I know what you’re thinking: Do I really need a 6WD vehicle? The answer is, of course, a resounding yes. Why? Bragging rights for a start, and while I’m sure there are plenty more reasons, I think I’ve made my point.
The Pinzgauer, much like the Land Rover Forward Control and Volvo C306, is a dedicated military off-road vehicle. Subsequently, its all-terrain capabilities are in a different league to most overland rigs, but inevitably that comes at a cost. The best vehicles for adventure travel are generally those that offer on- and off-road comfort and performance, acceptable economy, and access to OEM and aftermarket parts, accessories, and services. Unfortunately, with a 62 mph top speed, a thirsty 2.5-liter air-cooled motor, and almost zero driver comforts, this is a vehicle designed with one purpose in mind and little else. However, with deep pockets and a little imagination, it’s possible to create a very unique home on wheels (for inspiration, check out this Pinzgauer Off-Road Camper Tourand Adrenalin Industries’ 1986 718 6×6 Turbo-diesel).Sure, a Toyota Tundra or Ram 2500 is a more sensible choice, but when I’m at overland shows, it’s always the weird and wonderful that draws my attention. Today’s example showcases several tasteful modifications, a functional camper interior, and it recently enjoyed a complete driveline and engine rebuild by Fat Fabrications in Texas.
From the Seller:
“I built this with the intention to full-time overland in my retirement. I was doing that for about seven months when my health took a turn, so now it’s with a heavy heart that the Pinzgauer needs a new home. The rig is not fast but has always gotten me to some awesome places that a normal RV would not take me. This vehicle is a real head turner, and I’ve met many new friends because people always come up and want to know more.”
1983 Pinzgauer 712K Overlander
The Pinzgauer is fitted with a 2.5-liter air-cooled motor that produces 87 horsepower and 133 pound-feet of torque (some later models were fitted with a bigger 2.7-liter engine). We often quote the 0-62 mph data when discussing vehicles, but with the Pinzgauer, it’s hardly relevant, considering the 6×6’s top speed is a little over 60 mph. Needless to say, the on-road driving experience is decidedly agricultural, but that’s hardly surprising for a 6WD military vehicle designed specifically for off-road usage. Hence, what it lacks in on-road etiquette, it makes up for with unstoppable all-terrain performance courtesy of 6WD, portal axles for extra clearance, high and low range, hydraulic front and rear differential locks, and more. If you want a better idea of what the Pinzgauer is capable of, then a quick YouTube search will serve up some astonishing feats of capability, including Adrenalin Industries’ 6×6 at an Off Road Park.
- Freshwater tank, 25 gallons
- Yeti 1500x lithium battery with 180-watt solar panel
- Airhead compost toilet
- ARB compressor
- Iceco 62 fridge/freezer
- Solar shower, 8 gallons
This 1983 Pinzgauer 712K Overlander is listed for $45,000 and is currently located in Austin, Texas. Check the full vehicle specifications via the original Expedition Portal forum post here.
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