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Off-road SUVs are all the rage. Many drivers have the urge to get away from the hustle and bustle of city life and enjoy a wilderness adventure. Check out the 10 best new SUVs to buy for off-road use in 2022.

What is the best SUV for off-road use?

Red 2022 Toyota 4Runner, the best SUV to buy for off-road use in 2022, driving on bumpy terrain
2022 Toyota 4Runner | Toyota

There are a number of factors that make a good off-road SUV. This includes a traction-enhancing drivetrain, engine output, differential locks, low-range gearing, underbody protection, and wheel travel. 

For this list of best new SUVs to buy for off-road use in 2022, as detailed by Jalopnik, the focus is on gas-powered SUVs — not electric. With the ability to provide instant and smooth torque delivery, electric vehicles perform better for off-road use than gas-powered ones. However, with the limited driving range, electric SUVs might not be suitable for everyone for off-road use. With this in mind, for today, the focus is on the best gas-powered off-road SUVs. 

  1. 2022 Toyota 4Runner
  2. 2022 Ford Bronco
  3. 2022 Jeep Wrangler
  4. 2022 Land Rover Defender
  5. 2022 Land Rover Range Rover
  6. 2022 Mercedes-Benz G-Class
  7. 2022 Lexus LX 600
  8. 2022 Jeep Grand Cherokee
  9. 2022 Suzuki Jimny (not sold in the United States)
  10. 2022 Lexus GX 460

2022 Toyota 4Runner is the best SUV to buy for off-road use in 2022

The 2022 Toyota 4Runner takes the top spot as the best new SUV to buy for off-road use in 2022. Despite not receiving a major redesign since the 2010 model year, the 4Runner continues to hold its own for off-road action. According to Jalopnik, off-road strengths of the 4Runner include its “body-on-frame design with good ground clearance, good geometry, low-range transfer case, locking rear differential, and adjustable suspension.”

Some people might think that the off-road capabilities of the 4Runner peaked in the 1990s, and since then, the SUV changed into more of a passenger SUV than a serious off-roader. However, as illustrated by a drive on an off-road course that a Jalopnik driver took with a Toyota representative in 2021, the 4Runner is still a fantastic off-road SUV. The Jalopnik driver successfully pushed the 4Runner so hard on the off-road course that the Toyota representative told him to “dial it down.”

2022 Ford Bronco is an outstanding off-road SUV

Front angle view of green 2022 Ford Bronco, one of the best SUVs to buy for off-road use in 2022
2022 Ford Bronco | Ford

The 2022 Ford Bronco is the second-best new SUV to buy for off-road use in 2022. After its discontinuation in 1996, the Bronco made a triumphant return for the 2021 model year. The Bronco is highly rated by automotive experts and consumers alike, as the demand for the SUV is sky-high. 

While the Bronco doesn’t have the rock-crawling capabilities of its closest competitor, the Jeep Wrangler, overall, it’s a more “well-rounded off-road” SUV. A good example of this is the Bronco’s GOAT (goes over any terrain) modes. Settings include Mud/Ruts, Baja, Sand, Rock Crawl, Slippery, Sport, ECO, and Normal. For even greater off-road capabilities, a Bronco Raptor model will be released in the near future.

Buy the 2022 Jeep Wrangler for some hard-core off-road action


2022 Ford Bronco Raptor vs. 2022 Toyota 4Runner TRD Pro: Off-Road SUV Competition!

No list of new off-road SUVs to buy in 2022 would be complete without the 2022 Jeep Wrangler, which takes the third spot. According to Jalopnik, the off-road strengths of the Wrangler is primarily due to being “unchanged where it matters.” It continues to have a “combination of four-wheel drive, solid axles, and a low-range transfer case and geometry that favors off-road for basically forever.” 

A drawback of the Wrangler is that it’s noisy to drive at highway speeds. Also, it significantly sacrifices driving comfort to maximize off-road capabilities. However, this list is all about off-road use, so the Wrangler deserves a spot.

Whether it’s the 2022 Toyota 4Runner, 2022 Ford Bronco, or 2022 Jeep Wrangler, there are many great off-road SUVs that you can buy. In a similar list of best off-road SUVs, Forbes had these three SUVs for the top three choices, but with the Bronco first, the Wrangler second, and the 4Runner third. Get away from it all and enjoy an off-road adventure.