Best Off-Road VehiclesLast Updated August 8, 2023 | Andrew Boyle
The Jeep Wrangler may be the king of off-roaders, but that doesn’t mean there aren’t plenty of other capable off-road vehicles out there. Although the Wrangler may top the list of best off-road vehicles, it isn’t alone in its quest to conquer challenging terrain and rocky trails. From the classic Ford Bronco to the Chevy Colorado ZR2 Bison, we’ve curated a list of the best off-road SUVs and trucks you can find! Whether you enjoy desert racing, rock crawling, or mud bogging in the country, these off-road vehicles can handle it all with ease.
This may be the stereotypical off-roader, but for good reason. It’s hard to beat the Wrangler straight from the factory, especially the Rubicon that comes with all the bells and whistles you need for the trail. With 33-inch all-terrain tires, the Rock-Trac 4x4 system, and Tru-Lok locking differentials, the Rubicon is extremely capable right off the lot. Many have tried but few have succeeded to compete with the massive success of Jeep’s open-air off-road vehicle. Though the Wrangler grows more capable with each generation, even the first-generation YJ and second-generation TJ Wranglers have no trouble keeping up on the trail. Whether you are partial to the classic Wrangler style or prefer the newer generations, you can never go wrong with a Jeep Wrangler. Once you’re a member of the Jeep club, customizing your Wrangler with aftermarket parts is pretty much a rite of passage. There’s nothing like a lifted Wrangler with some big beefy tires!
Ford F-150 Raptor
Perhaps the most aggressive-looking off-road vehicle on this entire list, the F-150 Raptor is a beast on the trail. This truck doesn’t just look fierce — it has the performance to match that rugged facade. Not only does a high-output engine give the truck added power, the Raptor features heavy-duty front skid plates, an air-extracted hood, and a Terrain Management System. There’s even a Baja mode for high-speed desert racing as well as a Rock mode for those who prefer rock crawling. The Raptor features a locking rear differential with 4.10 gears, which is what the Wrangler Rubicon sports as well. Even though the Raptor hasn’t been around for as long as some of the other contenders on the list, it certainly has made its presence known in the off-roading community. Although an F-150 will certainly get the job done, no other model can compete with the off-road monster that is the Raptor.
Tacoma TRD Pro Series
Yes, we’re just going to include the whole entire TRD Pro series on this list. For 2019, the TRD Pro series consist of the Tacoma, Tundra, and 4Runner, and they all will kick some serious butt on the trail. Whether you want a midsize pickup, a full-size truck, or an SUV — Toyota made sure you’ve got options. All of these vehicles are ready for an off-roading expedition straight from the factory. Plus, we heard Toyota is bringing back Voodoo Blue for the 2019 TRD Pro Series, a popular shade that was exclusive to the FJ Cruiser when it was in production and will be available only for the TRD Pro series. The top-of-the-line suspension includes Fox Internal Bypass shocks, tuned by the engineers at Toyota Racing Development. Although there are slight differences between each model, they all provide maximum capability on the trail and a smooth ride on the pavement.
Chevy Colorado ZR2
This rugged midsize pickup from Chevy was made for the trails with segment-exclusive front and rear locking differentials and Multimatic shocks. It’s wider than your average Colorado, outfitted with beefy 31-inch tires and 17-inch wheels. Unlike the TRD Pro series that offers a limited color selection, the Colorado ZR2 has several enticing shades from Cajun Red Tintcoat to Kinetic Blue Metallic. Not only is this truck devilishly handsome, but it’s no joke on the trail. With an Autotrac transfer case, protective skid plates, and aggressive approach and departure angles, the Colorado can attack even the toughest terrain with ease.
Whether we’re talking about the classic Ford Bronco or the upcoming 2021 Bronco, there’s no doubt that it deserves to be on the list of best off-road vehicles. Gearing up to compete with the Jeep Wrangler, the new Ford Bronco is coming back hotter than ever. There’s no denying the Bronco is effortlessly cool. It’s tough enough for the trail yet certainly draws attention on the street as well. Just like the Wrangler, you can remove the doors and top to become one with nature when you’re out exploring the wilderness. For a wild ride, there’s nothing better than a bucking Bronco.
2019 Ram 1500 Rebel
Dodge is no stranger to the off-roading world, but the 2020 Ram 1500 Rebel is on a whole other level. With an optional 5.7L Hemi V8, the Rebel lives up to its name. Powder-coated black steel bumpers, a lift straight from the factory, aggressive approach and departure angles, and tow hooks are only a few of the features that make this truck trail-ready from the moment you drive it away from the dealership. A unique grille makes the Rebel stand out from the rest of the pack while giving it a fierce look. Ram trucks are known for their power, and the Rebel is no exception. Besides having a sweet exterior, the Ram Rebel is one of the most luxurious trucks on the market. An explosive combination of style, comfort, and performance, the Rebel is one of the best off-road trucks that will still give you that perfectly smooth highway drive.
Image Credit: Truck Trend Network, Autoweek, Chevrolet, The Daily Want, The Fast Lane Truck, AutoGuide