Potential Motors Adventure 1 traveling on dirt road
(Photo/Potential Motors)

Cross a UTV With a Campervan and You Get the Potential Motors Adventure 1 EV Overlander

Potential Motors Adventure 1 is a compact electric overlander that you can tow behind your truck on the way to the trail.

A Canadian startup promises an electric overlander designed to fit on trails where trucks and SUVs can’t. With sleeping quarters and a built-in kitchen, it could be your eco-friendly, off-road answer.

Small Enough for OHV Trails

Potential Motors Adventure 1 van sitting at overlook above city
(Photo/Potential Motors)

The Adventure 1’s big advantage is its small size. Potential says the electric off-roader is just 64 inches wide — 10 inches narrower than a Tacoma pickup. That makes the Adventure 1 narrow enough to fit on trails where conventional overlanding rigs just can’t go — at least without risking serious damage to the vehicle and the trail.

If you’re thinking 64 inches is too wide for the 50-inch restriction on Forest Service and other ATV trails, then you’re right. But most side-by-sides fall foul here, too. And, the Adventure 1 still qualifies as an OHV, so it can run anywhere other OHVs can — if it fits.

Potential says the Adventure 1 will be road legal in states where UTVs and OHVs are licensed to run on some public roads.

When the trailhead is farther away, the Adventure 1 can be flat-towed behind your truck. You can get to the trails without an extra trailer, and your battery is topped up when you arrive.

600 Electric Horses

Potential Motors Adventure 1 3D design
(Photo/Potential Motors)

Two electric motors power the Adventure 1 — one mounted in front and one in the rear to give it all-wheel drive. The total output from the two motors is 604 horsepower with 737 pound-feet of torque. That’s more grunt than any full-size pickup short of a RAM TRX or new crop of EV Pickups, and should give it impressive capability on any trail.

Ten inches of suspension travel in the front and rear, along with 12.9 inches of ground clearance, help you get over obstacles. The approach and departure angles are also good at 40 and 45 degrees, respectively.

Other off-road credentials include an independent suspension front and rear along with fully airtight construction to protect batteries and motors. Potential says its Off-Road OS can identify hardware failures in the drive system, and then compensate for them in real time to keep you moving and get you back off the trail. The same system will work to manage torque to give the Adventure 1 optimal traction off-road.

Potential shows off a hefty square-tube frame protecting the underbody and the battery pack. The frame supports more storage — including a spot for the spare — up top.

Full-Size Bed, Pull-Out Kitchen

Potential Motors Adventure 1, hatch open to reveal sleeping area
(Photo/Potential Motors)

A full-size bed deploys in the rear, letting the Adventure 1 sleep two passengers comfortably. When the bed isn’t in use, it folds and zips into a dustproof and waterproof compartment, keeping it dry and clean no matter what you’re doing off-road.

A modular kitchen is integrated under the bed, pulling out from the rear of the vehicle. It includes a two-burner propane stove, fridge, and sink. The Adventure 1 has 40 L of built-in water storage, giving you somewhere to keep water for cleaning and drinking.

Potential Motors Adventure 1 in warehouse
(Photo/Potential Motors)

The modular cabin storage system has day-trip advantages, too. Remove the kitchen, Potential says, and you can instead fit a pair of full-size dirt bikes behind the rear seats. Maybe electric bikes to match? The total interior volume is more than 2,500 L.

100-Mile Range, Emergency Charging

Potential Motors Adventure 1 rendering traveling on dirt
(Photo/Potential Motors)

Potential says you can expect 100 miles of off-road electric range. The Adventure 1 can be recharged using Level 1 wall plugs as well as Level 2 and Level 3 fast charging. In case of a charging emergency, a backup generator that uses the cooking propane supply can be used to power up the vehicle and get you home.

Preorders are open now for the Adventure 1. The vehicle will be shown in person for the first time at Overland Expo East on October 7-9. Potential Motors says the Adventure 1 will be built in very limited numbers, coming from its factory in New Brunswick, Canada. Pricing starts from $136,600.

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Evan Williams
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Evan has been drooling over cars since the time he learned to walk. Since then he's worked on controlling the drooling and expanded his interests to include hiking, cycling, and kayaking. He went to school for engineering but transitioned into a more satisfying career and has been writing automotive and outdoors news for nearly a decade