Hellwig's 2008 SEMA vehicle

Hellwig is excited to sponsor the Turtle Expedition at SEMA 2008. This amazing vehicle has all the characteristics that Hellwig stands for, rugged durability, innovation, and adventure. The Turtle Expedition is equipped with Hellwig Suspension; front and rear sway bars, and heavy duty air kits.

Read more details on The Turtle V here or visit their website at www.turtleexpedition.com”>Turtle Expedition Website.

Bound for Adventure


The latest in the 29-year dynasty of Turtle Expedition research trucks, the all new Turtle V and its Tortuga Expedition Camper may take us another step toward the elusive goal of ├Čn the ultimate backroad travel/adventure vehicle, but it is an experiment. It isn’t often that The Turtle Expedition builds a new travel/research vehicle, but when we do, our goals are unwavering: safety, comfort, functional performance, and above all, reliability.

Ford’s Super Duty F-550 4X4, powered by the reliable International Power Stroke Intercooled Turbo Diesel, puts this truck in a class by itself, while still maintaining the comfort and maneuverability of the American pick-up. The cab is the same as an F-250, but a closer look reveals a massive Dana 135 differential in the rear, with a frame and suspension designed to carry a GVWR of 17,500 pounds!! We are talking Heavy-Duty. Kind of like an F-350 on steroids! The Dana 60 differential up front has served us well over the years, but we are working to resolve problems with the sealed bearing assembly which cannot be serviced on the road.

A custom, European-style, expedition camper has been designed and mounted to the chassis of the F-550 using a three-point suspension system. In 2001-2002, The Turtle Expedition will start some serious testing. Build-up articles have appeared in Four Wheeler Magazine, and will continue to be published in Power Stroke Registry and Trailer Life as we explore some backroads in Mexico, Mississippi, Florida, Saskatchewan, Manitoba, and Michigan. By the end of 2002, we will have made a decision whether or not to build a limited number of refined Tortuga Expedition Campers for sale, and we will begin final preparation for our next big adventure. Destinations under consideration are Mongolia, Africa, and the Northern Silk Road through Kazakhstan and across the Taklamakan Desert in Northwestern China. In Chinese, Taklamakan means, “If you go in, you won’t come out”!

Specifications in a Nut Shell

Base Vehicle: 1999 Ford F-550
Design and Assembly:
The Turtle Expedition, Unlimited
Engine:International 7.3 L Power Stroke Turbo Intercooled Diesel V8 equipped with a 4″ Magnaflow Performance Exhaust system and a K&N High Flow air filter
520 ft. lbs. @ 1600 rpm
Horsepower: 235 @ 2,700 rpm
Factory six-speed
Transfer Case:
Factory two-speed
Locking Hubs:
National Spring packs with dual Rancho 9000 adjustable shocks
Rear Differential:
Dana 135 with Detroit Locker
Front Differential:
Dana 60 with ARB Air Locker
Michelin 335/80R20 XZL MPT
Stockton Wheel steel (custom)
To be determined

Posted on Tuesday, August 26th, 2008 in SEMA Project Vehicles.
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