The #VanLife spectrum is a broad one, starting with budget-friendly nomadic living and ending on the other side with affluent influencers who camp in comfort 365 days a year—unless it’s a leap year, in which case, make that 366. The new Airstream Intersate 24X adventure rig is for the latter who want something more lux than some people’s homes but make it mobile and trailworthy. It offers a lot, really, and even at roughly $215,000 after destination, you know there’s a market for it.
Clearly, I’m not a part of that market and you might not be either, but we can at least ogle at the van’s laundry list of features. I’ll be sure to hit the highlights, from the dually Mercedes-Benz Sprinter 3500 platform it’s built on to its solar energy harvesting capabilities. Oh, and the 42-inch LED light bar—that’s what really makes it an off-roader, if you ask Instagram.
The Interstate 24X packs a Mercedes 3.0-liter turbodiesel V6 under its hood that sends 188 horsepower and 350 pound-feet of torque through a seven-speed automatic transmission. That output is eventually dispatched to all six (six!) wheels, which are shod in 215/85R16 Goodyear Wrangler all-terrains. It should be pretty capable on muddy trails, then, even when loaded down with all the gear and a full 24.5-gallon tank of fuel.
If you’ve got one of those snazzy overlanding campers to haul behind, you’ll be in the clear. The Interstate 24X is rated to tow 5,000 pounds, which is more than enough for a 20-foot boat, too.
Airstream has done up the cabin the way you’d expect with durable, marine-grade Simtex fabric and a modern theme throughout. The living quarters are lit by dimmable LEDs and feature seating for six, though there’s just sleeping space for two. Regardless of that, the bed is configurable four ways and several components in the space can be rearranged however you see fit. Just don’t try to move the kitchen counter.
If you’re on the go and don’t have access to the grid—isn’t that the whole point?—then there are deployable solar panels to harvest electricity while the sun’s out. These help keep the pair of 100-amp-hour, deep-cycle batteries juiced. There’s also a 30-amp energy storage system and a 2,000-watt power inverter, so you shouldn’t have any problems plugging in an amp and strumming “Fast Car” by Tracy Chapman on your electric-acoustic six-string. No shame, that’s a great song. If you’d rather Bluetooth it from your phone then you can also it enjoy it over the Airstream’s Resonado speaker system.
I didn’t mention the 5.0 cubic foot refrigerator, the 13,500 BTU air conditioner, or even the Hydronic Timberline furnace and hot water heater that’s designed for high altitudes. I figured that was all implied but in case it wasn’t, now you know.
Aistream says the Interstate 24X starts at $213,850, which sounds like a lot. In no universe is that cheap, but it’s way less than something like, say, an EarthRoamer. You’ve got to pay to play in this space and if you’re more comfortable driving a relatively agile van rather than a mountain-climbing full-size truck, then this is a better way to spend your cash.
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