10 of the best Off-Road Vehicles for 2018

land-rover-discovery-best-off-road

If you think Land Rover has gone soft, then you need to check out the new Discovery SVX developed by the Special Vehicle Operations team. The 525-hp supercharged V8 means the SVX can keep up with just about anything and probably could crack 150 mph. But it’s also good at going slowly. Land Rover says the Discovery SVX has improved approach and departure angles, a locking rear differential, and knobby high-sidewall tires for slogging through the mud.

Want to go even more slowly…in reverse? Nestled in the rear bumper between the tow hooks, the concept SUV has a winch with a conspicuous orange hook—though it might not make it to production.

chevrolet-colorado-best-off-road

The ZR2 rolls on 31-inches tires, and it’s brawnier than the standard Colorado on which it is based. Specifically, the ZR2 is 3.5 inches wider and sits 2 inches higher. The ZR2’s advanced Multimatic DSSV shock technology is something normally seen on supercars. In this application, the tech is tuned to let the ZR2 excel at both rock-crawling (just remember to lock both the front and rear differentials) and high-speed desert blasts.

An optional turbodiesel has a sophisticated exhaust brake to save the brakes while towing—and it doesn’t rattle off a Jake-brake staccato to let the next town know you’re coming.

ford-f-150-raptor-best-off-road

The best thing about the 2019 Raptor is the new Jump Mode. When a 2019 Raptor goes airborne, it detects the wheels are off the ground and automatically cranks up the compression damping, helping the truck to avoid bottoming out when it comes back to earth. The rest of the time, the system constantly tailors the damping of the new Fox Live Valve shocks to match driving conditions.

A new “trail-control” is a sort-of cruise control for off-roading that can be adjusted from 1 to 20 mph and lets the driver focus on steering inputs while the truck moves at a constant speed. When set to 1 mph, the system can slowly pulse power to the wheels, which helps to rock the truck out of sand if it’s stuck.

Besides optional Recaro seats and a few small changes, the rest of the Raptor remains the same, with a 450-hp twin-turbo V6 feeding power through a 10-speed transmission.

gmc-sierra-at4-best-off-road

With no chrome accents, all-terrain tires, and a 2-inch lift, the Sierra AT4 looks more menacing than the standard Sierra upon which it is based. It also is more capable off-road thanks to standard four-wheel drive, low-range, a locking rear differential, and skid plates.

The AT4 keeps the Sierra’s fancy dual-hinge 6-position MultiPro Tailgate. It can fold one way to provide a step—useful when stepping out of the AT4’s high bed—another to extend the bed.

GM has long been fond of heads-up displays, and the AT4 features a big 15-inch version. The physical screen in the center console has a clever “Surround Vision” mode, which stitches several camera feeds together. A 5.3-liter V8 is standard, but the AT4 can also be had with a 6.2-liter V8 or a 3.0-liter I6 turbo-diesel.

ram-rebel-trx-concept-best-off-road

Tasked with outdoing the Ford Raptor and Chevrolet ZR2, Ram engineers dreamt up the Rebel TRX, a Ram 1500 on steroids. It has a 575-hp version of the Hellcat’s infamous 707-hp supercharged 6.2-liter V8. A full-fat, 707-hp version of the Rebel will arrive in 2020.

The TRX is more trophy truck than NASTRUCK. Ram says it will be able to cruise at more than 100 mph off-road. With 13 inches of suspension travel and massive 37-inch tires (at least on the concept), the Rebel will be capable of some serious off-road antics.

hennessey-goliath-6x6-best-off-road

Wild creations storm out of Texas-based Hennessey Performance with regularity. The Goliath 6×6 is the latest Hennessey megatruck, and compared to last year’s angular Velociraptor 6×6 and the brand’s 300 mph Venom F5, the Goliath almost looks subdued. In truth, it is anything but.

To create the Goliath, Hennessey takes a 2019 Chevrolet Silverado Trail Boss Z71 and adds a lift kit and a supercharger, a few other extras, and an “additional axle, wheels, tires and brakes.” You’re left with a 705-hp, $375,000 monstrosity that brings with it another two feet of pickup bed and more attention than you can handle.

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