Skip the auto shop - Our mechanics make house calls

The Best Used Cars to Buy If You Like to Go Off-Roading

Used Car Off-Roading
Rodrigo Garrido /

Your best bet for off-roading is a 4x4 SUV. Depending on the model that pleases you most, though, you might have to shop around a bit to find a good used one. That’s simply because off-roaders typically become very attached to their rigs, and often continue to drive them until they’re simply no longer drivable.

That said, you’ll probably enjoy looking for just the right off-road vehicle for you. Our favorites are the Nissan Infiniti QX80, Jeep Grand Cherokee, Jeep Wrangler, Lexus GX 460, and Nissan XTerra.

  • Nissan Infiniti QX80: This is a huge, luxurious SUV with a super-comfortable ride, but when it comes to off-roading, it delivers the goods. In auto mode, the rear-wheel drive delivers torque to the front as required. Once you shift into four-wheel drive, though, the torque is split 50/50. Traction control automatically slows unruly wheels if you start to slip.

  • Jeep Grand Cherokee: For two decades, the Grand Cherokee has proven itself when it comes to off-road capability. With the Adventure II package, you’ll benefit from an air-lift suspension with an incredible 10.4 inch ground clearance and 20 inch water fording, meaning you can go pretty much anywhere you want.

  • Jeep Wrangler: For hard-core off-roaders, the Wrangler has traditionally been the rig of choice. The base model is perfectly respectable, but if you want to take it up a notch, go with the Rubicon model. It includes electronic locking differentials, and is equal even to the demands of its namesake, the Rubicon trail. It’s not the most comfortable vehicle for daily driving, but off-road, it shines.

  • Lexus GX 460: This luxury SUV might look gorgeous, but don’t let the appearance fool you. It’s build to a full frame with a center differential for 50/50 torque split when the going gets tough. Add to that the KDDS (Kinetic Dynamic Suspension System) that reduces chassis roll, and you have a highly reliable off-road vehicle for both novices and pros.

  • Nissan Xterra: The Xterra is an affordable SUV with real off-road capability. Make sure, though, that you buy a 4x4 model – the XTerra is also available as a two-wheel drive that looks nice, but won’t give you what you need off-road. The 4x4 model, though, can handle some pretty tough trails.

The statements expressed above are only for informational purposes and should be independently verified. Please see our terms of service for more details

Skip the repair shop, our top-rated mechanics come to you.

At your home or office

Choose from 600+ repair, maintenance & diagnostic services. Our top-rated mechanics bring all parts & tools to your location.

Fair & transparent pricing

See labor & parts costs upfront, so you can book with confidence.

12-month, 12,000-mile warranty

Our services are backed by a 12-month, 12,000-mile warranty for your peace of mind.

Get A Quote

Ask a Mechanic
(100% Free)

Have a car question? Get free advice from our top-rated mechanics.

Ask A Mechanic
Over 10,000 questions answered!

Need Help With Your Car?

Our certified mobile mechanics make house calls in over 2,000 U.S. cities. Fast, free online quotes for your car repair.


Post a question and get free advice from our certified mechanics.


More related articles

P0240 OBD-II Trouble Code: Turbocharger Boost Sensor B Circuit Range/Performance
P0240 code definition Turbocharger Boost Sensor B Circuit Range/Performance What the P0240 code means P0240 is an OBD-II generic code triggered when the Engine Control Module (ECM) detects the intake boost...
Insurance Requirements for Car Registration in Kentucky
The Kentucky Transportation Cabinet requires that all drivers in Kentucky carry liability automotive insurance, or “financial responsibility” in order to operate a vehicle legally and maintain vehicle...
Rules of the Road For Iowa Drivers
Driving on the roads requires knowledge of the rules, many of which are based on common sense and courtesy. However, even though you know the rules in...

Related questions

Q: 2011 Lincoln MKZ has distinct pull/drift to left

I would first recommend having all of your tires on your 2011 Lincoln MKZ checked for incorrect tire conicity. Tire conicity is the ability of the tire to become cone shaped. If the tire tread becomes cone shaped this means...

Q: Windshield wiper stopped moving

It could be that the linkage rod popped off, but you would hear all kinds of noise coming from under the cowl. I would check the nut that attaches the wiper arm to the hub. It might have a plastic...

Q: Problems with transmission, stalling

Hey there. You cannot be moving in reverse and try to go into drive or this would confuse the computer and it may default in idle cause the stall. It is not good for the transmission to be moving in...