Manifest Your Off-Road Dreams With a Savage XT17HRT Overlanding Camper

XT17HRT Overland Trailer 25 photos
Photo: MDC Campers and Caravans Inc.
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Sure, travel trailers are great, but once you know where to look, the basic campers we may have grown up with are simply trumped by overlanding habitats like the XT17HRT. Pack up your goods, grab your off-roading vehicle, and let’s see what’s in store with this one.
If you’ve never heard of Market Direct Campers (MDC) before, it’s because this crew has operated out of Australia for most of its life. After all, it was born there, but over the years, news of their ability to craft comfortable and insanely capable machines has spread worldwide, and these days, America has access to four of its own MDC dealerships. Here I ran across the XT17HRT, the travel trailer in question today.

Why is this the sort of trinket you should take note of for future off-road and off-grid camping adventures? Well, if you’re aware of the habitats they use down in Australia, then you’re aware of what’s in store. If not, let me point out that the XT17 is built with the same techniques that allow Australia-destined campers to thrive where others dare not enter.

This ability to travel where roads don’t even exist is all due to the way MDC crafts each XT17. A hot-dipped galvanized steel frame, independent trailing arm suspension with dual shock absorbers, and coils on both axles allow for smooth transitions over uneven terrain. Aluminum composite panels on top of a fully welded frame mean the elements don’t huff and puff your house down. If you haven’t scrolled through the image gallery yet, now’s the time to do so.

XT17HRT Overland Trailer
Photo: MDC Campers and Caravans Inc.
Since you have an idea of what MDC offers here, let’s take a trip through our imagination and see what this means for folks like you and me. But, before I go on, let me point out that you’ll need at least $75,000 (€69,200 at current exchange rates) to hitch one of these puppies behind your truck, but I feel the image gallery may have shown you why this much is asked for.

Before I talk about the interior, let me point out a few other features that folks like you and me should be glad to be receiving as standard; reasons why the price stands where it does. So, you’ll find two 150-watt solar panels, two batteries, a BMS, an inverter, a Dometic furnace and AC, and a Truma hot water system. The start of a very solid off-grid setup, if you ask me.

As for that interior I mentioned, I fell in love with it at first sight. Sure, it’s simple; after all, how much can you fit in a 17-foot (5.2-meter) trailer? But it still houses a double bed, modular dinette, galley with two-burner cooktop, sink, the works, and a standing shower; no hunched backs here. MDC even managed to fit a washing machine and residential fridge inside the XT17.

Now, back outside the unit, you may find it redundant to include another galley, but MDC does just that. However, it only goes to show that this manufacturer knows that mobile living isn’t about staying cooped up in some camper. This lifestyle is all about getting outside, spending time with the family, and experiencing moments that bring you closer.

XT17HRT Overland Trailer Interior
Photo: MDC Campers and Caravans Inc.
Think about things this way. You’re out in the wild, with the sun shining overhead and the sounds of local wildlife buzzing. No neighbors in sight and no car horns either. With an outdoor lounge set up next to the camper, you sit in wait for whatever is on the fire and even break out a tune on the old six-string. Solar panels are soaking up the precious light overhead, but you’re covered with an awning coming out of the side of the XT17. Suddenly, a rogue storm hits the lands, and you’re forced to quickly pack everything in and move your activities indoors. Luckily you can continue cooking whatever you had on the stove outside. I told you it’s nice to have two cooktops.

If you’re the sort of three-person family that’s really into wild activities, maybe you’ve got yourself an e-bike rack. If you’re into scaling cliff faces that you may find in the wild, there are plenty of cargo bays tattered all over the exterior and protected with that diamond plating. Once you’ve returned from your activities, whether muddy or dusty, you can clean off the muck by setting up an outdoor shower station.

The last thing you need to consider, if you’re thinking about grabbing such a beast, is your actual vehicle. It will need to be a rather brawny bugger because the XT17 comes in with a GVWR of 7,716 pounds (3,500 kilograms) and drops 507 pounds (230 kilograms) onto your hitch. Quite the big boy, if you ask me, but we can see why; the XT17HRT boasts quite the gear to help you manifest your off-roading fantasies.

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About the author: Cristian Curmei
Cristian Curmei profile photo

A bit of a nomad at heart (being born in Europe and raised in several places in the USA), Cristian is enamored with travel trailers, campers and bikes. He also tests and writes about urban means of transportation like scooters, mopeds and e-bikes (when he's not busy hosting our video stories and guides).
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