15 of the best new SUVs and trucks for overland adventures
With the right vehicle, off-roading and landing can be an enjoyable adventure. The best off-road vehicles combine prowess, comfort and durability. The best-configured trucks and SUVs for landing allow for camping and have ample capacity to carry all the supplies you’ll need on the trail.
This Newsweek The list details some of the best vehicles for off-roading, considering the design and equipment attributes each needs to optimize off-road and overland travel, as well as a list of available accessories.
The Toyota 4Runner is an all-terrain and overlander favorite in the United States and there’s a good reason for that. Its locking rear differential, creep control and available drive modes make it capable. Higher trim levels come with knobby tires and heavy-duty skid plates.
The body-on-frame Toyota 4Runner is available with a number of accessories, including a Yakima roof basket and a 40-quart cooler. In the cabin there is plenty of room for four adults. In a pinch, owners can fold the rear seats down and camp in the cargo area of the midsize SUV.
Subaru Backcountry Desert
The Subaru brand is known for its high-performance adventure vehicles and the Outback is no different. It comes with up to 75 cubic feet of cargo space when the seats are folded down to maximize storage.
Most Outbacks are equipped with X-Mode or Dual X-Mode drive systems with settings for Snow/Dirt and Deep Snow/Mud drive modes to better manage the AWD system.
A more rugged and capable version of the Outback recently debuted. The 2022 Subaru Outback Wilderness offers a roof rack that can handle about 700 pounds – enough for a two-person rooftop tent – and can conquer tougher terrain with new equipment.
Rivian made its market debut in 2022 with its all-electric pickup truck, the R1T. The start-up has designed a highly configurable and high-performance all-terrain vehicle.
For nighttime adventures, the R1T offers a roomy three-bed tent that can be mounted on the truck bed. Instead of making a fire for cooking, Rivian sells a Camp Kitchen accessory for the R1T that includes a 1440-watt induction cooker, custom molded inserts that have a place for every fork, knife and spoon in the cooking set of 30 pieces included.
Although generally considered a brand with refined vehicles for on-road commuting, Lexus’ best-selling GX is a multifunctional SUV with impressive off-road chops. The model features several upgrades and modifications throughout its lineup to increase the GX’s prowess in the field. It has a ton of cargo space and is easily maneuverable.
Older GX SUVs are frequently modified by overlanders. Different tires, a lift and a roof rack add to the Lexus’ adventure possibilities.
land rover Defender 110
The Land Rover Defender has a long history of durability and capability, and the 2022 Defender 110 continues that legacy. With off-road driving controls and wide-angle mirrors available, the Defender is a solid off-road option.
This highly configurable SUV comes standard with plenty of adventure-ready features, including a power tailgate, rain-sensing wipers, roof rails and LED headlights/taillights.
For an overnight stay, the 110 can be fitted with an easy-to-build rooftop tent that comfortably accommodates two average-sized adults.
The Jeep brand is known for its off-road handling and the Gladiator lives up to its reputation. It is the only pickup that has removable doors and roof with a folding windshield.
Jeep has added several safety features available to the Gladiator, including the TrailCam all-terrain camera for increased visibility off the beaten path.
The Honda Ridgeline has a spacious cabin and a longer standard crew cab than its competitors giving passengers plenty of room to sit, lounge and store items. The Ridgeline comes with standard all-wheel drive, but has no off-road drive mode.
Honda designed a 7.3 cubic foot storage box that can hold extra gear under the bed and also double as a cooler with its drain plug. Buyers can opt for their Ridgeline with in-bed speakers, which are great for listening to podcasts while camping or pumping jams while heeling.
Honda Passport Trail Sport
The Honda Passport has undergone a complete rebranding and update for the 2022 model year with a bolder grille and TrailSport quality.
The rugged-looking Passport TrailSport model and available equipment including all-terrain tires, Sparrow XL roof tent, Dirt Complex swing-out spare tire carrier with integrated table, wheels and spacers black fenders help distinguish the model.
The Ford Ranger midsize pickup upgraded to the Tremor package is a solid option. Its easy driving and its Terrain Management System driving mode system make it extremely capable.
From the available roof and rear racks to boot tents, the Ranger is also highly adaptable. The Ford Ranger has a towing capacity of up to 7,500 pounds, which is enough for watercraft, small RVs, and trailers.
The popular Ford F-150 often tops the list of best-selling vehicles, in part due to its adaptability to most terrain. The new F-150, available in a hybrid version, comes standard with a 2.4 kilowatt on-board generator. Ford also offers a 7.2 kilowatt generator that can power most campground tools.
Inside the cabin, Ford offers an optional maximum recline feature on the front seats so they fold almost flat, providing accommodation similar to a single bed. Customers can add a center console that transforms the front seats into a workstation or a dining table.
The Ford Bronco has recently returned to the market and is an incredibly popular vehicle. Each model comes standard with all-wheel drive and a number of terrain riding modes including sand, mud/ruts and snow.
With a rear cargo hatch featuring a drop-down class window and roof racks designed for a roof tent, the Ford Bronco four-door SUV is a solid camping option. Inside the cabin, there’s about 65 cubic feet of space with the rear seat folded down for even more space.
When considering durability and off-road capabilities, the Chevrolet Colorado often comes to mind. With various engine options – including a diesel power plant to provide increased torque – and several features available, this pickup can handle some tough terrain.
The addition of the Trail Boss package gives riders taller suspension, increased wheel travel and locking differentials to handle extreme terrain. For those looking for more extreme capability, opting for the Colorado ZR2 will provide that.
Ford Bronco Sports
The Ford Bronco Sport is an SUV designed for outdoor adventurers. The rugged construction of the Bronco Sport has standard 4×4 capability, with All-Terrain or “GOAT” drive modes and 8.8 inches of ground clearance to handle a variety of off-road conditions.
The extended safari-style roof means more space for exterior cargo, and the standard steel roof rack can accommodate two upright bikes or up to 150 pounds of gear.
Subaru Forester Desert
The Subaru brand is known for its high adventure vehicles and the Forester is no different. The Forester Wilderness, new for 2022, features an improved dual-function X-MODE adaptive terrain control system with a variety of terrain options, including mud and deep snow. The off-road-ready SUV comes standard with all-wheel drive.
It also includes a Forward View Monitor system that allows drivers to see obstacles from a different angle when off-roading.
The Forester’s roof rails can support a static weight of 800 pounds, perfect for a rooftop tent on nighttime adventures.
The Kia Telluride is one of the newest additions to the SUV category, but with its excellent reviews, it’s fast rivaling some of the veterans. The spacious interior can accommodate up to eight passengers or the rear seats can be adjusted to increase cargo space.
The SUV is more capable and comfortable than it first appears with higher trim levels offering the most prowess and a near-luxury passenger experience.