Campervans need to be as rugged as the adventures that people take them on. They need to be ready for whatever the elements might throw at them, and they also need to be able to accommodate all of the owner’s needs. We see a lot of stealth campers that have been created purely with the ultimate off grid adventure in mind, but it’s not very often that we see a camper that has the ability to offer all of the things above in one affordable package. Luckily for you, fellow readers, we can finally reveal everything that we know about a brand new range of pop up truck campers from the genius minds over at Four Wheel Campers. It’s called Project M, and it’s going to change the way thrill-seekers get off-grid forever!

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We were lucky enough to test this brand new range of truck campers out on our visit to America earlier this year, and many of you might even have seen some of the elusive Project M pictures that we uploaded onto Instagram over the course of our trip. This camper is like no other Four Wheel Camper that we’ve seen before, and it might shock you to find out that prices for the base package are to start from just $9’000! Let’s stop with the fact-teasing and get straight into the article; this is one that you’re definitely going to want to bookmark for later!

Take A Look At Project M, The Newest Off Grid Camper On The Block!

Project M on the back of a dodge ram

We’ve had the pleasure of testing out multiple models and evolutions of these Four Wheel Campers over the past couple of years, and we’ve also experienced first hand the awe and excitement that people experience when they see them for the first time. We spent two weeks driving all across America with two of these Project M models in tow and people absolutely loved the idea. A pop up camper with the ability to expand and build upon as and when you see fit; it’s an overland dream come true.

For starters, let’s take a look at the outside of the vehicle. Four Wheel Campers started off with a smooth, curved exterior that didn’t bring about many thoughts of cruising through rocky mountains or hurtling through the undergrowth. They’ve since moved on to their signature striped-metalwork design which is much more rugged and practical, but nothing could have prepared us for the gnarly exterior on the side of this Project M model. The kick plate aluminium panelling brings about thoughts of Mesa Boogie amplifiers, punk-rock shows, and of rugged adventure gear designed to take a beating without ever breaking. In short, this could be the most rock-n-roll camper that America has ever seen!

What Else Is On the Outside?

The new camper being put through its paces by climbers

This camper isn’t just built to be as strong as Iron Man in a vibranium vest, it’s also got just as many cool gadgets on the outside as our favourite brash avenger too. Project M is designed to be as high-octane as your lifestyle; it’s primary purpose is a gear haulier for all of your offgrid equipment that you might want to take out on the trail with you. We took out two different models with us on the road; one on the back of a Toyota Tacoma Camper, and the other on the back of one of the gnarliest off road trucks around; the AEV Dodge Ram 3500, and each had important characteristics that will blow your mind.

Let’s start with the Tacoma first. On the side of the camper pod itself, we had a surfboard rack perfect for strapping on surf or snowboards for a trip to the ocean or the mountains. The straps are super secure and easy to use/adjust, meaning you’re not going to lose your gear halfway down the freeway. The Tacoma also had a lockbox on the very back of the truck, as well as a space for some all-important MaxxTraxx recovery tracks. If your lifestyle takes you to some hard-to-reach places, then you could well need to use these more often than you might think.

The Project M on the back of the Dodge Ram also made use of kayak rollers on the roof of the camper. These allow you to take larger kayaks and rowing boats on the road with you safely and securely without hindering other motorists around you. These items are all available add-ons that you can include in your package if you want, but the base model comes without all of these extras to keep the cost down for the buyer. I’ve mentioned a couple of truck models here already, but you can also put your Project M up on the back of a Toyota Tundra, your Chevy, or your Ford pick-up. Contact FWC if you’re unsure whether it will fit; they know their stuff!

Project M near a river

Give Us Some More Stats

Project M comes in two sizes depending on the size of your truck bed – Mid Size (5’ Bed: 400lbs 6’ Bed: 425lbs), and Full Size (5’8” Bed: 440lbs 6’-6’5″ Bed: 470lbs 8’ Bed: 515lbs). The comfortable beds that you sleep on (not the truck kind) in both models are 80″L with a width of 65-73″ respectively between the two sizes.

Popped down, the smaller module stands at 37″ and the full-sized pod at 39″ (plus the height of your truck), which means parking in supermarkets, beach-front parking, and pretty much anywhere else with a height barrier isn’t going to be a problem compared to vanlifers who travel in big panel vans. There are only two inches difference in height when the campers are erected (58″ and 60″ respectively), and both come with the new, fresh-looking kick-strip pattern in a variety of colours. Both models are pretty similar, but the full-sized pod will give you that extra bit of space for cramming more gear in.

The standard Project M model comes with a fixed bed over the cab that can be elongated via the Four Wheel Campers trademark pull-out system, a roof vent, windows, a fire extinguisher + LP/smoke detector, and it is prewired for solar panels. That’s everything that you’ll have inside. There is no kitchen, no toilet, no seating area and no dining table, but don’t let that put you off. Project M is designed with your adventure equipment in mind; you could drive your ATV right up into the back of this camper and still have enough room to chuck your helmets and an ice chest in with you for the ride. The bed is completely separate from the gear-storage area, and with the pull-down velcro flap windows in the pop-up section of the camper, you can rest in bed and gaze at the scenery after a long day riding, surfing, skiing, mountain climbing, or any other activity you can think of!

What’s Project M Like To Live In?

The new camper kitted out with a surfboard, paddle board and a kayak on the roof

We spent a little bit of time in these campers while out on the road and quickly understood the appeal that they have to both first time camper buyers who might be a little younger, and also the day camper audience who just want something that they can pop on the back of their existing truck and take along to track events for the weekend. The vibe we got while travelling around various meetups and festivals was that people don’t need fancy fridges or cooking utensils, they’re happy enough with a rocket burner, an ice chest, a couple of pull out camping chairs, and a comfortable bed to sleep in. Project M has the space for all of this and more.

It’s definitely a camper that promotes spending more time outside than inside, but that is what camping is all about. If anything, this is the first RV that puts the ‘camp’ back into campervan, promoting the outdoor lifestyle that Luxury Motorhomes with their TV’s and espresso makers have forgotten all about.

There will the be the option of including a battery system and USB charging, as FWC know all too well that the digital nomad market needs to keep their drones and GoPro’s topped up on the go at all times. Thanks to the best power banks and portable power-houses like the Jackery Explorer 500, however, it doesn’t even matter if you don’t opt to have electrics installed in your build.

Project M with Lake Donner in the Background

There are so many portable power products out there now that you can grab one and keep it charged up at home, and then it’s ready to take out with you at a moments notice and have power wherever you are, whenever you want it. Heck, I’d be tempted to keep Project M completely raw so there’s nothing that I need to worry about when throwing bikes and boards in the back. Plus if you pack an AA battery-powered blender, one of our Best Campervan Cookers, and a propane tank, you’ve got everything you need for breakfast, lunch, and dinner!

Is That Roof Easy To Pop Up With Gear On Top?

The pop-top system in these campers is so easy that you could do it with one hand. It’s partly down to the gas-assist lifting rods in each corner of the camper, but also due to the fact that everything just works as you would hope it would. Pushing up on the roof at the rear of the camper is a doddle, and by using the push bar over the bed at the front, you can erect the roof in no time at all. It’s super easy to do even with bulky equipment up on the roof too, and the rugged vinyl liner makes sure the weather stays outside where it belongs and keeps you warm when you’re in bed.

We tested this vehicle out in cold temperatures up on Highway 1 and it felt nice and warm inside despite there being no furnace. Grab yourself a good, thick comforter and a travel buddy (both are available in all good Target stores if you play your cards right), and you’re good to go!

Driving over Prosser Dam

Final Thoughts…

Project M is available in a whole host of colours including Matte Black, Red, and Khaki. Being able to customise the exterior colour of your camper is a pretty new feature for FWC, but we love it. It instantly makes the product more appealing to millennials and first time camper buyers who want that rock-n-roll camper vibe, and they make a pretty big statement whenever you park up…well…whenever you park up anywhere to be honest!

This gear-haulier camper is designed to be as empty or as full as you want, depending on your budget. The best bit is that if you buy the empty shell, you can always make your own cupboards and units as and when you need them, or purchase the extra products direct from FWC if you decide that you want to upgrade your set up after owning the camper for a while. It’s an incredibly affordable option for anyone who wants to get into truck life, and we highly recommend that you keep an eye out on the Four Wheel Campers website for more details dropping in the not-too-distant future!

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