The Unicat

This “garbage truck” has caused a bit of a stir on the Web. What some people thought was a refurbished rubbish vehicle is really a heavy-duty, off-road RV called the Unicat.

Unicats are manufactured in Germany and custom units can take up to 12 months to complete. If anything, these mobile houses are a great example of space saving techniques and gadgets.

If you really want to get off the beaten track and explore some of the more rugged areas of the world (yet still live in comfort) this RV might be for you. If you can afford it. Most Unicats sell for around $500,000.

In the U.S. Unicat offers two styles of RVs. The Amerigo is a family expedition vehicle in 4×4 or 6×6 configurations. The Professional is primarily used for search-and-rescue, natural disaster survival, remote eco-tourism, off-road ambulances, fire-fighting trucks, professional film crew trucks, and off-road racing support vehicles.

From the Unicat website:

In designing the body, first priority is given to functionality and performance criteria such as weight distribution, center of gravity, stability, and reliability. Next, a well-balanced interior layout comprised of seating/eating area, sleeping accommodations, kitchen, toilet/shower, storage, water supply, heating, lights, and electricity. Thirdly, we enable individual choices for interior appointments such as upholstery, flooring, counter tops, and cabinets in many finishes and materials.

Although UNICAT will gladly build custom one-of-a-kind vehicles, we recommend and prefer to build standardized models. Much research and testing go into the design, engineering and build-out of every new model and it’s extremely expensive and time-consuming to go through that rigor for each vehicle. Customer benefits include greater reliability, better value, greater serviceability, faster delivery, and most importantly, a better chance for an overall ownership experience over the long term.

“Drive from Prudhoe Bay, Alaska, to Tierra Del Fuego, Chile, roads optional. Ship your EV to the Sahara, Gobi, Kalahari Deserts or the Australian Outback. See people and places that others can only dream of. All this in a vehicle offering the highest standards of reliability, safety and comfort.”

Photos Courtesy of Apartment Therapy and Unicat

By Christina Nellemann for the (Tiny House Blog)

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Ryan Mitchell - February 1, 2010 Reply

I think the coolest part of this monstrosity is the, outside of the customs cabinets, is how at the back end a elevator drops down to reveal an ATV. The Cloth washer is also really nice, it is a combination washer and dryer in one!

Photos of it here:

Josh - February 1, 2010 Reply

Yeah, here are the other pictures of this particular model. I would love to tell people I live in a garbage truck, then invite them over to take a look!

Epperson - February 1, 2010 Reply

A group of European Academics ventured out into the Mongolian Steppes to study the dying Nomadic culture in a modern epoch. They traveled in a renovated Dutch Military Vehicle for a drop in the bucket compared to the asking price for the Unicat.

Check it out here:

    Kent Griswold - February 1, 2010 Reply

    Hi Epperson – thanks for pointing out the project and video. Quite a story and adventure. I hope to watch all of their videos as I can. Thanks for sharing.

      Epperson - February 1, 2010 Reply


      They seem they would be very receptive to a blog such as yours so perhaps you can contact them and gather more details.

Feng - February 1, 2010 Reply

I’m just concerned about what running the Dakar Rally is going to do to my fine china.

Lucas - February 2, 2010 Reply

This thing is proof that the end is near….

Arlos - February 3, 2010 Reply

This is one of the best projects, i’ve seen so far!

Abel Zyl Zimmerman - November 3, 2012 Reply

These sort of ‘super rv’s’ are fascinating… as a study in design and technology.

But, they are nearly spaceships. You could buy a helluva big ocean going sailing ship for half the price… and have enough $ left to circumnavigate a couple times.

RV AJ - January 6, 2013 Reply

Great post. I though this would be great for the RV crowd so I threw it up on my blog as well!

Link to Article: ?

LANE - October 8, 2013 Reply

I dare anyone to try to break into this steel fortress! Security has also been a nagging concern of mine regarding tiny houses. They seem so vulnerable. But this one appeals to me. But not the price LOL. But I guess we can’t have it both ways now, could we?
(Sigh)… we can only dream!

Mike - September 17, 2018 Reply

Aaagh The Unicat! I want one!

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