Power Wagon In Europe?

Doc Fluty

New member
Next spring my family will be moved by the US Military to Italy for about 3 years or so. In that time I would like to explore the western alps and generally fun places to go. I have a 2017 Ram Rebel now but have been wanting to upgrade to the 2020 Ram Powerwagon. So, gas cost not withstanding... would bringing the PW over be a bad idea?

I understand the limits of city driving and parking so I might buy something small and local just for around town daily driving and keep the PW strictly as an adventure rig... also the mass transit I hear is nice so that helps to keep the PW parked unless I want to have fun.

I hate the idea of buying something new over there and taking the loss when it's time to move back and selling it... and I also don't want anything used because of reliability issues, no winch, ect... also, a power wagon would give me the peace of mind that I wont get stuck in a ditch in a country where I dont speak the language. Plus I can keep the PW for when I get back stateside and continue my journeys in north america.

I thought about putting 35s on it and have read that I will need M+S tire or full blown snow tires in Germany... I dunno... is there anything you would think of that I should consider before I make this massive purchase?

::: I should have mentioned another main reason I wanted the PW over other options is I need to fit a family of six :::

Thank you in advance!
 
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Jnich77

Director of Adventure Management Operations
Personally, I wouldn't bring it. Its simply to large for where you are going.
 

filipe neves

New member
Bringing a Ram Rebel 2017 to Europe will not be a good idea.
The cost of gasoline is, I think you will have problems with legal issues, especially with limits on gas emissions.

Italy is one of the countries in Europe where cars are cheaper.

you can buy for example a Land Rover or a Mercedes G

some examples

https://www.ooyyo.com/italia/c=CDA31D7114D2856A111BF36FBA0E355B32A21D7C76398677133EF4/6096988293118271466.html/

https://www.autoscout24.com/offers/mercedes-benz-g-350-bluetec-s-w-lunga-diesel-grey-6fe36368-eff1-43fe-92ff-717ecd47f4d5?cldtidx=4
https://www.autoscout24.com/offers/land-rover-discovery-4-3-0-tdv6-211cv-s-autocarro-diesel-grey-511307fd-7979-4223-ac46-ed91dcc2d525?cldtidx=5#

some inspiration for you

 
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thisoneguy

Audi Expositioner
I live in Germany currently, and I would say bring what you want. It sounds like you understand the limitations. Big trucks are difficult to move in the cities, can be impossible to park almost anywhere - not to mention your home - depending on where you choose to live. I also understand Italy has a bit more bump'n'park attitude so that may be a consideration for you. All that aside, I see plenty of big trucks on and off base, and Ram trucks are sold here locally so there should be some support. As for gas, it can be very expensive - but you will have access to rationed non-taxed gas and it makes a big difference.

I came to Germany to buy a GWagon - and I have. I drive it daily, and as our weekend-mobile and manage to get by - though I think a PW may be longer and wider - which would make more difficult. I have not made any upgrades to the suspension or put larger tires mainly because I would no longer fit in to any garages anymore, as most are max 2 meters, and I am currently at 1.9 and I still duck while in the car driving into them.
 

Paddler Ed

Adventurer
What are the length, width, height and weights like on the PW? Check to see what it will fit in, can it be driven under car rules (GVM < 3500kg) or will it become a truck (>3501kg)? If a truck, be prepared to travel everywhere at a maximum of 100kph (62mph) as that's the speed limit for trucks, whereas a car is 130kmh in many European countries.

If it's taller than 2.1m, I don't hold out much hope for getting it in a car park, likewise, wider than 2m gets a bit tight (as thisoneguy mentions).

Also, remember not everyone likes American's on deployment... and a big American truck is a bit of an obvious way of announcing "I'm an American". Perhaps ask some of the guys who have been stationed over there how they were accepted if they brought their own vehicles (4x4 or trucks) over?

As you mention, a lot of Alpine regions and Nordic/North European countries require full winter tyres from about 1st November until 1st April (check as it varies) - will you be able to get them in the size that is used on the PW?
 

(none)

Adventurer
There are sooo many better vehicles to bring or just get something over there that you cannot have here.

Fuel cost isn't too much of an issue, at least it wasn't when i was there around 10 years ago. You purchase ration cards on post that you can use at Esso stations (this was in germany), gasoline is purchased at a much more discounted rate. that being said, you're going to be using a lot of it.

Size is also a concern. You won't be able to park that big ass thing anywhere, plus you'll have a difficult time on the narrow streets.

As others have mentioned, buy a G or defender over there. Check the rules, but there is a good chance you can get something we can't over here, drive it for the 3 years, then bring it back to the US.
 

Doc Fluty

New member
Philipe, those cars you listed were the exact type of options i would want to avoid. The land rover you listed would cost me $55000+ and I would need to sell it in three years when its time to come back because I could not bring that car back to the US due to regulations. So i would have to sell it and take probably over $12000 in losses for just 3 years use.

as far as bringing something back in general.. everything I have seen says it is VERY difficult to bring back anything that (a) isn't at least 25 years old or (b) something already certified to use in the US. So that limits me to buying something very old, relatively unsafe for my family (wife+4 kids) and suspect reliability or something new that I probably don't want to keep... like a volvo xc90

so thats why I pretty much gave up on those options and decided to buy something now that I can buy here and bring it back home with me when I'm done.

::: Also, I should have mentioned another main reason I wanted the PW over other options is I need to fit a family of six :::

Paddler, the dimensions are as:
Wheelbase149.3 (3,792mm)
Track Width Front68.7 (1,745mm)
Track Width Rear68.1 (1,729mm)
Overall Length238.8 (6,067mm)
Overall Width @ SgRp Front83.4 (2,119mm)
Overall Height80.9 (2054mm)

I've been watching many European overlanding videos on youtube the past week or so and am excited by the unique beauty of the area. i haven't seen almost any full size trucks but a few 4 door wranglers.

i haven't thought of the perception of an "American in a big truck"... but the truck would be very noticeable. This is pretty much how I am going to order it.



thanks, everyone for your input... I really am thinking long and hard about this choice.

 
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calicamper

Expedition Leader
There’s a reason the base lot cars are always being sold..

Save your money don’t buy another super expensive truck right before your stationed over seas. Sell the current one. Buy a used clean rig over there and if your smart one that can be brought back. And be sold for stupid money here.

I don’t know many AF guys who can afford a Power Wagon. You must be a high ranked Fly boy or a AF Heart doc
 

sg1

Adventurer
I live in Europe 4 months per year. There are a lot of RVs bigger than your truck. Parking will be possible but not in normal parking lots. You will have to look for oversize lots for buses or RVs. Driving with a full size truck will not be a problem. The local RVs are bigger. You will have to get used to the narrow roads though. Gas prices are about 6 to 7 dollars per gallon. Ration cards may help. 4x4 a winch and big tires are useless. There won't be any off road driving unless you go to Romania or Albania. Both are beautiful and easy to travel. Don't worry about being identified as an American because of your truck. It will happen anyway even if you drive a Fiat. Why not keep your old truck and get a new one once you come back? Chances are that you will get some dents in Italy. As I said roads are narrow and a dent or a scratch is nothing anybody gets excited about.
 

thisoneguy

Audi Expositioner
25 years old in 2023 (assuming a 3 year tour) is 1998 - GWagon, Land Cruiser (with the troop seats or third row) would fit your family of 6, be bulletproof reliable, have all of the comforts you would be looking for, and able to come home with you. Just saying.

Then again, I go back to my original thought, buy and bring what you want. I see enough that make it work. Not to mention all of the RVs and 5th wheels. It is doable and livable provided you accept the concessions.

You mention Wranglers - They are everywhere!
 

DaveInDenver

Expedition Leader
Land Cruiser (with the troop seats or third row)
Yes, find a decent 70 series and ship it back hopefully on the USAF's dime. I don't think I've seen a more compelling justification for owning a troop carrier! Family of 6 and need to travel around Europe. Heck yeah.

I'd personally try to find a 1999 HZJ78 (first year of the coil spring front suspension). It wouldn't be eligible for import until 2024, which I surmise would be a year after he comes back the U.S. and so I'd figure out a way to store it for year until it was possible.

But even a 1998 or older 80 or 100 series Cruiser would be cool to use and import back here.
 

Martinjmpr

Wiffleball Batter
Question: Have you ever been to Europe? Not being smartass, it's a serious question. Because those streets are VERY narrow.

CAN you drive them?

Sure, I drove a 5 ton truck through them many times. I even drove this through the streets:

MeandChester2.jpg

But it wasn't fun, I can tell you that (and those vehicles belonged to the Army, not to me.)

And this was in Germany where everyone is very uptight about following the rules. Italy with a more "laissez-faire" attitude might be even worse with people zipping around you just to get past.

I'd seriously consider something small and economical for your Euro Trip and then save your money and buy the PW when you get back to the land of the Big PX. Easier to drive, easier to park, easier to fuel and as other have said, all those "off road" accoutrements of the PW are going to be useless in 95% of the parts of Europe you'll be going to anyway. Europe doesn't have much in the way of "public land" like we do in North America, most of the forests are either natural parks (IOW, park your vehicle and walk or bicycle) or they are privately owned. So you would be putting thousands of miles (at HORRIBLE gas mileage) and 3 years of depreciation on a vehicle that you would not even be able to use most of the features of.

My recommendation is a euro-spec mini van. You likely won't need 4wd in Italy. Mini van is easy to park and has room for your family. If you absolutely, positively NEED a 4wd for some short excursion you may be able to rent one and then you don't have the cost, poor fuel economy, maintenance and depreciation costs to bear.
 

Johnboyy

New member
you'd be mad. sure it's technically possible, but all the best spots are going to be inaccessible.

you'll be 3 point turning and reversing to let people get past on any mountain road.

italy in particular is the home of the small car, the roads are made for fiat 500s.

I spent 10 days in northern italy last summer in a Nissan XTrail, and that was big in many situations. a power wagon is about twice the size.

Lr3 or land cruiser is as big as I'd want to daily in italy
 

filipe neves

New member
It seems that you are decided, but the options I presented are very popular in Europe (at least here in Portugal, the used ones are extremely valued, MB G has extremely high prices)

But considering family 6 people, limits the options.

I don't know how much RAM consumes, but keep that in mind.

I did some quick math, I don't know if it helps you decide
gallon 4.56 € (+/-) where 1 gallon is 3.78 liters and the liter costs on average 1.20 €.

has the option of the new LR Defender, is sold in the USA, so it must be possible to import

Good luck

sorry for my English
 
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