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New 4x4 Truck or AWD Van?


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I'm considering what to buy for my hunting vehicle. I currently have a crewcab 1/2 ton 4x4 Vmax with a Snugtop. I now have two bird dogs and it seems like I need more room. I seem to bulk out my little pickup pretty quickly and while my dogs are high powered hunting dogs with over-the-top breeding and training from pros, I treat them like house pets and let them ride in the back seat of the crewcab. That limits how many friends I can get in the truck on trips. I was thinking a van would also let the dogs stay in either airconditioned or heated comfort when the weather is extreme.

 

I'm thinking about the possibility of a 4wd van. I looked at the Sportsmobiles and the Quigley conversions but they are pricey. They only maker of anything close I could find was GM's AWD 1500 series vans.

Is this the Denali AWD system?

Anyone have any experience with the AWD vans?

 

What's the possibility of changing the transfer case and front diff to a real 4x4 setup?

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Seems to me a Tahoe/Yukon or Suburban/Yukon XL would be a better vehicle. As long as you don't get a Denali version you can get the selectable 4x4, as opposed to the AWD thats comes with the Denali. The SUV's ride better, have a lower profile so should be better on fuel and would have a better resale value. Van's are not real good off/road, top heavy and hard to maneuver. We had van's once for GPS survey crew work trucks and they did work out. The burban was the best vehicle.

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Seems to me a Tahoe/Yukon or Suburban/Yukon XL would be a better vehicle. As long as you don't get a Denali version you can get the selectable 4x4, as opposed to the AWD thats comes with the Denali. The SUV's ride better, have a lower profile so should be better on fuel and would have a better resale value. Van's are not real good off/road, top heavy and hard to maneuver. We had van's once for GPS survey crew work trucks and they did work out. The burban was the best vehicle.

 

 

+1!!!

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I would definately agree about the suburban or Yukon. Best of both worlds, plus 4x4 van will cost a fortune and still not as capable as the burb or yukon. The only real benefit of van would be the ability to sleep or camp out of it while hunting.

 

I would definately agree about the suburban or Yukon. Best of both worlds, plus 4x4 van will cost a fortune and still not as capable as the burb or yukon. The only real benefit of van would be the ability to sleep or camp out of it while hunting.

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I would vote Tahoe/Yukon or get a cap for the truck.

I have 2 Labs I put in the back when I go away, I put a dog crate back there, installed 12V plug in the back and run a 12"x12" - 12V fan to keep them cool in the summer, works great, and theres still room for storage back there. When I'm camping at a racetrack and no shade around it's actually much cooler in the bed of the truck than it is for them just out in the sun so they spend alot of time in their by their own choice...

Here's a pic...not a great pic but you can see the crate & fan on driver side of the truck.

 

P5210306.jpg

 

Also doubles as a great "jail" for your kids!! haha

 

336.jpg

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I appreciate all your preferences. I'm aware of the burbs and toppers. In fact my truck has a very similar topper. Going to a burb would actually be a slight downside in volume for me but it would be all a.c.'d and heated area.

 

DSC_4557.jpg

 

Burbs are expensive. Much more so than trucks or vans. A fully loaded AWD van lists in the upper thirtes but can be had for low to mid thirties brand new. A burb with the same trim will be mid $50s to 50K (I used KBB to work up these prices). I know it won't be able to go everywhere a 4WD truck with oversize tires can go. But I also know most of my offloading for hunting is pretty tame and I may just keep my truck too.

 

So I was looking for answers to those questions about the driveline and any other direct experience with either AWD and or AWD vans.

 

Thanks

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I had 10' AWD Chevy work van, and had it loaded with equipment... The awd worked really well but the worst thing about the van was ground clearance. It can go offroad, through mud, snow, whatever, but you have to be careful in deep ruts. I ripped off the front air dam, and got hung up on the frame a couple times. Also had to get both tie rod ends replaced @45k.

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