As a photographer, I’m always looking for the best car to sleep in for a quick weekend trip. I’ve found that hybrids are the best car for camping because the engine can be on while sleeping and allow for heat or air conditioning. And if you’re going to camp in a hybrid why not make it an off-road experience.
One of the coolest adventure vehicles for camping, in my opinion, is the Jeep wrangler 4xe.
But the wrangler 4xe is one problem. For camping, there is less room, because the battery is under the seats.
So How do you sleep in a Jeep Wrangler 4xe?
The best way to sleep in a 4xe is to build a small platform that’s the same size as the battery. You can use the extra space under the platform for storage, and add a simple bed on top.
Why the Jeep Wrangler 4xe is the best all-around car?
Total Area: 67.4 cubic feet
The Jeep Wrangler 4xe is a plug-in hybrid that will go 25 miles on electric-only and 400 miles with gas and electric combined.
Although it’s in the $50,000 price range it’s really the perfect all around car. It’s the perfect commute car, because you can use the all electric engine to go to and from work.
With an EPA estimated rating of 49mpge, this car will crawl over your Toyota Prius. It’s an incredible vehicle for long trips, and it will take you up Moab and through the Sierra.
The full system makes 375 hp and 470 lb-ft of torque which is more hp and torque than the Jeep Wrangler diesel. It also has Jeeps all new suspension that drives more like a luxury crossover.
The new wrangler 4xe is expensive, but if you live in the U.S you can qualify for the new EV credit of $8,000. Additional credits may be available based on your state.
The only downside to the 4xe is the cargo space. The all-electric Jeep wrangler keeps the same cubic space as other models, but it has a battery hump under the back seats.
How to sleep in the Jeep Wrangler 4xe
- Build a 6.5″ platform
- 3 – 2×4
- 1 sheet of 3/4″ plywood
The best way to camp and sleep in a Jeep wrangler 4xe is to build a 6.5″ platform. You can get all the wood cut for you at home depot.
Although the battery hump is frustrating, it’s not the end of the world. There are plenty of modifications that would allow you to build a custom platform to make the floor level. Most Jeep campers usually add pullout drawers to sleep on top, and this would definitely be an option.
Just like the Prius, jeep’s hybrid system should also have a camp mode to help you sleep with air conditioning or heat. Jeep also has an EV only mode that should let you use the battery for heat or AC. This should help prevent the car from using the gas engine when you’re sleeping.
Just like other Jeep wranglers, the Jeep 4xe will tow 3500 lbs. That means you can get great mpg and tow a small camp trailer to sleep in with your family or friends.
The video here has some great ideas to help you get started.
Why you should sleep in a Jeep Wrangler
There are great photographs to be captured by the roadside, but having the ability to travel in the back country is much more liberating.
The Jeep Wrangler unlimited wins number one for the best crossover for camping because it can go anywhere. If you’re not interested in the 4xe, the standard 4-door Jeep wranglers offer 72 cubic feet of cargo space.
With the seats down, the sleeping area is almost flat and can be corrected with some slight modification.
The base model Wrangler offers four wheel drive and depart angles that you won’t find in any other compact SUV.
Add a 2 inch lift and 34 inch tires and the Jeep Wrangler will take you anywhere off the beaten path.
I’m convinced if Ansel Adams was alive today, this is the car he would drive.
Best cars for camping listed by size
If you’re not interested in the Jeep Wrangler, here are the best vehicles for car camping listed by cubic feet. Read my full post on the best cars for camping here.
|Cargo Space (cubic feet)
|Toyota Rav4 hybrid
|Toyota Rav4 Prime
|Jeep Wrangler Unlimited
|Jeep Wrangler 4xe
|Toyota Highlander hybrid
|Dodge Grand Caravan
If I had to choose a vehicle to sleep in, these would be my top 3.
- Jeep Wrangler 4xe
- Toyota Rav4 hybrid
- Toyota Prius
All these vehicles offer a type of camp mode to keep you cool or warm during the night while using the battery, and both the wrangler and Rav 4 offer off road capabilities. But I would not push my Rav4 to the limits.