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The best off-road trucks of all time belong in an elite class of vehicles. Off-roading enthusiasts can only drive as far as their vehicles allow them to. If you hit the trails with a substandard ride, you’re going to have a bad time.
That’s why pick-up trucks have reigned supreme over the mountain paths and desert hills for decades. Off-road vehicles come in many shapes and sizes, but trucks have strength and power that SUVs or 4x4s can rarely match. Let’s dive right in and give proper recognition to the seven undisputed best off-road trucks of all time.
1. Ford F-150 (2009-2020)
The F-150 has been THE off-road truck for many years, with the 12th generation from 2009 to 2014 being the most successful. It was the first generation to offer two new powerful 4.6 and 5.4 liter V8 engines. This generation also enhanced the interior and exterior trim, simultaneously making the truck more durable and luxurious.
The 13th generation from 2015 to 2020 continued to build on the previous generation’s success. These models have beds that are about 50 inches wide — more than big enough to fit a four-wheeler and other off-roading equipment. This generation also got a big strength boost, boasting up to 450 horsepower and a towing capacity up to 8,000 pounds.
2. Chevrolet Colorado ZR2 (2007-2023)
The Colorado ZR2 is Chevy’s best off-road truck and easily one of the best off-road trucks of all time. We could have included all of the Colorado variations on this list, but the ZR2 is the cream of the crop. Chevy has added numerous off-road upgrades to the ZR2 over the years, including these notable features:
- 3.5” wider track
- 2″ suspension lift
- Wider fender flares
- Aluminum skid plates
- Rock Sliders
- Multimatic Dynamic Suspension Spool Valve (DSSV) Dampers
- Aggressive bumper and grille designs for improved departure angle
- New “Off-road Mode” that alters throttle progression, shift calibration, traction control, stability control, and ABS for different terrain.
Aside from its off-road features, the ZR2 has plenty of raw power. The latest models deliver 310 horsepower, 430 foot-pounds of torque and a towing capacity of 6,000 pounds. This beauty belongs right next to the F-150 as the kings of off-road trucks.
3. Chevrolet Silverado ZR2 (2010-2021)
The Silverado ZR2 sits right next to the Colorado ZR2 on our list for many of the same reasons. It offers the same V-6 straight engine options as the Colorado, which means it has a comparable performance in off-road environments. The later models also offer 6.2-liter V8 engines, which might be the most powerful engines on the list with 420 horsepower.
The Silverado also boasts some monstrous 33-inch Goodyear Wrangler Territory mud terrain tires, which is a huge game changer for off-roaders. This truck has the size and strength to get you out of any rough terrain.
4. GMC Canyon AT4X (2014-2023)
The Canyon is another truck with close ties to the Chevy Colorado. Both midsize designs come from the same General Motors developers in North America, so you can expect an almost identical performance for most model years. However, the Canyon’s recent models have significantly raised its placing on the best off-road trucks of all time.
Starting in 2023, GMC improved the Canyon’s approach angle to 36.9 degrees and added new 17-inch wheels wrapped in Goodyear Wrangler Territory mud terrain tires — the same tires on the Colorado. These features combine to provide optimal traction and navigation in suboptimal road conditions. Don’t underestimate the 2.7-liter engine either — it still packs a punch with 310 horsepower and 430 lb-ft of torque.
5. Toyota Tacoma (2000-2004, 2013-2015)
The Tacoma isn’t the biggest or boldest Toyota, but it’s a better off-road vehicle than the Tundra or 4Runner for several reasons. For starters, it has a whopping towing capacity of 6,800 pounds, fantastic driving performance and a bed width of about 60 inches. The late second-gen and third-gen models also have the greatest reputations for durability of any truck on this list.
Additionally, since the Tacoma is one of Toyota’s longest-running lines of vehicles, you have access to many off-road modifications and spare parts. You can keep upgrading your Tacoma and improving its off-road performance for years to come.
6. Dodge Ram 1500 TRX (2013-2023)
The Dodge Ram looks like a machine of pure brute force, but it has much more finesse than most people realize. Hidden under the hood is a supercharged 6.2-liter V8 engine, the same engine found in the Dodge Challenger Hellcat. This amazing feature allows you to go from 0-60 in under four seconds, which is a whole new level of speed and acceleration for pick-ups.
The Ram also has the typical features you’d expect from one of the best off-road trucks of all time. 11.8 inches of ground clearance is elite, and the 702 maximum horsepower is the highest on the list by far. Dodge doesn’t get as much love as Ford, Chevy or Toyota, but the Ram undeniably belongs with the F-150, Colorado and Tacoma.
7. Jeep Gladiator (2021-2023)
There has to be at least one Jeep vehicle on this list, and the Gladiator earns the coveted spot. It might have relatively new and unconventional body kit designs, but its 60-inch bed and 4,500-pound towing capacity set it apart from the Wrangler, Grand Cherokee and other Jeep models. Its 285 horsepower and 442 lb-ft of torque are more than respectable too.
The Gladiator also maintains all of the same trademark Jeep features — detachable doors, open sunroof and fold-down windshield. It provides the driving experience of a classic Jeep 4×4, but it brings the power of a pick-up truck too. That’s why it deserves a spot on the best off-road trucks of all time.
Hit the Trails With Any Brand
All off-roading enthusiasts have a personal preference for a specific brand. Ford, Chevy and Toyota are certainly the most popular, but other automakers have created their own elite off-road vehicles. You can hit the trails with any vehicle brand thanks to these seven behemoths, which belong among the best off-road trucks of all time.
Jack Shaw is a senior writer at Modded. Jack is an avid enthusiast for keeping up with personal health and enjoying nature. He has over five years of experience writing in the men's lifestyle niche, and has written extensively on topics of fitness, exploring the outdoors and men's interests. His writings have been featured in SportsEd TV, Love Inc., and Offroad Xtreme among many more publications.