JB Dirt Road Extreme
Upgrading its popular ‘Dirt Roader’ model, JB Caravans has introduced the Xtreme variant of its hardy off-road rig, targeted at adventurers looking for a taste of the wilderness without letting go of the comforts of home.
The Xtreme dirt roader comes with all the bells and whistles of any modern caravan, but has upped its game with superior build quality—all its parts are crafted in-house—that can get you through the most inhospitable terrains with ease.
At first glance, this massive rig is quite a looker-- high-profile external cladding with orange detail all around, presumably to tear through the rusty red dirt that dominates the dry Aussie rough country without looking worse for the wear. Off-roading enthusiasts have several versions of the van to choose from-- the 6.3m model and the 6.8m that come with rear doors, and the front-entry 6.6 m variant, along with a choice of layouts, colour schemes and décor styles within each of those models. The rear door entry models offer privacy for the bedroom area, unlike most caravans that open directly into the sleeping quarters.
Going over the exterior of the van, the frame is Meranti timber and the roof boasts of fire-retardant insulation. The chassis is galvanised steel and manufactured in JB’s purpose-built facility. The rig rolls on 16-inch all-terrain alloy wheels and has impressive ground clearance. The twin-shock, twin-arm suspension is courtesy AL-KO, a company trusted to churn out sturdy, reliable parts that ensure stability even on the steepest and rockiest of drives.
The van is pimped up with plenty of external LED lights- above the toolbox, in the large tunnel boot, on the rear of the rig and some stylish tail-light clusters. The usual caravan essentials are all included—jerry can holders and gas bottles on the nose of the rig, a large roll-out awning and the spare tyre. And then there are some thoughtful additions to make towing a large van more convenient- a reversing camera, grab handles in the front and rear in case you get into a sticky situation and then some luxuries such as a water filter, water heater and external speakers that can be hitched up to the TV/entertainment set-up, along with a WiFi router.
Designed to add stability and even weight distribution, the undercarriage holds the large fresh water tanks as well as a grey-water tank that can be easily emptied at an appropriate location.
When you enter the caravan up a foldable two-step set, the interiors of the Dirt Roader Xtreme scream “luxury”, in contrast to its rugged exterior. Panoramic windows let in plenty of light and the plush interiors are laid out in a chic but practical style. Café-style leather loungers with an extendable table form the dining area, adjacent to a fully equipped kitchen that includes a cooking range, microwave oven and heaps of storage closets and drawers.
Ample storage seems to be the emphasis of the design, with overhead lockers, corner cubbies and drawers galore. The queen bed lifts to reveal more storage and is nestled away from the door. The ensuite on the opposite end is also quite swish, with a full height shower cabinet, chemical toilet and concealed washing machine—again, plenty of storage space and cabinets both under the ceramic basin and overhead.
The Dirt Road extreme is not lightweight, but seems to be a durable choice for offroading in remote areas for longer periods of time, but with all the creature comforts of home.