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posted on December 10th, 2015

A picture-perfect road trip mobile

Throughout December, we’re showcasing some of the sweetest cars that Turo owners have to offer with our “12 cars of Christmas” blog series. Start ticking cars off your must-drive bucket list, or get inspired to rent out your killer ride and share the love with other car aficionados.


Having just finished up their apartment which was featured on Apartment Therapy, design aficionado Zack and his girlfriend Alex were looking for a new design challenge. Their hunger for a new project also just so happened to coincide with another hunger — for a change of scenery.

So about a year ago, they bought a Toyota Tundra and a camper shell and started sketching out plans for a 100-day road trip around the states. They also endeavored to make it as “minimal, functional, and comfortable as possible,” Zack said. And they passed that test with flying colors.

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The camper van is beautifully pared down with all the creatures comforts of home — from a pull-out bed, sink, and camp shower to camp chairs, table, and outdoor rug — and it served their epic road trip perfectly.

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“We did a big loop up through Canada, to Wisconsin, dipped down to Nashville, North Carolina, and then swooped down to Florida, New Orleans, the Utah national parks, and then southern California,” he said. But once they got back to San Francisco and back to work, they hated seeing their camper van just sitting on the street.

“It was built to be used,” he said. “Renting it out helps subsidize it and also helps with parking.”

“Typical RVs have a bit of a stigma; they’re not often thought of as cool and contemporary,” he said. But this van, affectionately named The Beast and the Barnacle, both turns heads and turns that stigma on its head.

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It’s beautifully appointed, road tested, and meticulously designed with form and function in mind. It even has its own Instagram handle.

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In SF and gripped with wanderlust? Hit the road in the Beast and the Barnacle and bring your daydreams to life. Or at least thumb through Zack’s photos and see what big, beautiful things can be accomplished in small spaces.

Megan is the copywriter and content tsarina at Turo. She lives to wander near and far, never met a beach (or dog) she didn’t like, and loves to talk postmodern lit and theory to anyone who’ll listen.