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Best wheeling rig
What is it? Out of the box off the dealers lot. What is the best wheeling rig? No mods can be made. I've always enjoyed the jeep is best, dodge is best, chevy is best, etc... arguments but really those arguments are being made by people that have modded rigs. Does it really matter what brand/model you have after you've lifted it, put lockers in, added large tires and so on? No it doesn't.

A few prerequisits.
Rigs that are available here in the USA. Not some rig I have to buy overseas and have shipped here (can be from a foreign manufacture though). Past or present rigs. Rigs that most people could afford to buy even with a loan. Let's keep the thoughts more oriented to wheeling than street driving but maybe consider that as well.

So the real question is what is the best rig straight from the factory for wheeling and why?
H1 hummer with the factory locking diffs and run flat system. Not my preferred vehicle because of its width and weight, but it will go a lot of places as long as it fits.
Tacoma quad cab..short bed.
Reasonable approach and departure angles...and breakover angle.
Tire big enough
Rear locker
Room for family and gear including extra fuel.
Not cursed with full size width and weight.

This flexability I think makes it more useful than the JK.
Slightly older article and only considers rigs available for new purchase at that time. Notice where a version of Doc's falls in this.
4X4 Shootout

I'm still undecided on mine. To me though when I think of saying it's the best wheeling rig I can buy from the factory it has to perform in all wheeling enviroments. Doc makes a good point with the family part as well.
Another good article along these lines.

Top 10 trail rigs
Power wagon.
Front and rear selectable lockers. Disconnect sway bar. 1 tons. 4.56 gears.
Plenty of room for gear and people. Comes with winch from factory. Solid axles.

Full width is great for stability. Full width can also fit on most trails up here. My full size dodge is proof
I'm torn between an H1 and Rubicon in the LWB variety (not sure about LJ or 4 door JK).

The thing the H1 brings is it's desire to go everywhere, self recover and easy to work on and diagnose. The rubicon for pretty obvious reasons. Lockers front and rear, disconnect sway bars, lighter, MT's on it, proven on the trail more than almost any other rig. Fuel economy plays in for me which dumps the popwer wagon straight from the list. I've found I can carry all I need in an XJ and too much extra. For me I think payload with a Rubicon would fine, considering all types of wheeling. The H1 depending on configuration can store your stuff and keep it dry. Fuel mileage isn't horrible for it either. Comes with nice tires as well. I thought about the tire thing. I think there are some decent vehicles but honestly a good set of tires can make all the difference. I did say straight from the factory so tire choice plays in here and bumps out several vehicles in the running.

Leaning heavily towards a hummer for it's tank like abilities, ruggedness and reliability (maybe the coolness factor as well). The Rubicon is a close second though and may win out in the end.
I looked at that article, though I like and agree with a lot of their choices , I thought there were better choices then some of those. I don't care for the rovers other then the 90, all others are really low, the chevy Blazer with a 28" stiock tires seams a little low and uncapabible too, the Dodge is interesting but I would of preferred any late 90s early 2000 TRD Toyota truck or the FJ80 with factory front and rear lockers, or the Raptor seams way more capable then the blazer and dodge.
My thoughts for an affordable trail/DD would have to be a 80' model Chevy. Easy to modify somewhat capable on the trail and cheap. Plus most parts (proven in this club) will fit most other brands with some modification. The ones in the for mentioned article are great if you have the bank roll to shell out $30k. Late '70 early '80 Toyota trucks are nice also.
Idea here is no mods not even tires. Best rig straight from the factory. I figure $30k is doable for most with a loan. Practical no but that's not the idea.

This stemmed from a conversation I was having with someone and they were talking about how there rig is better offroad than other brands. They had thousands on parts and more in fab and labor so in my mind brand didn't matter at that point. So I figured I'd get more people's opinions on the matter.
Mel, just buy Tony's H1 and call it good.
I have his spare 42" tire Smile
That's not stock nor the version I would own if I could own one.
I got to see a stock 2005 extended Rubicon (Factory 4:1 low, Factory front and rear lockers, Factory 33" MT/R's) go down a trail side by side with a H3 (factory 4:1, factory rear locker, factory rock rails, and factory mounted 31's.)

The Hummer actually did better on the rocks. The Rubicon took a rock to it's rocker panel. Both owners gave each other crap the whole day. Neither needed a tug, neither broke, but the Hummer had fewer issues negotiating one of the rougher trails north of Tucson.

I'd grab an H3
Stock, factory options only
"Stock" is a four letter word around here.
Both the H3 and Rubicon I spoke of only had options that came from the factory.

Apparently you never saw what you could order back when they were available. Smile
One word, UNIMOG.
Cost eliminated that one from the choices for me. Upfront and repair costs. Otherwise, YES!
1997 FZJ80, Factory locked. The most sophisticated inline 6 ever produced, the only engine to run smoother would be a 6 boxer. A power curve ideal for offroad use. The most used vehicle in any 3rd world county for a reason, reliability.
If it does end up coming to the US this is a game changer. Price probably would be insane here though, expected to be 200,000 over seas.

Mercedes G500 4X4-2


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