Best Off Road Vehicle List – Land Rover Range Rover Sport

14. Land Rover Range Rover Sport (2015)

For those who grew up driving the legacy Range Rover, the Range Rover Sport helps fill the growing niche for consumers who like to take a group off-roading in a mid-size SUV. The Sport is assessed as having excellent off-road capabilities, a large cabin, and a smooth ride. The vehicle is powered by a supercharged V6 engine for the stock purchase, but for those who want more power for off-roading there are two different supercharged V8 engines available to choose from. The Sport comes standard with an eight-speed automatic transmission and the overall fuel efficiency of the vehicle is pretty decent coming in at 17 MPG city and 22 MPG highway. With a number of “Family Friendly” features, the Sport is suitable to take on trails with more than just a co-pilot onboard; however, it has limited cargo space when compared to SUVs of the same size.

Best Off Road Vehicle List – Toyota Land Cruiser 100 Series

12. Toyota Land Cruiser 100 Series (1998-2007)

The Toyota Land Cruiser 100 Series that was produced between 1998 and 2007 is another excellent off-road vehicle. The company took the effort to significantly improve the motor over the FZJ80, and it even sees better overall fuel economy. The vehicle features a 4.7 liter V8 engine and is available in manual or automatic transmission depending on the preferences of the owner. The 100 series does lack a solid axle which gives some limitations when it comes to taking the vehicle to some of the more extreme terrain locations available in the United States, but it has equivalent performance to the FZJ80 in these circumstances. Toyota also significantly improved the brakes in the 100 series compared to past models, and the vehicle is assessed as being extremely reliable and durable. For those who also enjoy driving on-road, the SUV has no issues with cruising at speeds above 80 MPH, and it is not uncommon to find models with more than 300,000 miles on them.

Off Road Driving Skills

Off Road Driving Skills

North America  encompasses 6.8 million square miles. Less than 0.1 percent of that is paved roadway. So, to see North America, to really know the place, you need to keep rolling after the street ends.

But don’t be intimidated. With mild modification, most four-wheel-drive vehicles, including pickups, can handle recreational wheeling. 13 Provinces and forty-one states offer Off-Highway Vehicle (OHV) areas, backcountry trails on public land sequestered for motorized play. Places that are hard to get to and amazing to see once you’re there.  That doesn’t mean you should just hop in your truck and head out there.

Whether you’re just planning a day trip or a longer expedition. Leave being prepared. Preparation is most important thing to consider before you head off road.

Always be prepare. Whether its a travel medical kit or survival flashlight, be prepared with your provisions list: never assume you’ll have access to food, water, fuel, medication, or cell service. Protect anything that’s vulnerable to the elements. Paper maps, for example, can go inside a transparent zip bag. Aim to be self-sufficient. This is called building a bug out and you should have this if you want to go off road.

For vehicle upgrades, focus on tires, shocks, and LED lighting. Don’t cut corners, but shop smart; a couple grand buys serious capability. Still, Bower says, “they’re just tools.” Success ultimately rests with the person behind the wheel.

A huge mistake you can make is failing to respect the power of the terrain. Nature doesn’t let you hide from it. You will be soon tested by Mother Nature on how well you prepared.

One challenge for drivers who are used to pavement driving is learning to see those obstacles—boulders, logs, debris—as assets.

Trying to avoid the obstacles can lead to drivers punching out the side walls or bending bumpers or worse If you see a big, sharp rock on the path make sure you hit it with the center of your tire. It’s the hardest point. Consider you tire like a foot, you never hit the hardest step with your ankle so why would you do it with your tires?

Going off-road means adjusting how you think.

Pay attention to the details. This cannot be stressed enough. Something’s going to happen. The prepared off-roader lifts and assesses. But this all happens very quickly, quicker than you expect, even at 10 mph. Driving off road is an intense kind of awareness, and you might be going over all kinds of lumpy stuff for 12 hours. Oftentimes, people get rolling along and the routine and bumpy road lead to them becoming distracted. It’s kind of like driving the commute home from work. You sometimes wonder where the last 20 miles went by but your home.

Co-drivers help newbies stay vigilant. So read online forums for OHV outings or tag along on a four-by-four owners group meet-up. Find somebody who’s experienced, Bower suggests, and let them teach you. But even if you have to go it alone, the going is the important part.