There is no arguing that the number of rugged body on frame type trucks have shrank over the last several decades, there are still a number of off-road capable trucks. Many people argue that while the number of options is smaller, the overall quality, reliability, and durability has never been better. In fairness, this could also be considered the natural evolution of vehicles. Most pickup truck buyers don’t want to scale a mountain but rather use it for commuting purposes. As a result, fewer pickup trucks are built for off-road driving. Fortunately, there are still a number of high quality pickup trucks for off-road driving.
How to Decide?
Before looking at specific pickup trucks which are excellent for off-road in it is important to consider the characteristics which make these trucks the best pick. Everyone does something a little different when they go off road in be it mud, elevation, climbing, or even just tearing through fields and dirt roads. As a result, there are a number of different factors which need to be considered.
Dodge Ram 2500
The Dodge Ram 2500 has come under fire in recent years in terms of overall reliability; however these issues are largely tied to towing and hauling heavy loads on a regular basis not going off-road. In order to differentiate itself from Chevy and Ford the Dodge Ram 2500 has made a variety of changes over the past several years to make it ideal for off-roading. The ideal model features dual alternators, fifth wheel towing package, and excellent altering tires. Additionally, the newer Dodge Rams have overcome the previous front end/axle issues that plagued previous generations.
The new 2500 switch to a new radius arm front suspension. The purpose of this change was to reduce body roll and improve roll stiffness. This is key for anyone who wants to take on any off-road trail. It provides excellent high and low speed handling, even around corners. A drawback to this approach is the truck can feel a little heavy and slow at times so if speed is a priority this isn’t the best option.
A slightly controversy all change for people who like going off-road in their Dodge ram 2500 is the rear suspension. The rear suspension was changed to improve the three-quarter ton platform and provide a better ride when the truck was not carrying a load. The problem is this did not improve the ride quality as much as anticipated. Overall the Dodge ram 2500 has numerous benefits such as a massive stands, strong axles, and solid on road handling. Unfortunately, it does suffer from lackluster power, heavy steering, and a poor slip rear differential.
The Toyota tundra has always been a popular option among people who wanted to drive off-road. The 2014 model offers a number of new calibrations which make it even better suited for off-roading than ever before. The new and improved suspension is definitely impressive compared to any other pickup truck. The shock valving is precise which allows for ideal suspension travel and better overall handling. The Toyota tundra is an ideal truck for people who like to go off road test. While the overall crawl ratio is effective, the lack of traction aids does hurt the truck in rocky environments.
One thing to keep in mind, it is unlikely popular Toyota Tacoma, the TRD package on the tundra does not include a selectable rear locker. This means you will have to rely on break assisted traction control in order to prevent spinning. While this is effective it’s not something anyone wants to use with regularity when off-road.
Overall, the Toyota tundra offers excellent tires, ideal suspension, great speed, and adequate power. Unfortunately, the lack of a rear locker, week brake pedal, and significantly dated interior will push some buyers away. In general, this trucks ideal for people who want to play in the dirt but maybe not for people who want to scale rocks.
Chevy Silverado 1500
The final ideal option for going off road is the Chevy Silverado 1500. This truck recently underwent a massive revision which led to improved suspension, interior, and sheet-metal. Compared to previous generations, the Chevy Silverado 1500 performs exceptionally well and dirt. This is because it has the power to easily stay on the ground while benefiting from minimal electronic interference. A common complaint is the rear Gov-Lok can be a little unpredictable off-road and isn’t as effective as anticipated. At the same time, it is still more than adequate for improved traction in a variety of different scenarios.
One thing to keep in mind is that the Chevy Silverado 1500 has a low stance. While it is still high enough to easily handle most terrains, it is something to keep in mind. This is particularly true for people who want to go rock crawling. The Chevy Silverado definitely lacks in this capability.
Overall, the Chevy Silverado 1500 has a sleek interior which provides an added benefit to going offer it with friends. It also boasts dynamic handling, solid power, and reactive brakes. Unfortunately, the low stance will turn some buyers off even though it has numerous additional qualities which shine.