The best adventures start on the paved road and end on raw earth. If you are ready to tackle the vast world that exists off-road, you have some incredible options to consider.
But the last thing you want is to realize your Land Rover doesn’t have the clearance you expected, or you have no idea how to purchase Hummer H2 insurance.
Before you can start looking into the best off-roading parts and equipment, you’ll need to do some research to determine which off-roading SUV is right for you. Here are some of the most popular vehicles exploring the outdoors today.
#1 – Land Rover Defender
The newly resurrected Land Rover Defender is an incredible all-around off-roading vehicle. If you’re looking for a solid car to take you over the river and through the woods, look no further.
This absolute champion can carry you through mud and up some intense slopes thanks to breakover and departure angles around 40 degrees, and some ground clearance up to 291mm. That even beats out the Wrangler Rubicon — another top contender.
When it comes to customized driving experiences, the Defender has you set. Height-adjustable air suspension, an electronic active differential, and sophisticated off-road electronics are just a few of the features that continue to impress drivers.
When it comes to 4×4 capabilities, you certainly won’t be disappointed. Experts continue to praise its auto-locking center and rear differentials and its permanent four-wheel-drive system.
#2 – Jeep Wrangler Rubicon
You can’t talk about off-roading vehicles without the Jeep Wrangler. The Rubicon took everything off-roaders loved about the classic design and upped the game.
It now features more space inside and more advanced all-terrain capabilities including locking differentials, powerful and gripping tires, articulating axles, and a near industry-leading approach and departure angle.
Rock crawling is second nature to this beast of a vehicle. In addition, you can utilize its Rock-Trac transfer case, Tru-Lok locking front and rear differentials, and an electronic-disconnect front sway bar.
But honestly, there is no way to break down how truly exceptional this vehicle is at handling off-road situations with ease. The only way to understand why Wranglers are so popular is to hop behind the wheel of one yourself.
#3 – Toyota Land Cruiser
The Toyota Land Cruiser is the champion of the outback and knows what it takes to combine reliability with a pure off-roading heart. While even the base Utility version can handle the road less taken, the 2.8-liter turbodiesel Toyota with air suspension takes it all to the next level.
This car can take on the outdoors with solid features like skid plates, all-terrain tires, a locking center differential, and Toyota’s Kinetic Dynamic Suspension System.
Where this vehicle stands out most is its pure dependability. When you are exploring the outdoors, that could mean everything. That means you can look cool in what is technically a luxury SUV and drive for help when your friends’ vehicles break down.
#4 – Mercedes-Benz G-Class
Those not familiar with the off-roading scene might see the brand “Mercedes-Benz” and scoff at the idea of seeing them explore the unpaved paths and get dirty.
But Mercedes knows how to push the G-class to ever-increasing standards of off-roading capabilities. From its three locking differentials to its surprising 9.5 inches of ground clearance, this machine can move.
Recent additions to the G-class also include:
- Engine options from the straight-six diesel in the G350d to the full AMG G63 with a twin-turbocharged petrol V8
- Rack-and-pinion steering
- Two-speed transfer case
- Wading depth of 27.6 inches
If you are comfortable with the price tag (some models pushing past $130,000) and with pushing that beauty to its limits off-road, then this could be the perfect vehicle for you.
#5 – Land Rover Discovery, Range Rover, and Defender
Land Rover continues to impress the off-roading community with various models that exemplify the Land Rover brand.
The Land Rover Discovery is an all-around beast. It handles off-roading with ease thanks to its new six-cylinder engines and updated suspension. Those are just some of the equipment that makes it extremely versatile.
The Land Rover Range Rover is more of a luxury option, but don’t let that dissuade off-roaders. Sure the Queen of England owns one, but maybe she’s just a fan of its adventurous potential.
Specifically, the 2021 Range Rover SportVia Landrover boasts an adjustable air suspension system (providing up to a 10.9-inch ground clearance) and a Terrain Response system to maximize traction on a variety of terrains.
Lastly, the Land Rover Defender combines sophisticated off-road electronics with versatile differentials and configurations. You won’t be disappointed with the auto-locking center and rear differentials, permanent four-wheel-drive system, or breakover and departure angles.
#6 – Hummer H2
When the Hummer H2 was announced, people were skeptical it could maintain the H1’s toughness and military design. But that is exactly what GM did and in the process: They created an on and off-roading monster.
From stop-and-go traffic to hard-core trails, drivers can enjoy a tight steering response and a smooth ride.
Some outstanding approach and departure angles make any obstacle a thing of the past, and its superb suspension will make it all feel like a dream. Meanwhile, you can appreciate the peace of mind provided by an underbody skid shield to increase its durability and under-belly protection and the versatility of its traction control system.
Bonus SUV: 2021 Toyota 4Runner TRD
When you look at the Toyota 4Runner, you know instantly that it is ready to go on an adventure. Its specs certainly paint the picture as well.
Between the two trim options of the TRD Pro and TRD Off-Road, you’ll experience a solid four-wheel-drive system, an upgraded skid plate, sturdy TRD-tuned front springs, and Fox shock absorbers, which make the outdoors feel like a ride through the suburbs.
When you add on the all-terrain Nitto Terra Grappler tires, this vehicle is truly ready to challenge the outdoors.
Insuring Your Off-Road Automobile
You can’t talk about going off-roading without preparing your vehicle for the worst. When considering a new off-roading SUV it’s crucial to consider the different types of vehicle insurance available and ensure that they cover any unexpected incidents while you are exploring.
It can be difficult to break down the basics of typical car insurance rates, but it is recommended to read over each policy before selecting one.
Most car insurance policies only cover what’s considered to be “normal use,” meaning that if you were to get into an accident while off-roading, you’ll likely be covered. But if you overturn your vehicle as a result of careless driving that falls outside this realm of normal use, that probably wouldn’t be covered.
There are two primary insurance types to consider: comprehensive and collision. Comprehensive insurance covers damage to your vehicle that isn’t caused by a collision, and collision insurance covers your costs when you get into an accident and it’s your fault.
Regardless of which vehicle you choose or which insurance plan you opt in for, you’re going to love the world off of the highways. Remember to drive safely and come prepared for any emergency that might happen. There are certainly pros and cons to exploring away from civilization, and requiring medical or vehicular assistance is a major consequence.
Luke Williams writes and researches for the car insurance comparison site, QuoteInspector.com. His passions include best practices for insurance and off-roading safety.