ROK and ROL Your Way Into Mobile Living With One of These "Micro" Overlanding Campers

ROK Overland Camper 12 photos
Photo: Ember Recreational Vehicles
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“To be a rock and not to roll.” Most of us know these words from Led Zepplin. But if we apply them to off-grid and mobile living, ROK means Rear Outside Kitchen, and ROL stands for Rear Outside Locker. Since autoevolution doesn’t have much to do with rock bands, the latter will be the topic of discussion today.
I recently discovered an American RV manufacturer that saw the light of day no earlier than 2021. I’m referring to Ember RV, and in truth, this crew is built upon decades of mobile living tradition and ideals. In this spirit, we’ll explore the ROK and ROL campers, two overlanding machines designed for remote and intimate travels.

To make things easier to understand, the ROK and ROL are campers from a team led by Ashley Bontrager Lehman, granddaughter of the same Bontrager family that started Jayco. We can even say that some of those Jayco ideals and traditions are applied to this brand too, but we’ll never know, wink-wink.

However, it doesn’t matter where this crew gained all its knowledge; the gear they build seems more than ready to aid you in your adventures. For example, these two buggers are built similarly to other larger units from Ember, the Overland Series, and while these units are overland-ready too, they’re this manufacturer’s Micro Series.

ROK Overland Camper
Photo: Ember Recreational Vehicles
Overall, each unit is built upon the same in-house-designed steel chassis. Under that, Ember drops a Curt independent suspension with springs and dual shock absorbers. But, on top of the chassis, we find an aluminum shell frame with Azdel walls and rooftop and a Transcore composite floor.

Now, if you decide to ROK your way through life, your unit will feature a rear galley accessible from the outside. This is the RV that you want if you’re the sort of couple or small family looking to stay out in the wild for a couple of days or that simply don’t want to go through the trouble of exploring galley setups.

On the other hand, if you’re into quick trips, maybe to climb those cliffs on the outskirts of town or a fishing trip, the ROL may be of interest to you the most. Since the rear space where the ROK housed the galley is now free of cooking gear, the ROL reveals nothing more than a large storage bay for all the goodies you may need to ROL with the punches.

ROK Overland Camper
Photo: Ember Recreational Vehicles
Inside, both campers come across as the same. Nothing more than a futon, some storage space, a table, and a wardrobe is all you’ll find. Apparently, there’s enough space to sleep up to four guests, although I feel that four adults may be pushing it. If we look at things from a different angle, only one floorplan exists, the ROL. The ROK is simply an updated version of the first.

For a moment, take a little daydream where you have one of these puppies hitched up behind your truck. A GVWR of 3,495 pounds (1,585 kilograms) is all you’ll be pulling along. Driving along, the suspension I mentioned ensures you can take those hidden roads that pop up out in the corner of your eye; you decide to follow one, and it leads to a meadow hidden among the trees. There's even a brook nearby with fresh water to fuel your extended weekend. If you grab solar power accessories, really settle in for a long haul. The rest of this exercise in imagination, I leave to you.

All this begs the question: How much are you being asked to dish out for one of these? The ROL starts at $29,078 (€28,350 at current exchange rates), while the ROK is set at $31,109 (€30,200 at current exchange rates). Sounds like a camper ready for a tad more than just driving down hardtop surfaces.
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Editor's note: Images in the gallery display both the ROK and ROL campers.

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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