If you’ve gone shopping for a full-size diesel truck recently, you’ll know that they’re far from cheap. These “utility vehicles” now carry price tags exceeding those of many luxury sedans, and are just as luxurious inside. But what if you wanted something different? Something with a massive payload, a ridiculous amount of room, and a commanding view of the terrain ahead? Well, then you would buy a brand new Fuso FG 4×4 truck from Mitsubishi USA. Before you call me crazy, let’s look at a few stats. These trucks come with a five-year/175,000-mile powertrain limited warranty, use a 4P10-T5 diesel motor, and pack a staggering 8,055-pound payload. That makes for one heck of a good platform for building an overland truck, which is exactly what Randy Perkins did with this 2017 Fuso.
Randy designed the truck for an around-the-world trip later this year, but due to health complications with some family members, he has been forced to put his travel plans on hold. With the journey now years out, he has decided to sell his beloved expedition truck, hopefully to some lucky member on Expedition Portal.
According to Randy, this vehicle is the product of over 500 hours of work, including 35 hours of CAD time and a sizable amount of cash. The 2017 Fuso FG 4×4 has been paired with a custom flatbed to accommodate the 2016 Grandby Four Wheel Camper, along with side guards to shield the shell from impacts of brush, dirt, or trees. Lockable storage boxes are mounted in nearly every spare nook and cranny, which provides room for a serious amount of gear on any adventure.
Speaking of adventures, you’ll have plenty of fuel for all of them thanks to the absurdly large 265-gallon capacity of this truck. Based on the owner’s current fuel economy, this Fuso has nearly 3,500 miles of range, which means theoretically, you could drive from Los Angeles to Costa Rica without stopping! In case you’re just as thirsty as your truck along the way, there’s also 105 gallons of fresh water capacity, which is pressurized on tap.
For additional off-road capability, Randy upgraded the truck with 285/70/19.5 16 Ply 608S Toyo Tires on All Terrain Warriors Australia 19.5″ aluminum reversible rims. This made a big difference in both traction and clearance compared to the stock truck, but the ride quality still needed to be improved. To address this, an All Terrain Warriors progressive leaf springs package and big bore gas shocks were swapped in to replace the factory equipment.
Skid plates were then installed along the undercarriage to protect against any debris or large obstacles the Fuso may encounter, but the more likely threat was from animal strikes and impacts from other vehicles. For this, Randy opted for steel front and rear bumpers, each housing a 16,000-pound winch and auxiliary lighting. The rear bumper doubles as a gear cage for equipment like Maxtrax, Hi-Lift jacks, fuel, and propane, and can be lowered using a third small integrated winch.
Lighting and accessories are controlled through an eight-switch SPOD controller and rear accessory wall and powered by a large battery bank and 125 watts of solar with a 3.8-kilowatt built-in generator.
Although the truck was certainly capable of traveling the world with these accessories, it still wasn’t the most comfortable to drive for long periods of time. The cab was noisy, and the seats weren’t overly comfortable. Nothing that three layers of soundproofing, national air ride seats, and a 500-watt Stereo with six speakers and a 12-inch subwoofer can’t fix, right? While they were at it, they added a custom center console, a 3,000-watt inverter, and a cell phone booster.
With just 11,800 miles on the odometer, this Fuso has plenty of life to take you around the world and return with a warranty to burn on subsequent years of additional adventures. Where would you go first?
To learn more, contact Randy at either 503-780-3828, or Pvtmule@aol.com.