.
Beginning with the bikes and the cargo area, removable bed panels and a ramp were installed for easy loading and unloading. And storage space was converted to overhead carriers mounted on L-tracks in the ceiling which provided space for an on-board air compressor to quickly pump up tires on the go.
Getting to the perfect dirt bike trails can mean traveling over some rough terrain, which is why this build came with a set of KO2 tires, Foxshoxs, an Owl Van Hammerhead brushguard and Warn Zeon 12,000lb winch. Additionally, James and his wife decided to upgrade to our Four Seasons Package which includes internal and heated plumbing to prevent freezing, a Rixen heating system, a 30 gal. water tank, and double insulated walls. The couple is prepared for just about anything.
Some other upgrades included a 400W solar panel system, Skylight, Owl rack, ladder and tire carrier, 50” LED light bar plus flood lights on each side, powder-coated roof rack, rear trailer hitch, ski rack on interior cargo wall, and versatile Lagun table. Needless to say, this van had it all.
Off Highway Van’s floorplans can be modified to fit inside various van sizes and even different makes and models. For example, the Sundance Kid isn’t just for the Mercedes Sprinter, it is also compatible with the Ford Transit and RAM Promaster. When it came to James’ van, the larger 170 Sprinter worked perfectly but the floorplan required a little more room for his bikes and gear. As a result, one of our larger, family-style models, the Calamity Jane, turned out to be the best fit.
Cullen’s 144 Doc Holiday
Looking for a floorplan made to fit the entire family? Many people want a vehicle that can accommodate parents and children (maybe even a dog or two) but don’t like the size or style of an RV. Off Highway Van’s Doc Holiday is designed to seat and comfortably sleep 5 people, and is just one reason why it has become so popular.
Last year, our friend Cullen came to us with plans to take his wife and kids all across the country. He and his family are big adventurers and do a little bit of everything, that’s why this build came with a Low Pro roof rack, sliding bike tray, and even an exterior shower. Foxshox, 200W solar panels, and our winterization package were also included to give Cullen the option of taking his family on fun vacations off-grid.
In addition to the rugged 4x4 features, Cullen and his wife wanted to make sure that the van felt cozy and a little bit like home. They decided to go with a more contemporary color scheme of tweed gray, rust orange, and lonpearl black complemented by a solid walnut countertop in the galley. Together these elements help bring the feeling of family and home wherever they decide to go.
Jim and Dawn’s Sundance Kid
Built on one of our most popular models, the Sundance Kid, you can quickly see what makes this van unique. It’s bright colors bring a boost of energy that aligns perfectly with the customers who helped design it. Jim and Dawn are what some might call adrenaline junkies and spend a lot of time on the road. Just to give you an idea, Dawn is actually a sponsored Red Bull paraglider who competes on national and international levels. They used to own an RV, but got tired of the constant maintenance and extensive time it required to get ready and hit the road. The size of the Sundance Kid and vibrate colors made a perfect fit for their fast-paced lifestyle.
Switching from an RV might feel like a loss of appliances and functionality for some, but while the Sundance Kid is smaller, it's packed with features. In addition to the standard 40” galley and 130L Isotherm fridge, Jim and Dawn upgraded to a Big Kahuna shower, hide away cartridge toilet, exterior flood lights, and a sliding bike track.
Most Sundance Kid’s are built around this combination of comfort and adventure. They are perfect for couples who are looking to spend a lot of time on the road, or just get away for the weekend. Because it comes with only the necessities, such as a basic water and electric system, it eliminates a lot of the hassle larger vehicles require. In an RV, just getting away for a weekend can easily feel like more work than play.
The Kirby's Sundance Kid
Some of our builds come with custom colors and others come with totally unique features that separate them from the rest. Whatever you are looking for, OHV can build it. During the heat of the pandemic, we installed this custom wood panel ceiling, something we have never done for any other van.
We love the way it turned out, and what's more important, the Kirby's couldn't be happier. They use their Sundance Kid to travel all over the nation and beyond. After only having the van for a short time, they have already put a number of miles on those wheels and show no signs of slowing down.
(Photo by our customer, Brett Kirby)
The Kirby's continue to keep us updated on their travels by sending us some of the most breath-taking photos we've ever seen! Remember the opening photo? That as well as the one just above were just a couple of the fantastic shots we've received from some of our new friends.
Bonus, New Office Location!
While 2020 had its challenges, Off Highway Van continues to grow. We’ve received a high volume of orders for the coming year and by consequence needed a larger working space and team. Our office location had changed, but we are still in Salt Lake City and proud to work in the state of Utah. We have customers from all over North America and we look forward to our continued expansion focused on making our products more widely available.
We love having the opportunity to design, engineer, and assemble such unique products in this relatively new industry and could not do it without our amazing customers. To all those who helped make this year a success, we sincerely thank you.
OHV is not slowing down. In addition to greater customization, we are looking forward to making some other big announcements soon. While we can’t tell you everything, we can say that our parts department has been working very hard and may have some exciting additions on the way.... VERY SOON.
OHV looks forward to another great year and we are so thankful for our outstanding customers and the opportunity to work on something we are truly passionate about. We will continue to design, engineer, and build vans and accessories that help our customers go anywhere.