- All-Australian company producing bespoke 4×4 tourers
- High-end 4WD touring custom builds
- All-inclusive off-grid focused touring packages
Regular readers of 4X4 Australia will have seen quite a few fully kitted 4×4 rigs from Rambler Vehicles featured within its pages.
There’s good reason we keep coming back to Rambler rigs as they are complete packages for off-road touring. Comprehensive turnkey vehicles modified and equipped for off-road escapades anywhere around Australia.
The builds we’ve come to appreciate from Rambler have been high-end tourers built to go anywhere and sustain off-grid living. More often than not they are Toyota LandCruiser based – either LC79 or 200, often chopped and stretched – but we’ve also seen a Hilux and a few Isuzu D-MAXes from the Brisbane based workshop.
The builds start with new vehicles that undergo bumper-to-bumper transformations to deliver a touring rig created to suit the customer’s plans and expectations. The customer then takes delivery of a new 4×4 that is completely ready to hit the road and go travelling around the country. Rambler looks after registration (NSW and Queensland only) and can deliver vehicles nationwide.
Rambler Vehicles’ 300 Series build
They even give a nationwide three-year/100,000km warranty on all accessories and modifications, regardless of the manufacturer’s warranty. Vehicles also come with a free first Rambler Service to check over all the mods.
Moving into 2023, Rambler is almost ready to unveil its first LandCruiser 300 build and also reveal the packages they’ve been working on for the full-size American utes like the Silverado 1500.
But who are Rambler Vehicles and what is it they do to make their build so special? We spent some time with Rambler director, Kris Humphries to find out.
Kris Humphries, director at Rambler Vehicles
4X4 Australia: What is Rambler Vehicles?
Kris: Rambler is essentially a one-stop specialist vehicle and accessory broker. We work with the client to understand their needs and wants. We help select the best platform (vehicle) and best fit-out for their needs, taking in to account GVM, GCM and towing requirements. We plan the build down to the last detail.
4X4 Australia: What are the customers looking for in their 4×4 builds?
Kris: Most of our customers are looking for all-inclusive touring packages. Most common requirements are GVM/GCM upgrades, interior upgrades – improved comfort in the seats, leather, sound deadening and stereo upgrades. Also, 12-volt battery systems and upright fridges are a part of most builds.
4X4 Australia: So once you know what the client wants, how does the build progress?
Kris: We source the vehicle and accessories and then carry out the modifications, quality assurance and commissioning all in-house. We even offer finance and insurance options making Rambler a true one-stop shop.
4X4 Australia: Rambler builds always use some of the best aftermarket products available, what are some of the key brands you work with?
Kris: We are always guided by the customer’s needs however we do have preferred brands due to the quality and after-sales support that they offer. These include Lightforce, Carmans Auto Upholstery, ASG4X4, Superior Engineering, Outback Armour, TJM 4×4, Alpine, Toyo Tyres and Offroad Industries 4×4.
4X4 Australia: You mentioned TJM 4×4, you also own a TJM store, so is TJM gear compulsory on a Rambler?
Kris: Rambler is 100 per cent separate. It’s its own business, in its own facility. We still utilise a large amount of TJM product because we know it and trust it, but we are not locked to the brand. We can and have fitted ARB, Outback Armour, Superior Engineering, and Offroad Animal products to Rambler builds.
4X4 Australia: Spinifex is another brand we see on a lot of Rambler builds.
Kris: Spinifex Manufacturing is our business and it complements Rambler. It is our manufacturing and 12-volt business, so we use it for our canopies, trays, power boards and custom fabrication. We have customers who select other brands of canopies and trays, and Spinifex still supports this with internal fit-out and equipment.
Rambler Vehicles’ 79 Series rear
4X4 Australia: Between Rambler, Spinifex and TJM businesses, you are very much focused on 4×4 vehicles. Tell us about your own 4x4s.
Kris: I have been in the 4WD and outdoor leisure industry for more than 20 years. I’m an auto electrician by trade and have had a passion for cars from a young age.
My second car was a 1.0-litre Suzuki Sierra 4×4 and that’s where the passion for exploring started. Since then I have owned Jeeps, Hiluxes, Patrols, LandCruisers, Pathfinders, Suzukis even a couple of Land Rovers. Currently I drive a Chevy Silverado.
4X4 Australia: What’s been your favourite Rambler build?
Kris: LandCruisers are my favourite, so for me personally, it is a toss up between the Urban Khaki 200 and the last white stretched 200 recently featured – both cars I wish we had kept.
Rambler Vehicles’ 200 Series LandCruiser
4X4 Australia: Rambler is not just yourself, who else is behind the business?
Kris: Brad Russell is the other driving force behind Rambler. We have been business partners for the last decade. Brad is Mt Isa born and raised in the mines. He’s a Toyota man through and through and loves his 70 Series Cruisers. He currently drives a 79 Series.
4X4 Australia: Between Kris and Brad they have more than 50 years and tens of thousands of kilometres of experience in the 4×4 and touring business. It’s this experience that gives them intimate knowledge of what’s required of a touring 4×4 vehicle, and the best parts and processes needed to achieve it.
Backing them up at Rambler HQ are Dean Urda, customer experience manager, and Shai Smith, procurement and logistics manager, both experienced and enthusiastic four-wheel drivers.
Have the needs of clients changed over the years you have been doing Rambler?
Kris: I wouldn’t say our customers’ needs have changed, however our offering has as we have better understood what our customers actually do and what works and what doesn’t work. We constantly review and assess what we do and why. We are far from perfect and rely on feedback (good, bad and ugly) from our customers to improve and refine what we do.
Rambler Vehicles’ 79 Series LandCruiser
4X4 Australia: What’s new and exciting from Rambler in 2023?
Kris: We will be launching our first 300 dual-cab build in conjunction with ASG at the Brisbane 4×4 show (March 17 to 19). We are also excited about out American truck program also launching at the Brisbane show. We will be debuting our new Chevy 1500 series platform built for Australian touring. We also have some really exciting GVM and GCM based programs for the Chevy being launched in conjunction with Touring Solutions Australia and Offroad Industries.
4X4 Australia: It sounds like there’s no slowing down for the team at Rambler Vehicles and the year ahead will be loaded with exciting new builds using the latest vehicles on the market.
If you’re at the Brisbane 4×4 Show in March, be sure to drop by their stand to check out the latest builds, otherwise get on the Rambler website and in contact with the team to make your dream 4×4 build a reality.