Sportsmobile vs. XP Camper -- Why the XP Camper Won For Us

For us, the XP was our choice for several reasons. First and foremost are the capacities. A 75 gallon fresh water tank and an available 62 gallon diesel tank mean more time out and longer trips before returning to civilization. We could easily spend several weeks to a month out on trails before needing to find fuel, water, and provisions. It is a high quality product and we've had great customer service. The flatbed and design with large windows on almost every wall and ceiling make the camper feel incredibly spacious. I like the separated design, not because I plan to drive the truck without the camper but because if I am able to purchase a camper that will be with me the rest of my life and be able to replace the truck that carries it as necessary. We plan on going full time in it as soon as we are able for as long as we are able. All of the features above allow us to do this and sooner rather than later.


Before I start this response, let me state that I do not own an XP Camper, I have no financial relationship with XP Camper, and I'm not posting this on behalf of anyone other than myself.

That being said, I have looked in great detail at almost every camper mentioned in this thread, and imho the XP Camper is by far the highest quality, most capable camper for 2 people to take an extended overland expedition. ...but that's irrelevant.

The reason it is irrelevant ifs that ever overland traveler ultimately has a long checklist of criteria that defines their ideal vehicle. I've seen home built fuso's, million dollar unicat's, Ford Rangers with a flippac, and everything in between. With the exception of Christian's overlanding stretch limo they are all great vehicles that do the job for their travelers.

In our case, we had our own special requirements so we built the EcoRoamer. However, it was through that process that I can to know Marc back in 2006 and have followed his progress ever since.

I can honestly say, that his first few prototypes were crappy in many ways. It's what Doug Hackney refers to as the first pancake syndrome. Where the first pancake you make on a Sunday morning always comes out crappy.

Where XP Campers is different from Doug Hackney, or me, or the dozens of people on this forum who think they have a great idea for an expedition vehicle, is that Marc has had the luxury to learn from those mistakes and constantly improve upon them. I have no doubt the the ujoint/Justin V4 camper had problems, probably a lot of them. But those have almost no relation to the quality of product that I've seen Marc putting out these days. Oh and by the way, the manufacturer (Marc) bought back the camper, so is there really anything to be whining about?

At the end of the day, we are all here because we love overland camping. The industry supporting this passion is tiny. Trying to create and compete with a new product to serve this niche market is both expensive and exhausting. (I know, I've tried) SO, my hat goes off to Marc for doing what 99% of us haven't done, which is putting his personal money and time into trying to make a fantastic product and a more robust overlanding industry.

If you're in the market for a camper of any sort/size, do your research and see what works for you.

Perhaps we should now move this thread on to something more practical like "what would YOU like to see in a next iteration" rather than more pages of why XP Campers are/aren't ___________.


Entrepreneur & Lifehacker
@jayshapiro re: "Christian's overlanding stretch limo" ... whaaaaaaaat?! I have to see this thing! Do you have any pics? That would totally be worth hijacking the thread for! :)

@jayshapiro also re: "Perhaps we should now move this thread on to something more practical like "what would YOU like to see in a next iteration" rather than more pages of why XP Campers are/aren't " agreed, and I'll be happy to start that with this: My goal is to carry a dirtbike on the back of my XP Camper. That's why I opted for a Dually 3500, so I'd have the beefiness I need to do it. Since the XP has its entry door on the side, not the back, this seems very doable. I've been rapping w/ some other XP members about how to do it over on this thread: but if enough other XP owners wanted this, maybe it's something Marc could offer as an option. I'm happy to blaze the trail on a design that's specific to the XP for others to use later (i.e., open source the design a la EcoRoamer style!).

So that's my feature request. Another one for Marc was to have more hooks scattered throughout the ceiling (and velcro, which may not be such a good idea as pointed out by others on this thread: )



Is there something wrong with discussing and comparing campers ? Both the good and bad ? The original poster talks about how wonderful the XP camper is and badmouths the rest and when someone mentions a few problems with XP campers everyone gets all B*tthurt about it.

I live about 45 minutes away from XP campers and hope to stop by some time to check them out. They are out of my price range but it's always nice to check out cool,innovative campers.Marc seems like a real nice guy.


Supporting Sponsor
Chris, I've never met you. Hopefully some day I will. But... Didn't Marc give you a "scream'n deal on one of his campers? Didn't you take it to SEMA and got well deserved attention (in a large part from your XP camper)? Didn't he buy it back from you when you said that you were not happy with it? ARN'T YOU SATISIFIDED!!!! Why get an employee to B*tch about it? Time to "own up" man!

What comes around, goes around!
45K is what I paid. There was some decent press for both of us, that was the deal, worked out well. Yes, I am satisfied because I no longer have the camper. Justin is not my employee, he doesn't speak for me, I don't speak for him. Muzzling him is a job I would never ever want!

The points we've made have been all about defects in quality & workmanship that ACTUALLY HAPPENED. There, I owned up. ( I guess, not really sure what that means!)
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Christian P.

Expedition Leader
Staff member
With the exception of Christian's overlanding stretch limo they are all great vehicles that do the job for their travelers.

No one told us that a 1988 Ford Lincoln Limousine previously owned by a Las Vegas pimp is not a proper overland vehicle before...
I guess we should go back to Timbuktu and bring it back...


A few random images scattered on the web...from the day we got it in Vegas (and the previous owners...) and the delivery.

mark cp and ladies (Large).jpg

limoatBM (Large).jpg





*end of hijack...*

Christian P.

Expedition Leader
Staff member
Don't take this overlanding stuff too seriously.

There is no correlation between the size of your _________ (insert what you want - i.e, engine, bed, winch, tires, solar panel, water tank, etc...) and the amount of fun you will have when traveling.

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Exploring Elements

Supporting Sponsor
I think a bunch of us should just buy a few old limos, maybe put a skid plate and a lift on them and hit the road! Imagine a procession of limos crossing boarders and driving through South American borders. With a few of the same general model on the road we can use each other as parts vehicles as well and just keep going with less vehicles as we go. Spread the limo love all across the countryside ;)

I've been struggling with what overland rig to move into next, and the real answer keeps coming up the one that will get me there and still leave me a few dollars to put fuel in the tank, food in my mouth and keep my electronics running so that I can continue to take pics and share them with my friends. Bottom line, find something that puts a smile on YOUR face and hit the road!


Expedition Leader
Some Real World Experience

I first entered this thread to offer the Tiger as an option in the XP Camper vs. Sportsmobile debate. Ironically, it was seeing a Sportsmobile that led me to buy a Tiger, so I have little vested interest in this argument. That said (you knew that was coming), I tend to evaluate all overland vehicles for their suitability for use in the environments that I know best, Africa and South America.

This is an interesting blog by a couple who, having used an Xplorer 4x4 in Central America, bought an XP on a Chevrolet for use in Southern Africa. Sadly, they had to sell the camper after medical problems, but their blog is well worth reading as they used an XP long enough for the new to wear off and far enough from the factory that they could not simply pop back to fix things.



New member
As far as using diesel fuel appliances I would much rather save my fuel for my rig besides I opted for an exterior propane hookup so I don't get those god awful food smells in my rig.
My wife and I have been using the diesel appliances in the XP multiple times per day for over two months and I have used less than 2 gallons of fuel. In the same time, we've had friends who needed multiple propane refills.

Also, you aren't cooking on a diesel flame. The stove looks like a ceramic stove. You don't smell diesel at all.

Just wanted to offer up those comments from someone who has been living in an XP for over 6 months now!

BTW, your van looks awesome!


EDIT: Just realized you said "food smells" not "fuel smells" -- sorry about that! My wife is an amazing cook, so we have only had pleasant food smells in our XP so far!
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My wife and I have been using the diesel appliances in the XP multiple times per day for over two months...
Just wanted to offer up those comments from someone who has been living in an XP for over 6 months now!
Where did you eat the other 4 months?

Tx, Bill


Can't wait for V3!

I visited the XP shop in the spring and Marc and I put our heads together and between us we built a very crude full size mock up. A more refined prototype is currently under construction. Picture a slide in camper, similar in size to the V1, but with a full hard side, front pivot, pop up roof system similar to the V2. It will also incorporate a unique storage/mounting system that will address many of the shortcomings of traditional slide in camper designs. Oh and it will have a small pass through, either as standard or perhaps as an option, that is undecided right now. That is as much info as I can provide for now, sorry no pictures or drawings until the prototype is ready for public unveiling :)

I can't wait for this. If it work's out (and we don't end up with a livin lite or a uro-camper first), it will probably still end up on a flatbed!