Here’s a little news sure to grab the eye of camper van geeks. Benchmark Vehicles just introduced an Iglhaut Allrad-equipped, 170-inch Sprinter van to the U.S. for the first time. Benchmark calls it the AWOL.
If you happen not to be an overlanding nut, you might be asking yourself what any of that means.
We got you. Iglhaut Allrad is a German company that works with Benchmark Vehicles to modify Sprinter vans for the overlanding and adventure vehicle market. In the case of the AWOL, that means modifying a stock Mercedes-Benz Sprinter with front and rear electronic locking differentials, a center locking transfer case, impressive 37-inch off-road tires, and an 11-inch lift. True four-wheel drive, baby!
The German overlanding wizards also regeared the AWOL’s front and rear axles to better accommodate the kind of low rpms you get while chewing on gnarly roads. The result is a stock two-wheel-drive Sprinter transformed into an off-road-capable machine.
Iglhaut Allrad has been slapping this system into shorter Sprinters for a minute now, but the AWOL marks the first time we’ve seen it in a 170-inch model in the U.S. (This number refers to the interior length of the Sprinter’s cabin.)
Benchmark Vehicles claims the AWOL can go tit for tat on the highway, reaching speeds of 70+ mph. The company also says it beefed up the Sprinter’s native power steering for better maneuvering this beast up, over, and around boulders.
Benchmark Vehicles AWOL Sprinter VanExpertly Realized, Inside and Out
Once Iglhaut Allrad works its magic, Benchmark Vehicles takes over and continues modifications. Bilstein Heavy Duty struts with coilovers replace the factory struts. Benchmark also installs full leaf-pack rear springs next to Fox 2.5 rear shocks. And we haven’t even gotten to the interior yet.
The 170-inch-long, 68-inch-wide cabin provides standing room for people just over 6 feet tall. A full rear bed, a couch and table area, and stainless steel galley fixtures are but a few of the bells and whistles that Benchmark Vehicles regularly throws into its Sprinter mods.
“Our build team features top-tier experts in every aspect of design, cabinetry, electrical, and bodywork. Each Benchmark Vehicles made van is engineered for everything from tough terrain to everyday driving in a high quality, dependable rig ready for anything life throws at travelers on or off-road,” Benchmark Vehicles owner and founder Leland Gilmore said in a press release.
As you might imagine, all these fancy upgrades don’t come cheap. The Benchmark Vehicles AWOL Iglhaut Allrad 170 will cost you an eye-popping $500,000. If you’ve got that to spend on an adventure vehicle, pop over to the Benchmark Vehicles website and give the AWOL a peep.