Whether you want to navigate mud-splattered trails in Scotland, cruise along the beach in North Wales or simply unlock more traction and control on gravel-covered country roads, this countdown of the best off-roading cars is for you.
Wildly popular with adventurous drivers, these highly capable vehicles have the grit and determination to get you off the beaten track, with total peace of mind. So, what are the top off-road vehicles in the UK? From luxury models like the Mercedes G-Class to longstanding favourites like the Toyota Land Cruiser, read on for our pick of the toughest and most capable models out there.
Jeep Wrangler Rubicon
When it comes to adventure, nothing compares to Jeep. All models are designed to go offroad. But if you’re looking for the ultimate 4WD weapon, the Jeep Wrangler Rubicon is our pick of the bunch. We’re talking ultra-high traction mud terrain tyres and a huge 9.9″ of ground clearance. Jeep’s signature Tru-lok® electronically locking differentials actively distribute power evenly between the front and rear tyres for maximum traction when navigating tough terrain at low speeds. And let’s not forget the heavy-duty 4×4 Rock-trac® all-wheel drive system with a 4:1 gear ratio.
If value for money is a priority when shopping for the top off-road vehicles, it’s hard to look past the Dacia Duster. With a starting price of just £19,945 for the four-wheel-drive diesel version, this beefy model offers incredible bang for your buck. It’s not the most capable or luxurious off-roading vehicle on our list. But it does boast excellent ground clearance, great hill descent control and a clever electronic locking centre to improve traction in unstable driving conditions. The digital infotainment system keeps you up to date with all your off-road displays and data.
Looking for a 4X4 that will turn heads? The Ineos Grenadier is one of the best off-roading cars to hit the British market in 2023. The tough-as-nails models have just started to roll out of the company’s production factory in France and quickly gained a reputation for their utilitarian and pared back design. Inspired by legends like the Land Rover Defender, the Grenadier has a boxy silhouette and impressive clearance of 264mm. A max wading depth of 800mm makes it more than capable of splashing through streams and rivers. If you’re a Tottenham Hotspur F.C. fan, you’ll have one more reason to love the Ineos Grenadier. The brand just announced an official partnership with the Premier League team.
Land Rover Defender
If it was good enough for the late Queen Elizabeth II, it’s good enough for us! Mind you, things have changed a little since she was photographed behind the wheel of a Land Rover Defender on estates like Balmoral and Sandringham. The all-new Land Rover Defender is reimagined with best-in-class safety standards. Not to mention state-of-the-art tech and a luxurious interior.
Other upgrades to this top off-road vehicle include air suspension and advanced Terrain Response electronics. This clever technology allows you to tweak your vehicle settings to match the driving conditions and improve off-road performance.
Rock Crawl mode actively softens the responsiveness of the accelerator to improve control, while Sand mode boosts engine and gearbox response to maximise traction on soft surfaces. Grass/Gravel/Snow mode is a godsend in slippery conditions. Electronic Traction Control kicks in to prevent your tyres from slipping and keep you in control. It really is a go-anywhere vehicle, making it one of the best off-roading cars on the market.
Toyota Land Cruiser
The Toyota Land Cruiser has an “unstoppable” reputation and it’s well deserved. This feat of Japanese engineering was first introduced in the 1960s as the FJ40, and has been winning over off-road enthusiasts ever since. The latest models combine serious 4X4 performance with just the right amount of luxury.
In many ways, the Toyota Land Cruiser is comparable to the Land Rover Defender, it’s longstanding British rival. Though instead of luxury, the focus is on comfort and economy. There’s loads of pulling power, which makes the Toyota Land Cruiser ideal for towing caravans and trailers.
Sate your appetite for adventure in the Skoda Karoq. This midsize SUV combines great off-road performance and in-cabin comfort with exceptional value for money. While you wouldn’t necessarily want to take it too far off the grid, the four-wheel drive version is more than capable of bouncing along unpaved country roads and climbing gravel hills.
Mercedes Benz G-Class
Luxury meets adventure in the Mercedes Benz G-Class, one of the top off-road vehicles in the UK. The aesthetic is clean and boxy, with unique geometric wheel arch liners and a big focus on flat surfaces. Technology is at the heart of this beast, with features like 100% differential locks and low range gearset options drastically improving off-road performance.
Under the body is an ultra-robust ladder frame. This serves as the backbone of the G-Class and is manufactured using sheet steel up to 3.4 millimetres thick. In terms of stats, the G-Class boasts climbing ability of up to 100%, maximum fording depth of 70 cm and a max side slope angle of 70%. The only downside? It’ll cost you a pretty penny. The G-Class doesn’t come cheap and has an On the Road (OTR) price of £131,095. This is where car finance can step up.
Car finance for off-road vehicles
If you’d love to get behind the wheel of one of the best off-roading cars of all time, we can help. Use our calculator to crunch your numbers and get a car loan quote in seconds. Whether you’re dreaming of taking on the legendary Bala 4×4 Off Road Driving Experience or want a more reliable way to access your secret lakeside camping spot, car finance can get you there faster.
With so many capable vehicles out there, why wait to plan your next adventure? Get behind the wheel of one of the best off-roading cars and get some mud on your tyres.
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