Bushman SC35-52L Fridge

My present car fridge is over 18 years old so it was about time I looked at another one to take its place. I’d been researching for quite awhile and was looking at something to fit into my existing space and had low current draw, enter the Bushman SC35-52L fridge.

With so many different types of fridges available it took some time to wade through the different models, dimensions and features that set each type of fridge apart. Was I going to look at a single or dual zone and how did their lids open?

I’m going to be upfront right away. Bushman fridges supplied this fridge to Travel Outback Australia but only after I asked.

My research had led me to what I was looking for so I approached them. This I have found over many years sees me getting what I want rather than what potential suppliers may want to get some marketing coverage for.

My drawer system in the back of my Prado is homebuilt. I originally built this unit to fit into my wife’s 120 series Prado and, to my surprise, found it also fit into the back of my 150 series with a couple of minor alterations.

Bushman SC35-52L Fridge

Made specifically also to fit my old fridge this left me with a space likely to fit up to about a 50L fridge. I would have liked a bit bigger fridge but I wasn’t about to change over my drawers just to do get one.

So, after measuring up the space and whittling down the list of fridges that might fit, and had specific features I was after, I settled on the Bushman SC35-52L Fridge. Why this particular fridge?

What I like about the Bushman SC35-52L fridge is its versatility. It can be a smaller 35L fridge, a 45L or it can be a 52L fridge.

Another feature is that you can separate areas for your frozen food, fridge items, crisper and tall bottles using the 3 stacking baskets provided. By lifting out the baskets you can easily access the food that’s on the bottom.

If you want the smaller fridge you can upgrade later by simply buying the extension kit. This really is quite unique in the market and enables you to get more from your portable fridge investment.

When I was fitting the fridge to the Prado I found I had to modify my slides to allow the fridge to slide out an extra 60mm due to the difference in lid opening between my old fridge and this one. After a bit of messing around with a new set of slides I got it to work but once in place I had only 3mm clearance at the top.

Bushman SC35-52L Fridge

I must admit to being a bit worried about this so once it cleared, I breathed a sigh of relief.

Connecting up to my 12v power supply I decided to change from the standard cigarette lighter plug over to an Anderson plug as I simply don’t like ciggy plugs due to their propensity to come loose. I already had that supply sitting just between the middle row of seats and the rear compartment so it was an easy matchup.

I have just changed my auxiliary battery over to a DCS 70AH lithium battery so it will be interesting to see how they both perform. I’m really hoping the stated average power draw of 0.067 AH is accurate and my battery will perform well.

Are you interested is the facts and figures? Well, read on.

The Original Bushman SC35

Want the smaller SC35 small to medium sized portable fridge / freezer? It uses minimal power by utilising an oversized cooling unit for its size and will literally run off the trickle from an almost dead battery.

It’s also only 380mm high so will easily fit into a tight spot. This makes it a great option for an overnighter or to set it up as a deep freezer.


Set temperature range  -18º to 10º

Average power usage    Average 0.5 amps per hour (set at -4º in 25º ambient)

Current draw                     Variable speed drive compressor (2A – 4.5A)

Low voltage cut-out        10.4 V

Dimensions                        L 690mm x W 385mm x H 380mm

Weight                                 22.5kg


The Original Bushman SC35-52

You get the SC35L fridge and the extension kit which includes:

– 10L extension collar

– 7L dome lid

– 3 stacking baskets

– 240V – 12V adapter

– 4 Heavy duty tie-down brackets

–  Standard 12V cigarette lead

+ Free transit cover


Set temperature range                  -18º to 10º

Average power consumption      0.67 Ah in 52L (set at -4º in 25º ambient)

Current draw                                     Variable speed compressor (2A – 4.5A)

Low voltage cut-out                        10.4 V

Length  and Width                           (690mm) x Width (385mm)

Heights                                                 35L (380mm), 42L (475mm), 45L (465mm), 52L (545mm)

Weight in 52L                                     24.5kg

Bushman SC35-52L

Why I like the Bushman SC35-52L Fridge

Bushman fridges have proven reliability with over 20 years of use in Australia

The Nidec Danfoss BD35 compressor is German designed / Japanese owned and is built with a full steel cabinet and covered by a 5 Year warranty

Outstanding Efficiency

The genuine Bushman designed cooling system allows 360º ventilation on the top, bottom & 3 sides

Average power usage is 0.67 Ah in 52L (set at -4º in 25º ambient)

It has a simple easy to use interface with a digital thermostat. You can see the current temp and, at a push of a button, the set temp.

Use as a fridge only in 35L, 45L or 52L or use as a freezer only in 35L or 45L. You can also utilise 3 cooling zones in 52L by using the 3 Internal stacking baskets

Heavy duty tie-down points and a side opening lid.

If you want to see me do an unpacking of the Bushman SC35-52L fridge take a look at this vid.

So, there you have it. I’m just about ready to hit the road again and I can only hope that this Bushman fridge lasts as long as my former one.

As long as it keeps my food and the beers cold I’ll be happy.

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