By Chris Weiss
15:01 June 11, 2012
The felidae family is perhaps the most multi-personalitied family in the entire animal kingdom. It spans everything from huge, predatory beasts that would sooner tear you apart limb by limb, sinew by sinew than look at you, to tiny, amicable (although somewhat aloof and self-serving) pets that wander gracefully around home and yard. We think that might be why Tiger Adventure Vehicles chose its name. As its latest vehicle the Siberian Tiger shows, Tiger's line of campers has two distinct, equally strong personalities: hardened and fearsome on the outside but gentle and welcoming on the inside.
The Siberian tiger is the largest cat in the world, so Tiger Adventures chose to use the name for its largest, most expensive Tiger camper model. Like its namesake, the camper is deceivingly beautiful and graceful from certain angles, but it won't hesitate to lunge and claw when necessary.
Tiger Adventure says that the Siberian is designed for full-on off-road adventures as well as standard road trips. It mounts atop the back of the Ford F450 Crew Cab, which Tiger says comes standard with four-wheel drive, skid plates and upgraded shocks. The camper uses a three-point mounting system crafted to eliminate the transfer of torsional stresses from the truck's chassis.
Though it may be rough and ready on the outside, the Siberian provides a level of interior refinement and comfort that could make Bentley rubberneck. The minute you open the door, you're greeted with a sophisticated blend of aluminum framing, bamboo flooring and furniture, and Corian counter space. The kitchen area includes a stainless steel sink, three-burner recessed stove, convection microwave, refrigerator and freezer. The bathroom has a porcelain toilet, full-length mirror, bamboo vanity, exhaust fan and separate shower area.
In terms of sleeping, a modified king bed made from memory foam is located in the sleeping compartment above the truck cabin. The bench seating in the dining area folds into a double bed to accommodate two more. A skylight in the upper sleeping area provides ventilation and a view out to the starry night overhead, and conveniences like LED reading lights and bedside storage shelves complete the package. The television's multi-directional arm allows for for both cabin and bed viewing.
A combination of air conditioning, furnace, hot water heater and 45-gallon (170-liter) fresh water tank brings the comforts of home on the road. Primary power comes from AGM batteries with 300 amp hours, and a 200-watt solar system keeps them charged. A Cummins generator runs more power-heavy equipment like the air conditioner and microwave. Other standard interior equipment includes an audio system, pass-through to the truck cabin and wardrobe closet. Options like leather bench seating and Wineguard satellite TV system up the comfort level even further.
As the interior purrs with bamboo surfaces and cozy furnishings, the Siberian's exterior equipment keeps it sharp and ready to react to its surroundings. Exterior LEDs light your mobile campsite; a back-up camera lets you maneuver safely; and a 24 cu ft (680 liter) external storage locker keeps tools and other gear safe and out of the way.
The Siberian Tiger can be purchased with both the 6.8-liter V-10 gas and the 6.7-liter V-8 Turbo Diesel 450 Crew Cab models. It is available for order now, and prices start at US$163,000, including the cost of the truck.
Source: Tiger Adventure Vehicles