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All Vans With 4×4 or AWD (in the US)

Are you looking for a van that must have 4×4 or AWD?  It can be a really important or even an essential feature of your van.  Whether you are driving in the snow, muddy roads, or even traversing slickrock, sometimes you just gotta have it.  So here is a complete list of all vans with 4×4 or AWD (in the USA).

Please note that some of the vans pictured are not completely stock.  They may have aftermarket modifications (bigger tires, lift kits, bumpers, etc).

Let’s start with all the vans with 4×4 (four-wheel drive).

Vans With 4×4

Mercedes Sprinter Vans with 4x4
Mercedes Sprinter: Photo by Zane Līsmane on Unsplash

Mercedes Sprinter (4×4)

Years: 2015-Present

Four-wheel drive Mercedes Sprinters were made available in the United States starting in 2015 (‘til present).  And, as of 2021, Sprinters are the only full-size vans available in 4×4 from the factory.

This makes the 4×4 Sprinter the most coveted four-wheel-drive van on the market.  They continue to be the most luxurious and capable platform for camper vans.

That’s why the 4×4 Winnebago Revel, one of the most premium campervan conversions, is built on the Mercedes-Benz Sprinter chassis.

Volkswagen Vanagon Syncro: Photo by Nick Dunlap on Unsplash

Volkswagen Vanagon Syncro (4×4)

Years: 1984-1992

Volkswagen Type 2 (T3 – third generation) is called the Vanagon in North America and South America.  The “Syncro” in the name signifies that it is a 4×4 model.

They were in production from 1984-1992.  But with low numbers and high demand, they are expensive and hard to find.

A Mitsubishi Delica van with 4WD
Mitsubishi Delica L300 Star Wagon Photo: @kyles_car

Mitsubishi Delica & Toyota HiAce (4×4)

Years: 1990’s

4×4 Japanese vans like the Mitsubishi Delica Star Wagon and Toyato HiAce were never sold in the US.  However, it’s becoming more popular to see them imported here.

The US has age thresholds that prevent foreign vehicles from being imported until 25 years has passed.  So these 1990’s 4×4 Japanese vans are just starting to find their way into the US and Canada.

They have a pretty funky look that is hard to miss.  And be aware that the driver’s seat is on the right side!

These vans a little tough to find, but here are a couple importers (East Coast:, West Coast:, Canada:



Sadly, that’s the end of the list for factory 4×4 vans in the US.  Now onto the AWD (all-wheel drive) vans available in the US.

All-wheel-drive isn’t quite as rugged as 4×4, but they are still pretty capable off-road.

Vans with AWD

2020 AWD Ford Transit
2020 AWD Ford Transit Photo: @lukewronski

Ford Transit Cargo (AWD)

Years: 2020-Present

2020 was the first year that the Ford Transit van was available with an AWD option.  Thus becoming the only full-size van in the US available in AWD, and filling the hole left by GM when they stopped production of their AWD vans.

But the Ford Transit represents a shift towards the new boxy euro-style vans.  They are available in low, mid, and high roof models.

Check out the new 2023 All-Wheel-Drive Ford Transit Trail, a van created specifically for vanlife.  It has AWD, bigger wheels, increased ground clearance, and more!

A Chevy Express AWD vans with 4x4 or AWD
AWD Chevy Express Photo: @ketchandy

Chevy Express 1500 (AWD)

Years: 2003-2015

The Chevy Express 1500 held a unique market segment from 2003-2015 being the only full-size van in the US with AWD.  The AWD was only available on 1500 regular length Chevy Express Models (i.e. no 2500, 3500, or extended versions).  You can find AWD available for the passenger van or cargo van modes.

They discontinued the Express 1500 in 2015, sadly taking the only AWD model out of production.

GMC Savana 1500 (AWD)

Years: 2003-2015

The GMC Savana is mechanically identical to the Chevy Express because both are made by General Motors.  Only the cosmetics/branding are different.  So the same AWD models are available from 2003-2015.

Chevy Astro (AKA Astrovan)

Chevy Astro / GMC Safari (AWD)

Years: 1990-2005

The Chevy Astro (AKA Astrovan) and GMC Safari are two General Motors minivans available in an AWD option (1990-2005).

Both vans are built mechanically identical with just cosmetic differences.  Their boxy appearance makes them easy to confuse with their full-size cousins (Chevy Express and GMC Savana), however, they are significantly smaller.

A Toyota Sienna is a mini van with AWD

Toyota Sienna (AWD)

Years: 2004-Present

The Toyota Sienna was first available in AWD beginning in 2004 (until present).

It was perfect timing to fill the hole left by GM stopping production of their AWD Astrovan and Safari minivans.

The Toyota Sienna is a famously reliable minivan option, so even older all-wheel-drive models are quite desirable.

Chrysler Pacifica is one of the only minivans with AWD.
Chrysler Pacifica, Photo by Isaac Martin on Unsplash

Chrysler Pacifica (AWD)

Years: 2020-Present

In 2020, the Chrysler Pacifica joined the Toyota Sienna as a modern minivan with AWD. 

What’s The Difference Between 4×4 and AWD?

AWD – (All-Wheel Drive)

AWD systems are almost always automatic.

Meaning that you don’t need to worry about turning it on and off.  The vehicle will automatically manage power to all four wheels to optimize traction.

All-wheel drive is designed for continuous operation on pavement but works well in all conditions.

There is usually a fuel economy penalty associated with AWD systems.

This makes all-wheel-drive the better option for casual drivers looking for increased safety when driving in unpredictable conditions like snow, ice, and rain.

4×4 – (Four-Wheel Drive or 4WD)

True 4WD systems must be manually engaged by the driver.

The vehicle is capable of operating in a normal 2WD setting for pavement and high-traction surfaces.  Two-wheel drive supplies power to the front wheels or rear wheels.  Having the 2WD option helps with fuel economy in normal everyday driving conditions.

4WD is generally better for off-road driving in more rugged and low-traction conditions.  It is not good for continuous use on pavement because it doesn’t account for wheel spin variation when cornering.  So you can experience that “jumping” sensation when the axles bind.

4×4 is great for drivers who can identify specific adverse driving conditions ahead of time.

There is usually an option for a 4WD “high” and “low”. (or 4Hi, 4Lo, 4H, 4L)

4×4 High is meant for higher speeds, like snowy roads or light sand/gravel.  Though, it’s best not to exceed 55 mph.

4×4 low range is meant for very slow speeds (under 15 mph) when navigating especially rough terrain.

For example, deep sections of mud or sand, water crossings, rock crawling, etc.  The 4WD owner can selectively engage 4×4 Low just to conquer these specific obstacles.  Then when conditions improve, they can switch back to 2WD or 4×4 high.

4×4 and AWD Systems Are Not Standardized

Something to remember is that not all 4×4 and AWD are created equal.  There is no industry standard, so naming can be confusing or misleading.

So an AWD system on one van might be different from the AWD on another van.

But generally, the newer vehicles have more advanced systems than the older vehicles.  For example, most new AWD systems have incorporated a limited-slip differential and more intelligent monitoring systems.

Or some vehicles have full-time 4WD or permanent 4WD, which is really closer to AWD than it is to a true 4×4 that can switch between 2WD and 4WD.

Takeaway: Vans with 4×4 or AWD

That’s the complete list of minivans and vans with 4×4 or AWD in the US.  For those who insist on having four-wheel drive or all-wheel drive, these are the only factory options. But this may leave you wondering, do you really NEED a 4×4 van?

Let me know in the comments if you think I forgot one or misquoted the production years.

Didn’t Find The Perfect 4×4 Van?

Didn’t find the vans with 4×4 or AWD that you were looking for?  Don’t worry, there is one other way! You can turn a 2WD van into a 4WD with an aftermarket transfer case 4×4 conversion.

There are several upfitters who can convert a 2WD van into a 4WD.  (Quigley Motor Company, Agile Off-road, Ujoint, Advanced4x4Vans).  But be prepared to fork over $10-18k for a 4×4 conversion like this.

Or you can sometimes find a used 4×4 van that someone else converted. Ford E-series vans are the most common vans to have an aftermarket 4×4 conversion.

Check out our complete GUIDE:

How to Choose a Van for a Campervan Conversion

Most Capable Tires For Campervans Pinterest Pin

And even vans with 4×4 or AWD are only as good as their all-terrain tires.  So make sure you get the most out of your rig with a good set of rubber!

Best Tires For Campervans | For Epic Adventures

No matter what kind of vehicle you have, check out Off-Roading Essentials to make your van more capable and save you from getting stuck!

These tools and upgrades have helped take our 2WD campervan to some incredible off-grid locations.

Campervan Off-Roading Essentials Pin 2

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