Every November at the annual industry-only automotive aftermarket show, brands reveal the best new overland and off-road products. These are our favorites.
The SEMA Show is immense. But over a few days earlier this month, I dug through the aisles to find products that should make waves in 2019. These are the 10 best new products on display for overlanding at the SEMA Show. Which would elevate your next automotive adventure?
Icon Vehicle Dynamics 2.5 Aluminum Series Shocks
Icon Vehicle Dynamics makes some the highest-quality off-road shocks around. It continuously pushes for more and is now transitioning its entire 2.5 Series to a one-piece aluminum shock body construction, where it’s now a two-piece steel shock body.
There are a number of big improvements that this construction offers, which include better heat dissipation, lighter weight, and a much stronger shock body. Anodizing and Cerakote coatings will also ensure there will be much-improved corrosion resistance.
The new Icon 2.5 Aluminum Series shocks will hit the market in early 2020 and be the same price as the current steel offerings. The one exception to this is that there will initially not be an aluminum coil-over setup, but the brand is working on that.
Yakima LockNLoad Platform Rack System
The Yakima LockNLoad platform rack system has been on offer and tested in Australia for many years now. Yakima is just now introducing the system to the U.S. market for a wide range of popular vehicles.
Besides being a clean and strong design, the LockNLoad platform rack system also offers up a full host of quality, secure accessory mounts. Mounts for jerry cans, Maxtrax, Hi-Lift, shovels, and more are available.
Dometic CFX 3 Series 55IM 12V Fridge
Dometic is the world’s largest RV accessory supplier and has been heavily marketing its quality 12V fridges to the overland market the past few years. For 2020, Dometic is fully updating its CFX line of 12V fridges.
The new Dometic CFX 3 Series will be available in February. The brand has dropped a few fridge sizes — the 40, 50, and 65 — and replaced them with a 45 and 55IM. The updated fridges will have a new digital control panel with more features and be controllable through a new Bluetooth-connected app.
The Dometic CFC 3 Series 55IM is going to be the big seller. Not only is it a usable-size fridge for a wide range of vehicles, but it also offers up an icemaker.
While it’s only a single-zone fridge, it has two small ice trays with lids on a rapid-freeze plate in the fridge. Who doesn’t want ice for their campfire cocktails? The 55IM weighs in at 46.97 pounds and can hold 83 12-ounce cans of your favorite beverage.
Suntop JLU SunTent
Suntop will bring us a new bread of rooftop tent (RTT) in spring 2020. The new Suntop SunTent is specifically designed for the Jeep Wrangler JLU. The SunTent converts a Suntop soft-top into a streamlined, wedge-style RTT.
A Suntop soft-top will cost you about $850, and the SunTent will run another $1,800.
AEV Steel Wheels
American Expedition Vehicles (AEV) has once again brought us a high-quality, tested product designed to take the abuse of remote overland travel.
The new AEV 17×8 Steel Wheel is designed to offer the correct offset for 37-inch tires on a Jeep Wrangler or Gladiator and 35s on the Chevy Colorado. Tacoma fitment is also in the works. They will be available in mid-2020 and run about $159 each.
WARN Subaru Crosstrek Winch Bumper
WARN is the industry leader in winches and also offers a wide range of bumpers and other off-road accessories. It has now expanded its offerings even more with a Subaru Crosstrek (2019+) winch bumper.
The bumper is designed to work with up to a 6,000-pound powersports winch and has an optional tubular grille guard. The bumper is a direct bolt-on unit but does require a bit of plastic trimming.
The WARN Crosstrek winch bumper is available now for $749, with the grille guard costing another $162.
Factor 55 Rope Retention Pulley
The recovery ring has been around in the off-road world for some time but is just now getting popular. It’s basically a pulley, or snatch block, designed to be used in conjunction with a synthetic-lined winch. It’s much smaller and lighter than a traditional pulley/snatch block.
Factor 55 has refined the recovery ring and addressed one of its major weaknesses: rope retention. Factor 55 is calling its new recovery device the Rope Retention Pulley. It is a recovery ring that has six silicone rope retention fingers around it so the winch line doesn’t fall out of the ring when not under tension.
Besides the silicone fingers, the outside has been Teflon-coated for reduced friction on the soft shackle. The Factor 55 Rope Retention Pulley will be available near the end of the year and retail for $110.
Decked Truck-Bed Toolbox
DECKED is known for its quality plastic truck-bed platform drawer systems. In mid-2020, it’s also going to offer a truck-bed toolbox. The toolbox will have a ton of security features, including a Bluetooth locking mechanism, which is solar-powered.
The box will also feature springs in the hinge rather than struts at the sides. This will make it super easy to access everything from both sides without the struts being in the way like they are on most boxes.
The truly awesome feature of this new truck-bed toolbox is the optional built-in retractable ladder. The ladder will make loading adventure gear atop a roof rack or truck-bed rack super easy.
American Adventure Lab Gladiator Bed Rack System
Probably the most talked-about Jeep Gladiator at SEMA 2019 was this creation by American Adventure Lab. The main reason it was so talked about was the S.A.R.T. (Sliding Articulating Rooftop Tent) bed-rack system.
The bed rack not only allows for adventure gear on top, accessories on the sides, and gear in the truck bed, but it also offers up an articulating RTT platform. This allows the RTT to stow neatly out of the way and be flat when deployed, no matter the terrain the truck is on at the time.
The American Adventure Lab S.A.R.T. Gladiator bed-rack system costs $2,500.
Bear Bones Overland Trailer
Bear Bones Systems has created this single-wheel overland trailer. It calls it the CMTS, or Configurable Minimalist Trailer System.
The idea is that it can be pulled behind just about any vehicle, is super small for storage, and fully configurable for a wide range of gear-hauling applications. It can haul dirtbikes, bicycles, kayaks, and more. The new trailer will be available soon and set you back about $4,000.