Ask Nathan: EVs *Can’t* Camp, Mazda MX-5 Miata vs. Ford Mustang Convertible and Maverick Tremor Troubles?

I answer your questions!

Winnebago introduces all-electric RV based on the Ford Transit-e
Source: Winnebago Industries, Inc.

In this week’s Ask Nathan:

  • EV cars and trucks can’t camp!
  • Miata vs Mustang convertible?
  • I’m unhappy with my Ford Maverick Tremor?

The first question comes from a viewer who feels that EVs can’t camp.

Q: (Via:AskNathan@tflcar) Not one time have I heard any of you say that EVs can’t camp, cuz they can’t!

All TFL does is talk about EVs all day long. I’m sick of hearing about the Ford Lightning and all the other useless trucks that run on batteries. Y’all need to talk about vehicles we care about, like the Chevy Colorado or something. See the EVs you talk about have no business camping or over landing. Y’all proved that when you went to Alaska. That was a total waste of time!

I don’t see anyone making EV RVs. That’s because they aren’t capable enough!

– D. Bailey

A: When you say, “EVs can’t camp,” is it because of the range? If so, there are a few things to keep in mind.

Before I go there, I wanted to correct you on something. We report on EVERY SINGLE VEHICLE sold in the United States – and then some. Ford example: TFLtruck’s YouTube channel posted over 16 videos these past few weeks, and none of them featured an EV. TFLcar posted 16 videos with one featuring a Prius, and another talking about our fleet (which has the Hummer EV).

TFLclassics featured NO electric vehicles recently, and our TFLnow channel covered two hybrids and two EVs this past month.

Sure, our TFLEV channel covers all electric and electrified vehicles, but that’s implied by the name of the channel. Our bike and off-road channels rarely feature EVs. Finally – YES – we do talk about electric vehicles on our TFLTalk channel and podcast. Why? Because it’s news.

Every single automaker is building electric vehicles and we are here to cover it.

One final point, before I ruin the remainder of your rant. In the past two months, the new Chevrolet Colorado and GMC Canyon have been featured over a dozen times on a majority of our networks.

Image: Ford

Now, about that argument about “EVs can’t camp.”

Let’s not focus too much on the upcoming Winnebago Ford E-Transit all-electric RV too much. Until we drive it, I don’t have much to say – other than you’re wrong about people building EV RVs. The Winnebago e-RV will have an approximate 120 mile range. While that isn’t a lot, it’s still capable of going cross country – on the slower side. Still, it’s a fully contained RV with all the amenities of a regular B or C-class RV.

Now, what’s your definition of “camping?” Sure, off-the grid overlanding would be tough for an EV. We’ve proven that on our trip through Alaska. Fortunately, the millions of campers who go to campgrounds throughout the United States can plug in to many facilities. Hell, many have 240V, which is great for many EVs.

Anyone can go camping, in just about anything that moves. The question is: where can they go? Our new Chevrolet Bolt can easily take me and my spouse to hundreds of campgrounds around Colorado in a day. We can unfold our tent and camp for a few days before heading back. In many cases, on one charge.

Just because you hate something, doesn’t mean it’s lacking potential.

– N

The next question comes from a TFL fan who is cross shipping a base (EcoBoost) Ford Mustang Convertible versus a Mazda MX-5 Miata Grand Touring.

Q: Nathan, I’m comparing a base model Ford Mustang convertible against a Mazda Miata. Both about the same price.

In your experience, which one is the better all around driver. It’s just me and sometimes a friend. Both cars are manuals and ragtops, and the Mustang has almost no options. The Miata is the top of the line Grand Touring. They are both close to $36,000.

– Dan, the suntan man

A: Two VERY different cars, no doubt!

I wish you gave me more information. These two cars are extremely different, and I can only base this opinion on my seat time in both. Despite weighting over 1,000 lbs more, the 310 horsepower Mustang convertible is a hoot to drive, but you need costly upgrades to make it competitive with the Miata. It handles well enough, but the MX-5 Miata would dance circles around the Mustang, except on the drag strip.

Weighing in at about 2,400 lbs, the 181 hp Mazda MX-5 Miata isn’t a rocket off the line, but it is quick.

As I’m becoming an old fat man, my preference is more on comfort than ever before. Between that, and the utility of a back seat and a larger trunk, the Mustang makes more sense to me.

… but if you’re doing weekend track days, stick with the Mazda.

– N

The last question comes from a fan who recently bought a Ford Maverick Tremor, and regrets it.

Q: ( Howdy – Recently discovered  your  channel, its fantastic.

Dilemma: I ordered a Mav Tremor and it’s here. But after watching your review I was a little let down.

Can you give me your two cents on the vehicle? How would you situate it with respect to say the “off-road” AWDs from Toyota and Subarus on the one hand, and a more basic 4wd truck than the Tacoma TRD pro that you compared it to.

Very hard to get perspective from your video and relate to the trails I drive on.

Thanks for any advice and your time

– Nathan

A: Sorry about your pickup, but your name is awesome!

It sounds like you’re concerned about your new Maverick Tremor’s off-road ability. Sure, after Andre used the Tacoma TRD Pro as a benchmark, the Maverick Tremor didn’t seem to perform that well. That’s like comparing a Miata to a Porsche 911. Seriously.

On its own, the Maverick Tremor has a surprising amount of capability for most trails, even somewhat challenging ones.

I especially like its grip with those Falken Wildpeak tires, rear locker and Trail Control system. It’s an outstanding combination.

You have to remember, this is a pickup with independent suspension, and a fairly low departure angle. Boulder bashing isn’t its thing. Still, if you want to chug through thick mud, hairy trails and bad weather, the little Maverick Tremor is a hell of a good choice.

Rejoice and have fun!

– N