Oh, you think your Sprinter's cool Mr. #Vanlife? Chew on this!

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Living here in Portland, I see a lot of vans clearly intended for enjoying the great outdoors. There are at least four VW Eurovans within a two-block radius of my house and no shortage of imported JDM choices, either, including a converted fire truck and a Mitsubishi Delica Space Jam Happy Tripper (or something to that effect). Those would be the more accessible choices, though. There are also the professionally modified, big-bucks Mercedes Sprinters, and judging by bumper stickers and general sentiment, the former crowd isn't too keen about the Sprinter crowd. Why? I honestly don't know. Please enlighten me in the comments.

Either way, if you really want to put Mr. #Vanlife Sprinter in his place (for whatever reason that may be), I can think of no better way that blitzing forth into the wilderness in this 1975 Steyr Puch Pinzgauer 712 AMB. This is a 6x6 all-terrain military vehicle that makes a Mercedes G-Wagen (also available as a 6x6!) look like a little red wagon. The AMB stands for ambulance, which is what gives you that handy enclosed space at the back to outfit to your #vanlife heart's content. The 712 AMB's (and by the way, it's really hard to not type AMG) typically came with the 2.7-liter engine upgrade over the standard 2.5-liter. It's still a four-cylinder gasoline engine, though, so definitely not an AMG. It has 102 horsepower and some amount of torque (despite digging, I could only find torque figures for the 2.5, so know that it's somewhere north of 133 pound-feet). This seems like a good opportunity to note that it can supposedly tow 11,000 pounds on road and about 4,000 pounds off road with a payload of 3,300 pounds. This is on top of a basic 712 6x6 empty weight of 5,291 pounds (so lighter than a G 63!). It also has a five-speed manual transmission plus two other serious-looking levers labeled in German that do something related to looking forward and looking back. I sure hope they include the manual.

This particular Pinzgauer has received some smart modifications and upgrades including six-wheel disc brakes (that's fun to type), six new Kevlar Goodyear Wrangler tires, a custom dash with MGL aircraft engine monitor gauges, and LED exterior lighting. As you can see, the former ambulance space is left open for 3,300 pounds worth of beds, kitchen, mobile work space, whatever.

So yeah, this thing is pretty cool. Worldwide Vintage Autos in Colorado is offering it for $38,900. That's definitely cheaper than a Sprinter and not that different from Eurovan prices, either.

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