MagnaFlow Ambassador Aaron Kaufman recently joined us at Overland Expo West 2022 among the pines and peaks of Flagstaff, Arizona to check out some of the latest developments in off-roading and see what the ascending popularity of overlanding is all about. Aaron and his dog Chili spent a couple days touring the showgrounds alongside MagnaFlow Spokesman Richard Waitas, allowing Aaron to gain an up-close understanding of what is currently the biggest trend in off roading.
First off was a stop at Rigd Supply to talk to Jason Denney (Ig: @tacodust) and check out their hitch-mounted products, including their new bike rack. Aaron was impressed by the careful engineering that was clearly required to make each concept work, especially the fact that each of the products is designed to be mounted on a vehicle without compromising its towing capabilities.
One vendor that definitely grabbed Aaron’s attention was AEV (American Expeditions Vehicles), which first piqued his interest in “like the late 90s” with how seamlessly their products integrate into stock vehicles, offering a clean, OEM-like look. He particularly loved AEV’s vintage-looking Jeep JL with some classic 70s aesthetics, as well as their beastly, top-of-the-line Ram Prospector. “It looks incredibly OEM” Aaron said of the Prospector, which also features AEV’s. He spent a good amount of time talking with Matt of AEV about all the considerations that went into the design and modification of the Ram, including how they lifted the axles without changing the ride height.
Centerforce’s thoroughly unique 1964 International-Harvester Scout 80 easily caught Aaron’s eye. With its bare-bones, no frills interior and honest-day’s-work patina found throughout the vehicle’s exterior and interior, it was clear that this rig is the real deal.
Looking To the Future
Of course, being an off-roading and overlanding focused exposition in 2022, the brand-new Hummer EV was in attendance. Both Richard and Aaron thought it was an interesting looking vehicle, and they’re curious to see how the rig’s hold up in the long run. GMC also had their Canyon AT4 Concept at the show, which is functionally similar to Richard’s Chevrolet Colorado Bison (minus the many customizations Richard has made to his Bison, of course).
We had a great time spending a few days with Aaron and Chili, and we’re so happy they were able to meet us at the show. He really enjoyed getting a closer look at the overlanding lifestyle and it was a lot of fun to introduce him to all of our industry friends. For more coverage of Overland Expo West and all the other shows we attend follow us on Facebook, Instagram, YouTube and Twitter. We look forward to hopefully seeing Aaron and Chili at some of our other events in the near future!
WATCH THE OVERLAND EXPO WEST HIGHLIGHTS