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TruckHouse BCR: Carbon Camper on AEV RAM, Rolling on 40s

Combine an upfitted by AEV RAM 1-ton truck on 40s with a full-featured carbon hardshell camper, and you get one impressive overland expedition-style camper. The TruckHouse BCR is an evolution of an already proven concept, this time on an appropriate chassis.
TruckHouse BCR(Photo/TruckHouse)
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Take a proven truck, proven truck upfitter, and a proven quality expedition quality overland camper and wrap them into one impressive package, and you get the TruckHouse BCR. This off-grid, four-season expedition vehicle has all the right ingredients to be a truly comfortable and capable home on wheels.

TruckHouse made a massive splash in 2021 with the BCT, its Toyota Tacoma-based carbon expedition camper. I wrote about it at the time, impressed by the camper and mods to the truck, but said it was the wrong chassis for the job — too low payload and power.

A few years on, and it looks like TruckHouse came to the same conclusion. The impressive camper build remains, but instead of a low cargo capacity mid-size truck platform, it has moved to a modified high-payload 1-ton truck chassis.

TruckHouse x AEV Collaboration

“I was initially impressed with TruckHouse’s extremely high build quality, strong work ethic, and logical approach. After talking through what they wanted to build next, we naturally saw an opportunity to collaborate, not only by supplying the AEV Prospector XL chassis, but working together we were able to design the BCR’s external surface to perfectly complement the refined ruggedness of the PXL,” said Dave Harriton, CEO and founder of AEV.

TruckHouse not only went big with the truck, but it also worked with one of the best OEM quality upfitters out there, American Expedition Vehicles (AEV), to make it even more formidable. The AEV Prospector XL, or PXL, in this case, is a highly modified RAM 3500 cab chassis truck. It features a 3-inch lift, 40-inch tires, Highmark fender flares, snorkel, and a stamped steel front bumper with a 20,000-pound winch.

The RAM can be configured in either a regular or crew cab and powered by either a Cummins diesel or Hemi gas engine. It can also be set up with up to 74 gallons of fuel, for truly long-range overland travel.

TruckHouse HiPR Foil

TruckHouse BCR
HiPR Foil aerodynamic system; (photo/TruckHouse)

Besides helping dial in the cab chassis RAM, AEV also helped design the exterior of the camper. They not only made it look athletic and flow with the lines of the truck, but also worked on aerodynamics.

The HiPR Foil (High-Pressure Reduction, “Hyper”) aerodynamic system is the result of those efforts. It is similar to air curtains found on many modern vehicles, like the latest Chevy Silverado trucks, to control air around the front wheels. In this case, the HiPR Foils on the front of the cabover “reduce the naturally occurring high pressure in front of the cabover by redirecting and controlling drag-induced vortices down the side of the camper.”

This patent-pending new camper design feature is expected to increase drivability and improve fuel economy. I, for one, am very interested to see if it does either, as it’s a very cool idea. The expedition camper space is due for some big innovative ideas.

TruckHouse BCR Carbon Camper

The TruckHouse BCR camper is a one-piece carbon fiber shell that is made using a vacuum infusion process. That means that it is going to be very light, stiff, and strong.

The BCR camper shell “is mated to the truck chassis via a first of its kind carbon fiber reinforced torsion free mounting system.” TruckHouse wouldn’t divulge any more details on this front, but I’m intrigued.

The carbon camper shell is also protected from obstacles, tall and low. Up top, it has rub rails along the top of the camper to protect it from branches. Down low, it has rock sliders at the rear departure angle and in front of the rear wheels to protect it from rock hits. Truck cab sliders are in development.

The camper floor is a massive 10.7 feet long, which doesn’t include the cabover. The whole expedition vehicle is 25 feet long when built on a double-cab truck and 22.5 feet long when on a regular cab truck.

TruckHouse BCR

Life on the Road Less Traveled

This is going to be a big roomy camper. The cabover offers up a king-size bed and a big skylight/hatch over the bed for stargazing.

There will also be a rear U-shaped dinette, which also converts to a bed, and is surrounded 270 degrees by massive flush-mounted dual-pane windows. As long as you’re under 6’6″ tall, you’ll be able to walk around in the camper without hunching over.

An optional passthrough from the camper to the truck cab is on offer. TruckHouse has found that some customers prefer not having one, hence why it’s optional. But, I find that it has a ton of great advantages. Never leaving the vehicle from bed to driver’s seat is one of them, to stay out of the weather, and for safety.

Of course, the camper will have all the latest in electric tech. A solid-state digital switching system will control everything, while a lithium battery bank keeps everything running. A massive solar array on the roof will help keep the battery bank charged when off-grid for extended periods. Starlink Mobility is also on offer for ultimate connectivity anywhere.

The kitchen will include an induction cooktop, convection oven/microwave, sink, and a two-drawer 12V fridge/freezer. Three different toilet options (cassette, dry flush, or composting) will be available, and we’re going to assume an indoor shower — although that hasn’t been officially announced.

A roof-mounted, recessed awning is standard, as are roof vents and fans.

TruckHouse BCR: Pricing & Availability

TruckHouse is done building the Tacoma-based BCT, with eight in existence. It plans to have a prototype of the new PXL-based BCR rolling down the backroads near its factory in Reno, Nev., this fall, with production starting soon after. The first TruckHouse BCR deliveries are expected in spring 2024.

You can get your name on the preorder list with a $10,000 refundable deposit. TruckHouse is being tight-lipped about pricing at this stage, as materials costs continue to wildly fluctuate.

TruckHouse BCT Tacoma camper
TruckHouse BCT Tacoma camper build at Overland Expo West 2021; (photo/Bryon Dorr)

As points of reference, the TruckHouse BCT Tacoma builds were priced at $285,000-380,000. A RAM 3500 chassis cab ($49,000-96,000) with an AEV Prospector XL upfit ($23,000+) will run you $72,000-119,000+.

While the truck will take much fewer modifications than were required on the Tacomas, reducing labor costs greatly, the truck itself will cost more, and the camper is bigger and no doubt more costly to build, with even nicer features. My best-educated guess at this time is that the TruckHouse BCR will cost $400,000-500,000.

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